Thursday, July 4, 2013

Drawing Villains

An evil enchanter as seen by H.J Ford.

Since my last post, I’ve finished the previous book illustration and started on the next one. In this new illustration readers are introduced to the over-arching nemesis of the series.

Traditionally, villains are ugly. Bad = Ugly, you know. But what about relatively normal-looking, evil characters? Or even deceptively handsome ones? Aren’t those representations all the more creepy because they don’t have huge bulbous noses or horns on their heads?

It's easy to recognize evil when
it looks devilish. Illustration by HJ Ford.

Interesting questions, eh? As I began the new drawing this morning, I found myself considering giving my villain some caricatured features in order to make him look more "evil." But that’s not how he’s described in the book (although he does have horns on his head – kind of) and I must draw him as I wrote him. This character's actions are extremely evil, though he hides them behind a "normal" face. As we are all aware, good and smooth looks can sometimes hide awful things beneath. If a heart is fetid and foul, or cold as ice, then evil will surely grow there.

I didn’t mean to make this a preachy post, but it seems that drawing villains is something of a moral issue for me.

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