Thursday, November 24, 2011

Illustration Friday: Vanity

Blogging again so soon...I'm so happy!  Doubly happy too...I just managed to get this done in time for Illustration Friday's topic this week. Huzzah!  A very quick ink sketch that was all done in three days, which is fast for me.   If I had added any colour at all, it would have taken me much longer to finish. (Psst...sorry to my lovely lady readers out there, that the poor girl on the left has nothing on.) 

It's been a very long time since I've done a straight black and white illustration.  I mostly stick to using a sepia coloured ink and leave the black just for comic work.  So, this was a fun deviation to do. I also had a lot of help from Coral DRAW...I'm getting addicted to touching things up digitally now.

I might as well explain some of the symbolism I've used here.  I wanted to incorporate the idea of twin vanity goddess', though on the surface to appear to be beautiful and their lips dripping with honeyed words of how gorgeous the person they are dwelling in is, they are actually ladies of the underworld.  They stand ready to wither away the most tender hearted of people.  The two mirrors that each of them hold distorts the viewers perspective of how they see themselves, to the point of despair. 

Aphrodite, the goddess of beauty, stands for the impossibly too thin female figures of the fashion magazines.  Thus, why some of her bones show through her pale skin and she wears little or no clothes.  On her top hat, much like the Mad Hatter's, display the numbers of the so called ideal dress size of 2 and 0.  Though, Aphrodite's mirror, not matter how thin the on looker to this mirror gets, will always lie, showing the figure of a pig instead. 
I hope her hungry looks gets across on her face...I really wanted that to show.  This idea for Aphrodite came from the movie "Devil wears Prada", where the model's never eat or eat a cheese cube to keep from passing out.

Narcissus, the goddess who loves only her own beauty, has much of the same effect as her twin on those who dare look through her mirror.  They love only themselves, and cannot tear their gaze away from their own visage that they waste away or begin to indulge in risque relationships.
I got this idea from noticing a young teen aged girl on the bus, who spent the entire trip looking at her self and preening into her small hand mirror.  She even managed to walk down the street after she got off, still looking in her mirror.  I sort of laughed at that...what teenager doesn't do that? *giggles*

Well, that was rather a dark trip wasn't it?  I'll post something a little less, um, dark next time.  I took a lot of inspiration from Takaya Miou , who is one of my favourite manga illustrators of all time.  I tend to visit her website and blog a fair bit.

That's it for now.  Thanks for coming by and paying a visit my lovely friends, I wish you all a creative week!


  1. Your details always astound, Erin....even eerie ones like these :)

  2. Gorgeous work, Erin..I love how eerie they are and all of your fantastic details..thank you for describing these dastardly twins. Funny to watch that teen preening like that..I believe I was similar waaaaayyy back then. Keep up the fantastic work. And very cool work Takaya does too..though I'm partial to your work!

  3. I can't imagine how long it takes for you to do your fabulous work. I think that I'll have to stick to painting!

    Have a great week.


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