Monday, January 10, 2011

The Outsider

I've been working on these paintings for the last three weeks, and I'm pleased to have finally finished them. They are book illustrations based on the Albert Camus novel, 'The Outsider'.
I tried to get enough variety in the images to make them as interesting as possible, without taking the text too literally, but at the same time staying faithful to the essence of the narrative.
The coffin painting took some thought, as its a strange scene in the book. I wouldn't go so far as to call it surreal, but it certainly has a peculiar undertone. I tried to capture that subtlety of odd perception which Meursault (the main protagonist) describes, which is why the perspective is slightly askew. I purposefully made the overhead lights unnaturally bright, so as to emphasise the theme of dazzling light that permeates the novel...
The middle painting (the close-up face) deals with the disorientating light as mentioned above. Its a dramatic, and quite pivotal scene in the book. The rendering probably deserved more attention, but I just didn't have the time to spare unfortunately.
However, its the prison cell painting which I was most keen to spend more time on, but alas, the deadline prevented this. I had to improvise areas of this painting that sadly don't work as well as I had planned. I had imagined this image being more atmospheric, bordering on haunting, with a lot more detail in the light and tone. Never mind.

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