This project was a representation of two themes from both The Scarlet Letter and the film Juno: struggling against imposed ideas and public vs. private self. The medium I chose was two hand drawn photos that I enhanced in Adobe Photoshop to model works by the famous pop artist, Roy Lichtenstein. The pieces I drew inspiration from were Thinking of Him (1963) and Shipboard Girl (1965).
I would name my first piece Thinking of Them as I depicted Juno with tears in her eye as she imagines what both she and Hester Prynne feared-- single motherhood. Juno knows she’s ill-equipped to handle a child on her own and then fears the couple she planned to take her baby will then become one half of a pair, instead. The imposed idea is that family must include a mother/father/child. Juno and Hester were both people who had non-traditional families, Juno with a stepmother and Hester living without her husband for a while. This family model is the idealized version of what is right. In both circumstances, they find a way to cope that suits them. In my piece I made a question mark where the father would be. I used the orange/white stripe and mix of red and gold to represent the social stigma both were forced to hold that caused them anxiety over the imposed belief of the traditional family.
The second piece is a bit more abstract in concept than the first. It shows Reverend Dimmesdale with a tear on his cheek as he looks on to the letter D on the scaffold. The letter D is an indication that the character is Dimmesdale. Dimmesdale struggles throughout the novel with his public image in direct conflict with his private self. His emotion is that he knows that it is also his shame at adultery, but he doesn’t have to endure it publicly. Rather than himself of the scaffold it is his essence. He cries because he truly belongs up there and eventually realizes that himself. I used the stripe pattern, but I made the white red, instead. Someone like Paulie Bleeker, though very unlike Dimmesdale with different intention, also wishes to bear some of the responsibility.
The process of creating my pieces included drawing the pictures by hand and inking them. I scanned them into Photoshop and added the dot texture, bold lines and contrasting hues mimicking the pop art style of Lichtenstein. Photoshop is extremely time consuming and complicated. This was my first time doing extensive work with the program.
If I were to redo the project and when I do continue work with pop art, I will use a drawing pad that connects to the computer and draw the photos on the program Illustrator. It makes for smoother and neater artwork rather than erasing and using paper. Overall, I’m very satisfied with my work in Photoshop but if I had a few more steady hours of work I would have used it for Photoshop. This type of project is enjoyable, but frustrating due to the fact that perfection is unattainable. The quality and effects are always changing and endless.