Creative energy is often really harnessed when shared, and the relationship between Hunter S. Thompson and Ralph Steadman is no exception. Virtually anything that Thompson produced during his career featured Steadman’s wonderfully bizarre illustrations, which greatly complemented the out-there, Gonzo brand of journalism that Thompson pioneered in the latter quarter of the 20th century.
Steadman’s images are instantly recognizable to anyone familiar with the enigma that was Hunter S. Thompson. And thanks to Johnny Depp’s brilliant portrayal of Thompson in 1998’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, another generation was introduced to the often misunderstood writer as well as Steadman’s sensory twisting and thought provoking drawings. Not only is Steadman’s work used for the Criterion Edition cover art of the film, but Fear and Loathing director Terry Gilliam thoughtfully (and effectively) assaulted the audience with Steadman’s often drug-fueled images throughout the film.