Sunday, 18 September 2016

Mary Shelley at Universal

Right! I have been intending to post this frajizandajiz. The inspiration (apart from the usual 1930s Universal monsters fixation) came from Kate Beaton. If you are unfamiliar with her work I suggest, urge, beg and implore you to visit her Hark! A Vagrant site and meander around the archives. Two particular favourites of mine are Dude Watchin' With the Bront√ęs and Shallot. I first saw Dude Watchin' in a shop window on Haworth High Street (appropriately enough) and a more succinct summation of authorial differences to the male figure in fiction between the sisters I have yet to find. As for Shallot, well, you will never read Tennyson in the same light again.
The gestation period for my cartoon was very long. The execution even longer. And the final scan and post even longer still, but here we are all finished and complete and as gorgeous as geese. Still quite a few flaws in execution, but as far as producing this little piece goes it has been a joy from beginning to end. I reverted to more traditional methods in the crafting of this cartoon. Pencils, light box and then, pen and ink. The finished artwork was done in indian ink on Bristol board, an absolutely delightful medium to work on.
The other really pleasant part of working on this little project was the research. The online National Portrait Gallery site was invaluable although it has to be said that my renditions are only approximations of their images. Bram Stoker was strange looking cove. The beautiful Mary Shelley looks a little bit like my wife!
For the sake of completeness I shall now include the preliminary pencils in their raw and unabridged detail.