Le Petit Loup Rouge (2014)

The majority  of things that inspire me tend to come from children’s books. There is something very free about the artwork in these, as if they are allowed to put in extra magic because to the reader, magic is as real as reality itself. Le Petit Loup Rouge (Amélie Fléchais, 2014) contains wonderful forest illustrations which really helped me develop my own forest concept.

La Petit Loup Rouge translates to The Little Red Wolf, which I am assuming is a play on words for the tale of Little Red Riding Hood. The book was released in June 2014, and contains a marvelous amount of fantastic locations.

My French was bad in those days when I knew it. Now, I can barely understand a word. The glory of this book, as appears to be the key to visual storytelling, is that the images speak for themselves. Unless I am interpreting it completely wrong, -but then again, they still manage to tell a story, even if it might be the wrong one. The waterfall on the illustration above is one of my favourites. Although highly detailed, the repetition of circular forms and a light, simplistic colour palette creates a zen-like balance. The colour contrast of the wolf’s cloak catches immediate attention. I suppose this is the good thing about picture books: unlike animation, you can rest your eyes on every image before it disappears into motion.

Small details like these (illustration above) are what creates a visual mystery. One image zooms in on tiny details we otherwise would not have seen, thus, it makes us wonder: What about the background forest in the illustration below? What unseen details could unravel on the next page? Because of the unity of the visual style, images appear effortless. All we have to do, is space out.