A Picture Is Worth a Thousand Words
One of the best parts about reading a book is discovering strange worlds, strong characters, and new realities that come to life right inside your head. Our personal connection with books stems as much from the strength of our imagination as from the original words and descriptions by the author.
Who hasn’t gone to see a movie adaptation only to be dismayed—or occasionally delighted—by the actor chosen for a beloved literary role, or by the CGI or costumes used to depict more fanciful characters?
In his blog The Composites, digital artist Brian J Davis uses police composite sketch software and the original descriptions of popular literary characters to illustrate them as their authors may have first intended. Take Frankenstein’s monster, first described by Mary Shelley as:
“Beautiful! Great God! His yellow skin scarcely covered the work of muscles and arteries beneath; his hair was of a lustrous black, and flowing […] but these luxuriances only formed a more horrid contrast with his watery eyes, that seemed almost of the same colour as the dun-white sockets in which they were set, his shrivelled complexion and straight black lips.”
The monster in the book is hardly the flat-headed, neck-bolted behemoth that Boris Karloff so popularized.
Ever wonder how far Hollywood differed from the books, or how similar the characters you pictured are to an official law enforcement composite? Keep reading.