Wednesday, January 19, 2011

An honest trade


“Well, well,” said the old gentleman, composing his features. “Don’t be afraid! We won’t make an author of you, while there’s an honest trade to be learnt, or brick-making to turn to.”

Oliver Twist
Chapter Fourteen




“Canvas 155”
January 18, 2011

[click to enlarge]




Update:
In the Forum: a reading rampage.

10 comments:

Two Tigers said...

Apparently those old advocates of honest trades and manual labor have no idea how hard it is to build something out of WORDS!

William Michaelian said...

Some things never change. When Oliver was admiring the books owned by his benefactor, the elderly gentleman suggested that someday Oliver would be able to write books like them himself. This quote was his response when Oliver said no, he would much rather read them, or sell them. A beautiful little commentary by the young Dickens, written when he was still in his twenties. I’ve been enjoying his sarcasm throughout.

jasmin said...

William, eine schöne Zeichnung, ich bewundere sie,
ich wünsche eine zufriedene Zeit herzlichst Jasmin

William Michaelian said...

Thank you, Jasmin. The drawings do have their own story to tell, like journal entries without words.

Jean Spitzer said...

Fun to read Dickens. There's so much to enjoy.

William Michaelian said...

Amazing atmosphere, delicious details. I wonder if there would have been a Masterpiece Theater without him.

Old 333 said...

I love the implication about the honesty of bricklayers sitting there in the text. Thanks for this, and for the picture, William!

William Michaelian said...

Thanks, Peter, and I have good news: my three-year-old grandson is here, and I just heard him tell his grandma in the kitchen that “Papa is working.” Papa. That’s me. And so his brainwashing has taken effect.

rahina q.h. said...

well i was told at a very early age not to draw and paint as i would be poor and hungry the rest of my life... no one mentioned the word happy or complete and honest to the self;)
and apologies if i have not commented as often... sometimes i silently listen:)

William Michaelian said...

No need to apologize. Listening is an art. As is being a parent, a sibling, a relative, or a friend. Time and again, we’re blind to the teachings of our children.