Recently images of Disney characters moonlighting as other Walt Disney World Cast Members started popping up all over social media.
I decided to reach out to the artist known as “Joey Draws” to see what inspires him. His art is featured all throughout this article. Enjoy!
Josh Young: How long have you been drawing and what inspired you to start?
Joey Draws: I would say I started “trying” to draw when I was 16. At least that is when I moved from doodling in my notes and in the corners of my homework assignments to carrying around a sketchbook. This was also around the time when everyone was asking me what I was going to do after high school and what I wanted to do with my life.
JY: Clearly Disney is an influence in your work. What animation inspires you the most? Are there any particular characters or movies that made you want to start drawing on your own?
JD: Oh definitely. I’ve been drinking the Disney Kool-Aid for as long as I can remember. I worked at the Disney Store in high school and majored in animation specifically with the goal of one day becoming a Disney animator.
As for what inspires me, I mean, Glean Keane’s work almost goes without saying. My favorites being what he did with Ariel, Pocahontas and Tarzan. Also, although he’s not Disney, Don Bluth’s work on Anastasia… master class.
JY: Your work often blends Disney characters with Disney theme park attractions. What made you blend those two together?
JD: It started out as conversation between some my friends who happen to also be Cast Members at Walt Disney World. We thought how Marry Poppins would make the perfect Guest Relations Cast Member. She is kind, stern and practically perfect in every way.
I also love the fact that as long as Disney continues to make new attractions and new characters, I’ll always have something to mash up together.
JY: What are your favorite attractions at Disney World?
JD: Tomorrowland Transit Authority PeopleMover. I love to people watch, is that weird?
JY: You create specific commissions for cast members and “Disneyize” them in their costumes. How did that come about and is there a place people can go to see some of the pieces you’ve already done?
JD: I seem to have fallen into this niche of drawing Cast Members in costume and it is definitely my most requested commission. Whenever I have offered to do commissions, it’s Cast Members who message me first. And I literally can draw them in ANYTHING, but ultimately what a lot of people seem to want is a picture of themselves in their work costume, which I think is awesome by the way. Cast Members don’t often get the recognition they deserve! I just think it’s also quite funny and says a lot about the type people who work for Disney. Here is the link to some of the work I’ve done.
JY:Is there a place people can buy some of the artwork you’ve already created?
JD: Sure, just click here!
JD: I said earlier that I went to school with the dream of becoming a Disney animator and it’s funny how dreams change. Obviously, if Disney offered me a job I’d be a fool not to accept, but now in my “ideal world,” my dream job is to be an independent artist. To make a living, making my own characters, telling my own stories. That is the new dream! 🙂
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All Images Copyright: Joey Draws