Illustration & Design

A Good Man is Hard to Find

A Good Man is hard to find illustration

2017. Drawn in pencil and digitally colored in Photoshop.

This project was to create an illustration for Flannery O'Connor's short story "A Good Man is Hard to Find." The concept behind this illustration was to represent a scene towards the end of the story, the moment of Grandma's epiphany as she reaches out to the Misfit and exclaims "Why, you're one of my children!" before she is shot and killed.

I believe one of the main themes in O'Connor's heavily symbolic story is that people rarely change themselves for good. The Grandma character considers herself a good woman, despite her selfishness, artificiality, and vanity. It is only towards the end of her life, as she is threatened and the rest of her family is picked off by the band of outlaws, that she begs for mercy for her own life and tries to show remorse. The Misfit's line, "she would have been a good woman if someone had been around to shoot her every minute of her life," represents the fleeting nature of Grandma's attempt to change and redeem herself. 

Through this image I wanted to convey the brevity of Grandma's epiphany and redemption, as she reaches a moment of misplaced kindness and understanding towards the Misfit. The burst of light represents her temporary epiphany, as well as a celestial representation of the three gunshots through her chest.