Labyrinth book art
Create characters with Cory Godbey.
This year marks the 30th anniversary of Jim Henson’s classic film, Labyrinth. As a part of the anniversary celebration my picture book, Labyrinth Tales, tells three original stories, each focusing on a different character from the ground-breaking, strange and dazzling world that Jim Henson, Brian Froud and many others worked hard to create.
When it comes to writing and illustrating for something as beloved as Labyrinth, my main goal is to approach it honestly and respectfully. It’s an honour that I’ve not taken lightly. I feel that, in a manner of speaking, I’ve been allowed into Brian’s garden to gather up sticks. Put another way, he built the sandbox and we get to play in it.
Well, perhaps one of these days Brian will come swinging out of his front door with a broom and chase me out of his garden (because, really, who wants some kid playing in your yard!) but until then I’ve enjoyed the artistic pleasure of intensely studying his work. It’s richly complex, astonishingly beautiful and truly magic.
To bring these new stories to life, I work hard to be certain that I’ve gathered appropriate reference for the characters and the world. There’s a delicate balance you must walk while trying to create something honest and new, yet at the same time respecting the original work. It’s been gratifying to see the response from fans who have enjoyed my take on these classic characters!
I feel incredibly grateful that I’ve been given the opportunity to draw and write for such widely adored characters, and in some small measure add to the legacy of Jim Henson.
Cory creates fanciful illustrations for books and films. His award-winning work has been featured in the likes of Spectrum: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art and the Society of Illustrators. You can see his work at www.corygodbey.com.