Thursday, July 22, 2010

Princesses of Power #7: Tiana


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



TIANA: She's the princess AND the frog with her shapeshifting powers. Tiana's lilypad-themed gown is here reimagined as the functional athletic-wear of the super-people of today - or a few months ago anyway (drawing primary influence from Bryan Hitch). Ribbed rubber vents? Check. Thick visible piping? Check. Sensible footwear for the girl on the go? Check. Ready for anything? Check and check.

And that brings us up to the present, and an end to the Princesses of Power series... at least for now. There's at least one more princess to come, and at least one that I skipped that I kind of wanted to take a crack at, so maybe sometime I'll pop out a couple more. or maybe not. Did you have a favorite? Did you notice the two covers that had hidden Mickey's?

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Princesses of Power #6: Jasmine


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



JASMINE: Well, if you had to be designed in the 90s, at least the leather-jacket over Spandex thing is preferable to what poor Belle got. Slightly. I slid the Jewel from the top of Jasmine's head down to her forehead to make it look like some sort of power focusing device, and generally tried to draw some influence from Jim Lee designs. She's ready to race off on the magic carpet headlong into danger.

Those extra random straps on the legs? I have no idea, but they really had them in the nineties... all the time.

FUN FACT: The above was drawn and written before DC Comics made a big splash with Lee designing a new Wonder Woman costume a few weeks ago. Guess what? He's still adding jackets with rolled-up sleeves on top of unnecessarily complicated super-hero costumes! I haven't picked up any of the issues with the costume in it, so I'm just going to assume the design is for a story about Wonder Woman traveling back in time to the mid-90s, because otherwise in 2010 they wouldn't really put something like this on the most iconic female superhero of all time, right? Right?

Tomorrow: The tantalizing Tiana!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Princesses of Power #5: Belle


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



BELLE (AND THE BEAST): Well, with three princesses coming out between 1989 and 1992, this kind of fashion nightmare had to happen to somebody. Poor Belle gets saddled with the giant shoulderpad, enormous gun, metal arm, towering topknot, unnecessary padding look that was so prevelant around that time. I stopped short of giving her a glowing, bionic eye. I just couldn't.

In fact, I felt so bad about giving Belle such an intentional eyesore, that I decided to also design her a more classical, sleek costume based on her blue and white peasant dress. Here you go, Belle. Don't be mad at me:



There. Are we still friends now?

Tomorrow: Jasmine and her belly-button!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Princesses of Power #4: Ariel, The Little Mermaid


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



ARIEL THE LITTLE MERMAID: The Little Mermaid came out in 1989, and one of my favorite superhero artists at that time was Walter Simonson. Ariel was one of the more difficult characters to reinterpret since there isn't a lot of costume to her most classic look (and none of her dresses on land are all that iconic or even appealing. What was up with putting the redhead in a pink dress? Mary Blair must've been rolling over in her grave.). In the end, I decided to keep it pretty simple, drawing the lines out from the seashell top and adding a mask similar to those Simonson was drawing on Jean Grey (also a redhead) in X-Factor at the time.

Flounder gets the Wolverine treatment since their yellow and blue patterns are so close to begin with that I couldn't resist. Snikt!

Tomorrow: An extra-special edition starring the Bewitching Belle and her Beast (and some slight rule-bending)!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Princesses of Power #3: Aurora The Sleeping Beauty


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



AURORA THE SLEEPING BEAUTY: This is the one that really started the whole Princesses of Power idea of matching the super-designs to their time of original movie's release, even though it's also the one that stretches that concept by the longest time. Sleeping Beauty was released in 1959, and it would just be a few years later that Jack Kirby really started popping out radical, cosmic character designs, and I saw an echo of that in Aurora's tall tiara, pointy shoulder pieces, and the zigzag pattern at her pelvis. It was easy to imagine her costume reinterpreted by Kirby, and then I realized it was even easier to imagine the same thing happening to her enemy, Maleficent, The Mistress of All Evil. Even unaltered, Maleficent darn-near looks like a Kirby Creation to begin with (she's not, of course. Credit goes to Disney legend Marc Davis).

As you can see from the corner box, Aurora's costume can change from pink to blue, depending on the occasion. She may be a superhero now, but she is still a princess after all.

