Monday, November 8, 2010

Now With More Words Than Pictures!

As another month has passed me by without progress on the Hans Christian Andersen project, I find myself compelled to readjust the focus of this blog yet again.  I suppose one could call it a success; as my mission statement of sorts (back in January) announced that the purpose of giving myself the "assignment" of illustrating Andersen's tales was to somehow trick myself into creating other art.  Since August I have been primarily absorbed in working on my Steampunk Taxidermy (working title) series.  October saw not only the completion of likely the most complicated piece in the series, but also my very first book cover design, a project I greatly enjoyed working on.  Now, a week into November, chilly, dark six o'clocks alleviate some of the guilt I feel for spending entire evenings chained to my desk.  Hence, the Raven, next (and largest) of my Steampunk drawings, is well on his way.

This does NOT mean that I am abandoning the Hans Christian Andersen project.  Quite on the contrary, I've had a delicious (literally - but that's all I'm telling for now!) image from The Goloshes of Fortune in my mind since July. (Thank you, Kindle, for documenting just how long it has been since I read it...)  If you haven't read The Goloshes of Fortune (and you probably haven't), I highly recommend it.  While not all the Andersen tales I've read so far have been worthwhile, this one is lengthy, but a delightful read.  In fact, I highlighted several lines that I was considering for my illustration before I came across the one that I absolutely had to use.  If I haven't convinced you to read it already, maybe these will whet your apetite.

"Their shapes were too graceful, their complexions too delicate, and the cut of their dresses much too elegant.  They were two fairies.  The younger was not Fortune herself, but the chambermaid of one of Fortune's attendants, who carries about her more trifling gifts."

"In a very few seconds the watchman had travelled more than two hundred thousand miles to the moon, which is formed of a lighter material than our earth, and may be said to be as soft as new fallen snow."

"The materials of which it was built seemed just as soft, and pictured forth cloudy turrets and sail-like terraces, quite transparent, and floating in the thin air."

"The first heart he entered was that of a lady, but he thought he must have got into one of the rooms of an orthopedic institution where plaster casts of deformed limbs were hanging on the walls, with this difference, that the casts in the institution are formed when the patient enters, but here they were formed and preserved after the good people had left. These were casts of the bodily and mental deformities of the lady's female friends carefully preserved."

"Then he entered the heart of this man's wife; it was an old, tumble-down pigeon-house; the husband's portrait served as a weather-cock; it was connected with all the doors, which opened and shut just as the husband's decision turned."

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