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Featured Artist of the Month


Our honoree this month, Juffy, is well known as an artist who takes so much inspiration directly from the films' canon that almost her entire gallery of nearly 500 pictures is anchored firmly within the recognizable cast and setting of the movies. She hardly has a need to seek beyond those boundaries in order to create her art, endlessly experimenting and playing with interpretations of our beloved characters and art styles in a way that's both familiar and innovative.
It was a week later, from when it was sent, that I read the AOTM email in my inbox. (If I saw it then, it would probably have made my week-long vacation even sweeter :3). Brian's polite reminder that I have been voted the AOTM nearly made me fall out of my chair, figuratively speaking. It is SUCH a great honour to be featured on the front page of TLKFAA! A great start to the morning to an otherwise mundane day. I want to thank everyone who view and enjoy my art. It's a great motivator for me. Like a lot of artists here, I watched Lion King when I was a wee little thing. And like a lot of artists here, the movies inspired me to draw Lion King-related art (homg no way!!). The usual statements that artists make can also be applied to me too, such as Lion King being life-inspiring, and my room being completely filled with Lion King merchandise (looove my tlk shrine!!). Drawing is an outlet for me, a way to slip into another world for a little while. From my time spent doodling, being an animator has always been one of my dream careers from childhood. Although that door has probably closed, my love for drawing would continue to shine :D

I can track a few light-bulb moments of revelation in my artistic career: one was when I realised drawing canon was as much fun as drawing OCs, if not more; second was when I decided to 'look beyond what I see' and draw Lion King humour. I fancy myself as something as specialising in Lion King funnies (at least funny to me 8D). And I do love drawing facial expressions, sometimes hopefully turning those into hilarious things! I reckon there are still thousands of untapped humour in the Lion King universe just waiting to be uncovered. So if my art brings a smile to your face, then I have succeeded.

And for those who have just begun drawing Lion King art, keep practicing and keep creating pictures. (A featured art here is one of my first uploads onto TLKFAA, my babeh Firo. See? No one is born with a pencil in their hand :D) The future of the Lion King fandom depends on you too! Don't forget, draw for fun!

Once again, thank you for your votes and thank you to those who have influenced my art through the years (most aren't active Lion King artist anymore but I hope you know who you are ;) ). Brian, the biggest thanks goes to you for creating this site and for putting up with us Lion King artists! I thought I'd say here that one of the most amazing things of being voted AOTM is to get to read what Brian has to say about your art! So if you want Brian's feedback, keep practicing!

Cheers mate! You guys rock!

Juffy out.
A member of the TLKFAA since 2005, Juffy is no stranger to the denizens of this site, and is in fact the creator behind a great many of the Archive's most popular and well-loved pieces. We can attribute this to her effortless execution of a pleasingly familiar canon art style, with loose, flowing digital linework and a confident, clean coloring style—but most importantly a highly developed sense of creativity and fun. It's one thing for an artist to learn to replicate Disney's crisp, refined art style convincingly; but it's quite another to capture a mischievous comedic energy and a spark of "what if?" that gives rise to vibrant, vivid speculative fiction that takes off from what we know as the canon storylines.

Thus, while Juffy's lush, richly finished, fully colored pieces are the true centerpieces of her gallery (and rightly so), what makes her gallery a compelling place to visit and to stay are her frequent forays into artistic and character-driven humor, some examples of which can be seen here. She loves a visual pun, and her free-flowing and confident sketching allows her to capture the tone and physical acting of a joke drawing in a way that adds tremendously to whatever gag is being conveyed.

The fact that so many of these jokes and comic situations are drawn strictly from an in-universe continuity—one that doesn't require any mental deviation from the canon narrative—sets Juffy's work apart from many others who use The Lion King as a broad set of rough guidelines and settings and then proceed to take the cast of lions out-of-character for the sake of a laugh. Juffy prefers to stay within the boundaries of what's plausible within the canon universe. One might think this is limiting; there is, after all, only so much that can be done without breaking free of the bounds of the "official" story. But she imposes that restriction on herself without seeming to find any difficulty in coming up with new ideas, even choosing to focus on seldom-drawn characters like Pumbaa and Zazu rather than to gravitate toward Original Characters or fan-fiction storylines. It's a rare treat, seeing this kind of love for the movies as they are being made so manifest.

Juffy doesn't constrain her work to this site alone, nor even her Lion King-centric art. Her Lion King Storytellers group on DeviantArt is dedicated toward art based in the TLK universe that seeks to tell a story visually, whether as a comic or other form of sequential art, or just as a particularly expressive single scene. She's gathered a roster of a dozen or so artists around that theme, and her initiative in bringing such an effort to fruition speaks volumes about her motivation and dedication to the craft. It should go without saying that Juffy's artistic career is only just beginning.

Congratulations, and we all look forward to many fruitful years of Lion King art to come!

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