The curly girl and I watched Coraline today, which I love, but what I love most is the ‘Making of…’ in the bonus features. The detail and work involved in hand-making every tiny thing is awe-inspiring. Check. It. Out. You can also see the hand knitting of a tiny star-covered jumper here.
But the thing that really moved me was the art direction. I just loved hearing about it. It was inspired by the illustrations of the Japanese artist Tadahiro Uesugi whose illustrations are, in turn, inspired by American advertising of the 1960s (so far, so right-up-my-street). The images above are some of his illustrations for the film. There’s an interesting interview and more pictures on this website.
I think there is a lightness, a sense of glamour, a sense of freedom in his illustrations. I love how he shows beautiful nature in our cities – tree-lined streets, leaves on a patio, roof terraces. I love a roof terrace.
I love how leaves and light are part of the glamour. That is something that I hope to achieve.
The colour palate of his illustrations is always so beautiful and muted with all those sharp contrasts of light and shadow like a lovely Edward Hopper. Feel free to buy me one, it’s my birthday soon….
My idea has always been these two characters – Byrd and Spry – who represent different aspects of what my flowers are about. Byrd is like Julianne Moore in A Single Man (fabulous, all mid-century and a bit dishevelled). These illustrations are definitely Byrd.