Brian Holderman

Brian Holderman is known for creating a vividly colored cartoon world of poison, mis-happenings, and temptation. The image above entitled ‘siren’ is a visual embodiment of that quote, the snakes and female suggest temptation, while the black droplets form a ‘poison’ also.

I find this image very interesting as it combines both monster-like creatures and sexy pin up themes, and pulls it off very well. The character is mostly human looking but the colours, particularly the blue skin make her look very ghostly or dead, similarly to Tim Burton’s corpse bride. The red and black surrounding the blue give an ominous feel to the image, emphasizing the ghostly feeling of the overall image.

Similarly to classic pin up’s this character is drawn with a confident aura, looking down at the viewer in a powerful position – holding two large snakes. The character is surrounded by danger though this gives her a kind of ‘bad girl’ sexiness, rather than a virtuous beauty.

The way Holderman builds up the background with the three main colours reminds me of a waterfall, as if the background is falling down making way for the main attraction. This effect helps to make the block colour foregrounds stand out. The minimal colours and the block formation of them gives a vintage horror poster/b-movie look to the image which reflects Holdermans much used themes ‘poison, mishappenings and temptation’

Holderman’s other work has this same kind of bad horror film poster vibe to them such as this one below, advertising a show of his work. I like his style of only using 2-3 block colours in each of his works because it’s simple but he uses colours that contrast each other to create a striking image that intrigues the audience.


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