Beauty and the Beast

That was a 1976 commission by Editions Fleurus in Paris. The original text by the Princesse de Beaumont had been slightly updated for easier reading for the 13-year old girl audience of the magazine Djinn.

Of course I had seen Cocteau's version of the tale, an obvious influence here with the torch-bearing arms...

But for the rest I spent a full month preparing, sketching, drawing and painting the 15 pages I was instructed to deliver.




I took a day strolling at the Château de Vizille, exploring it both inside and outside, seeking appropriate settings, taking sketches and pictures.



Then I worked on horses in movement until I felt I had them right. Errors are still visible, though, but they are of the minor kind.

I still was on a learning curve, and that was when I understood how to draw trees.

For the monster I started from a book of photographs of large cats, focusing on the lynx. The male figure had to be tall and imposing. I also went deep into costume documentation, so details would be true to life.
I'm quite happy with the clothes in general and the folds in the cloak in particular. Same to the right here.