draw­ing poe: the won­der years

How the mas­ter of the macabre in­spired a fairy tale il­lus­tra­tor

ImagineFX - - Scott Gustafson -

Sev­eral years ago Scott came across an old pa­per­back of Tales of Mys­tery and Imag­i­na­tion, the col­lected sto­ries of Edgar Al­lan Poe, that he had bought when he was about 13.

“It not only brought back mem­o­ries of how fas­ci­nated I was by Poe and his sto­ries at that time, but it also got me won­der­ing what Poe would have been like at that same age,” Scott says. “As I thought more about it and then be­gan to re­search it, the idea of Ed­die just seemed to take on a life of its own.”

The re­sult­ing novel was Ed­die: The Lost Youth of Edgar Al­lan Poe, writ­ten and il­lus­trated by Scott and aimed at eight to 12 year-olds. It’s some­thing of a de­par­ture from his usual work, not least be­cause all of the 90-odd illustrations are in mono­chrome, apart from the cover art, shown here.

“As far as il­lus­trat­ing the story, even in its ear­li­est con­cept stages I knew I wanted a lot of pic­tures and that those pic­tures would be in black and white,” he ex­plains. “Black and white not only seemed ap­pro­pri­ate to Poe and the story, but il­lus­trat­ing a book with draw­ings as op­posed to paint­ings was some­thing I had wanted to do for a long time.”

The story it­self grew out of pos­si­ble sit­u­a­tions that the young Poe may have found him­self in, and the vis­ual pos­si­bil­i­ties grew out of that. “When il­lus­trat­ing it, I was mind­ful of an at­mos­phere that I wanted to evoke, as well as il­lus­trat­ing the ac­tual story,” says Scott.

Ed­die stakes out the mys­te­ri­ous Mephisto. Un­der the Lam­post

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.