James Jean


I found out about James Jean when I asked about a set of comic books named Fables but rather than the actual content of the book I was much more interested in the artwork for the front cover. I had fallen in love with the graphical style on the front as the line work was so delicate but detailed and the colour was bright, powerful but still blended really well together like a classic water-colour painting. This was when Ken whilst working had told me about how he had a new book out called ‘Rebus’. I had to buy it there and then, it’s truly incredible to me, it captures all the things I saw from the cover of the comic book and so much more.
I would love to be able to reach this level and standard of work one day but I think there’s a lot more work involved to get there as well as the fact it is a very unique style. But rather than actually having and using this style, I’d love to be able to create the level of definition within his characters and worlds. There’s so much narrative within his images and so much going on, you really want to just stare at the drawings for ages just to see how the lines and colours are formed.
He really keeps to his heritage with the style of imagery and the delicate colours and painting sort of style.

The ‘maze girl’ one is one of my favourite images from James Jean at the moment. It captures so much emotion within just the stance of the girl, even though you don’t even see her face you get a sense of how she feels. The body posture in which she’s having to hold the, what seems delicate but intricate, maze wheel behind her back. It’s almost like symbolising that it’s not so easy to move forward, it’s even more expressed with the boy ahead easily rolling the wheel along as the old game is. Her posture and the fact you can see her very small eye lashes brushing down and her head orientation tell you a lot about how she’s feeling. The composition in which she is in the middle, means that she’s the main focus but then gives the maze wheel the full face to the audience.
It’s something that I’ve looked and some what mentioned before about the look of the character and remember how much the posture, curves and layout all effect the emotions conveyed.


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