Simons Mith wrote:David's style looks like it will be fine for the long run. But this Wanda needs work. This ain't her, yet, IMV. But it's really hard to articulate why. Maybe this version is too vampy, too overtly sexual. There was something restrained about Wanda that allowed her to wear the most outragous stuff and carry it off. This one seems to be missing that sense of reserve, and as that's a key part of her character it makes the picture just a shadow of the true Wanda. She just looks tarty. If I can think of a better way to say what I think's missing I'll come back and do so. But on the whole, bloody good work, David, keep it up! And don't take this post too much to heart because I have a feeling by the time the next book starts you'll have 'got' the character fully anyway.
Going back and checking book 1 I'd say it is the male gaze in David's picture here. Ok, feminism 101: the male gaze is the tendency for pictures to be constructed so that the viwer has an easy time identifying with men in the picture, and an easy time to see the women as sexy. Typical stuff is men in suits shown with a focus on the face, and women in sexy outfits highlighting the areas constructed as sexy. The gender of the person behind the pen or the camera is not relevant, only the composition of the picture.
So it is not only the Wanda but the whole picture focusing on her boobs by way of her outfit, her posture, the color contrast and the position of the boobs near the geographical center of the picture. Jamie's Wanda had outrageous outfits but the pictures did not make that the center of attention, instead bringing focus to her facial understated but very clear expressions. Both Jamie and Xin has also had Wanda with a very powerful body language.
Check for example scantily clad, and crazy powerful Wanda here: http://www.erfworld.com/book-1-archive/?px=%2F143.jpg
Or how Wanda's cleavage is way out of focus early on in book 1 (Erfworlders being bubble-heads back tehn of course helped push everything else out of focus).
Jamie set a very hard precendence to follow with Wanda, in how he managed to convey a powerful, sexy, reserved and person with focus on facial expressions (despite being reserved). Xin's Wanda was very criticised in the beginning, and I am sure David will get it in time.