MONDAY: Aquatic adventures with Ariel: The Little Mermaid.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Princesses of Power #2: Cinderella


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



CINDERELLA: Arguably the most classic Disney Princess, Cinderella also gets a fairly classically-styled costume with a ruffled trim on her skirt inspired by Supergirl's most feminine uniform. For those of you wondering who Cinderella is, she's a minor supporting character from the 1950* movie that is named after her, despite mostly being about mice who like to make dresses.

The clock icon on the chest serves as a reminder to Cinderella that her powers only last until the clock strikes twelve. No mask needed, since the glam makeover is enough to disguise her from the few people who know her anyway, but she'd better learn to keep a better eye on the footwear if she wants to keep her identity secret for good!

*that's right, despite their modern reputation for being a princess factory, Disney actually waited 13 years between its first and second princess movie, and there are longer gaps to come. Uncle Walt wasn't big on repeating himself. If Disney had a hit as big as Snow White today, you know they'd have greenlit "Snow White II" AND "Dopey: Secret Origins" before the opening weekend grosses were finished being tallied.

Tomorrow: The alluring Aurora: The Sleeping Beauty!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Princesses of Power #1: Snow White


The task I set for myself: redesign the Disney princesses as superheroes, drawing inspiration from super-fashions of around the same time their animated movies came out.



SNOW WHITE: The original Disney princesses gets the most classical superhero costume, drawing inspiration mostly from Superman and Robin (in addition to SW's own gown, of course). She's in hiding from the wicked queen, so that explains the mask. The seven dwarfs are thrown in as the seven sidekicks in more generic, slightly sillier costumes as a free bonus offer.
While we're here, let's see if we can come up with powers for each of the dwarfs based on their names/personalities:

Doc - Super intelligent, natch.
Grumpy - flies into Wolverine-style berzerker rage.
Sneezy - Incredible concussive nasal blasts.
Sleepy - Super contagious yawns render his foes drowsy.
Happy - Flings sweat laced with chemicals that send his enemies into a blissful trance.
Dopey - No change necessary. Dopey is already a ninja.
Bashful - Bashful has an astonishing and incredibly potent super-ability, unfortunately he is too shy to use it or even tell us what it is.

TOMORROW: The scintillating Cinderella!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Announcing Princesses of Power!



The task I set for myself was this: redesigning the Disney princesses as superheroes, keeping the familiar elements of their costumes along the way. The additional guideline I gave myself was to try to imagine the costumes as they might've been created around the same time they had initially been designed for their animated features (meaning Snow White should look like a character from the 30s, Cinderella from the 50s, etc.).

I also went ahead and designed covers for each of them, complete with titles and various indicia to match the comic covers of each time period, just because I thought that made it more fun. New super-princesses will be posted every weekday from July 14 through July 22.

Come back tomorrow as we journey back to 1937 to meet the princess who's changing what it means to be "the fairest one of all": the sensational Snow White!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Disney attraction series #4: it's a small world


it's a small world
Disney attraction portrait series #4: it's a small world
"There is just one moon and one golden sun/And a smile means friendship to everyone./Though the mountains divide/And the oceans are wide/It's a small, small world."

Cutesy-poo, shamelessly idealistic, and thoroughly kid-friendly, many dismiss it as a baby ride. Full of animated dolls intoning endless variations of the same simple tune, some dismiss it was creepy. But me, I see the beauty in the colors and style, joy in its ebullience, and hope in its message. I'll come right out and say it. "My name is Brodie, I'm an adult, and I love 'it's a small world."

Friday, July 9, 2010

Roller Derby Supergirl


Roller Derby Supergirl
DERBY GIRLS #3: Supergirl! The maid of might, wisely ditching the cape when its time for the bouts and opting for a 70s-inspired athletic look. I hope she spits that gum out before she gets skating, though I suppose there's less of a danger of choking when you have super-breath.

Roller Derby Maleficent


Roller Derby Maleficent
DERBY GIRLS #2: Maleficent, the Mistress of All Evil. Judges, watch this one closely, please. She's prone to cheap shots, low blows, and turning into a massive fire-breathing dragon.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Roller Derby Wonder Woman


Roller Derby Wonder Woman
Here are some things going through my mind this week: Wonder Woman's costume (DC gave her a new, terrible one this week)roller derby, and the Fourth of July. SO: Wonder Woman goes roller derby! Of course, she doesn't really need the helmet and pads, but she likes to play by the rules. Go, Wonder Woman, go!