I love the idea of the tagline being Strange is Relative. I also love when you can see many meanings in one phrase. As another turn of phrase, I liked the idea that the subject being painted in the portrait was a doll, and the 'fictional' (i.e. the painted version of that person) was 'realistic'. I wanted to give the impression that the real world version of Barnabus was a more playful version than the 'painted' human version, or a slightly pretentious vision of him.
I had the idea to create the 'real world' being of Barnabus as a doll, because so many of my favorite Johnny expressions remind me of just that - expressive, silent emotions. Tim Burton and Johnny Depp are both creative visionaries, in their own right, and their concepts are so strong artistically (be it character or story) that they could film a silent movie, and we'd still know exactly how they wanted to make us feel because the visuals are so strong.
I also love the dark but not depressing aura that surrounds both the creative style of Burton and the classic show of Dark Shadows as well (if you've never watched it, RUN to Netflix- its a diamond in the rough!) My goal was to have the vibe of my own creations reflect that.
I created the doll in it's entirety, from the pattern of the body, the outfit (pants, shirt, vest and coat), to the sculpt of his hands; I also painted on the details with an acrylic paint to create further depth as well. I made a frame for his portrait, so that it would reflect the 70s era, but with a warped sort of flair. I wanted the portrait of Barnabus to reflect the doll, so I drew and painted him in the same attire that I designed and tailored for the doll
His vest is an olive green brocade fabric, and his brown coat is a soft leatherette material. He has matching heeled boots (which I felt were appropriate for the time period) and 3 chains connecting the vest in the center. He is also holding a large red amulet, as seen in several promotional images, which I'm sure we'll learn more about at the highly anticipated release of the film itself
I also felt the need to add it in as in the show, the jewelry of Barnabus sets us off in the very beginning, so it was a small homage to the show as well.