Archives for posts with tag: Disney

Disney characters are so ubiquitous in today’s popular culture that they are sometimes the subject of a less wholesome narrative (as seen here and here). In his series Noir Princesses, San Diego-based illustrator/artist Astor Alexander explores Disney princesses in a darker light. These highly stylized portraits harken back to mystery novels and films of the 1940s and 50s and tell stories centered around said princesses as noir fiction protagonists. Alexander’s talent is undeniable, and his aesthetic is right on the money. He captures the individual personality of each recognizable princess character while transporting them all to a less familiar setting with a foreboding cinematic quality.

Prints available here.

Via Behance and Instagram

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Just as the title of this intriguing series (and cleverly named… “Alt Disney”) implies, UK artist/illustrator/designer Tom Ward brings some beloved Disney characters into an alternative view. Ward’s depictions are a bit askew, transporting familiar faces that have been with us for some 70 years into the present. We find it particularly interesting how the introduction of the ubiquitous smartphone changes everything in a few of these pieces. And even serves as social commentary, especially in the instance of Ward’s The Sword and the Stone piece where young Arthur has his nose in a phone, basically too engaged to be bothered with the sword. Really makes us think about our collective love affair with our phones, and about possible missed opportunities because of it. The point is, on the surface these pieces are fun, but there really is so much more. Hats off to Ward for striking that balance brilliantly.

More alternative Disney art here and here and here.

Via Instagram

Chalking has been growing in popularity for years, in part due to the increased visibility of incredible artists like Dana Tanamachi (here) and others (here and here). There seems to be a mini movement in Japan right now involving blackboards and chalk (more here). As the saying goes, “everything old is new again”, blackboards, which are now being replaced with whiteboards, possess a sort of novelty these days. Hirotaka Hamasaki, aka Hamacream, is a Japanese art teacher with incredible skills and thousands of Instagram followers. His ability to recreate intricate familiar works of art (on a chalkboard, no less) is just stunning. Though the impermanence of this medium is a bit unnerving to us (we’d want to preserve these works for a long time), they are no less brilliantly executed for having been created with chalk. Truly inspiring.

Via Instagram and Twitter

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We’ve seen many reinterpretations of Disney characters and themes over the years (here and here and here), but nothing quite like Las Vegas-based painter Heather Theurer’s take. Theurer, who surprisingly doesn’t have a formal art education, takes it well beyond simply fan art. Her skill set and techniques are rooted in fine art, more specifically Renaissance painting, consisting of “a multitude layers of paint and glazes (as many as 20 or so in some cases) to reach the desired depth and detail that dominates her work.” Self-taught or not, Theurer creates some gorgeous work that has actually been commissioned by the big cheese, Disney, which is undoubtedly a great source of pride and validation. With such a deep catalog of characters and stories from which to draw, the possibilities for Theurer’s incredible series are endless.

Via heathertheurer.com

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Sure, we’ve seen paper cut art before (here and here and here), and we’re very fond of it, by the way. But we’ve never seen anything quite like this. London-based artist/photographer Rich McCor (otherwise known as @paperboyo) brilliantly pairs his paper cut skills with his keen eye for photography. And the results are clever, playful and unexpected. McCor’s carefully crafted silhouettes are brought to life against sometimes familiar and iconic backdrops. While his work may seem simple in concept, there’s no doubt in our minds that these smart compositions require much more skill than one may think. Needless to say, we are thoroughly impressed and inspired. And his growing base of 175,000 Instagram followers would surely agree.

Via Instagram

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We’ve all enjoyed colored pencils at one time or another, but few pull off the depth and richness when utilizing these basic tools as Ontario-based illustrator/tattoo artist Andrew Wilson. Wilson’s creations are not simply sketches, but carefully crafted works of art that would make a digital illustrator envious. We love that Wilson creates these pieces by hand, and is able to achieve such contrast and nuance, especially in the shadows and highlights. And we’re not alone in our admiration of Wilson’s tremendous skills. His social media stats speak for themselves… 94,000 likes on his Facebook page, and 53,000 followers on Instagram. We will definitely be checking back on Wilson’s growing body of work, just awesome.

Via Facebook and Instagram

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Disney characters are often the subject of artwork in this particularly pop culture-centric moment in time (here and here and here), so it’s no surprise that someone has envisioned what Disney royalty might look like in “real life”. And that someone is Melbourne, Australia-based Finnish designer/illustrator/art director/photo manipulator Jirka Vinse Jonatan Väätäinen. The rise of live-action Disney fairytail movies in recent years has certainly increased public consciousness about these beloved characters, but Väätäinen depicts a much wider variety with astounding results. Gathering an assortment of photos online, Väätäinen digitally blends them together and manipulates them in such a way that looks natural and realistic. It’s an interpretation, of course, but pretty spot-on in our opinion. His work has been floating around the internet for years, and his newly released set of princes has regenerated interest in his excellent work. Just a sampling here, so be sure to check out Väätäinen’s site for the full collection. Magical, indeed.

Via jirkavinse.com

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There is something to be said about fan art. By its very nature, fan art is created as a sort of labor of love, and generally not commissioned or endorsed by the creators of the work from which the fan art derives. For Tumblr artist simply known as Punziella, Disney characters are her subject of choice. It’s not that often that we feature fan art, but Punziella is quite adept at transforming said Disney characters. She gives them a makeover, taking them out of whatever time period we’re accustomed to seeing them, and dresses them in current fashions. Not an easy task, but executed like a pro by Punziella. Nice work!

More fan art here, and Disney-inspired art here and here.

Via Tumblr

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Though these photos probably don’t do them justice, British contemporary artist Joe Black’s large-scale compositions are stunning. Composed of thousands of small objects, such as Lego bricks, ball bearings, plastic toy soldiers, buttons and badges, these pieces are not simply visually stimulating, but also thought provoking. The Captain America likeness of Black’s piece titled “Carry Your Own Sins Missy” is composed of 1,478 handmade badges of collected imagery, from Elvis and Disney cartoons to the Vietnam War. In his own words, “The iconic image of Captain America encapsulates the idea of America as the hero nation. However, within the image we glimpse the conflicts and contradictions of the all-American dream.” Similarly, the Superman likeness is made up of 1,389 badges of Western cultural imagery interspersed with corporate logos, fast food and obesity. Black has an incredible eye for tonal composition. We only wish we could see these in person… spectacular work.

Via mrjoeblack.com

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Chinese sculptor Li Lihong juxtaposes contemporary corporate logos with traditional Chinese imagery and ceramic techniques, with fantastic results. The series is a sculptural mashup of corporate identity and fine art, of contemporary and traditional, of East and West, of old and new. Western business has become integrated into Chinese culture, and Lihong’s work seems to embrace it.

Via Facebook

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