Thursday, January 29, 2009

When You Wish....

You probably know by now that I'm a big Disney fan. My ideal vacation would be a week or two in DisneyWorld in Orlando, Florida. And believe me--with the way this winter has been going, Florida is sounding pretty good right about now.

My love affair with Disney should come as no surprise. I was born in the 50's, so I grew up on a TV diet of The Mickey Mouse Club during the week ("Mousketeer roll call, sound off now!") and Walt Disney's Wonderful World Of Color ("The world is a carousal of color....") on Sunday nights.

The Sunday show actually had a few different titles over the years. It was first called simply Disneyland. That was changed to Walt Disney's Wonderful World of Color, and eventually became The Wonderful World of Disney.

It was a pretty full viewing schedule, keeping up with Karen and Cubby, Jimmy and Roy, Tommy and, of course, everyone's sweetheart Annette Funicello. Then Sundays were filled with dramas such as Davy Crockett, Texas John Slaughter, the Swamp Fox, Scarecrow, or the cartoon antics of Mickey, Donald, Goofy and (my favorite) Professor Ludwig Von Drake.

Not too long after the DisneyLand theme park opened, my Mom and Dad planned a trip out West for a Summer vacation and the final destination would be Anaheim, California. I was probably bouncing off the seat cushions all the way. And as far as I was concerned, it was the most magical place I'd ever seen. I've been to Disneyland a couple of times over the years, and have been to DisneyWorld 3 times, and I can't even put into words the feeling I get when I'm there. It's a feeling of peace, and of comfort--a feeling that everything is going to be all right, and nothing bad can happen. Truth to tell, it feels like home.

I haven't been back to DisneyWorld in years, but another trip is certainly long overdue. Just thinking about it has me grinning.

I'm not the only one who feels this way, of course. And--lucky for us--one of the people Disney faithful is an artist by the name of Thomas Kinkade, "Painter Of Light".

Last year he started a series of Disney paintings depicting favorite scenes from the Disney movies he grew up with and enjoyed. The first one honored Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs, and is called, "Snow White Discovers The Cottage".

You definitely should click on the picture to enlarge it. Snow White is in the foreground. The cottage looms invitingly over the bridge. Woodland creatures abound. Far in the distance, foreshadowing Snow White's journey, is the castle of the Prince.

In a touch of whimsey, Kinkade has hidden seven Mickey silhouettes in the picture--one for each dwarf. Good luck finding them all--I haven't been able to.....yet! Although the first one, I believe, is directly in front of Snow White--a circular rock topped with two other circular rocks. See it?

(An interesting side note: my Bantam Crossword Dictionary gives several definitions of the word whimsey. The last definition they give? "Fantasia".)

This picture is, of course, available for purchase at I'm sooooo tempted....

The second of the series is in the works, and I came across this picture not too long ago. It's not the finished product--it's a color study--but I have to say, it looks amazing. It's called "Pinocchio Wishes Upon A Star".

Again, the main character is in the foreground while the star--or is it the Blue Fairy? It sure looks like that "star" has wings--blazes overhead. We also have a bit of foreshadowing in the distance. Surely that's Pleasure Island sitting out there in the bay, while Monstro the whale seems to be sizing up a sailing vessel.

I don't know how many of these Disney-based paintings Thomas Kinkade plans to do, but I can't wait to see them all. I feel like it's Sunday night, and the show is about to start.

The world is, indeed, a carousal of color.......and light!


sparkle said...

We have two stunning paintings in our house by Peter Ellenshaw, the Disney legend. We have a Kinkade too, of a local scene, but Ellenshaw is by far one of my favorite artists. When we was still painting, we would go into his gallery in Disneyland and ogle. Absolutely ogle.

I'm not sure how I feel about Kinkade re-painting a scene that Ellenshaw painted...

but I'm a disney fanatic too. If we were wealthy enough to have a vacation home or something, I can guarantee it would be Disney Central, with a kitchen decorated and accessorized with mouse ears.

Go to DisneyWorld. It's amazing. All of it.

sparkle :)

Radha said...

These painting are so wonderful. Makes me want to jump right in and take that walk to the cottage!

Anonymous said...

Hi Dr. Ken
Your post has brought back many lovley memories. I also watched many of those same programs on TV. They were very gentle innocent programs. And I can certainly understand how you feel about Disney World, its a magical place and its WARM!
I love the pictures, they are so beautiful
Thanks for sharing

barbie said...

Such great memories. I lived for Wonderful World of Disney on Sunday nights and wondered how hard it would be to become a Mouseketeer. *sigh* I loved it when VHS tapes became available and I could buy Peter Pan and watch it over and over again.......

Thanks for the memories (oops...that's Bob Hope isn't it?)

Anonymous said...

To add to what Sparkle said, my mom is a Kinkade fanatic. My parents are the one who bought us ours (engagement present) and they have no less than 5 paintings of their own. The one that hangs in their living room is the one he did of Sleeping Beauty's castle at Disneyland, with the statue of Walt and Mickey in the foreground. We have a print of that as well.

Mina said...

It was The Wonderful World of Disney by the time I was watching it, which was every Sunday.

In trying to find a bigger picture of the snow white so I could track down the 7 mickeys (I just love a puzzle) I came across a mention that hidden mickeys are used quite frequently in Disney related ventures.

Those paintings are gorgeous.


Hermione said...

Sigh! I loved watching the Mickey Mouse Club every evening. Darlene was my favourite, but I loved Annette too. I think Karen and Cubby were a little younger than I was. I knew all the words to all the songs, and my biggest thrill was finally getting a pair of Mouse ears. Only they weren't attached to a little hat; they were on a plastic band that hurt!

We have musical Kinkade Christmas wall clock.


Dr. Ken said...

sparkle--I think you're selling Kinkade short by saying he "re-painted" a scene that Ellenshaw painted. Both pictures are excellent, though--thanks for including the link!
A lot of spankos seem to be Disney fans. Maybe we just like the idea of "FantasyLand". :-)
A friend of mine out East has been to DisneyWorld at least once a year since it opened, and on occasion, twice a year. I wish I could do that!

Radha--I know what you mean. It looks very warm and inviting. And they must have a woodshed around back that you and Lord Krishna could check out.... :-)

Andrades Girl--LOL! Yes, I agree. And we all know how much you need to be, warm.

Barbie--and now we can watch them again and again on DVD. And yes, that line is definitely Bob Hope, but I was a big fan of his, too, so I don't mind.

Fireman Chris--the picture you mention is also a favorite of mine, as is his painting of Cinderella's castle. Lucky you to have a print!

Mina--good luck tracking down a larger version of the picture. I've tried just zooming in on the one I have, but the picture starts to distort somewhat, and that really doesn't help when it comes to picking out details....

Hermione--I used to have mouse ears with a basic cap back in the childhood days. That plastic band doesn't sound like much fun at all!

Little Princess dani said...

Dear Dr. Ken,

I've said it before...I think you must be a very nice man. I totally relate to the Disney films.

Thanks so much for sharing this with us.