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December 23, 2012
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The Life She Might Have Known by punker--rocker The Life She Might Have Known by punker--rocker
"One more day all on my own,
One more day with him not caring.
What a life I might have known,
But he never saw me there."
~Eponine, "One Day More"

I was incredibly moved by this scene from the Les Miserables film where Eponine decides to go to the barricade, and we see her—covered in dirt, sitting in this dark, squalid room—binding her chest and hiding her hair to disguise herself as a young man. It was sort of a punch-in-the-gut moment. She's desperate, and she's taking on something that is way too much for even her to handle. I pictured her having a moment of fear where she started to doubt her decision again, where she understands that she could be killed.

And then she realizes she's led such a wretched, hopeless life that it doesn't matter what happens to her, not if Marius would notice her. Not if he would really care about her, just this once.

Basically I couldn't handle my emotions.

Sorry about the movie spoilers. GO SEE IT ASAP. It was the best movie ever, and I personally thought Samantha Barks (who I used as a reference) as Eponine stole the show just a tiny bit. That could be due to personal bias and my love for the character but it could also be due to the fact that Sam was freaking amazing.

I think some stuff still looks hinky and saving it as a .gif screwed up the quality.....I'll fix it later. :shrug: And yes, the almost-dark moon is my failed attempt at symbolism..... Tell me if you like it! And I'd appreciate constructive advice too, on the lighting especially and if my semi-realism attempt was successful. My muses were the Les Mis movie soundtrack and "The A Team" by Ed Sheeran on repeat. :D

Anyhow hope you all like it!
Add a Comment:
 
:iconladyriverwolf:
LadyRiverwolf Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2014
This is so utterly perfect... you captured her character completely.
Stunning work.
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:iconmairelyn:
Mairelyn Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This is Gorgeous~ you capture SamathaBarks!Eponine So well
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jul 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks! :D
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:iconcassdoubleme:
CassDoubleME Featured By Owner May 27, 2013  Professional Digital Artist
Nice!! xD I've done two drawings with Eponine and Enjolras, would you want come to see 'em? C:
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:iconfaeryraven:
FaeryRaven Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2013
I absolutely love this. I feel the very same as you == the scene when she binds her breasts is one of the best in the film. Despite Eponine's sadness & hopelessness, I also see her taking back her own power at this moment. Wonderful work!
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah someone had a stroke of genius when they came up with this scene. There was plenty that could have been better but this particular scene was extremely effective.
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:icon1jade2:
1Jade2 Featured By Owner Mar 27, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
How can you draw windows....?!
Love the expression on her face and the description kills me :)
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Mar 28, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Speaking of windows under this lighting there would probably be some kind of a reflection....oh well. :) But you just have to make the glass not completely see-through I guess.

Thank you!!
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:icon1jade2:
1Jade2 Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I guess if you have a light source behind her in the room, you should have made a reflection, but it's not a huge mistake :)

It looks so nice and if you are able to draw a reflection too, I would envy you forever!!! :D

You're welcome :)
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeahhhh I don't think a reflection is going to happen haha, I spent too many hours of my life on this picture already. :)
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:icon1jade2:
1Jade2 Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Haha I understand :) but I don't think people miss a reflection anyway? :D
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Mar 29, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yeah nobody's said anything so far. :D
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:icon1jade2:
1Jade2 Featured By Owner Mar 30, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
then leave it and let me love it :love:
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:iconjackiestarsister:
JackieStarSister Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013  Hobbyist Photographer
You know, I didn't really appreciate the scene that way until I saw this analysis. Remembering Barks's expression during that part--I realize you're completely right. That really helps me better understand Eponine's decision.
Reply
:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 27, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Haha well it's one possible way to look at it anyway. This scene always gets to me.
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:iconmelli-melian:
melli-melian Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2013  Student Filmographer
There were things I wasn't happy about with the movie, but them putting in the chest-binding scene I thought was absolutely brilliant. I think the reason people love Eponine so much is because she's honestly one of the most complex and emotionally moving characters Victor Hugo stuck in the book. They kind of plowed over her part in the movie, but it could be argued that even Victor Hugo didn't realize what he had with her. Either that, or he was simply a cold, heartless fiend who enjoyed metaphorically gutting any female who ever read the book.
I think I'm going with the latter, just to give him some credit with his own writing.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I agree 10000% with everything you just said. This scene was so moving and heart-wrenching, it was perfect. I thought this was one of the few places where they did justice to her character. And I guess her first series of scenes were good too. I've heard people say that Victor Hugo just didn't take notice of what a brilliant character she was when he was writing, and it seems like Tom Hooper had the exact same problem.
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:iconmelli-melian:
melli-melian Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Student Filmographer
Another problem was they took a 3 hour show and condensed it to a 2.5 hour movie, but they could have easily taken out "Suddenly" if they weren't so focused on trying to nab an Oscar. That would free up 2 minutes they could have used in other areas.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It's true, although I think "Suddenly" did add something to the movie, even if it was pretty cheesy. But I would have rather had other things in there, like the entirety of "A Little Fall of Rain" or something like that.
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:iconkuabci:
kuabci Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2013  Professional Filmographer
She stole the show because she was basically one of the only people who could truly perform the music. She was fantastic live when I saw her in London as Eponine too.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Well I thought everyone did well. Honestly none of the singing bothered me (except occasionally with Russell Crowe I was like...you tried honey). But yes she was fantastic and I'm SUPER JEALOUS you got to see her when she played Eponine on stage.
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:iconkuabci:
kuabci Featured By Owner Feb 6, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Yyyeaaahhhh, I thought SOME of them did well. There were a few that have no business singing ever again, even if they did look the part. (Like you said, Russell Crowe... bless his heart... Stars was pitiful. And I do like Hugh Jackman in general, but his is the worst Bring Him Home I've ever heard... he was bellowing and braying his way through that entire "prayer".) But ANYway, yes, Eponine was fantastic, and I do like your artwork of her.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Ugh yes I forgot about "Bring Him Home." That was worse than fingernails on a chalkboard, especially after seeing the 25th Anniversary concert and the complete masterpiece that Alfie Boe made of the song. Other than that I thought Jackman was brilliant. And I actually liked Russell Crowe's "Stars" even if it definitely lacked power, but with him I thought it was during the sung dialogue that he was really out of his depth.

