Saturday, September 22, 2012

Life of Richard Parker

For years I taught the novel 'Life of Pi' to undergraduates.

 I have always been fascinated by the book and its setting in India and the Pacific Ocean.
Pi's leap for survival into the lifeboat lands him in the company of a bengal tiger, Richard Parker with whom he spends nearly 227 days at sea!

 In a letter to the author Yann Martel, Barack Obama described the novel as, "an elegant proof of God, and the power of storytelling." 

Adventure, spirituality, exploration of various religions and perseverance find voice in this novel.
I agree with Martel that the power of imagination can transcend “dry, yeastless factuality.”

Martel says,  “That's what fiction is about, isn't it, the selective transforming of reality? The twisting of it to bring out its essence?” 

Richard Parker is both fiction and reality. The reality of human will to survive and overcome fears. The symbol of Pi himself in his humanity and savagery.


I have always loved the various book covers of this novel! The tiger and the boy in the confines of the lifeboat thrilled me!


pic from google


Richard Parker is a character I will never forget.


 “It is true that those we meet can change us, sometimes so profoundly that we are not the same afterwards, even unto our names.” 

Interestingly, it is through journaling that Pi keeps himself sane through the tough period in his life.


When little Ay, a second grader who lives on the seventeenth floor of my apartment, wanted to know about animals, we looked at his encyclopedia and seeing the picture of the tiger excited him!
He wanted me to draw a tiger for him!

It is the national animal of India.

Inspired by the little one's eagerness, I set out to draw and here it is...



I used watercolor, ink, liners.
Linking to PPF, Creative Everyday, Art Journal Everyday, Artists In Blogland, Sunday Sketches.
Have a great week, everyone!

36 comments:

  1. Great tiger! He doesn't look scary - his eyes are almost soulful or is it perhaps a bit worried? I wonder what your little friend thinks? I like the composition and the way you have placed him on the page too.
    You might like to share your more orange work on Mandarin Orange Monday (which reopens tomorrow night).

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    1. Thank you, Lorik! Yes, it's true, he doesn't look scary. I did not want a scary one for he little kid. :-)
      Also, painting 'animals' is a new for me! Will definitely try to link up.

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  2. Lovely post and painting. I like your kind generosity of time with little Ay too.

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    1. Hi Laura! I enjoy talking to the little one! Where else can you hear all about dinosaurs from Jurassic Park eating KFC chicken!!! :-)

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  3. I also read and enjoyed that book. (It is time for another read.) The tiger is brilliant and I feel he's just about to leap off the page, out of my computer....and into my studio....scary. Beautifully drawn and coloured.
    x

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  4. How awesome that you were sparked by the eagerness of a child and in turn you sparked his love of knowledge. I am sure having an adult interested in what he wants to learn about will positively influence him for years and years!

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    1. I know...my interest in art was sparked off by my aunt and mom! Thank you, Carolyn!

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  5. I've never read that book but after reading your post, I am intrigued. Love your tiger. Happy Show and Tell Saturday from Artists in Blogland!

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  6. So very beautiful..an inspirational post..full of wisdom and beauty and your art is stunning..such depth and beauty and soulfulness! Gorgeous!
    Wonderful to visit your magical realm~! and I love the backdrop to your blog..it looks fantastical!!
    Victoria

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    1. I'm glad you liked the background! I did it in the paint tool and used it as background.

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  7. I love this book as well... I have given it to my daughter to read over Spring break... she is 16 and madly reading everything she can get her hands on... we have spent the last few months tripping through Conrad, Cormac Mc Carthy, Keroac and Kesey... a lovely time to be her parent as she discovers each of these authors and their work... I can't wait to see what she makes of Pi ... loved the post and your tiger is simply fab...xx

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    1. Wow! Wonderful that your daughter is interested in reading!
      As years pass our children become our closest friends, don't you think?

      I'm sure she is going to love Pi. Some of the places, like Madurai temple, Munnar...places I have been fortunate to have visited over and over are just as magical as he describes! I love his take on religion and acceptance of all versions of the almighty.

      I enjoyed painting for Ay. He learns and watches and tries to do his bit too! My own son is twenty one and he smiles watching his mom playing!

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  8. Good drawing feline has a clear grasp his movement and his gaze. Saludos

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  9. Sweet tiger portrait.
    Love the play between figure and ground in this art.

    ♥♥♥
    Happy PPF!!
    Mary
    Mixed-Media Map Art

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    1. Being self taught, I had no rules or concepts and just did what I felt like! :-) The layout was not planned and I realized it when you pointed it out!

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  10. I really like you tiger - especially since you drew it for little Ay! How sweet of you to spend time with him AND make art for him:-)

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    1. Minnie, thank you so much for commenting! I'm a huge fan of your paintings!

      I have done other recycled art projects too for Ay and he thinks we are a team! While talking I try to teach him too.

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  11. I've never read that book, but I think I could use a positive outlook type of book now, politics world affairs and the economy not being so good. Your tiger is unique and seems to have wise eyes. These are the things which are important for children, folks who spend time with them, good for you.

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    1. Thanks for reading and commenting on my post, Linda!

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  12. Your tiger looks strong and terrific :0...it seems I need to grab this book and read :)

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    1. Ritu, so glad you like it! I'm sure the book will be a good read.

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  13. Your tiger is amazing! Well done! :)

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  14. I really like your tiger painting...and thanks for the reminder to read this book!

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    1. Lynn, I'm sure the book might inspire you to create something wonderful!

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    1. Thanks so much for your feedback, Christine!

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  16. I love your tiger, especially his eyes. Blessings!

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    1. :-) My tiger came out looking more wise than bloodthirsty!
      Thank you or 'dhanyawaad' from Richard Parker!
      (Dhanyawaad is Hindi for 'thank you')

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  17. wonderful sketch! your tiger is lovely. I always see this book at the library but have yet to pick it up. I must do so soon!

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  18. Wonderfully done tiger ~ very creative and expressive ~ (A Creative Harbor)

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I am always happy when you comment. It gives me the push to go on painting, writing. Thank you so much!