“When we want to co-create, we read. We want to participate; and we want ownership. We would rather have sketches than verisimilitude — because the sketches, at least, are ours.”
Peter Mendelsund, associate art director at Alfred A. Knopf, explores what we envision (and what we do not) when reading literature. The answer, it turns out, is “not much” — at least nothing close to what we see in the physical world — and yet we have a strong connection to these sketched-out images because they are, in part, our own creative handiwork. Blending narrative theory and personal reflection, Mendelsund offers some bold answers to the question of how vision and literature align; and by juxtaposing classic texts (from Chaucer to Calvino) with striking illustrations and simple questions, he challenges readers to reflect on their own experiences of seeing while reading.
Visit Mendelsund’s blog to learn more about this book and other projects here.
All images by Peter Mendelsund