Shogun Vader – Clinton FelkerI don’t even know where to start on this reimagining of Darth Vader, one of the most sinister villains of my childhood, by artist Clinton Felker. I’ve been a Star Wars fan for a very, very long time, and everything about this piece just screams badass. Felker has really paid attention to detail here – just look at Vader’s kneepads! They’re the symbol of the Empire! Vader’s helmet is extremely reminiscent of a samurai helmet, and turning his lightsaber into a katana was an excellent touch. If you liked this one, he has reimagined a few more Star Wars characters over at his blog, The Hand That Feeds, including Yoda, Boba Fett, and even the iconic stormtroopers.
Steampunk David and Goliath – Roger NobsI didn’t even have to look at the actual title of this piece to know what was going on here. The classic tale of boy versus giant has made its way into pop culture a thousand times over, but I had yet to see it portrayed quite like this! The detail of the Goliath-bot, as I like to call it, is incredible, and the image of David standing bravely in its path ready to take it down is pretty inspiring. Nobs has even gone the extra step and created another awesome piece showing “Sir Gerald O. Liath” proudly displaying his machine before he began his rampage. Very cool.
A Realistic Nightmare Before Christmas – Alex RuizI will always have a soft spot in my heart for The Nightmare Before Christmas, and wow do I love this piece by artist Alex Ruiz. For those of you who haven’t seen the original film, it is done in stop-motion using very stylized models, and this piece does away with the stylizing and paints Jack Skellington and Sally in a much more realistic light. They both all of a sudden look rather sinister while still being wholly recognizable as the characters you know and love. A very unique take on a classic!
Woodblock Star Fox – Ukiyo-e Heroes (Artist Jed Henry)I fell in love with the Ukiyo-e Heroes collection when they first started making these incredible Japanese woodblock style art prints, and they’ve since launched an immensely successful Kickstarter campaign (they raised roughly 30 times their original goal amount of $10,400!!!) to enable them to continue to make even more pieces! If you’re a fan of video games, I’d highly recommend checking their page out – they’ve got everything from a rather scary-looking Kirby print to a totally awesome Samus from the classic Nintendo Metroid Series.
Mario Noir – Anthony JonesFilm noir is one of my favorite visual styles when it comes to artwork, and Irvine artist Anthony Jones has done something amazing with it to the characters of one of the most iconic video game series of all time: Super Mario Brothers. As this portrait of Princess Peach shows, not all is right in the Mushroom Kingdom, and our hero Mario has his own problems to worry about before he can worry about saving the day. This series is a fantastically dark look at the whole Mario crew, and I had a hard time choosing a favorite between aspiring actress Peach and mob boss Bowser! Hope you all enjoyed these pieces, and I would love to see some of your creative reimaginings!