Hypable talked with Karen Hallion about her successful Doctor Who and Disney Heroines collection, and also got an exclusive sneak peek at her latest sketch featuring the Doctor and another famous Disney princess!
Hallion boasts a large and dedicated fanbase, particularly on Facebook, and a whole array of incredible designs that feature fan favorite characters from popular shows and films like Firefly, Once Upon a Time, Harry Potter, and many, many others.
One of her most popular series is the Doctor Who and Disney Heroines collection, which shows the Doctor in his TARDIS meeting some popular Disney characters. We can just hear him now, “All of time and space; everywhere and anywhere; every star that ever was. Where do you want to start?” Who could say no to that?
Check out the gallery of images included in this series below. The designs that are officially recognized as part of this collection include Cinderella, Ariel, Rapunzel, Belle, Alice, Mulan, Merida (work in progress, shown here), and Snow White. Jack Skellington was a related sketch, as was the one of Little Red Riding Hood, though neither are actually a part of the Disney collection. The Red Riding Hood sketch was a collaboration with Matthew Parsons.
1. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am originally from a small town in Massachusetts just north of Boston called Nahant. I went to Ringling School of Art and Design, and graduated with a BFA in Illustration. Up until a few years ago, I was an elementary school Art teacher and now am working full-time as an artist. I originally wanted to work for Disney as an animator, so my work tends to reflect that. I am influenced by the amazing work of Glen Keane, Audrey Kawasaki, and Alphonse Mucha. I also speak fluent Star Wars, Firefly, Buffy, Harry Potter and Steampunk. I currently live in Swampscott, MA with my husband, my sons, and our cats, Obi and Kenobi.
2. ‘Doctor Who’ and Disney, who knew they’d go so well together? How did you first come up with this concept?
Well, I started watching Doctor Who because a fellow artist thought I would enjoy it. What struck me was that his companions are not necessarily just love interests but also cohorts in his adventures. I started imagining who else might make good companions for him and thought of Cinderella; what an interesting twist to her story it would be if he appeared right at that moment.
The Disney princesses yearn for excitement and adventure, so I try to place the Doctor at the point in their story where it seems they are ready for things to change, and it just seems to work together so perfectly.
3. When you first did your Cinderella design, did you think it would be so popular? Did you ever expect you’d be doing a whole series of ‘Doctor Who’/Disney mash-ups?
No; in fact when I came up with the idea for Cinderella and wrote it down on my white board (where I keep all of my ideas), it sat there for over a month before I decided to work on it. Once I drew Cinderella, though, I knew I wanted to do Ariel and Belle, but did not plan to continue going with it after that. When I saw how much people loved them, I decided to keep going.
4. Which one was the most challenging to draw?
Rapunzel because I knew I wanted the Doctor hovering and that I wanted the tower in there. I don’t draw buildings very often so I got a little tripped up on that piece.
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