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Inspirations and plans for creating 'A Sense of Place' illustrations

14 Feb 2017

With Brookwood Cemetery as my 'Place', I considered different poems and literary interpretations of Death. However, I felt that many of the poems are romantacising death. And a cemetery, although eery, is also sad. Many of the graves were falling apart or the names were worn down. As if nature seems to be claiming back the landscape and overrunning the graves which encroach onto the landscape.

The idea that nature is destroying and fracturing something which, at the time they were placed there, were thought to be permanent man made structures is an unusual angle. I am always looking for the alternative angles as these create the most in depth illustration, in my opinion.

 

In order to fully develop an idea, planning is key. Here is an example of how I develop my first idea of nature vs grave sites into a deeper concept:

  • Research process used to create the graves. Where the stone was quarried? How old the stone was? How had it been created (Geology)? What tools might have been used in early victorian times (when most of the faint graves were made) in creating and engraving the stones? How has the process changed over time?

  • Research how weathering affects the grave stones. Rain and cold weather? Or also acid rain, which could be seen as 'man made'?

  • Look into other things which show nature taking over. Chernobyl? Abandoned cities? Films with a dystopian theme e.g. I am Legend? Man made objects e.g. cars or wire fences, that nature have enveloped?

  • Media which explore the graveyard location? Disney's Silly Symphonies? 'A Monster Calls'? 'The Book Thief'? Harry Potter graveyard scenes? 'The Graveyard Book' by Neil Gaiman?

From collecting research from a variety of sources, book, film, art, news, articles etc. I can gain a better understanding of what I want to say and what I think is IMPORTANT to say, not just allows me inpsiration for drawing and idea.

 

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Illustrations © Claire Marchant 2019