Working on It—Notes on a Case of Melancholia, Or: A Little Death

Nicholas Gurewitch’s Notes on a Case of Melancholia, Or: A Little Death is a darkly illustrated and disarmingly earnest picture book about death, fatherhood, and psychoanalysis. In this recent Project Update, Gurewitch gave backers a peek a the process of ensuring continuity in his work.

When I depict an object or scene in this book, chances are it shows up on more than one page. When I do a redesign to make something look better, it can have a ripple effect throughout multiple pages. [Ensuring continuity is] a time-consuming process that has happened a few times, even in the late stages of the book.

A new page six in progress.

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Hey Tumblrfolk. I’m KICKSTARTING a new book! It’s about psychoanalysis, and death, and fatherhood- all in a style inspired by Edward Gorey.

Dream Journal Excerpt- March 2nd, 2013

I realize the strange guy I’m eating brunch next to is the filmmaker Ethan Coen. He’s more outgoing than I thought he’d be, but also kind of erratic.

He presses me about what I thought of “A Serious Man”. Rather than tell him my opinion, I theorize to him that the movie was an effort at emulating the method Shakespeare used to make Hamlet interesting.

He asks me gravely: “How did you know that?”

I tell him it’s obvious: The opening scene contains an indeterminately malicious or benevolent ghost, and the rest of the movie is the main character grappling with the mystery - to no avail.

He invites me to join him on the overnight ferry. We sleep in separate quarters, but I have to get up to urinate in the middle of the night. When I go to use the common bathroom, he is in there, sort of standing on the toilet seat with both his ass and feet on the seat. I apologize for intruding, but I don’t exactly hurry to close the door. We both smile, and it’s not too awkward. I understand that this is just the way he likes to shit (and he knows that I understand).


A cartoon by The PBF


Watch out, here comes Mr. Faeber the Grumpy Neighbor (animation I did with Karl Mort)