Historical Disney Princesses FAQ

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By shoomlah
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Rather than answering these individually over and over again, I'm just going to leave this here and add to it as needed:

First off!
- I'm not telling you which princess I'm doing next.
- I would appreciate it if you didn't tell me what character I should do next, or what you're looking forward to, or what character you hope I'll do!  It's very sweet and I definitely appreciate the sentiment, but consider the fact that you're something like the 400th person to tell me about Elsa, or Anna, or Merida- it's not adding a lot to the conversation.
- No, I'm not doing any Kingdom Hearts characters.  There's no particular historical precedent, so they don't really have anything to gain from this series.

Are you going to do Merida?
Every time someone asks, I am 5% less motivated to do it.  I am currently 325% unmotivated to do Merida.

Are you going to do any more pieces in this series?
Nope!  Not as finished illustrations, anyway.

Which princess are you going to do next?
I honestly don't know until I start working on it, and I also don't like spoiling the surprise.

Can I make a request?
Please don't!  There are only so many Disney princesses, so requests come across as a bit redundant.

Are you going to do [INSERT DISNEY CHARACTER HERE]?
I'm researching all of the Disney princesses simultaneously, actually, since I tend to find reference for one while I'm looking through books for another.  As to the order in which I do them, it's completely up to my whim.

For further clarification, I literally have a list of the female (or otherwise) characters in the grand Disney pantheon- I know what my options are, I can promise I'm not forgetting anyone, and I don't have some master plan where I know which one's I'm going to be doing.

When are you going to do [INSERT DISNEY CHARACTER HERE]?
See above- I also don't have some master plan as to the order of these things.  I usually have a couple files going at once.

BUT MULAN ISN'T A PRINCESS.
Oh hey, look at that.

What about Alice/Esmeralda/Jane Porter and all of Disney's other non-royals (or, in Kida's case, non-official royals)?
They are not being ignored.  I have some weirdly obscure Disney tastes, though, so you might end up seeing a certain cowgirl on a catfish before you see Esmeralda.

What about the men/ancillary characters like Aladdin and Lottie?
I'm honestly not planning that far ahead, and I also have a lot of other non-Disney art projects that I'd rather spend time on.  Granted, Inca Emperor Kuzco would be...  Yeah.  Epic.  We'll see.

Are you going to do Anastasia?
I'm afraid not.  I never liked the film much (Let's ignore the fact that I own the soundtrack what of it SHUT UP DON'T JUDGE ME), and I want to stick to Disney.  It's what I grew up with.

Actually, I meant Cinderella's stepsister, Anastasia.
Oh!  Well then.  Possibly.

Did you know the original story of [DISNEY PRINCESS] actually took place in [YEAR] and/or [PLACE]?
Yes!  I've researched all of these to a fault.  If it honestly feels like I've missed something please do comment, but also remember that I'm basing these specifically on the Disney versions...  Imperfections and all.  Sometimes the date of the original source material is relevant (Pocahontas, Esmeralda, etc), sometimes it isn't.

No, but really, Princess Badroulbadour is supposed to be from China, and-
Yup!  I read that Wikipedia page too.

I disagree with your choice of time period, and only one of us can be right!
In the long run, these are compleeeeetely for personal gratification and enjoyment.  Sure, The Little Mermaid fits pretty well into 1837, but I don't like the '30's (seriously guys WHAT IS THIS NONSENSE: upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia… ) and Ariel's legomutton sleeves are placed high enough to scream "Belle Epoche," so, y'know.  Loophole.  I'm thrilled to hear how other people interpret the films, just not to the point that I'm going to go back and change my art.

Well these aren't entirely period accurate, are they?
These are for fun.  Stylistic liberties have been taken.  If the films themselves are at about 50% historical accuracy, these are more around 85-90%.  Closer, but they're not diagrams.

Why are all their eyes closed?
I really like the demure sideways/lowered glance, so after doing Belle looking down at her mirror it seemed like another way to tie the series together.  I like that they're not engaging the viewer, that they're in their own world, but in the long run I just really enjoy drawing them!  It implies large eyes without looking too cartoony.

Are you doing these because you hate the original Disney princess dresses?  THEY'RE SO PRETTY WHAT IS YOUR PROBLEM I BET WALT IS ROLLING IN HIS GRAVE
These aren't meant to be better, just more historically accurate.  Don't freak out.

How long does it take you to finish one of these?
Judging from my process videos, somewhere around ten hours if you don't count pauses, the earlier design process, etc. It depends- some of the princesses were pretty effortless, but it takes a lot more time and thought when I'm less familiar with the time period.

How long does it take you to research each character?
Hard to say! I'm researching a lot of these simultaneously, so these are now the result of research spread out over the course of months, or even years. It's a lot easier if I'm familiar with the time period- Cinderella and Ariel were proverbial walks in the park- but sometimes it's a solid week of reading books, looking up inspiration, doing studies. I put way more work into it now that I did back in the beginning.

Do you have any suggestions as to where I can research historical costuming?
I do, finally!  You can go check out the journal entry here shoomlah.deviantart.com/journa… , and I'll try to update it regularly.

