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Featured Artist of the Month


There's no denying that Atarial has produced some of the most strikingly show-accurate art that this site has ever seen. Just a glance at her body of work tells the tale: she's a tremendously talented artist whose hard work over the past six years has paid off well in making her into a professional-grade illustrator and animator whose ambitions are bound to carry her far in her career. It's high time we recognized her here on this site as our Featured Artist.
Ok wow. I can't really believe it, I was checking my emails out of boredom and, well this shows up. It's just one of those things you never think will happen.

But what do you talk about here. Well, I will be the first to admit that I never really got hugely involved in the community side of this site; I just found my group of friends in 2007/8 and we had some good times. I wasn't that great at my art back then, but I had fun and always tried to do better. While most of my friends have moved on from this site, I will thank them here, because they made my few years here enjoyable, and I will also thank my newer fans, you guys know who you are and you are all very lovely.

Finding this site was, I think, the result of google image searching, as it is for most I'm guessing. I was amazed at the art people were posting, I don't remember too much really, but I do remember that artists like Tima, Redbuzzard and AudreyCosmo were regularly posting. The Lion King had always been one of my favourite movies and still is. And so I decided to join and start uploading. Lots of Doctor Who crossovers back then, before I gained confidence in my art and drew more canon and OC work, but really, it was this site that kickstarted my love of drawing again. I hadn't drawn anything for quite a number of months before joining this site; I was quite disheartened about it all, and so signing up here that helped me discover that I just had to keep at it if I wanted to get better. I can honestly say that I don't think I would be at the stage I am if I hadn't discovered and joined this site.

So can I just say thank you for voting, thank you so much! Cookies for everyone =D
There's not much more inspiring than to see just how far Atarial's self-motivation has taken her. Looking at her first rough pieces of work (i.e. Scar at the top left), watchers would hardly have recognized that they were looking at an artist who would one day produce works as undeniably gorgeous as the others shown here—especially the somber, melancholy nighttime scenes featuring Rafiki (a favorite subject of Atarial's) and Simba.

But follow her work forward through history and you'll see the long visual story of her perseverance and the joy of creation. There was no sudden revelation, no moment when she abruptly unlocked a secret and became a hundred times better. She's been working diligently, day after day, to improve herself and her understanding of important artistic techniques a little bit each time. She doesn't show discouragement over not making great leaps ahead, but takes inspiration from the small, slow bits of progress that each new picture represents.

The result is unmistakable. Her recent work is vibrant, expressive, intensely emotional, and all but indistinguishable stylistically (when she so chooses) from canon Disney art. Much of it would not look at all out of place in a Disney-produced "Art Of" book. Every fan-artist has a unique personal goal for his or her work; but I'm sure a great many are driven by the desire to one day produce art that may as well be the work of the show's creators. Atarial, at least, can easily claim to have gotten there.

This kind of long-term dedication and relentless pursuit of excellence, by her own set of standards, has perhaps inevitably led Atarial into the first stages of a career as a professional animator. Lots of fan-artists harbor that dream; and not many are able to actually turn it into reality. It's in this way as in so many others that Atarial's example serves to inspire the rest of the TLKFAA community: through her we can all see that it's possible, if it's that important to you, to make your love for creating art into a discipline that will serve you for the rest of your life.

A round of applause for Atarial, and all the best wishes for the future!

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