No need to jump down a rabbit hole to marvel at the opulence of Wonderland. Tonight's Toil Girl Robin will pour you a hot cup of snazzleberry tea and welcome you to her own land of vivid imagery inspired by writer Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll) and the god of all that is wonderful Walt Disney.
I embraced Robin's theme for a portrait with my heart wide open. I was a child immersed up to the top of his head in the colorful and happy world of Walt Disney. I was insane for Walt Disney and anything he attached his name to. I can't help but to assume it was that world Disney created that inspired--demanded--that I become an artist.
My eyes glossed over gazing at the incredible art and those many beloved characters that lived upon the silver screen whenever a classic Disney movie had its run for that year in the theaters (when I was a kid of the pre-video/DVD generation, if you didn't catch "Dumbo" or Song of The South" in the theaters for that short period of time, you were out of luck for another three or four years or whenever Disney Studios decided to re-release them again). After viewing each movie, I'd come home and trace over the covers of my many Disney soundtrack albums. Since those were original illustrations made specifically for the album covers, they were even more eye-boggling than the cell-painted characters and matte-painted backgrounds in the movies!
My dreams of becoming Disney's successor were sidetracked by the allure of super heroes and menacing monsters, and I assumed I'd conquer those characters with my trusty pencil as well. Little did I know large, lovely women would have the final say. :-)
Obviously Robin shares my love for the King of Color. She thought it was a great idea to combine my Toilesque style of drawing with the more whimsical approach of Disney. She provided me with some choice Alice In Wonderland art and described to me what she wanted in the portrait. I suggested a few things, but the crux of what you see is pure Robin.
When I first ran across the Toil Girls site, I thought to myself, 'Self, you can do that. You can put it all out there and look good.' I'm conservative, and I knew I couldn't have a racy pin-up done (though the thought did cross my mind), so I asked Les to make me Alice, of Wonderland fame. And I wanted to look 'Disneyesque'.
My five-year-old daughter took one look at the portrait and said, "Mommy, when can I get mine done? I want to be a Princess too!" Awww...she thinks mommy looks like a princess.
That's all I needed. I could care less what anyone else thinks, because my precious thinks I'm a princess.
My husband loves it. Especially the tribute to him in the tree over my shoulder.
I can honestly say that it was worth every penny. It's an exquisite piece of art that will forever fill my home with beautiful whimsy, colorful memories, and steaming teapots. Not to mention the bread-n-butterflies. Every time I look at it, I find something else to love. It is detailed beyond what I expected, and it captures my being, my personality, my joy, and my inner child, as well as the outer princess.
Thank you, Les, for creating a lasting piece of me, a treasured piece of art for my children and grandchildren to awe at. When I'm gone, I will have left behind a footprint in the most vivid of colors.
Thank you for the very, very kind words, Robin. I guess I'll be leaving some pretty saturated footprints, myself, thanks to the concept you brought to me. Thanks also for allowing me to pay tribute to one of my greatest artistic inspirations who has left us a spirit that still guides me.