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Cruella De Ville – Threadless t-shirt contest submission

June 25, 2012

Well here’s some info on a submission for a Disney villains contest, being run via Threadless.

Some background about the brief to start.  The idea was to do a t-shirt for Disney based on one of their famous villains. I think the list had Captain Hook, The witch from Snow White, the Queen of hearts, the baddie from Aaladin and one from The Littlest Mermaid and more.  I chose Cruella DeVille and to do an updated version of her.

For my version I decided to convey her as a sultry, vampy and subtly evil woman. On doing some visual research (and from what I can remember of the character from seeing the original as a kid), I know she smokes and has a long cigarette filter. Which is a good device to portray opulence an d a class of person. Rather like the monocle in a male character.

So I develop the piece and submit it to Threadless, including an image of the Disney version to compare in my slide show, complete with a picture of her smoking.  Well not long after submission, I hear back that the piece has been rejected because “Disney does not want their character to be portrayed as smoking”.  lol I have to laugh.  You can’t find an image of Cruella on the internet without her smoking. Also, how is it better to be holding a poisonous apple that you intend to murder a princess with, or a hook and sword you want to walk a young lad off a plank into water filled with sharks or crocs like the other villains? oh well.

I reworked the piece, i can’t help feeling it’s lost a little without the filtered cigarette, but I’m still pretty pleased overall.
I’ve yet to hear back to see if it will be allowed now.

Here’s my version, pre Disney edit.

Cruella DeVille lines development

Cruella DeVille - Colour block detail

Cruella DeVille final

Cruella DeVille final - Closeup facial


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