Happy 200th Birthday Charlie Dickens! He is probably my favorite “classic” author. The imagery and moods he builds are so robust, not to mention the themes and brilliant characters he designed are right up my alley. London, smokestacks, chimneys, murders, dry humor, smart humor, dark humor, despair, hope, fear, shadows, chases, rooftops, thievery, spying, seedy underworlds, gangs, wars, and ghosts, all in tailed coats and top hats; what’s not to love?
The cantankerous old grump hobbled his way home through the blustering snow and dangerous ice, completely unaware his life was following in his wake. A young weak flame, his past, hovered right behind him. A giant lumbering man, his present, walks careful aside him as not to fall out of step. Ahead of him, creeps the shadows of his future and into them he ventures. A lingering cry haunts the alleys and the streets, chains clank and rattle of warnings to a ruined man as he bitterly scoffs off the world, heading home to sulk.
Here is this year’s rendition of Dickens’ Ebenezer Scrooge along with all four ghosts. I stayed with the traditional flame character for the Ghost of Christmas Past. I had to do three or four thumbnails, and a nearly full render of another drawing to get a composition that I liked since I wanted them stacked, using the Ghost of Christmas Yet To Come as the backdrop. I haven’t really seen Scrooge done with a beard, sometimes Victorian chops, but usually clean shaven. I thought it might be fun to give him a cranky old beard and make him stout rather than long and lanky. I had a lot of fun doing this one, hope you enjoy.
“Darkness is cheap, and Scrooge liked it.” – A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens.
Now that it is officially December, I thought I would post a flashback illustration in a Christmas theme. This is one I did several years back of Jacob Marley appearing before Ebenezer Scrooge to warn him of his impending future. Although, in life, Marley was probably a normal sized person, I felt he should probably be larger than life in his ghostly form. Instead of wailing from afar, he certainly would be in Scrooge’s face, shaking him up as to make sure he gets the message. I sold several prints of it at a Silver Lake, California show last year and is available on Etsy around Christmas time.