Heather Cranston

Graphic Designer



The Old Man and the Sea - Hemingway

Jan 30/14

Re-reading Ernest Hemingway's, The Old Man and the Sea... and almost ready to start sketching.


Feb 2/14

Jessica's advice to 'choose something with a lot going on' echoed in my mind as I drew marlins over and over this weekend. The Old Man and the Sea is a classic, but can be summed up by: an old man is in a boat in the middle of the ocean, hooks a marlin and fights him for days. Yes, there is more to it, but that is the basic gist. 

A few things that come up over and over are -

- How giant the marlin is in comparison to the boat/man
- How looooong he has to battle the fish. And how the fish tows him around for days and nights on end.
- How he has to musted up all of his effort and strengh when the marlin starts to change direction. He talked about the Marlin 'making another turn' - the current comes in to play.
- The old man's wish for the boy to be there with him (his fishing partner). 
- His failing hands, which are callased, cut, scabbed and weak. 

Other things to note -

- The story takes place in Cuba in the late 50s so anything too slick looking would be weird.
- The colour purple and lavendar are used to describe the fish when it jumps out of the water. This happens a couple of time. 
- I don't want to reference sharks in any way. I know they come, and they are part of the story. But then the cover would also have to say 'spoiler alert: sorry if ou wanted to read this book'... 
- Harpoons. He harpoons the fish and that is a pretty big milestone, but he repeats over and over that he loves the fish, the fish is his brother, and for that reason it's ok that he kills it. But no one wants to know that that the fish dies before they start reading the book.


Feb 3/14

The beginnings of things...

So far I really like the idea of the fishing line and the 'turns' (above). I think this could be really cool in a Charley Harper kinda way. Which is also suitable for the era.


Feb 4/14

So I've decided to pursue the battle between the man and marlin. I know this may seen obvious, but it is the most interesting. 

I keep going back to two very different feeling sketches.

They each have their own appeal. I've confusingly labelled them as concept 1 + 2, although really they are two different executions of the same concept. Either way. Concept 1 might be a bit more traditional. Concept 2 is interesting, but I worry that the iconic shape of the marlin is will be lost from a birds-eye view.

As I am thinking about which to move forward with, I am also considering inspiration for a style of execution.

Feb 5/14

Here we go! First digital rendition... Any opinions?

Feb 5/14 (again)

Slight tweaks and I'm liking it better. It's a bit less colligate looking.

Above - colour adjustments to inline and marlin's fin.

Above - I felt like the man was downplayed too much. I made him a bit bigger.

I am sort of happy with the colour. Sort of - because purple and lavendar came up a lot this feels like the 'correct' answer. Enforced by the fact that it was a bit somber. However, the book took place in Cuba of all places... in the 50s. He spoke about the boys youth and wished that he still had his. He day dreamed about Joe DiMaggio and how exciting his (and other yankees) lives must be.  All of that being said... I landed on an alternate. 

Does he seem happier, or is that just me?

Feb 12/14 
I'm calling it done! I'm happy with the end result. What a great class. I'd happily recommend it to anyone interested :)


And just for fun:


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