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All Past Featured Artists

Featured Artist of the Month

Paso

The TLKFAA would not be what it is today without Paso, whose patently unique approach to Lion King fan-art has provided one of the guiding lights for many, many other budding artists who call this place home. Dark, gritty, disturbing, and yet hauntingly beautiful, Paso's art elevates this whole site.
...You have no idea how hard it was not to fall into that cliché "WOW! Are you for serious??" opening that everyone seems to do. I'm just kind of dancing awkwardly around it, because honestly, that was my exact thought process when I saw that email perched nicely on top of my sprawling inbox. I half expected someone to leap out from behind my desk bellowing, "You just got PUNK'D!"

So...wow, where do I even start? The funny thing is, I just got back from a class where I literally ranted about art for a solid five minutes. (A good chunk of pretentious critics are heralding the cry "Art is dead!" Which, as anyone wielding a pen or paintbrush knows, is utterly false. But I'll save my theoretical artistic rambling for another day. Just had to throw that in there.) Art isn't a hobby of mine. It's a state of being. As cliché as I know this will sound, it's my passion. If someone who's known me for a span of more than twenty minutes sees me without a sketchbook in hand, they'll assume I'm delirious from some horrible tropical illness.

Honestly, I think EVERY artist should own and use sketchbooks. Take them everywhere with you. Sketch from life, from dreams, from conversations, from movies, from imagination. Don't be afraid to push yourself out of your comfort zone with styles, genres, and mediums. Sketch in pen (and watercolor!). It's okay to make mistakes, I promise! The only way you're going to learn and grow is by pushing yourself and stretching those boundaries. It really gets under my skin when people complain that they can't draw X or Y, then proceed to never attempt it. How can you expect to overcome that if you don't try? Also, and I cannot emphasize this enough, EXPRESS YOURSELF. Let it all out on paper. Emotion can add so much power to a work of art.

Last, but certainly not least, a gianormous THANK YOU! Brian does a ridiculous amount of work to keep this site up and running, and to top it off he's a really nice down to Earth guy, so be nice to him people. Less dramatic rule-breaking and more love for The Lion King and its fanbase, eh? All the people who voted for me...you crazy, lovable artisty folk you, thanks a million and fifteen. This site has this unique supportive feel that has really encouraged me to pursue art as a living. Much love for my wintastic friends, wife, harem, denmother and densiblings, RaptorJesus and all those people that tolerate me in the land of sketcher at ludicrous times of day. I think I've rambled enough...er, too much rather.

Peace and Love,

Legetta

What can be said about Paso other than that her recognition as Artist of the Month is long, long overdue? Seemingly every time she touches pen or bush to paper, something fantastic is bound to fall out—and it seems like an undeserved bonus that it shares subject matter with the movie universe we all love.

Full of life and energy, taut and agitated, with a gritty realism hardly ever seen in TLK fan-art, Paso's art repeatedly and effortlessly takes the genre to levels seldom seen. The most remarkable thing about her body of work is almost certainly its shocking realism—not just the morbid and often violent themes, or even the detailed, naturalistic execution of her characters, but the way she is able to combine that realism of form with a deep, absorbing, engaging expressiveness, seen most clearly in her characters' eyes. It's a rare thing when an artist can make a realistically-constructed character, with small eyes and an animal's feral features, and make it able to convey expressions every bit as readable as from a character designed for animation with large eyes and humanoid facial structures. Yet Paso can do it with animals as different as a lion, a rhino, and a flamingo.

It's impossible to look at Paso's art without confronting its disturbing themes, though, and it must be said that the art in her gallery is not recommended for the sensitive. You have to steel yourself a bit before diving into Paso's gallery, knowing that not everything you find will be pleasant or easy to look at. Much of it is the stuff of nightmares, dark and brooding, emotional and challenging, and seldom—if ever—without an underlying point or message. Paso's words about expressing oneself through one's art are clearly hard come by, and thus all the more worth heeding.

Yet if you've prepared yourself for the jarring experience of stepping into Paso's world, you'll find a world of The Lion King unlike anything you've seen before. Scar is not Andreas Deja's stylized cartoon, but a realistic dark lion such as you might see in a zoo, but still uncannily recognizable. Mufasa is just as chillingly transformed—nothing like you'd see a Disney animator draw except in a sketchbook of character concepts, yet still unmistakably Mufasa. Vitani is more the warrior than Disney ever conceived, yet you instantly know it's her.

There's little that can be added to Paso's art—it really does speak for itself. There's far too little of it there right now (only what's been re-uploaded after an account cleanout), but just the little that's there is enough to give anyone with the right kind of taste a thirst for more.


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