Curating the Perfect Living Room Gallery

When Michael’s had a sale on my favorite style of frame (18″ x 24″), I went a little overboard. I bought six, despite only had three prints which required framing. As the living room portion of The Jubilant Traveler lounge has a camel on beige print, I wanted a simple frame that wasn’t black to help brighten up the room. Uncertain how long the paint will stay on the walls, I didn’t want to commit to a particular color until I know for certain what my color palate for the room will finally become. Having lived in rental housing since 1997, there is a certain sense of exhilaration knowing that I can commit to designs involving more than sticky tack and command strips. I have found several prints that I am head over heels with, and I hope to soon add them to my decor.

 Little Mermaid shag art (left), Kessel Run Qualifiers (Center), HIMYM  Finale (Right)

I want to ensure that I am not limiting myself to a particular color palate or fandom in the selection of my art. I have plenty of Star Wars nick-nacks around the house as well as the Kessel Run Qualifers print which was a limited edition I picked up during Star Wars Weekends. The walls are natural on neutral colors, so I want to select items with rich, saturated colors. I always think of the bright colors in films like Amélie and Moulin Rouge, both of which are set in Paris. Through my research, I have discovered that I still have an adoration for Japanese-style manga, art nouveau, and retro design. I am noticing that my dining room is taking on a world traveler image, but the living room is gravitating toward fantasy and otherworldly which is perfectly acceptable when one is a dreamer and a writer. The prints below aren’t absolute, but are ones I found particularly striking.


My Fascination with Mecha

Another cartoon staple during my childhood was Voltron, a Japanese animation in which the the guardians of the Planet Arus drive mechanical lions which transform and fit together to create a giant robot. Along with ThunderCats, I firmly believe that Voltron was another Saturday morning animation responsible with my obsession with Japan. As a child, I didn’t know how much the plot was altered or that the cartoon was even Japanese as the localization and translations to English included changing the character names to names like Keith, Sven, Allura, and Hunk. It did make me want to grow up and fight aliens in outer space in a giant robot lion and be the Princess of my own planet.

Voltron PosterRetro Art by Dave Perillo

What I adore about this 30th anniversary limited edition print is that it embraces the art style of an era before my own. It reminds me of vintage ads from Japan and the shag art-style of mid-century U.S. The only issue I have with the poster is the lack of Sven (Shirogane), the original pilot of the Blue Lion before Allura took the controls. I wish they would have included him. If I were to pick a top batter for the walls, I think this one would be it. (I’d also want to order this shirt and this cozy blanket to save on shipping.)


 

A Dystopian Sailor V

Fans of the Sailor Moon series, know that before Tsukino Usagi  becomes Sailor Moon, there was another sailor uniform wearing crime fighter. Fellow Sailor Scout, Aino Minako, was originally known as Sailor V well before she joined up with Sailor Moon and her Inner Scouts as Sailor Venus. She even had her own comic Codename: Sailor V, which would be the predecessor to the international sensation Pretty Soldier Sailor Moon! Part of her journey prior to joining the others is fighting crime in England. From the launch of Sailor Moon in the US, Sailor Venus has always been my favorite. The uniform depicted by Ms. Thomas is that of Sailor V (red, white, and blue) and rather different from her orange ensemble later on.

Sailor V for Vendetta” by Rachel Thomas

I have watched V for Vendetta several times, and it has been one of those films that took an exceptionally long time to appreciate. Watching it, I was prompted to research Guy Fawkes Day, the meaning of the mask, and why it has become such a critically acclaimed films. I do love how Sailor V’s mask is overlaid onto the GF one with decidedly rosier cheeks as well.


Best Brawling Bartender in Midgar

When asked about my all-time favorite video game, Final Fantasy VII has been the consistent response since summer 1997. In the endless, who’s the better heroine: Tifa Lockhart versus Aeris Gainsborough, I’ve always been Team Tifa. However, I never wanted her with that wishy-washy Cloud. The most difficult thing about finding art involving Tifa is the gratuitous over exaggeration of her breast size. Yes, her character design is flawed in the sense that she is a hand-to-hand combat fighter in a cropped tank top and a mini-skirt. With the release of FFVII: Advent Children, Tifa’s costuming underwent drastic changes including a more battle appropriate tunic top and knee-length shorts.

Seventh Heaven by Rose Beach

Although Tifa is posing it up in her original AVALANCHE costuming, what I love about this print is that it’s a tasteful pose. Ifind the addition of multiple tattoos interesting as if memory serves me right, they are based on her Limit Break finishing moves. Her heavy tray proves that Seventh Heaven truly has a beverage for everyone to enjoy and as most epic campaigns tend to start in a bar, another mark in the win column.Looking at the cards closely, I can see Cloud and fellow AVALANCHE member, Barret, and I am curious to know if that studded jacket belongs to another character like Vincent Valentine!


Pulp Fantasy Fiction HyRules

The Legend of Zelda was one of the very first games I ever played on my Nintendo. I only ever played the releases for the original 8-bit console and I never beat either of them. However, when Super Smash Brothers was released for the GameCube, Zelda became one of my favorite characters to play because she could transform into her alter ego Sheik. The later interpretations of Zelda has a self-rescuing princess as well as formidable fighter  and playable character has made her one of my favorite non-Disney princesses.

