When I think of The Hunger Games, one of the last words to come to mind is "cute." Sure, there are a number of scenes in both the books and movies that are devoted to getting all dolled up, but it's hard to forget that under all the beauty is a prisoner to an oppressive system.
Even Effie can't hide all the effects of tyranny with rouge.
However, this Hunger Games fan art by DeviantArt user Ninidu is the closest I've ever come to seeing the beauty through all the pain and suffering. Here's a collection of impressive Katniss creation to show how Ninidu reimagines the world of Panem.
There were never such devoted sisters
“Tuck your tail in, little duck,” I say, smoothing the blouse back in place.
Prim giggles and gives me a small “Quack.”
To start, let's remember the early days when Katniss could still enjoy her family life without getting PTSD flashbacks.
Sending a message
I hurry over to the camouflage station, where some of the other tributes, undoubtedly the morphlings, have made a colossal mess. But I find a partial container of bloodred berry juice that will serve my needs. The flesh-colored fabric of the dummy's skin makes a good, absorbent canvas. I carefully finger paint the words on its body, concealing them from view. Then I step away quickly to watch the reaction on the Gamemakers' faces as they read the name on the dummy.
This scene was The Hunger Games answer to a mic drop.
Not just playing it up for the cameras
Let’s get you cleaned up. Keep an eye on the woods for me, okay?” I say. It’s hard to know where to start. He so caked with mud and matted leaves, I can’t even see his clothes. If he’s wearing clothes. The thought makes me hesitate a moment, but then I plunge in. Naked bodies are no big deal in the arena, right?
Here's a scene that should have made its way into the movie: Katniss coming to Peeta's aid and cleaning his wounds.
The boy with the bread
I stared at the loaves in disbelief. They were fine, perfect really, except for the burned areas. Did he mean for me to have them? He must have. Because there they were at my feet. Before anyone could witness what had happened I shoved the loaves up under my shirt, wrapped the hunting jacket tightly about me, and walked swiftly away. The heat of the bread burned into my skin, but I clutched it tighter, clinging to life.
One of the most touching moments of the story deserves multiple panels.
Aiming for normal
One afternoon Peeta stops shading a blossom and looks up so suddenly that I start, as though I were caught spying on him, which in a strange way maybe I was. But he only says, “You know, I think this is the first time we've ever done anything normal together.”
Because this conventional setting is extremely unconventional for these two, I think this has got to be my favorite piece of the entire collection.
Peeta carries Katniss to bed
“Don’t go yet. Not until I fall asleep,” I say.
It's those small moments between Katniss and Peeta that often get lost in the shuffle of the chaos and murder of the arena, but I really appreciate that this artist has seen something special in them.
Effie's Colorful Capitol Couture
Why add a quote when only a picture will do these looks justice? In the beginning, Effie embodies the Capitol's hunger for excess, and she shamelessly wore that opulence all over her body.
I almost wish they made the Capitol's fashions a little more grotesque because these outfits are too perfect to hate.
The dreaded return to the Games
My body reacts before my mind does and I'm running out the door, across the lawns of the Victor's Village, into the dark beyond. Moisture from the sodden ground soaks my socks and I'm aware of the sharp bite of the wind, but I don't stop. Where? Where to go? The woods, of course. I'm at the fence before the hum makes me remember how very trapped I am. I back away, panting, turn on my heel, and take off again.
This moment captures Katniss's pain when she realizes that she is going back in the arena for a second Hunger Games.
Chariots of fire
I look as if I have been coated in glowing embers — no, that I am a glowing ember straight from our fireplace. The colors rise and fall, shift and blend, in exactly the way the coals do.
It was obvious when reading this section of the book that this scene would be a crowd-pleaser, and this is one of my favorite interpretations of it.
Johanna Mason was a master of deception
This worked very well for a girl, Johanna Mason, from District 7 a few years back. She seemed like such a sniveling, cowardly fool that no one bothered about her until there were only a handful of contestants left. It turned out she could kill viciously. Pretty clever, the way she played it.
Johanna was my favorite character from the books, so I'm glad to see her getting the proper respect here.
Give us a spin!
The creature standing before me in the full-length mirror has come from another world. Where skin shimmers and eyes flash and apparently they make their clothes from jewels. Because my dress, oh, my dress is entirely covered in reflective precious gems, red and yellow and white with bits of blue that accent the tips of the flame design. The slightest movement gives the impression I am engulfed in tongues of fire.
I am not pretty. I am not beautiful. I am as radiant as the sun.
I couldn't close out this list with any other work of art. It's the scene that probably gets the most love, but that affection is clearly well-deserved.
Be sure to check out the rest of Ninidu's artwork over at DeviantArt!