“beauty seen.”

faerie tale feet piece inspired by the french fairy tale tellings of “beauty and the beast,” or “la belle et la bête.”

(a little bit of madame de villeneuve and beaumont’s versions; both worth a read and a compare & contrast study in book club!)  

my image focuses on beauty’s feet (with jealousy-evoking marie-antoinette-like heels i made up) with beast’s looming shadow, her 6 sisters, birds from the castle menagerie, one of her ruined father’s merchant ships, the horse, the wolves, the magic mirror, the fleur de lis (vive la france!), the rose her father stole to bring back to beauty & source of all of beast’s wrath, a treasure chest that could never be filled to capacity, and the golden ring that beauty would turn to return to the beast’s castle after visiting her sick father & her greedy sisters tried to trick her into staying home instead of returning to the heart-broken & dying beast. (you see the original french tale is a bit even more dramatic than the disney classic! definitely worth the read & definitely worth watching jean cocteau’s black & white film version of 1946! & even more kudos to you if you can get your hands on a copy of christophe gans’ “la belle et la bête,” the 2014 french film.  stunning.)

 in the research process, i took the opportunity to collect some rare illustrated editions and all the other lovely versions i could get my hands (paws) on... and somehow my first beast sketches looked like a tony diterlizzi illustration… fine by me! i ended up of course just using the beast’s shadow….

in the research process, i took the opportunity to collect some rare illustrated editions and all the other lovely versions i could get my hands (paws) on... and somehow my first beast sketches looked like a tony diterlizzi illustration… fine by me! i ended up of course just using the beast’s shadow….

 once i finished my research, i go though my lists of story icons that would service telling the story visually as well as would work well as silhouette shapes.  so here's the step where i'm starting to trace the icon drawings from the tale to fill in the background pattern…

once i finished my research, i go though my lists of story icons that would service telling the story visually as well as would work well as silhouette shapes.  so here's the step where i'm starting to trace the icon drawings from the tale to fill in the background pattern…

 here’s the finished background drawing, which i retraced onto the illustration board with some transfer paper.

here’s the finished background drawing, which i retraced onto the illustration board with some transfer paper.

 starting with the PINK gouache background, i start painting the piece one colour at a time. so background, then beasts shadow, then the shapes– and the shapes again to match what colour they’d be in beast’s shadow. woohoo colour theory!

starting with the PINK gouache background, i start painting the piece one colour at a time. so background, then beasts shadow, then the shapes– and the shapes again to match what colour they’d be in beast’s shadow. woohoo colour theory!

 definitely fell in love with the colour red gouache i mixed for the roses in the background!!  i mixed winsor & newton opera pink, flame red, and the essential naples yellow.

definitely fell in love with the colour red gouache i mixed for the roses in the background!!  i mixed winsor & newton opera pink, flame red, and the essential naples yellow.

 background done… time to paint the shoes! 

background done… time to paint the shoes! 

 “beauty seen.” inside, outside, and discovered.

“beauty seen.” inside, outside, and discovered.

original painting has SOLD, but you can get your limited edition signed print here:  http://etsy.me/1fzrWGq

purchase the matching greeting cards here:  http://etsy.me/1I4I0Xt