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  • In Search of the Most Beautiful Pictures Ever Seen August 30, 2015

    Author: Beach Combing | in : Actualite , trackback


    One of the nice things about running a blog is that you can ask people things and as Beach is now at a point of nervous desperation on this issue he is going to open this obsession to a wider public. In 1993, 1994 or possibly 1995 Beach was walking down a street in a British cathedral city when he passed the local children’s bookshop. There on display in the window were the most beautiful illustrations that he had ever seen. He was so impressed that he can still remember them tolerably well twenty years later, though he only saw them for about ten seconds on that bright winter day. Impressed the next day he returned to the bookshop but the pictures had gone: the shop assistant explained that they were illustrations for a children’s book (a new children’s book?) and that other passers-by had been affected by them too. Why, there was the book on sale! But Beach stupidly let it go. It was a time of poverty and while he had intended to try and buy the window pictures for twenty quid he wasn’t going to waste that money on a ‘kid’s book’. Foolish, foolish…

    The years rolled by and Beach just couldn’t get the pictures out of his head. In fact, they have grown with the ‘remembering’ and are now cosmically beautiful and shining things and it would be wonderful to possess them (ah!) and then hang them up in the house where the children can marvel. The problem is the name of the illustrator and the name of the book are unknown. So here is a brief description of the two pictures that really stuck in Beach’s mind. Both pictures were from fairy tales: the first showed an evil witch offering an apple to Snow White (?) out of her window and the second a long haired princess leaning out of a castle window in a mountainscape. It is no accident that both involved windows, this was their secret. On the left of the picture there was the extremely detailed but irregular clutter of a room: a witch’s lair, a princess’ unmade bed etc. Outside the window was a landscape, woods in the first mountains in the second. The landscapes were almost frighteningly symmetrical and contrasted fiercely with the images inside. Of course, all this depends on fallible human memory.

    Please, please, please can you help Beach find these images: drbeachcombing AT yahoo DOT com

    There may have been other pictures but these are the two that have stuck.


    Filip found them, 30 Aug 2015, THANKS!:

    Angela Barrett, author Josephine Poole, Snow White (1991)

    And here are the pictures.

    angela barrett apple offered


    A couple of thoughts. Wonderful to see them again, but interesting (i) how my brain had ‘perfected’ them and changed them in various ways. For example the princess was looking outside the window on the left. (ii) My perfect images have now been destroyed by having the real objects in front of me.

    Thanks again to Filip!