2022 Grad Show

Xinnong Ye

AUArts Grad Show Self-portrait

VCD – Character Design & Illustration

Art is a perfect way to express myself. And it also gives me the opportunity to explore the world we live in. The most crucial reason I like illustration is that I truly enjoy the process when I’m drawing and creating new graphs. For me, illustration design enables me to focus more on the surrounding environment and to quickly get inspiration from it. Illustrations can also be used to convey information in a graphic language and to explain the text in a more visual way. I like to experiment on different styles in drawing and to use different colors, lines, and patterns in my designs.

“Léon: The professional” 2022 is a digital illustration of a book cover. My design of it is based on the movie Léon: The professional, an English-language, French action thriller written and directed by Luc Besson. The plot revolves around two main characters Léon and Mathilda. Léon reluctantly takes in 12-year-old Mathilda after her family is murdered by a corrupt DEA agent. My design also focuses on the two main characters. In the film Léon has two important things; one is a potted plant, and the other is Mathilda, a girl he saves from the agent. I drew Mathilda’s portrait inside Léon’s body and colored it with a botanical pattern. In the use of lines, I used simple ones for the outline. The relationship between Léon and Mathilda becomes mutual salvation for two empty souls; Léon is socially inept but cold on the outside and warmth on the inside, retaining the innocence of a teenager under the vicissitudes of his appearance. On the other hand, Mathilda is only 12 years old, but she is forced to mature early owing to her family environment. Their mental behavior differs from their appearance in many aspects, which creates a great contrasting effect.

Instead of a happy ending at the end of the film, Léon finally confesses his feelings to Mathilda when the momentum is over. However, it is too late for Mathilda, thus creating a very strong emotional pull. In the use of color, I chose blue as the main color to show the film’s suffering and loneliness. In the characters and the background, I use plant patterns for coloring. The potted plant repeatedly appears in the film. My interpretation is that it not only represents loneliness but also represents Léon himself. This is also why I used plant patterns on Léon. Before Léon meets Mathilda, he is lonely. This girl has essentially changed his life attitude: after he encounters her, he wants to get rid of his loneliness and live a stable life. When Mathilda plants a potted plant, Léon finally gets the life he wants after he dies.

Léon: The professional

“Léon: The professional” is a digital illustration of a book cover, this design was created in 2022. My design focuses on the two main characters Léon and Mathilda.