 Twilight Gal by Astor Alexander

One of the common misconceptions is that Link and Zelda are interchangeable, which often results with those unfamiliar with series to think that Link is a girl. His character is often portrayed as a younger man or child, but his character build has been more lithe like Legolas from Lord of the Rings. What I love about the hardboiled pulp cover design is that the woman depicted isn’t Zelda, but Midna, an ally who is cursed into an imp form. I am so curious to know what the pulp fiction version of the Legend would entail!


Additional Contenders

There are so many unique and fun designs available on RedBubble, so the greatest task is whittling down the ever growing list of art prints I want. I only have so much wall space in the living room, and until I can decide on the themes and schemes for the other rooms, I cannot afford to go overboard.

 I love fusions of art-styles and fandom!

Glitter ‘n’ Gold by Pipper Digs – Combining two of my favorite things 80’s cartoons and art nouveau, Digs makes a beautiful mash up rendering reminiscent of Loïe Fuller in Fire Dance for the Folies-Bergère as illustrated by Jules Chéret. With the abomination that was the reboot of Jem, I am surprised to find any fan art. Thankfully, the limited availability focus on the original.

I Am No Man! by cumix47 – One of the most over-memed comics is that of classic Batman slapping Robin, but the killer twist is that it’s Éowyn of Rohan laying the smack down on the Witch King in LOTR: Return of the King. It’s probably one of the most Girl Power oriented scenes in the entire series, and it is one of my favorites. The only drawback is that this piece isn’t available in 18″ x 24″ format.

When one has many nerdy pursuits, multitasking is essential!

Ghibliwarts Crest by Grant Thackray – Combining my eternal waiting for my Hogwarts letter with some familiar faces with the Ghibliverse! While beloved Ravenclaw is very much not Howl’s devastatingly handsome bird form, I do love that several key players have made the design. Again, while it’s available in 18″ x 24″ format, the image itself is square. I would be tempted to add to the white space should I be able to decide on an appropriate quote or two.

 Snooow Yes!” by Mike Kendrick – There are so many wonderful layers to this Princesses of Wrestling series, but combining Snow White with the Undertaker absolutely blows my mind. Snow is the first Disney princess with her debut in 1937 a film interpretation of the much darker Brothers Grimm story. The Undertaker is one of the most iconic professional wrestlers and still actively wrestles part-time. Plus, the addition of manager and WWE Hall of Famer, Paul Bearer, akin to one of the seven dwarves. Snow is wearing a rendition of The Undertaker’s original costuming.


 The textured paint ties the entire Jubilant Traveler space together.

Eventually, I will find a proper entertainment center and a larger screen television. The living room is one of the largest rooms in The Lil House of the Nerdy, with the greatest amount of wall space. I want to select prints that will provide for interesting conversation starters which will result in my guests learning a little more about me and my interests.  The greatest thing about RedBubble is the availability of items and the variety of selection. I applaud the incredible creativity and artistic skill of each artist who showcases their work because they are making fan art available to the masses. I do love the works also posted on DeviantArt, but few of the items are available for purchase.

Answer Me, These Questions Three

  1. Where are the best outlets/places to purchase fan art?
  2. Which of the above prints should I invest in first?
  3. Are there other fandoms which require representation on my walls?
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9 comments

  1. Emma · March 7, 2016

    I usually get most of my prints on Etsy because they seem to have the best variety. I particularly love minimalist artwork – both GreaterGeek and Heidi Eger Designs have some great stuff in that department. Lots of Marvel and classic movies. I’m loving some of your selections though – that Sailor moon / V for vendetta print is amazing!!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Danielle @ From Girlie to Nerdy · March 7, 2016

    I tend to get prints on Etsy – I’m absolutely loving the Sailor Moon V for Vendetta print!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen P. · March 7, 2016

      Right!? I kept trying not to look at it but I can’t tear my eyes away!’

      Liked by 1 person

  3. depepi · March 9, 2016

    Where are the best outlets/places to purchase fan art?
    I usually end up on Etsy
    Which of the above prints should I invest in first?
    Are there other fandoms which require representation on my walls?

    Like

    • depepi · March 9, 2016

      Damn keyboard! I was trying to answer. So here I go:
      1. I usually end up on Etsy, but I also found cool stuff on eBay. But nothing can be as better as to go to certain shops in Tokyo where you can find treasures!
      2. Tough, tough question. Hmmmm the Twilight Gal would be the first.
      3. Yup: LOKIIIII. Marvel. I love Marvel, so, I would recommend Loki 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Dina Farmer · March 9, 2016

    Honestly, I don’t have any fan art prints on my walls. I’m a photography nerd so all the art on my walls are my own personal photographs. I tried the fan art and it just didn’t fit with my style. But I totally love what you have done!! It’s really unique and I suppose if I had a dedicated office that would be something I would certainly consider doing in there.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. *Mandy* · March 18, 2016

    These are all amazing!!!!! ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Karen P. · March 23, 2016

      Yay! I am glad that you approve! I think I am going to start with the Voltron poster!

      Like

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