Home, the quirky triumphant solo debut of Carson Ellis, might look oddly familiar. You're not mistaken – you've seen this charmingly wholesome artwork before. And it's not because it looks as if it fell out of a Wes Anderson movie set and into your lap. Carson Ellis is the illustrator for children's classics like Lemony Snickett and The Benedict Society. She's also well known for her artwork in Wildwood, a children's fantasy novel written by her husband, Colin Meloy, the lead singer for the Decemberists. You'll recognize Carson's contributions on the band's album covers and merchandise, full of blossoming colors and quaint patterns.
Home is an ode to the many structures across the world that we dwell in, from the messy riotous nest of a sparrow to the peaked roof of the artist's own humble abode. Carson gives a nod not only to the cheerful graffiti and clustered bricks of urban sprawl but also the domed turrets of white marbled eastern palaces and the cozy cottages of the countryside. She indulges in the silly and the fantastic at every turn, with houses fashioned out of shoes that spill mischievous children across the yard or the Spartan spatial quiet of a lunar landscape. Peculiar characters people her pages; knights in armor astride seahorses, a Norse god in a winged, gold helmet, and a Slovakian duchess peeking grimly from beneath her hat while anchoring twins in her iron grasp. The final page is a culmination of the detailed illustrations that have preceded it, with an element from each scene included as a component of the artist's own studio.
– Kaz Weida