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Art Nouveau-Era Morpheus

Art Nouveau-Era Morpheus (Pencil Illustration, 1999)

While I was studying at Ball State University, I took a course in Graphic Design history that introduced me to both the Art Nouveau movement in general and the work of one particular artist named Alphonse Mucha. I was floored by this guy's work, and immediately fell in love with his style. At the time, I was also catching up on back issues of Neil Gaiman's masterpiece, The Sandman, and saw an obvious parallel between the two. This illustration was inspired by a similar piece of Mucha's, featuring Sarah Bernhardt cradling her then twenty-something son, but was accommodated to fit within the confines of the Sandman's story. It's much more a horror piece now than it was in Mucha's artwork, but still has a sense of elegance and grace to it. I'm honestly surprised more people don't list Mucha as a major influence, since shades of his work are all over the place today.

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