What specific references were you looking at while designing Jasmine's costume?
Racinet's plates were a primary source of inspiration: www.darvillsrareprints.com/Rac…, along with paging through sites about Persian miniature painting and middle eastern clothing terminology. have handled her completely differently had I drawn her today, but these are the references I was looking at at the time.

Can I cosplay your costumes?
Please do, I encourage it!  All I ask is that I get to see photos of the final product. :)

Favourite Disney princess?
LILO I DON'T CARE IF SHE ISN'T A PRINCESS. Best all around Disney character. Ever.
Published:
© 2011 - 2020 shoomlah
Comments386
anonymous's avatar
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beefcakemistake's avatar
beefcakemistakeHobbyist Digital Artist
Thank you for doing this series!! 
I think its easy to see how much fun it was to make them c:

I am excited to see more (including other projects) from you
zuko-gaara-lover's avatar
why did you decide to stop the series?
jc-wiseman's avatar
jc-wiseman Artist
neat
Menacorn's avatar
I have a question. You did "Disney" serie a few years ago, Will you do a remake now?
Changing things, looking from diferent history time...
Will you do it?
shoomlah's avatar
shoomlahProfessional Digital Artist
Nope
Menacorn's avatar
Ow... ok x)
KatysCornerTx's avatar
KatysCornerTxHobbyist Artisan Crafter
I can't judge about owning the soundtrack to a movie I've never seen.  I own at least *two* to movies I've never seen.  XD  And the Anastasia soundtrack *does* stand pretty well on its own.
Spencerietta's avatar
Ooooh, I'd be really interesting in cosplaying your Aurora or Belle - if I ever get around to it, I'll be sure to send you photos!
norree's avatar
norreeStudent General Artist
I just wanted to say a random thank you for doing this series. I've followed it since it began, and I love looking back through it on random mornings like today. Even if you don't do any more, I'm just so glad you did this many!
slytherinblack's avatar
I know you literally just said not to do this so you can kick my butt but I want to see Kristoff in more traditional Sami garb. 
shoomlah's avatar
shoomlahProfessional Digital Artist
thanks for acknowledging and then disregarding my request, I guess?
VenusinaMarciana's avatar
VenusinaMarcianaHobbyist Traditional Artist
I hope you get inspire someday again they are lovely
singingstar1216's avatar
singingstar1216Hobbyist General Artist
I absolutely love your work!  Your new Belle design reminds me a bit of the dress Belle wore in the French stage musical at the Theatre Mogador.  
jadem1122's avatar
forgive me if in wrong but the buzzfeed video 
Historically Accurate Disney Princesses seems to be a rip off of your work, or maybe its just a coincidence? 


www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3Fr5w…
popocole's avatar
I'm sure you know this, but your work is being used UNCREDITED by 

clipd . com

I had to do a google image search to find you.  Great press only works if credit is given.

WONDERFUL work.  One of the best reimaginings I have ever seen.
shoomlah's avatar
shoomlahProfessional Digital Artist
thanks for the heads up and the lovely comment!
Scoobie27's avatar
I have a more personal question to ask about one your designs, is it possible to get an email from you? hassan.medina27@me.com
LocketLocke's avatar
LocketLockeStudent Digital Artist
I HATE Anastasia, as in the movie
Ketami's avatar
Your drawings are fabulous! Thanks so much for doing them. I have to say that I agree with nearly all of your interpretations. I love the way you used historical accuracy and referenced/mixed them with the Disney versions.

In fact now I'm seriously thinking of taking my Disney classic dolls and creating dresses for them based on your art. I am so tempted, but it would take forever...... If I ever manage to get around to it I'll send you pictures.

I am really looking forward to Kuzco especially as I am a geek for pre-columbian mesoamerica. Come on, we all know he's an honorary Disney Princess.

Gotta say if you ever manage to do any of the Princes/Kings I kind of wonder what your interpretation would be of King Arthur from Sword and the Stone. Especially because King Arthur is such a mythic figure. I'm sure you know plenty about the various references in history that most likely came together to create the legend. Gotta admit I enjoy the interpretations of him that are more solider the royalty.

Keep up the awesome work, I'm really looking forward to your next installment whether it becomes Princesses/Queens, Villains, or Princes/Kings.
cadeloo's avatar
I actually discover your art just like 2h ago and i'm already a huge fan of your style <3 
All this curves omg *O* This is totally the style of lines i would love to be able to do ( don't know if it's correct xD ) 
I read the FAQ and seems i don't see my question so i ask ( aznd i am pretty sorry if this question is on the FAQ like really :(
I know you plan to draw more of this serie so do you plan to post more video process ? :3 
Because yes your video are so fascinating i was close to my screen like really xD 
I want to say congratulations for this awesome serie and thank for the inspiration and fascination <3 
Ariel523's avatar
I'm really hoping you'll be able to sell these as prints sometime soon... I'm dying to complete my collection and purchase prints of my favorite pieces of yours.
Cookiesnet's avatar
Go to clairehummel.com I'm buying her art books :love:
Ariel523's avatar
Oh yes, I saw the books are available, but I was collecting these as a series to frame and hang on my wall ]: I would love to get the last 4-5 as prints to complete the set...
anonymous's avatar
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