Saturday, July 14, 2012
Loki - The Oedipus Trickster(Mock cover #3)
Loki Laufeyson. You are one fucked up child only a parent could mess up. I heart this character to bits! Man Loki. Lady Loki. Kid Loki. It doesn't matter! This character is pure fun!
For those who do not know this Marvel comic character, she is based on Norse Mythology. She is specifically based on the god of trickery and deceit. This illustration is influenced by both the Thor film and the comic book series.
Being a messed up case in both classic and modern interpretation, Loki is a complex villain and in recent events, changed into a woman not of his will in the comic, but of complex circumstances (It doesn't mean she didn't have fun being a female. She messed with so many people with her new sexual identity. Verily so!). XD
In a way, this is a transgender piece to me. Loki is generally a man, who turns into a woman from time to time. He is all about transformation and change in some ways. I am not saying Loki is some deep symbolic character per se, just that this illustration for me is a transgender piece- Nothing else. Nothing too complicated in my opinion. I worked on this piece, constructing it, trying to understand the character, and what not when making this piece... It doesn't mean I am necessarily correct. It's an interpretation.
However beyond the sexual theme, I felt Loki's tale is more of an Oedipus-like story of a child, who grows up to be an adult with the will to overcome her father and triumph. The idea of needing to kill the old to rule as the new is very classic concept be it Norse, Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and so forth in history and in myth.
For Loki, the need to rule means much to her, I think. I constantly feels she is casted in the shadow of her brother, Thor. She never feels she can gain Odin's love. She isn't the ideal son. As a half giant, abandoned for being small and human proportioned (a deformity in frost giant culture) by her biological father, the frost giant king, Laufey, her existence is tragic. She was unloved to begin with. Her own father abandoned her as a baby in the frozen tundras of the icy Nifelheim realm to die. She was then saved and adopted by the main comic hero's(Thor) father, Odin. She was raised never knowing of her origin till much later, which must be a shock to her self identity. Eventually Odin, her adopted father, would abandon her for Thor, who she compares herself too always as a rival and enemy.
She has always had a complex issue with father icons. The usual result of wanting to overcome said paternal figure shows through her constant evil schemes, battles, vengeance, desire for love, need of acceptance, need to murder, need to over throne, and other classic parental wants. Loki is a very Oedipus being.
In the illustration, I wanted to show her as a strong character regardless of moral code enjoying the success of getting past her pain and anger with one father- Laufey. Yet, I also wanted to show the villainy of her archetype. This visual approach was to show a human side of Loki yet show she is still evil. Powerful and independent, but still evil. She is able to overcome a chapter in her life in vicious glory whether the audience find this is the proper way to do it.
As an experiment, I used different textures from ink spilt photos, different types of metal, and papers as I wanted more painterly and toothy quality in the piece. Graphite made lines disappeared for the most part in this piece as I let it be more of a guide to the digital aspects. Using graphic elements and painterly strokes for a more modern approach is heavily influenced by Adam Hughes and James Jean to pop out figures and show story through symbols and literal imagery.
The piece revolves around death such as the ravens, or the graphic, flat shapes of trees withered and dry. Everything about the piece even the pale and almost sickly color palette in both Laufey and Loki's skin is screaming death. Emotionally I wanted the viewer to sense the sexuality and horror emanating from the subject matter as a beauty slaughters a beast of a giant, covered in crimson glory only to understand the monster she killed is her father. The violence is harshly stark in contrast against the pure, white snow making it feel more vulgar as if innocence is tainted beyond repair. The fans should see it both disturbing yet sensual, monstrous yet human, and sympathetic yet unforgiving.
Loki is a beautiful asshole!
Lol. I do love crazy, funny characters!
COPYRIGHT: Illustration belongs to J.S. Choi (c) DO NOT USE!
Copyright of Loki and Laufey belongs to Marvel(C).
Laufey's creators are Stan Lee and Jack Kirby.
Loki's creators are Stan Lee, Larry Lieber, and Jack Kirby.
Media: Graphite, Texture, & Photoshop