Monday, 18 December 2017

Jungle Moon II - Adding a Story

Yesterday I uploaded the first version of Jungle Moon. Then, of course, I had to go back and tweak it.

I had shown the picture to a friend of mine, Petra Brewitz, and we talked about some of the finer details, like tilting the hips a little bit to bring out more curvature, and changing the color of the hair.

We also talked about context: What is the story? Why is the Moon so large? When we talked, I said that the Moon is large, not because it is close in reality, but because the woman in the picture studies it. It is large in her mind. We also talked about putting a pterosaur, an airplane, or a spaceship in the picture to provide contextual clues to her story.

The idea is to raise questions. Rather than showing "nude woman standing on branch in tall tree looking at the moon", and viewers just accepting what they see, I want viewers to ask questions and create possible answers, like:
  • When is this? There are two quetzalcoatlus in the picture. These are from the late Cretaceous era, which would put the scene at 100.5 - 66 million years old.
  • Why is the Moon so large? Well, the Moon was closer 100 million years back, but only about 3,000 km or so. The Moon is 384,000 km away today, so it would have been about 381,000 km away in the late Cretaceous era. The difference in perceived size from Earth would have been very small. Perhaps my original explanation is correct after all. Perhaps we are peering into another dimension, where the Moon was much closer to Earth. (What about gravitational effects? You go figure that one out. Basic physics, but I am too lazy to do the math today.)
  • How did the woman travel back in time? Well, two years ago, Petra, a couple of other friends, and I, created and published a time travel comic book adventure, A Rift in Time. Maybe that has something to do with it.
  • How high is the tree? There were redwoods in the cretaceous period, but still... The most likely explanation is that the tree she is in, is a tall tree on a the edge of a very high cliff.
  • Why is she nude in a tree top? The answer to the second part is probably that she is enjoying the view. The answer to the first part, well, I'll leave that to you. For now.
  • Why isn't she afraid, considering the dangerous environment she is in? Perhaps she knows how to survive in it. Perhaps, she is more dangerous than the environment. Perhaps she is done being afraid, no matter what. Perhaps she enjoys the mix of fear and beauty in the environment.
There is no single right answer to any of these questions. It is possible to construct an infinite variety of stories that lead to this moment, with a nude woman looking at the Moon while standing on a branch in a tall tree.

What happens after, depends on what has lead up to this moment, but the story can take a radical turn. She may slip and fall, or the quetzalcoatlus flying towards her may attack. Or, less dramatic, but maybe leading to even greater impact on the story, she is there to think things over, to make a decision, something of importance to her, and perhaps to others.

So, by adding a quetzalcoatlusflying towards her, and another in the lower part of the picture to show that the first one is not alone, it is part of an ecosystem, not some random monster, I have hinted at a story, and maybe even a connection with a previous story. If there are connections with previous stories, then there are possible trajectories, and thus possible future stories. I can tell the stories, or provide glimpses of them, or be silent.

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