I never really watched Futurama while it was being broadcast, for reasons I won’t go into here, but I found Volume One for sale at Sam’s Club for less than $15, so I thought, why not. Needless to say, I got hooked and bought the other three volumes as well. Volumes Three and Four I watched the way some people eat potato chips, as a result of which two things happened: I got a DVD player full of potato chips and I fell for Leela in a big way.
All that is prelude to the following image:
I’m particularly pleased with this. (Although I have to note, parenthetically, that I’m not all that pleased with the photo. This has been an incredibly difficult canvas to photograph.)
The whole idea was, what would Leela look like if she were a real person? If Matt Groening was walking down the street and said, “Hey, she’s perfect for my new cartoon show. I’ll just Valmorphanize her!”Thus, the observant will note that she has two things no Matt Groening character, to my knowledge, has ever had: a chin and an iris. The chin was pretty easy—as a strong, determined woman, she would have a strong, determined chin. The iris was just an attempt to bridge the pink of the lips and the purple of the hair.
I’m also a tad proud—perhaps even a bit smug—about the fact that I didn’t use any models for this. I considered one of the gals in Accounting, who has a narrow face and strongly defined features, but I never did. I just kept blocking stuff out and filling it in, thinking “I’ll ask her when I’m closer to doing the real thing.” But I never did, and the features just kind of came about on their own. Well, I did look at my own face to see where the ears, nose and lips all were in relation to each other. (Turns out, they’re all on the head.)
What I like most of all is the fact that she’s beautiful. She’s startling at first, the way she would be in real life, but one can quickly get used to her and see how attractive she is. That, to me, is the essence of the character. (That and the strength of character and competency.)
The photo really doesn’t do it justice, I tell you. If I look at it out of the corner of my eye, I could swear I see her breathing. Of course, that’s just crazy talk. That’s the sort of thing a person says before they rip up the floorboards, right in front of the police, and shout, “Villains, dissemble no more! Here!–here! It is the beating of his hideous heart!”
I’m not quite to that stage. Hey, thanks for thinking about it, though.