architectural visualisation / design / digital art

The Darkest Part of the Woods

The Darkest Part of the Woods SMALL

This matte painting was inspired by “The Deepest Part of the Woods”, Ramsey Campbell’s novel.
There’s a tall silhouette in the background (Goodman, the spirit of the woods) as well as a few sinister faces sprouting from the trees. Considering Campbell’s novel continues H. P. Lovecraft’s mythos, I figured the creatures from the game Bloodborne would be perfect for the disembodied, illusory organic shapes in Goodmanswood.
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Goodman, the ancient creature that lurks in the forest, is described as a “dim shape vaster than the woods raising itself out of the trees”. The protagonists witness other aparitions such as a face that flies, a face crawling on the ground, stickmen and a swarm of colourful insects, “darting and swooping around one another, such a multitude of them that they were able to sketch a form as tall as a man.”

The trees are also described in strong vivid terms: “grey scaly and thin branches”, “a fallen tree split into fragments that resembled eyeless reptiles with deformed legs
insects and birds and small animals were […] sprouting partially formed from branches. […] Though the excrescence was patched with glistening lichen and starting to collapse, it had her father’s face”.

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In order to evoke the shapes and mood in the descriptions I went and took photos of the trees in Knole Park, Kent Downs; I cut out their silhouettes and grouped them in a composition.

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“Under a sky that looked seared pale as bone the trees had acquired an elusive greenishness, which must be the beginnings of leaves but which reminded him more of mist and lichen.”

The rest was grading, adding photo filters and painting on top until I achieved the desired effect.

Full size: 6208×3966 px

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