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All Past Featured Artists

Featured Artist of the Month

KassyNaVerdis

We're off to a late start this month thanks to the unexpected downtime, but that doesn't mean this month's Featured Artist deserves any less than the usual amount of accolades. Indeed, KassyNaVerdis—an artist with admirable dedication both to artistic growth and to on-topic Lion King art—should get it all and then some.
Y'know, I realize that everyone starts off with, "Wow! I never expected this! I was so shocked when I saw the email!" The funny thing is, it's true. I really didn't see it coming.

I was 12 when The Lion King released, and I've loved it ever since - to the point of frightening my friends. While I've been drawing for years, it never occurred to me to try drawing anything from my favorite movie until about a year ago. The rest, as is so often said, is history. I found TLKFAA and started uploading things that make me cringe looking back on them... and I haven't stopped drawing and uploading since.

I don't really have any useful advice or words of wisdom to offer, since I usually find myself baffled by the things people ask for tips on. The best I can offer is to draw what makes you happy. We tend to be our own worst critics, and in drawing things we want to excel at, we'll try all the harder. Draw for yourself, not to try to impress others, and take criticism as it comes. Remember that it's the art that's being criticized, not you, the artist.

We're all very lucky to have a place like TLKFAA to come together, to share our art and ideas, and the (sometimes disturbing) obsession most of us seem to have with one of the finest pieces of animation ever created. There are a lot of art sites out there, but this is the best I've found, or heard of, when it comes to having a sense of community. I'm happy to be a part of it, and honored by receiving Artist of the Month.

She's only been with us for a year, but in that brief time KassyNaVerdis has built up a loyal following of fans who appreciate her work for its appealing and unique look and its focus on on-topic subject matter. Fans can also enjoy her willingness to experiment and share the results of her findings—sketchy pencil works are available in her gallery as well as finished computer-colored pieces, and through them we all get to benefit from seeing the techniques that all the best artists up to and including Disney animators use to lay the groundwork for the gorgeous finished art we all love to see. KassyNaVerdis also has a folder full of tutorials on her techniques for things like skies and backgrounds—background elements that fill out the ambience of any picture by placing the character in a context that reinforces the realism of the finished portrait or scene.

The majority of KassyNaVerdis's posted art is in her "Colours" folder, though—completed and computer-colored scenes starring all our favorite canon characters. Her Simba is among the most appealing I have seen on the Archive, with a fun-loving looseness about the line style that really accentuates the fundamental attributes of the character. Her collaborations with other well-known artists (also available in that folder) are also top-notch; she brings as much to an image with her able coloring as with her own linework. You'll also find experimentations into entirely different artistic styles, from real media to stained glass and even desk scratchings—a testament to the unique versatility of Lion King fan-art to inspire artists to branch out in all technical directions while sticking with a thematic universe that ensures a community of fans and well-wishers who will always be there to cheer them on.

KassyNaVerdis deserves a full month's worth of attention at least; she certainly deserves her place as this month's Featured Artist. We can all be sure that whether it's here or at her DeviantArt account, KassyNaVerdis will be delighting her fans for many years to come.


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