Friday, September 23, 2011

It Started With a Laddie Pencil

I’ve been drawing Disney characters since I've been old enough to maneuver my Laddie pencil to make 3 circles.
Ok, I admit it. I just drew this

Then, after years of battling with my mom to be allowed to put posters up on my bedroom walls, she finally gave in to my very convincing arguments (and whining). At the tender age of 10, I grabbed paper, my scented marker collection and some old Disney picture books and went to work. On the back of my dad’s old engineering blue prints I drew Mickey, Donald, Daisy and Pluto and stuck them all over my bedroom walls (luckily I left enough space for my Backstreet Boys posters and Russell Crowe shrine).

No, I didn't give Mickey a mole. That's ancient sticky tack bleeding through

The paper has not aged well

Now, in my 20s, I’m trying to make something of my art. After painting a few replicas of Disney Fine Art pieces for my living room (and an inspiring trip to a Disney Gallery), I’ve decided that I want to be one of those Disney Fine Artists! 

With the original piece at Art of Disney Gallery
My version

I had the pleasure of speaking with one of their featured artists at a signing at the Art of Disney store in Downtown Disney this February. Since then, I’ve desperately wanted to be sitting on the other side of that table, signing my own pieces for Disney art lovers. The only problem, how does a copy machine make original work!?

The last few months since that trip, I have spent hours (and miles) trying to dream up creative art scenes that would WOW Disney. There’s so much to think about for this:

1.      Is it in the realm of my skill level? (Love ya Tink, but I’ve sacrificed too many erasers for you)
2.      Is it different and not like any other Disney Fine Art piece?
3.      Does it have my style? (What IS my style, do I have one?)
4.      Would it make Disney money? (And me!)

So much to think about, all while dealing with severe cases of painter’s block, time constraints, and of course, big, ugly self-doubt.

I’ve painted a few original pieces, but no response from Disney yet (crossing my fingers that they’ve just mistyped my email address and are frantically googling my name and contact info)  




And a few original non-Disney pieces, with the goal of having my own art show when I’ve made enough

But even with the statement above, more often than not, I think ‘Who am I kidding’ to think that my stuff is worthy of an art show. It's one thing to send jpegs of your work to some faceless person but a whole different thing to consider a show. “Yeah, good luck with that ," Mean Me heckles in my head (and for an extra jab at my confidence, I’ll check out the new works posted to Disney’s fine art site..I told you, self-torture is a talent).

But, I’m determined. And one day I will be on the other side of that table. (and most importantly, get to post my artist’s bio on their website that I may or may not have been working on for months!)


  1. I think you are JUST as talented as the folks on the Disney Fine Art site. I agree that it's just a matter of honing your style. I really love the Ariel two-tone one. That could be a really fun Princess series.

    "All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney :)

  2. Aw, thanks Morgan. I actually did start a princess series with that, I have that one, Belle and Tink, all two-toned with their special colors.

  3. Great article! I am personally a huge fan of Thomas Kinkade.