Flash Fiction and Paint and Color and Ink and Paper – 2/11/19

Flash Fiction February 2019 – twenty-eight days of short short stories, an event taking place at Fictive Dream, an online fiction magazine featuring short stories. My part in the event? I did a small abstract painting as the illustration for each story. I’ll be showing one of them to you each day in February to accompany the story on Fictive Dream.

Today’s story is “Mountain Lake”, by Leonard Kress. Check out the illustration, then go to Fictive Dream and read the story.

Here is the image, with the banner:


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and on its own.


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9 thoughts on “Flash Fiction and Paint and Color and Ink and Paper – 2/11/19

  1. Laura (PA Pict)

    I found that story to be really quite unsettling in ways I cannot quite put my finger on. The whole thing feels dark and brooding and as if some sort of violence or catastrophe could erupt at any moment. Your artwork perfectly captures that atmosphere and the dynamic of three plus one. I like that the female figure is so boldly white and bright against the darker hues of the piece. I also love that streak of green – maybe the hostility of untamed nature, the trail they cannot find, and/or that disturbing snake reference – against the violet. It’s a combination I never would have thought of but it is very effective.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      I felt the same way about the story as you did, exactly (“in ways I cannot quite put my finger on”). You’ll see when I post the next set of analyses that my thinking on this one became very speculative and symbolic. Anyway, I did have a clear idea of the image I wanted to do, though – I made three tries which you’ll see in that aforementioned post, but all had the same elements. I do love the color scheme in this one. I did the streak with my finger, at the very end, thinking it might be too much, but it turned out to be just what was needed.

        1. Claudia McGill Post author

          Yes. So often one mark or one color makes the whole difference, and it takes time and practice to see that and figure out what it should be, and even then…it is so easy to go wrong. I am glad this one didn’t, because I liked the rest of the picture so much – but…it needed that one more thing. Agghhh. Luckily this time it fell into place and smiled back at me!

  2. Laura Black

    I found this an intriguing story, and I’m interested to read the reaction to it. In terms of the artwork the lilacs and purples bring me back to trips in the Scottish Highlands. I find the colours match the mood very well. The representation of the female figure in white reflects her quiet dominance in the story, and I love the three male figures huddled together, each with a black squiggle reflecting their confusion. Just perfect.

    1. Claudia McGill Post author

      Thank you. This story was mysterious and full of word pictures. I tried to close my eyes and imagine just colors and shapes. I admit it took some time – this story is very opaque in some ways. In the end it became almost a mythical setting for me to portray, I think.

  3. memadtwo

    I was immediately drawn to the art, but not so taken with the story. it’s like one of those dreams people tell you…you had to be there I think. I just couldn’t find the door to get in with this one. (K)

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