When it was recently announced that the character of Hermione Granger would be cast with a black actress in the new Harry Potter play Harry Potter and The Cursed Child, the social media world was aflutter. Some were outraged; some were thrilled. J.K. Rowling expressed her support—pointing out that it was never specified that the character was white.
Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione 😘 https://t.co/5fKX4InjTH
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) December 21, 2015
And indeed, although famous literary characters often are described in detail in text, their Hollywood versions don’t always quite match. But what do those characters actually look like? If you fed the description to a police sketch artist, what face would you see? That’s the concept behind The Composites, a tumblr that renders literary characters as police sketches.
Using descriptions directly from the book, creator Brian Joseph Davis uses law enforcement composite sketch software to create the faces of famous literary icons, from Sherlock Holmes to Lisbeth Salander. Each month he uploads a new literary character from both modern and classic literature. Check out the samples below, and visit the site for more. (You can also pick up his book, The Composites: Police Sketches of Literary Characters.)
Jane Eyre, Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Sherlock Holmes, A Study in Scarlet, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Lisbeth Salander, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson
Annie Wilkes, Misery, Stephen King
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