Alex Ross Spotlight: The Mask of Batman

Batman, eyes, Alex RossBy Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

What’s the right way to portray Batman’s eyes in a real-world scenario? Should the mask have eyeholes that are smaller, and come right up to the eyelids? Or is it the standard set by Tim Burton’s Batman movie, in which the eyeholes are larger, but black make-up around the eyes creates the illusion of a tighter fit?

For Alex Ross the answer, in a sense, is both.

“I wanted it to look like it was just like make up on a face,” Ross said via YouTube video. “That it wasn’t this three-dimensional thing jumping off a human being, but that it was as close to his skin, like as if a human being becoming Batman is just more of a transformation. It’s less about what’s plausible and more about what matches what the comics always did, which is they treat costumes as really just naked skin painted. And that’s what I thought artistically was desired about Batman, not the practicality of, ‘Well how well will that mask take a gunshot?’ Well, it ain’t gonna take a gunshot. It’s imaginary, in effect.”

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