I bought a thick and heavy illustration book/ catalog from 1989 in a half-priced book store recently. I didn't even go through half of the work that's featured there yet, but what I did do though is picked up a sharpie and post-its and started going through pages, marking certain features: styles, strokes, themes, color palettes, etc. for future reference (Since it's more of a magazine than an actual book I felt like a can vandalize it a bit).
I was on my way to Chicago, going through Indiana fields and flipping through pages, and even though the 80s fleur was overwhelming in the book I was more and more falling into the noir realm. Maybe, it's that couple of noir-ish illustrations I saw while flipping the book and the fact that I wanted to do something in this style for awhile or just the overall sense of old illustration got to me, but I was determined to make at least a small noir illustration with all its drama and pathos...