Last week Daily Doodle celebrated Roald Dahl and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. I was drawing a lot of children, but having an established character to draw was a LOT of fun. When you read the book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the children are introduced mostly through illustration, and are described by their behavioral traits. Charlie is a good boy who loves chocolate and helping his family. Veruca is a spoiled child who wants everything, Augustus is greedy, and so on.
I saw Charlie Bucket immediately. A poor black boy who dressed in very respectable but generic clothing. His mother probably shops at Walmart. His clothes are a little worn out, since he doesn’t have very many. He dresses in a polo shirt and jeans so he looks responsible for his paper route, but won’t get teased too much at school. I imagine he does a little anyway, but that doesn’t bother Charlie as much as the fact he doesn’t get to eat chocolate like the other kids do.
Next were the Naughty Children. Veruca Salt, Violet Beauregarde, Mike Teavee and Augustus Gloop.
I kept their stories simple in my head while I drew these characters. Veruca would want to be a pretty princess. She probably wins child beauty pageants (because her father bribes the judges) and loves Disney World. I think she has to be in full princess costume all the time, wearing a feather boa, her mink coat, and jewelry (don’t forget her tiara!) and fluffy dress. The bigger the hair, the better.
Violet is competitive, and likes to keep things simple. She wears a #1 tshirt so no one forgets she’s the best. Her hair is in pigtails so her gum doesn’t get stuck in her hair when she sticks it behind her ears. She’s dressed in jeans and a tshirt, so she’s ready to beat anyone at anything.
Mike Teavee was fun for me to draw. I know he’s supposed to have 18 toy pistols on him at all time, but I drew him with one ray gun and a smart phone instead. I imagined the Mike of today would be constantly staring at a portable video game system and wear earbuds to drown out the distractions of the world around him. He’d be the sort to Google everything just to prove he’s right, and if he wasn’t, he’d probably change Wikipedia so he would be.
Augustus Gloop stayed fairly traditional. I didn’t have any updates for him in my head. I drew him after my late grandfather, who was very much like little Gloop. In hindsight, the only difference I might have made was to put more stains on his sweater vest.
Because the children in the book were so loosely described, it was fun to explore a multicultural cast. I think Dahl purposefully didn’t describe the kids in too much physical detail, so that all children could relate. No child wants to be greedy, bratty, rude, and obnoxious, and no one wants to suffer the consequences these children did from their bratty actions. I think it’s important that the good children and bad children have equal opportunity to be represented.
I hope you have enjoyed these sketches 🙂