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Early Victorian Elsa by suburbanbeatnik Early Victorian Elsa by suburbanbeatnik
It's been a little over a year since my last Disney girl, but finally, here's a new entry in my long-running Historically Accurate Disney Heroine series!  Meet Queen Elsa from FROZEN.

The original study for this painting is here. Like Hans, I depicted her in late 1830s clothes: I modeled a lot of her style on Maria II of Portugal, one of the cooler queen regnants of the 19th century. (I debated using Victoria, but I nixed that for being too obvious.)  Basically, I chose the late 1830s for the setting since the women's styles in the movie were solidly 1840s to early 1850s in their silhouette, but Hans's hair and costumes floated somewhere Napoleonic and early Victorian, and the young princesses wore Empire style children's frocks. (Also, concept art of the Arendelle royal family place the girls' childhood in the 1810s-1820s, so an 1838 date seemed reasonable.)

This wedding dress and this painting of Clara Novello also inspired the gown design.
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
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:iconkissmeimdanish:
KissMeImDanish Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014
Considering the fact that I felt like Elsa's face had no uniqueness in the movie whatsoever (i thought both sisters looked like carbon copies of Rapunzel, with big eyes and tiny noises) you really managed to bring some 'character' into the face, without making her unrecognizable from the original character. 

Also the time period you chose is quite perfect when you consider what the girls wore in their childhood. I felt the clothing in the movie were a less 'scattered' across time periods than in other Disney movies (apart from Elsa's Ice gown - she looked like a 1980's Barbie doll!).

Very well done!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Feb 14, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! I'm sorry I haven't replied so quickly, because I've been pretty sick for a while. But yeah, the character design in Frozen was not great. In fact, the head of animation on Frozen actually said some really asshat sexist crap about animating female characters, which you might have seen (you can find an article about it here. It was a little difficult trying to make Elsa look like herself, when she looks like a generic Keane child. But I'm glad you think I succeeded. :)

I actually have a friend who's been working in animation since the '60s (he worked on Robin Hood in '73, and he's also worked with Hanna-Barbera, Ralph Eggleston and Don Bluth) and he was NOT IMPRESSED by Frozen. He thought it was a mediocre, badly scripted movie, and didn't have a lot of nice things to say about the character design.  

And LOL at the 1980s Barbie doll! I know, right!?
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:iconjuliana63:
Juliana63 Featured By Owner Jan 28, 2014
cool concept!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! :)
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:iconart-fashion-history:
Art-Fashion-History Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014
Simply gorgeous!!!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! :D
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:iconsliwaa:
Sliwaa Featured By Owner Jan 27, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
OMG Cute ! ^w^
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! :XD:
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:iconwalkingonthestars:
WalkingOnTheStars Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2014
I absolutely adore the colour of this dress! And the puffed sleeves! (Hm, felt like Anne of Green Gables right there...)

As much as I loved Frozen's dresses, I do wish they had done something more accurate, like this. The lack of culture is something that really bothered me about the movie.

Especially her Snow Queen dress. Idk, it just seems so totally inappropriate for the apparent time period. Like, could people have even imagined a dress like that back then? O.o I wonder, are you considering doing a version of that dress? I would love to see your take on it.

I still can't get over those sleeves...
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
I thought the animation costume designs were decent, for Disney-- I thought Hans' costumes were pretty effective-- but... I was pretty eh about the girls. Elsa's Snow Queen dress especially made her look like someone from a 1980s Icecapades fantasy production, especially with all the powder-blue sequins. 

I have some great ideas how to revamp the Snow Queen dress. Hopefully, if I have time, I'll be able to show you guys something soon!
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:iconwalkingonthestars:
WalkingOnTheStars Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014
Lol it does!! Definitely to modern (and sexy) for my taste...

And I can't wait to see them! :)
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 31, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! :)
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:iconharetrinity:
HareTrinity Featured By Owner Jan 26, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Lovely! :) Good use of colour!

It would have been nice if her outfit had carried a more authentic feel about it... I don't even think the Disney one was bad, but, looking at this and more actual royal fashion from around the time, I think the Let It Go song would have carried more oomph with added accuracy. Her ice queen gown was actually very similar to her original in how it hangs upon her body whereas this is clearly more restricting, which helps the symbolism. Far superior tiara, too!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
That's true, isn't it? They both had tight waists and long full skirts, so very similar silhouettes.

I love the song "Let it go" like TONS, but I can't help but feel it could have been showcased better than it was. But I think that boils down to how poor Elsa ended up being more of a plot device than an actual character. :/
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:iconharetrinity:
HareTrinity Featured By Owner Feb 1, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I was pretty underwhelmed by Let It Go when I watched the film, though it's grown on me since... I think the best song for me was probably The Frozen Heart, which was less pop-y, then Love is an Open Door because it sold the ship to me, heh... I really like song visuals though, and I think that's part of why Let It Go didn't impress: It had a lot of space to work with (MOUNTAIN RANGE) and really didn't rise above snow drifts and crystalising air, which is kind of pretty but didn't really make use of the space or big up her powers much to me. Shouldn't crystals mean prisms and rainbows of light, and a castle be decorated with giant beasts (even if they were inanimate)? That she was by herself didn't help, I think...

(What's really got Let It Go stuck in my head now is a World of Warcraft video that's used clips of Arthus (Lich King) with it, including a giant undead dragon. I used to play the Warcraft games and WOW, and I'm a sucker for dragons, so it helps a lot.) :p

And I think Disney now understands that Elsa should have been more of a character, seeing as how she's the one the fandom loves most. Then again, it wouldn't have hurt for all of them to have a bit more substance! Roll Eyes 
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:icongothic-romantic99:
Gothic-Romantic99 Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
This is pretty. I like the color of the dress and how you styled her hair. Nice work.
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! :)
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:icongothic-romantic99:
Gothic-Romantic99 Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You're welcome.
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:iconaniek90:
aniek90 Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014
Wow, I love it! I already liked your first drawing of Elsa and this one is even better :D
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks! :)
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:iconidontknowwhoyouknow:
Idontknowwhoyouknow Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
It's perfect! Reminds me of Queen Victoria :XD:
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 30, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thanks!
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:iconidontknowwhoyouknow:
Idontknowwhoyouknow Featured By Owner Feb 2, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Btw, I followed your tumblr (as tryinad)
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you!
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:iconidontknowwhoyouknow:
Idontknowwhoyouknow Featured By Owner Feb 15, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
You'e welcome!
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:iconsalierifemme91:
salierifemme91 Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Srsly it's too perfect!!!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! :)
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:iconsalierifemme91:
salierifemme91 Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Welcome. :)
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:iconwickfield:
Wickfield Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2014  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I was thinking that the girls' outfits definitely looked 1840s (those v-waists!) but I think you did a good job compromising on the various possible time periods.  I love the color of her dress!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! I used a lot of phthalo blue and cobalt turquoise to get it super vivid, and I think it worked. :)
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:icongryffgirl:
Gryffgirl Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2014
Beautiful gown and colors!
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:iconsuburbanbeatnik:
suburbanbeatnik Featured By Owner Jan 23, 2014  Professional Traditional Artist
Thank you! :)
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