milkweed ballerinas

30 08 2013

you can see here some of the dozens of screen-captures I used to recreate a background from disney’s FANTASIA, THE NUTCRACKER SUITE. it is my favorite segment of the 1940 released masterpiece. backgrounds from FANTASIA are extremely rare, so I ‘just’ needed to re-create one. that turned out to be one of the most difficult tasks, since it is not just a side pan with dozens of little milkweed ballerinas flying around, it is a multiplane scene as well. what means that the different levels move in different speeds. anyway – it took me a while, and I had to paint a lot additionally. below is the result

milkweed ballerinas recr

© disney enterprises, inc


8 12 2010

I always wanted to somehow recreate the final background after I had seen the reproduced layout in ROBERT D.FEILD’S 1940 published book THE ART OF WALT DISNEY. it took me a while and was quite complicated, but now you can see it below – the mentioned page from the book and the recreated extreme long pan-background from disney’s november 1940 released FANTASIA ( DANCE OF THE HOURS ).

© disney enterprises, inc

symphony nr.6

29 04 2010

this extremely long recreated pan is from disney’s 1940 FANTASIA, the PASTORAL SYMPHONY. for my taste it is a bit too colorful. but I am european, and especially northern-europeans prefer more subdued colors. more interesting is the stylized world that was created for the greek mythology inspired gods and fantasy creatures.

© disney enterprises, inc


6 07 2009

fantasia recr.022a

a recreated longer pan from disney’s FANTASIA, BEETHOVEN’SPASTORAL SYMPHONY.

© disney enterprises, inc

nutcracker 2

25 03 2009

this recreated combined pan from disney’s FANTASIA, NUTCRACKER SUITE, was the most time consuming piece I did so far. there was so much animation happening in the background that I had to actually repaint several areas, of course trying to match the original. I really wanted to see it completed, in my opinion one of the most beautiful scenes in the film.


© disney enterprises, inc


9 01 2009

KAY NIELSEN, 1886 – 1957, is next to ARTHUR RACKHAM and EDMUND DULAC one of the greatest childrenbook illustrators of the late nineteenth century. he was born in denmark and moved later to california, where he worked from 1938 – 1941 in the disney studio. in FANTASIA he designed most of the NIGHT ON BALD MOUNTAIN and AVE MARIA sequence. below I recreated 3 backgrounds from another sequence in fantasia, BEETHOVEN’S PASTORAL SYMPHONY. as you can see in the following three illustrations by nielsen ( created much earlier for a children book ), he even influenced the look of that part of the film.





© disney enterprises, inc
© nielsen

milkweed ballerinas

28 12 2008

again some more recreated artwork from disney’s FANTASIA, from the NUTCRACKER SUITE segment. when you watch that part you are overwhelmed with the animation, the colors, the flow of the moving camera, all the animated effects, the music. I always found it difficult myself looking at this masterpiece and trying to analyze it at the same time. it was impossible. the only way it works now is with today’s technology, studying the top quality DVD release singleframewise. and finally, after I was able to recreate the amazing cameramoves and had removed the animation, I could sit stunned in front of the pure background paintings. believe me, my respect is too big to make the animation look less important. when I worked in the disney studio, I had a chance to flip through a lot of stacks of original animation. all of it is still stored in the ANIMATION RESEARCH LIBRARY. but nearly 90% of all the background-art doesn’t exist anymore, – earlier I explained why. another reason for me to concentrate on that is, I design these worlds myself and love to paint backgrounds.





© disney enterprises, inc


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