Hilary Knight’s Favorite Things

The celebrated illustrator who drew Eloise shares a few of his favorite things

THE IMAGE ABOVE is a photograph of some of my close relatives and friends—including Lena Dunham, who is behind the HBO documentary about my life and work, It’s Me, Hilary: The Man Who Drew Eloise, coming out in March. We had an instantaneous connection when we met. She has a tattoo of Eloise, the children’s book character I helped create, on her back.

The image in front and the little fish and frog refer to my author photo from Eloise Takes a Bawth. I actually got into the water of my East Hampton pond for it, which was horrific; it was filled with bullfrogs and fish. To the right is a portrait of Eloise and my favorite doll of her. She was a representation of a lot of the strong women in my life, including Kay Thompson, the author, but also of myself.

My parents, who were illustrators, did that New Yorker cover in 1926. I always thought what evolved into Eloise started with this cover: It’s very elegant and stylish. The video camera is important to me because I documented every single thing I’ve drawn in the last 20 years, starting with my pencil sketches. A lot of the footage is going into the documentary.

Behind is a picture of my cat, Ruff; my friends told me to put him in a cat show, and I took him to the big one at Madison Square Garden. He won Eighth Best Household Pet and got that ribbon. I didn’t want him to do it, but he seemed to like it.

On the right is one of the little stage settings I’ve started creating: It’s a portrait of my assistant, Wilson, on the left, with me, out exploring. He’s the Indian child actor Sabu, and I’m an Indian prince on an elephant, which is something I would still like to be.”

as told to Christopher Ross

Wall Street Journal wsj.com Original URL http://www.wsj.com/articles/hilary-knights-favorite-things-1423754062?KEYWORDS=hilary+knight

© 2015 by Hilary Knight .

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