Saturday, 26 September 2009

The not so small world of Blair

I received an email on my recent trip to California which said that a package had been delivered to my house and been left outside. The package - “a book” - was then duly wrapped in a series of plastic bin liners and left propped at the back door. Naturally upon my return home the weather was far more winter than early autumn and torrential downpours were not conducive to the package surviving.

It would have been better had I actually remembered that the package was there when I got home - but I eventually recalled the email and went in search.

As I wasn’t expecting any book material it was with utmost delight that the book was “The Colors of Mary Blair” - a 300+ page volume featuring the works of Mary for an exhibition that has been held in Japan.

The collection features an impressive number of Mary’s paintings from both film and theme-park attractions - and the “small world” selection is anything but small. An added bonus to these are context images from imagineering - for example a Marc Davis illustration of the (unrealized) Western River Ride is shown alongside Mary’s interpretation of the scene.

However my favourite section is for the giant mural housed in Disney’s Contemporary Hotel which features details of the designs.

The Contemporary Hotel Mural

“it”s a small world”

Peter Pan

There is such a delight in viewing Mary’s work “together” that hopefully one day the exhibition will travel.


...or rather Peek-a-Rocky.

As we head into a season of Halloween happenings, some monsters are just too cute to spook you. This adorable, but hard to find little “monster” of Monsters, Inc Ride & Go Seek! at Tokyo Disneyland will be less shy in the next issue of Tales from the Laughing Place. Rocky is one of several new “monsters” to be found with your searchlight in the interactive dark ride and was designed by Walt Disney Imagineer Larry Nikolai. If you are really observant you might even find all six...

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Happy 10th Anniversary Reflections of Earth

On October 1st 1999 Illuminations: Reflections of Earth officially opened after a short period of soft opening (which according to Wikipedia began on September 23rd). I first saw the show on December 31st of that year having only seen one illustration which showed the “open” globe - and it has remained my favourite nighttime show since. Gavin Greenaway’s score is amongst the finest ever for a Disney production.

In Issue 16 of Tales Illuminations: Reflections of Earth will begin a series looking at the evening spectaculars from the Disney parks around the world called Night Magic.

Further photographs can be seen here:

Happy 10th Reflections of Earth.

Monday, 21 September 2009

Grizzly Trail, Mystic Point and Toy Story Land model images from the HKDL expansion

Toy Story Land, Grizzly Trail and Mystic Point models - Preview images from future articles about the expansion of Hong Kong Disneyland and the art of the Disney model-maker in Tales from the Laughing Place. Further images will appear in the updated teasing tales section of soon.

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Updates to Tales from the Laughing Place website

I have updated the look of several pages on our website, including the telling tale page which now features a clear menu to other areas of the site. We will be adding a couple of new preview stories to the teasing tales section which will feature exclusive photographs of the fantastic models for Cars Land and the Hong Kong Disneyland expansion - a couple of these are shown here...

Tales from the Laughing Place at the D23 Expo

A big thank you goes out to our existing and new readers for visiting our booth at the D23 Expo. It was a great pleasure to meet and talk with you all. I congratulate everyone who managed all four days, I’ll bet your feet hurt just as much as mine!

I must thank Hilary for the kind assistance in working the show and the desire to describe the magazine in her best English accent...

Welcome to the art of telling tales

Just a note to say hello and welcome to our blog for updates on Tales from the Laughing Place Magazine. We aim to feature unseen photos, extracts from previously published and upcoming articles, along with notes and thoughts on future issues. Full details on the magazine can be found at