Maleficent – a sculpture and drawing, Angelina in the flesh, the movie, props and costumes

Creating the new, (such as the Disney “Maleficent” movie, or my own drawing of that “Evil Enchantress”) while preserving the essence of the old. I used heavy, black charcoal strokes and just four types of green in my latest “Where Pictures Shine” release, a Numbered Limited Edition of 24.

Four Caran d'Ache Neopastel colors used in Maleficent art by Douglas Rickard

Four Caran d’Ache Neopastel colors used in Maleficent art by Douglas Rickard

Drawing Maleficent by Douglas Rickard

Drawing Maleficent by Douglas Rickard

Walt Disney Classics Collection Maleficent figurine by Kent Melton

Walt Disney Classics Collection Maleficent figurine by Kent Melton

I think that I have captured not only Kent Melton’s 1999 Walt Disney Classic Collection 10” piece with this minimalist portrait; but also I hope, the original Marc Davis “Sleeping Beauty” animated character, which the sculpture brought from two dimensions to three, before I brought it back again, to a line drawing.

Maleficent Numbered Limited Edition Art by Douglas Rickard

Maleficent Numbered Limited Edition Art by Douglas Rickard

Maleficent art

Maleficent art

In “Maleficent” Angelina Jolie channels the 1950s movie villainess’ ink and paint, especially when she smiles. She actually gave me a wave you know, (along with a dozen others) on her way in for a “Maleficent” costume event at Kensington Palace. Fortunately I saw that exhibit later… (outside royal grounds).

The palace scenery for me, in “Maleficent” was even more breathtaking than the magical moors. Modernist colors in “Sleeping Beauty” bled out from those stylized characters in the medieval Walt Disney story. In “Maleficent,” the richest, seemingly ancient and long-lost colors surround you in three dimensions, literally, depending upon which screening you choose.

“Maleficent” wonders why King Stefan and even Flora, Fauna and Merryweather already knew the uninvited fairy would be bad news. It’s fascinating to trek into what could have been their pasts. But as even Angelina Jolie said “there is not just simply good and bad,” I wished the good weren’t painted quite so simply bad in this story.

The actors with their amazing costumes, even the crowds in the castle halls reminded me of realistic illustrations of fairy tales by Eric Winter in original British Ladybird books; a delight to behold. But I enjoyed the live-action re-interpreting of, and nods to, the original “Sleeping Beauty” animated movie most, whether it be a cottage, a lopsided cake or an edge of your seat Christening exchange.

Maleficent Aurora's cradle

Maleficent Aurora’s cradle

Ladybird book Well Loved Tales Sleeping Beauty retold by Vera Southgate, Eric Winter illustrations

Ladybird book Well Loved Tales Sleeping Beauty retold by Vera Southgate, Eric Winter illustrations

Maleficent Aurora Costume and the Spinning Wheel

Maleficent Aurora Costume and the Spinning Wheel

Maleficent Spinning Wheel

Maleficent Spinning Wheel

Maleficent Horns Headdress

Maleficent Horns Headdress

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Time to Say Goodbye to the Walt Disney Classics Collection

Douglas Rickard with Chernabog Walt Disney Classics Collection and his Fantasia drawing

Holding Walt Disney Classics Collection sculpture Chernabog: “Night on Bald Mountain,” Douglas Rickard next to his “Fantasia Characters” art, at the Castle China event in 2014

I’ve displayed my still-lifes of the Walt Disney Classics Collection sculptures up at Castle China before, but nothing prepared me for the true treasures opened up at this month’s event in Dudley, poignantly, perhaps the last ever like this. (That’s my hand touching the “Bambi” Field Mouse, below!)

Walt Disney Classics Collection

First ever Walt Disney Classics Collection piece. From “Bambi” Field Mouse: “Little April Shower.”

Cinderella Dress

“Cinderella:” “A Lovely Dress for Cinderelly” NLE 5,000, 9” Walt Disney Classics Collection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In this fleeting video report of the day, catch farewell close ups of over 20 Walt Disney Classics Collection characters!

Never have three dimensions captured Disney characters so accurately, as the Walt Disney Classics Collection. Even vintage maquettes animators used as guides, in the making of Walt Disney’s movies like “Fantasia” and “Pinocchio,” don’t seem to have literally stepped out of the film, in both form and color in the same way this fine art sculpture line does.

Mr Toad

Mr. Toad: “Blue Boy” 6 1/2” and “Pinkie” 7” Walt Disney Classics Collection Disneyland Exclusive 2000

In 1993 at the start, original animators like Marc Davis were around too, with advice for translating their creations into porcelain. Collectors enjoyed how Tinker Bell’s sculpture precisely mirrored her on-screen pose in “Peter Pan.” And it wasn’t just fairies that received this careful treatment, even behemoths like Monstro were caught by the WDCC artists and sculptors. And we could own these ourselves!

Tinker Bell: “A Firefly! A Pixie! Amazing!” NLE 12,500, 5” Walt Disney Classics Collection, sculpted by Kent Melton

Tinker Bell: “A Firefly! A Pixie! Amazing!” NLE 12,500, 5” Walt Disney Classics Collection, sculpted by Kent Melton

Monstro

“Pinocchio:” “Monstro’s Revenge” NLE 750, 8 1/2” 2001 Walt Disney Classics Collection, sculpted by Dusty Horner

Douglas Rickard and his Donald Duck drawing of the WDCC sculpture

Douglas Rickard and his Donald Duck drawing of the WDCC sculpture

Taking my framed art up from London a day early gave me the opportunity to un-box and experience close-up a couple of rare Disney “Fantasia” collectibles as you’ll see in this video:

I don’t think the initial Pixar characters were favorable to the line. Woody and Buzz look three dimensional already, and in 1998, better in life as… toys. Today though, the computer animated Disney character has the illustrative softness of those in a film Walt Disney himself had touched (films originally only ever chosen by the WDCC.) Elsa and Anna even look like fine porcelain.

New licensee Precious Moments in 2013 were about to put the WDCC name to Disney gift-ware. It was quite possibly the ire of collectors, that ensured the encasing of the Walt Disney Classics Collection line safely into a “vault” instead. After all, collectors had been educated on the finer points of porcelain figurines over the years by… the WDCC.

Snow White herself awoke from such a state and so one day I wish, will the Walt Disney Classics Collection. Could Olaf’s size and stature be more fitting for a starter sculpture? My first purchase was tiny Thumper. Once I had him home, larger “Bambi” pieces from that scene (with price tags I’d never once dreamed I’d pay) eventually followed. However, you and I can still open teal green boxes from the secondary market and in the meantime, here are a few, fun un-boxing videos:

Medusa versus Cruella

Along with “Pete’s Dragon,” “The Rescuers” was the big, new Walt Disney Productions movie of the day for me, as a little boy. And I remember watching an interview at the time, with the animator of Madame Medusa, Milt Kahl, who said how she was a wilder version of Marc Davis’ Cruella De Vil.

Even though I have a soft spot for Madame Medusa, I can’t really choose which character is the superior rogue. So perhaps it’s only fitting they be together for the very low “Story Lines” Numbered Limited Edition of my still-lifes of these villainous WDCC releases, sculpted by Kent Melton and Patrick Romandy-Simmons. Who’s your favorite?

Medusa and Cruella art

Medusa and Cruella art

Madame Medusa and Cruella De Vil

Madame Medusa and Cruella De Vil