Saturday, July 07, 2007

Mr. Bickle

I'm definitely mildly obsessed with Taxi Driver. The imagery of the film is a constant source of inspiration for me as evidenced by the three or so pieces a year that have come like clockwork.

I decided to approach this piece as a tee design. I've had a few people comment on previous Bickle efforts, asking for shirts, and I thought doing an illustration with a limited color approach would do me good. I've been writing a lot more than drawing lately, and I could use the practice.

Travis Bickle



Human Mollusk said...

Great design, Ray!
Hope you don't mind a minor crit tho: The shadow on Bickle's forehead looks unrealistic.

I like the weird symbolism you've got going on here. What's up with the seethrough sleeves? You always come up with really surprising motifs.
The colors are cool, too.

Ray Frenden said...

Thanks, Fufu. Most of my efforts only take a couple of hours, tops, to produce. This one took five. Five hours. Ugh.

It was the damnable trap of trying to nail a likeness that got me. I definitely need more practice when it comes to celeb drawings and the like.

I second guessed all the shadows on the face a bunch; I uploaded a 30 minute (hugely sped-up) video of the drawing process to Brightcove.

I agree that the shadow sucks - I'm sort of embarrassed of this piece now.

The concept of the see through sleeves was sorta-kinda a few different thoughts together. One idea was that in behaving at his basest, Bickle revealed a bit of the dark, animal nature that we all have, but choose to mask (IE: no tricks up his sleeves, frankness).

Another thought was it would simply make him appear more vulnerable to be able to "see right through him."

The bird/greenery symbolize the peace, the hushing of his inner urges that committing violence brought him.

I dunno; I'm not real fond of it now.

Aeron said...

I wouldn't sweat it, the character is stylized so the shadow on the forehead works well enough. The video was interesting to see.