Thanks again!
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:iconkuabci:
kuabci Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Ha ha, each time I listen to RuCro sing Stars, I still kind of shake my head in disbelief that he was ever cast. Our favorite part is "safe behind baaaaars!" Sometimes it sounds like he's not even trying. Pierce Brosnan gets a lot of flak for his performance in Mamma Mia, but at least he definitely put his heart and soul into it. Like you said, Russell didn't even seem to do much acting! It was very strange. But on one thing we are agreed: Alfie Boe's performance is a masterpiece.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Okay yeah..."safe behind bars" was pretty bad. And the last note, he looks like he's howling at the moon. I laugh every time. I'm not actually a huge Javert fan though, of the character or his songs, so maybe it's just that I didn't care very much. And I think his lack of acting was more his interpretation of the character, which was supposed to be stoic but came off as just plain old disinterested in everything.
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:iconkuabci:
kuabci Featured By Owner Feb 16, 2013  Professional Filmographer
Yeah, I'm not actually a huge fan of the character either, but I have heard him played very well in the past at least. I think Stars at least is a great song. I kind of think his lack of acting was just lack of acting, but that's just one perspective, ha ha.
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:icongogogryffindor:
gogogryffindor Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2013  Student General Artist
this scene made me think of Mulan XD
This was such an amazing movie :heart: and I love the stage show too, so glad Sam played Eponine :)
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:iconmelli-melian:
melli-melian Featured By Owner Feb 7, 2013  Student Filmographer
I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought of Mulan!
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:icongogogryffindor:
gogogryffindor Featured By Owner Feb 8, 2013  Student General Artist
Haha :D
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I have to admit I didn't think of Mulan, but yeah I see it.

Sam was perfect and she made the movie for me. :)
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:iconblackparademajorette:
blackparademajorette Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013
when she died in the book, it bothered me. not the fact that she died, she actually got on my nerves, but that she knew everyone in the barricades would die and that Gavroche, her little brother who snuck her into plays and operas so she could feel better about her shitty life (even though Azelma needed it more), was also there. she's dealt with the police, she would know that they were heartless enough to shoot a child.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I haven't got that far yet but I have a feeling I'm gonna be sad when she dies just because she dies.....
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:iconblackparademajorette:
blackparademajorette Featured By Owner Jan 7, 2013
i just couldn't stand how she complains. Azelma is completely hallow inside and has no will, Gavroche is perfectly happy on the streets because he was kicked out when he was around ten for being another mouth to feed and a boy, and her two youngest brothers weren't even named, in fact, they were sold and dumped on the street a few years later. quite honestly, she had it the best out of her siblings, she even had a lover who didn't care how ugly she and her vioce were (ironic in the musical that she's pretty and sings lovely, the book said the exact opposite) or how much she drank. yet she claims to have it so bad.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 8, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Comparisons aside, she DID have it bad. She knew what it was like to have a good life but now she is forced to be a criminal to stay alive and probably goes to bed hungry every night. Her father is abusive and it's implied he makes her prostitute herself. So maybe she had things better than her siblings but she still had an awful life that made her suicidal and drove her borderline insane.

