of L. Frank Baum's classic plus an unusual children's record version, too.
The next best thing to being there for Blair
Blog, Movies, People, Books
Posted on May 21 2014 by Greg
Cinderella, Alice, Peter Pan, Johnny Appleseed, The Three Caballeros…it’s a small world...
Only a few of the iconic Disney productions touched by the magic brush of painter, stylist, designer and conceptual innovator Mary Blair.
This multi-story mosaic mural still graces Disney's Contemporary Resort in Florida...
and her work extends into children's books (including the still-in-print Little Golden Book "I Can Fly" (below), home furnishings, advertising -- she even did the color design for the movie version of How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying.
The Walt Disney Family Museum is presenting a spectacular, once-in-a-lifetime exhibit of her amazing work now through September 7.
If you have not been to this fabulous (genuinely) interactive museum yet, this is your excuse to finally experience it. But even if you cannot make it there, curator John Canemaker has lovingly assembled a treasure trove of these art pieces in a new book with the same name as the exhibit: Magic, Color, Flair: The World of Mary Blair.
This new book goes to great lengths to build upon the foundation Canemaker established with his earlier book, The Art and Flair of Mary Blair, which has just been reissued in a new edition. There is so much great art that you’ll be surprised to discover how little the two books overlap. In other words, yes, it’s worth having both volumes.
Mary Blair is also part of the august group of artists represented in Charles Solomon’s new book, The Art of the Disney Golden Books. Inside, you’ll see images of the worlds of Disney that you may have entered yourself through these beloved books. I know I spent hours “living” inside them.
So did animation giants such as Brave co-director Brenda Chapman, Toy Story art director Ralph Eggleston, Monsters, Inc. and Up director Pete Docter, Beauty and the Beast animator Glen Keane and Lilo and Stitch director Chris Sanders, as well as master illustrators Peter Emslie and Russell Schroeder. All of them and more offer personal and professional insights into why these books mean so much to all of us.
Like Disney Theme Parks, movies and music, you didn’t just stare passively at Disney Golden Books—you entered them and lived in their world. And you can do it now in the new book, The Art of Disney Golden Books.
“I can’t tell you how many times Mary Blair comes up in discussions, or an illustration somebody saw in a Golden Book,” says Up Producer Jonas Rivera in this book. “They really are a source of a lot of the color, inspiration and storytelling here at Pixar.”
DVD REVIEW: 20 Feet from Stardom
Blog, Movies, People, Music, Records
Posted on May 13 2014 by Greg
I'm so glad this film won the Oscar.
When you learn about Darlene Love's astonishing career, check out her performance at this year's Oscar ceremony (the one with "Adele Dazeem"). You'll give her a standing ovation, too.
As you will for the mega-talented singers who you'll also meet in this film that -- and it's about time -- gives credit where credit is due, to the mega-talented studio and background singers who toiled behind the headliners (hence the title) and/or gave the world gigantic hit performances but were robbed of proper acknowledgement.
Also after watching this film
, go back and look at the liner notes of your pop music albums. You'll see their names. Over and over again.
This documentary also questions the issue of what constitutes "stardom" and true "success." Becoming rich and famous relies on talent, luck, persistence and being at the right place at the right time -- yet some do not achieve it with all four. Yet, is a life well lived, working in a art form that you love, its own reward. Is the grass always greener? Is being content synonymous with "settling?"
I don't think being able to hold onto who are and what is dear to you is "settling." Regardless of being famous or being "niche," integrity matters, quality matters, and these artists exemplify these attributes.
Even if they aren't household names, how many of the biggest name in entertainment remembered by the general public after more than a few decades? What matters is what they have given us to enjoy and cherish. That is what lives on.
Cheers to you, great makers of music magic.
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