Favorite Characters: Mickey Mouse

Mickey Mouse adjusts his bow tie while on stage as the third in the series of some of my favorite characters

Mickey Mouse adjusts his bow tie while on stage as the third in the series of some of my favorite characters.

I know what you might be thinking: “How could you not start with Mickey Mouse? Is he actually third on the list?” I should probably state that these characters are not presented in any particular order. For example, Basil of Baker Street is not at the very top of my list; I just thought he would be a fun one to start with. On the flip side, even if you are a big Disney fan, it is okay to have someone other than Mickey Mouse be your favorite character. However, I don’t know that I could choose just one favorite character, which is why this series is called “Favorite Characters” with an “s” on the end.

As you may recognize, Mickey Mouse as seen here is reminiscent of the opening segments of the Mickey Mouse Club. This particular outfit is from Tuesday, when Mickey was all dressed up for Guest Star Day. The stage and curtain are also reminiscent of the stage in those segments, too. While Mickey Mouse has had many looks over the years as his design changed, the Mickey Mouse Club opening segments of the mid 1950s were some of my favorite Mickey designs. Just my personal opinion.

Lovable

Most everyone would probably think of Mickey Mouse as lovable. He is easy to like because of his personality. Some might also say that his design, with its rounded shapes, was meant to make Mickey appealing as well. For whatever reason, it is pretty easy to love Mickey, as is evidenced by his popularity over the last 95 years and counting.

However, how easy is it to love someone who is not as appealing? We all know people who for different reasons are not all that likeable. But does that mean we just ignore them? Not at all.

In the Bible, Jesus commands us to love everyone, not just those people that we like. I have heard more than one person say that command is the most difficult one to obey sometimes. I do not disagree with them.

Loving everyone does not mean accepting what they have done, and it does not mean that we agree that everything is good, because not everything is good. We love everyone in the hopes of turning them to Jesus and away from their past.

Of course, if it were easy and everyone were naturally doing it, Jesus would not have had to tell us to do it. But it is not easy, and it does not come naturally. But it is what we are told to do. As Christians, we are supposed to be different from the world. And loving everyone is definitely different from the world at times.

To truly love one another is to love everyone, no matter who they are, in the hopes of changing all our lives to what God wants us to be.

“If you love those who love you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, what benefit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. And if you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, to get back the same amount. But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful. - Luke 6:32-36

Love One Another

About the Artwork

While Mickey Mouse Club was originally broadcast in black and white, color footage of these openings does exist. However, I chose to not exactly follow those colors, but rather to use my own, especially on the stage and curtain. These colors are similar, but not exact.

Also, digital art makes it possible for me to have a fully-rendered background. In traditional paintings, you would not draw or paint the stage behind Mickey. But for these things that I do, the backgrounds are always complete. So if I want to move Mickey slightly, I don’t have to do any filling in. And if I want to reuse the background for something later on, then it is ready to go. I think of it more like painted backgrounds with animated “cels” placed over them, just like they would do for animated shorts and movies in the old days.

Here is a look at the first rough sketch (in blue), with the closer-to-final sketch (in red) on top of it:

Mickey Mouse Sketch

I made a few minor tweaks between the second sketch and the final line version, but nothing too major.

And it probably goes without saying, but this is fan art. There is no official Disney connection here.


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About Burnsland
Burnsland is Steve Burns, with generous help from his lovely wife Laura. Steve is a husband, father, photographer, webmaster, writer, podcaster, artist, Christian. Steve enjoys sharing his photography, art, and stories through Burnsland.com, from the Burnsland World Headquarters in Tennessee.