And it bugs me a little when people think she's ugly. Victor Hugo explicitly wrote that despite how her poverty was trying to ruin her, she was still beautiful. The voice thing, yeah I'll give you that, but that's something that has to be changed for a musical.
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:iconblackparademajorette:
blackparademajorette Featured By Owner Jan 8, 2013
I just think people try to romanticize her. Yeah she was poor, but she had people who loved her. Nancy from Oliver Twist put up with all the fucked up parts of the street life. she never knew what it was like to be loved. she was picked up off the street at age five and told to steal or she would be thrown down a flight of stairs (like what happened to the Artful Dodger and Charlie Bates) or even killed. she was forced into prostitution at age fourteen and lived with a man she loved, who was eighteen years older than her and treated her like a dog and most likely raped her. when she stuck up for Oliver and kept Fagin from beating him, she showed up a week or two later with huge faded bruises on her neck and it was implied that this happened before. and, of course, she envied Rose, a bourgeoisie, not because of her wealth or easy life, but because people loved her. poor Nancy was perfectly accustomed to being grabbed by the throat, dragged out of bed, and violently thrown to the floor. she didn't squirm or fight, only asked what she did wrong this time, and what she thought was coming is anyone's guess.

and also, in poverty, you don't complain. you never complain, because there's always someone out there who as it worse than you can imagine, no matter how bad off you are. and you especially never complain to strangers. even most of the homeless of modern day Fairbanks, Alaska abide by this, and the winters here regularly reach forty below Fahrenheit.

also, i noticed your song choice for Eponine inspiration. even though i really don't like her, i'll admit she reminds me of a few of my favorites, Nobody's Daughter [link] and She Walks on Me [link] both by Hole. hope you enjoy.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Oh, but I also just have to throw out there, it's been theorized that Dickens' portrayal of Nancy was an earliest recognition of Stockholm Syndrome, where a victim forms an emotional bond to his or her tormentor. So it's not necessarily Nancy's strength or goodness that allows her to make the best out of her terrible situation--it's possibly a mental disorder.
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:iconblackparademajorette:
blackparademajorette Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013
she also said something about how Bill fills a hole, and the fact that he's old enough to be her father hints at something seriously Freudian.

i'm not sure about Stolkholms, because she was with Fagin for nine years and with Bill for three, and she's not all that attached to Fagin.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Interesting comparison (and another character played by Samantha Barks FTW!!). :) I have read that book although it was a long time ago, but Nancy is also a character who I have a soft spot for. I love the way she just learns to cope and keeps on smiling.

It does bother me when people try to pretend like Eponine is this perfect angel who has no faults. But, in the musical anyway, Eponine actually does not spend the majority of the time complaining. If you look at most of her scenes with sung dialogue, she actually seems pretty chipper, at least at the beginning. She sings multiple times lamenting how Marius will never love her, but she isn't really complaining--more like trying to figure out how to accept that she'll never be his--and doesn't actually ever complain about being poor or anything. I haven't read the whole book so it may be different there.

It's also slightly different with Eponine because she knew what a good life was like. I'm sure it's difficult for her not to have a feeling that she was wronged by the world and deserves better. This isn't an excuse to complain, but it helps people understand her.

I'll listen to those songs, thanks for posting them! :)
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:iconblackparademajorette:
blackparademajorette Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013
she does complain to Marius when she enters his place uninvited, at least, that's what i would call informing on a serious note and in a heavy light with a sense of entitlement.

another character who makes characters like Eponine feel unbearable is Fiona Gallagher from Shameless (well, the U.S. version for sure, i'm not familiar with the original). Her mother abandoned her and the other five kids when she was only seventeen. Her dad was a useless drunk, so she had to drop out of school and take care of the kids with three or more jobs at a time. she never breaks down, she just never lets herself. she's probably done everything but strip to put food on the table, and she often has to water down the milk just to stretch it. She's proud that the kids can steal and be frugal.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 9, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
It's possible that she does have a sense of entitlement. Like (I think) I said, she was born into a comfortable, even spoiled, life and then had it all taken from her. Now she's living a worse life than Cosette did when she was essentially their slave, and I'm sure it rubs her the wrong way. I haven't read the whole book so I can't talk about that, but Eponine in the musical seems to do the best she can with what she's given. She laments her life at times but never really complains about it.

I'm not familiar with that other character though...
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(1 Reply)
:iconsnoopypeep:
SnoopyPeep Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
This is great! Also, this was a great scene in the movie! I definitely agree with that sentiment. :)
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Haha thanks, the movie was chock full of awesomeness. And tears...
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:iconsnoopypeep:
SnoopyPeep Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh, certainly! It was amazing, though.
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:iconfrosty2011:
Frosty2011 Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
WOW. This is amazing. I loved this scene as well and Sam was incredible. You captured her perfectly.
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Aw, thank you so much! I don't know about perfectly, but I tried, and I appreciate it. :)
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:icontwilightwolfchick:
twilightwolfchick Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Love this. Not much more can be said. Seriously this made me speechless because of how beautiful and amazing it is...love :heart:
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you so much! What a sweet comment. :)
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:icontwilightwolfchick:
twilightwolfchick Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
You're welcome! So how'd you like the movie? To me it's my favorite movie of all time right now. :D
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:iconpunker--rocker:
punker--rocker Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Le Magnifique. It wasn't perfect but still managed to be perfect somehow....I just want to watch it again. It's my favorite movie of all time too.
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:icontwilightwolfchick:
twilightwolfchick Featured By Owner Jan 1, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Ugh I wish I could watch it again. Too bad I'm broke. I cried at the end though and when (spoilers to any passerby who may read this) Gavroche and Enjoloras died...and the way they died was so horrible and sad :'(
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