The Music and the Mirror

Sci fi/Fantasy image by

Susan Beckhart

So after I graduated, my high school did A Chorus Line. And my best friend and I went back to see it four of the five nights it played. (Can you say 'obsessed'?) And it was wonderful, and fabulous, and when you see it four times in a row, you have a chance to notice some interesting things. See, the set for A Chorus Line is basically a bare stage with a big mirror at the back, and for their version, the mirror consisted of several sheets of cardboard covered in tin foil. The effect was that you could see vague reflections in the mirror, but all the details were fuzzed out, because tin foil isn't THAT relfective. So in the show, there's this wonderful song sung by Cassie, one of the auditioning dancers, called 'The Music and the Mirror', in which she dances out of desperation, begging the director to give her this chance because dancing is all she's ever wanted out of life. But as she was dancing, with her red dress on, and the yellow spotlight on her, I noticed something interesting: The mirror had just enough dust on it that anywhere the spotlight hit it, it showed only the yellow of the light. On the other hand, where her shadow fell on the mirror, it reflected things as usual. But if you were sitting off to the side, as I was, then the reflection of her body and her red dress in the mirror didn't match the shadow cast by the spotlight, so what you got was a Cassie-shaped shadow, within which you got bits and pieces of her actual reflection. This picture grew out of my desire to capture that effect, but as you can see, I haven't even gotten to adding the mirror yet. The picture is by no means finished, stalled mainly by my being too scared to actually attempt the mirror effect I described. In the meantime, I've learned a lot more about computer coloring in Photoshop, and the final version will probably be started from scratch. Still, I thought I'd share this version, as it gives a pretty good idea of how the picture is supposed to look.

Published More than a year ago

Category Fantasy

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