Under Manarola, page 1 & 2

I created this children’s story for a uni assignment. It’s based in a small town in Italy called Manarola, part of Cinque Terre which is a string of small villages on the coast.

Manarola is incredibly beautiful, with houses the colour of sugar almonds and terra cotta that look like they’re about to tumble down the steep hill to the sea. Water rushes from the top of the hill out into the bay, and I thought “wouldn’t it be cool to go and explore down there? But what if you couldn’t find your way out again?!”

The story’s mostly in black and white as it’s a mock up, but we needed to make a few pages in full colour and this is one of them. It’s acrylic on canvas board with some permanent marker for highlights. The people are colourless on purpose.

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A perfectly good picture.

ImageYou know when you have a drawing that’s perfectly good. And you, silly person, want to make it great! So you play and you play and you add this and that until… aw, fuck.

This drawing was perfectly good and then I screwed up her eyes by adding too much black ink. So, to “fix it” (read: alter it irreparably by logic-defyingly adding MORE shit), I gave her some funky Steampunk-style goggles and a Rambo headband.

While this pastel/ quill and ink drawing isn’t FANTASTIC or GREAT, I think it represents a cool idea that wouldn’t have come about without taking a perfectly good drawing and screwing it up.

I can go back, pick out the bits I like, get rid of the bits that don’t work and maybe make a drawing that’s a lot more interesting than the perfectly good original.

Sometimes imperfect it better!