See Sublime Watercolor Depictions of Motherhood

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Photo: Samantha Hahn

Celebrating every stage of motherhood, the artist Samantha Hahn captures the full experience in her new book, A Mother Is a Story: A Celebration of Motherhood, out today from Abrams. In a series of ethereal watercolor illustrations, the Brooklyn-based mother of two paints alongside powerful quotes on motherhood by the likes of Maya Angelou and Victor Hugo.

“After giving birth to my son, I remember looking around at women on the street and thinking, ‘Wow, you did this too!’ and having an automatic connection even with strangers,” Hahn writes in the book’s introduction. “Becoming a mother gives you insight into the mind of your own mother, it allows you to see from her perspective for the first time and deepens the bond you share. … Creating this book, I wanted to see if it were possible to portray this shared experience of motherhood in all its glorious, messy beauty.”

Click below to see illustrations from the book, featuring sage words from Elizabeth Gaskell, Joyce Carol Oates, Cynthia Rowley, and more. Hahn will sign copies at the book’s launch Wednesday night at STORY’s “F Word” gallery exhibit honoring Women’s History Month, for which she designed the signs and portraits. A Mother Is a Story is published in conjunction with Hahn’s Stories for My Child: A Mother’s Memory Journal.