Good Reading : February 2010
FEBRUARY 2010 ı goodreading 23 behind the book of the hearth fire. I love to explore relationships and the way people develop and change. It's not surprising, then, that portraits of favourite characters make up most of the artwork in the galleries -- and my readers are exceptionally talented! It's exciting to open up a new image of a beloved character, or to see a reader's individual interpretation of a scene from a novel. Gallery contributors range from the professional and semi- professional artists to young readers trying their hand. Everyone has his or her own vision of the characters -- generally much more beautiful or handsome than my own mental picture! Since I first saw Kay Steele's portrait of Faolan from the 'Bridei Chronicles', I've thought of my character as resembling this striking image, despite the fact that Faolan is described in the books as the sort of man nobody would look at twice (a useful quality for a master spy). The other portrait of Faolan, by French illustrator Capucine Mazille, captures something of his elusive quality and his sadness. While most of the art work on my website is based on my books and characters, there are some artists whose work I display because our ideas run parallel in so many ways. One of these is Portuguese graphic illustrator Francisco Martins, who experiments with themes of nature and mythology. I love to be surprised by my readers. When they illustrate scenes from the books, it often isn't the most dramatic they choose, but the subtle, the romantic, the evocative. A pair of hands gently placing a cloak over a weeping woman's shoulders; a man standing in the shadows, watching a couple as they chat by a camp fire (yes, Faolan again!). A girl dancing, red hair flying, lost in her own world; a woman in a blue gown, running along a beach barefoot as if suddenly set free. These images tell me that my novels have spoken to readers on a deeper level than entertainment or escapism, because they cut to the emotional heart of the story, showing that the artists have understood exactly what I was trying to do. I'm waiting with keen anticipation to see what artwork arises from my newest novel, Heart's Blood, which is very loosely based on the fairytale Beauty and the Beast, and is my first attempt at a ghost story. The 12th-century Irish setting and the cast of unusual characters should spark the creative imagination, I think. To view the galleries of fan art, visit Julia's website and click on the 'media' link. www.julietmarillier.com www.writerunboxed.com Juliet's most recent book, Heart's Blood, is published by Pan Macmilllan, rrp $32.99. Clodagh in the Otherworld © Helena Reis. Helena’s website is http://helenart.feyrealm.com. Faolan © Capucine Mazile. Capucine’s website is http://capucinemazille.com/.
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