Today I tried to create a mouse that was totally different to one that I created earlier this year. I wanted to see if I could change the persona of the charter and make it become an evil character. I was inspired by the book The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka and illustrated by Lane Smith. As the book is about the wolf’s side of the story and how he accidentally blew the houses down by his sneezing. The illustration of the wolf is totally different from the wolf that we all know and see from the fairy tale, big teeth, big eyes etc. This is the image of the wolf in the book:
As you can see the wolf has tiny teeth, small eyes with glasses on which shows intelligence as well as an innocent look about him. The eyebrows are raised to suggest he is saying ‘who? me?’ His colour of his hair is a light brown not a dark dirty colour so it shows he his clean and takes care of himself. Also the way he addresses the reader is quite relaxed as he tells you to call him Al, first term basis which is associated with friendship. From this short analysis I could see how the whole character has become softer and a lot nicer than one originally perceived. From here I used this mouse that I had originally produced:
I wanted to make this mouse evil and come across as a bad character and so produced a couple:
Above is using my usual materials that I tend to scan in and collage with. I went for the intellectual look with the glasses that are unusual. Using simple colours he could be a character that looks normal however he is clever and devious in the way he thinks.
Above is the same character but using a different collage. I have used I photo I took from within a flower, the way I have placed it looks like he has some funny intestinal organs within him and you can see them due to him being slightly opaque. I like the bold colours although it is totally out of my style and I feel it is too cartoony which I don’t tend to do.
This is the one I think works best, using the combination of the previous two techniques I have created a mouse that you wouldn’t exactly want to cuddle. The hair is made up of a photo of a tinsel head, putting the spikes in the direction of the natural hair of the mouse. From reading the previous posted article by Lawrence R. Sipe, where it comments on how spikes and sharp angles create an uneasy feeling of insecurity with the reader. That is what I have tried to attempt with the teasel hair. Making the mouse look rugged by adding scares and scratches to show it has been in a few battles without consequences. I have not gone a for a cartoony look as I feel it will just make fun of the mouse. I have found I tend to work better when I use real natural anatomy of animals as I find it easier than creating the figure from scratch. Here is one of the images I tried to do from scratch:
I didn’t finish it as I was getting frustrated with it. I learnt that everything doesn’t work first time and if this was part of a book I would go back to it to improve it but I really don’t like it due to the composition, figure, colours etc. I prefer the previous image and so I would try and use that one.
From here I am going to carry on exploring, I don’t know where it is going to take me and I am not comfortable with it but I think it will benefit from this learning curve.
Scieszka, J., Smith, L., 1991, The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs. London: Puffin.