illustrated moment

making sense with words and pictures


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When I drew Audrey Hepburn

Audrey IM3It’s time for a confession.

Although 95% of the films I love to indulge in are either all-guns-blazing action movies or colourful-and-magical animations, I must admit that I’m a sucker for the romantic old Hollywood films.

There was a simpler time, when acting in the dramatic arts was exactly that: acting dramatically! From the glamorous clothes to the impeccably unrealistic bedtime make up – the era of old Hollywood has me charmed!

One of the films I’ve rewatched over and over again is the beloved Sabrina. With its well mannered humour and romantic plot, I have been enchanted by Audrey Hepburn’s most wonderful work. I’m not sure if it’s the naive-blushing kind of infatuation that only a teenager could experience, or maybe it’s the elegantly powerful transformation one can undergo with a little bit of inspiration – but something about this movie turns me into a doe-eyed romantic.

So I thought, you know what would be great? If I attempted to illustrate Sabrina doing what she does best: giving a coy side glance to life – I hope you like it!

Remember to have a good day. Remember to smile more, laugh more, allow yourself to get excited!


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4 annoying things about Disney

I am a sucker for Disney movies. I love them. The colourful animations, the beautiful dresses, the clichéd stories and the catchy musical moments. How can you not love them?

Even though I will stay an eternal fan, I can’t help but notice a few seriously annoying things whenever I watch an animated fairy tale by Disney. Here are my top 4:

1. Breaking into song is weird enough – spontaneous duets are weirder

Spontaneous, yet harmonious, duet anyone?

Spontaneous, yet harmonious, duet anyone?

There is nothing more ‘Disney’ than a random musical outburst by a main character. Often the song is about true love, how awful it is to be lonely or a medium to express true inner feelings about the main character’s current situation. There’s beautifully choreographed dancing – even passers by are in on it – there’s a superb orchestra and very-well-thought-out-yet-spontaneous lyrics. It’s what Disney is known for, and it can be one of the most annoying things ever!

In the movies, nobody even raises an eyebrow when someone randomly bursts into song, but if I tried to give it a shot I will be arrested for public disturbance. Maybe I’m just jealous – maybe I crave for such a moment, with an inspiring and motivating soundtrack playing as I bellow out my emotions like a lyrical genius – maybe. However, there is one thing I am definitely not jealous about – the romantic duets. You know what I’m talking about! Disney princess is dancing aimlessly in the forest, singing a tune that seems just a bit well rehearsed, and she hears a distant man singing the same song, in complete harmony. Oh, she doesn’t run in the opposite direction, assuming that he must be a seriously dangerous stalker – no, she runs towards him with open arms! They meet each other’s gaze, hold hands and dance like a pair of lunatics. Why is she so confident to wrap herself eagerly around this stranger? Oh, did you not know, they were meant to be…their love is the truest love. Urgh, how annoying!

Random songs and duets that seem far from random, have to be the most annoying thing about Disney.

…or so you thought…

Actually, the most annoying thing is that you go home download those optimistic fairy tale tunes onto your iPod – and then have to answer to all the teasing and laughter you get when someone else discovers that you’re really a reluctant fan.

2. Only Disney characters can’t tell who is pure evil

Stereotypical Disney evil

Stereotypical Disney evil

This one just aggravates me. The movies always start the same way: there is love and music in the air, the trees dance in the wind and people of the Kingdom laugh with joy, the colours are bright and the soundtrack is happy. Then you cut to the evil character’s lair, and the music becomes heavy accompanied by thunderstorms. Disney has forever portrayed its bad characters like this – it is one of the most popular stereotypes of the industry. If you’re a step-mother or a jealous uncle you are very likely to develop this evil disease. Every good story needs an antagonist, but it’s time their stereotypical appearance is noted and foolish mistakes are not made by trusting them. Now, we know that the characters in Disney movies can hear the soundtrack playing in the background (as we discussed in point 1, above) well enough to sing along perfectly in tune, so why do they choose to ignore the moment that the bass drops? Disney antagonists tend to wear black and purples, they are drawn with sharper lines, they lack the cheerful manner of everyone else in the story and they are usually quite creepy. Despite their traditional appearances, the naïve protagonists do not register the danger they are placing themselves, until it is far too late!

3. ‘Happily ever after’ is not a satisfying ending

Awkwardly walking into the sunset

Awkwardly walking into the sunset

There you are, clutching your chest, all emotional, with tears in your eyes and a tennis ball sized knot in your throat, as you get romanced on this fairy tale adventure. You battled through the unrealistic hardships alongside the main characters and you vouched for their love, even when your family and friends mocked your weird emotional attachment to the animated movie. Then the lovers hold hands, victorious and happy, they make out quite conservatively and walk/ride off into the sunset. You have a stupid grin on your face as you are told that they went onto live happily ever after. The end.

It’s forbidden to ever discuss what happens in the vast space of time which we call “ever after”. Disney has always assumed that we’re satisfied with that ending. Well, I’m not. Forever is a long time, and the odds are against the one-day-old relationship the Disney Princess and Prince have. No-one can be happy 100% of the time! Having only met yesterday, no doubt there will be a lot of fights about quirky aspects of their personalities which are far from ideal and appealing. They will get angry, complacent and probably fat. If they were brave enough to marry, they’ll probably get divorced, and Prince Charming will most likely have a mid-life crisis and charm some young blonde female in order to justify his existence as a man. The odds are against them living happily ever after, that’s all I’m saying.

4. Gives girls unrealistic expectations of hair

You will NEVER have hair like Disney hair!

You will NEVER have hair like Disney hair!

As a young girl, I watched every Disney movie I could get my hands on. I gushed over their love stories, obsessed about their inspiring songs and thought that one day I could have wild forest animals run to my aid as I get ready for a fancy, royal ball. The one thing I didn’t really give much thought to was hair.

Every single Disney character, whether they are male, female, good or evil, is blessed with thick, luscious, long, flowing and well-behaving hair. If it happens to be windy, oh my, each strand moves uniformly with the others to mesmerise us all. If they just came out of the ocean, oh my, it’s still full of volume and bounce. It is a universally well known fact that Disney hair never has a bad day, looks flat or becomes greasy. I must admit that it left me disappointed in my human hair, which was difficult to tame, style and maintain – something Disney heroines rarely have to think about. Isn’t Disney annoying with its unrealistically good hair?

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I love Disney movies – always have and always will. I really like the new direction they are exploring, with Frozen they turned the usual boy saves girl with a kiss on its head, and it’s about time too! The quality of Disney animations have stood the test of time, and regardless of little annoying clichés they still stand by, their movies will always have a captured audience. Hey, maybe we all watch them because we kind-of-actually like those annoying clichés.