I’m a visual person. I’m currently pushing 5000 pictures on my phone. Obviously, memories are precious, but I like to be able to look at and touch stuff. When it comes to Disney, this means I have art in my home (along with a TON of other Disney merchandise that some people might tell me I don’t really need, but they’d be wrong). It warms my heart to have Mickey smiling at me, even when I’m hundreds of miles from the nearest Disney park. Another time, I’ll share the art I’ve picked so far, but first, let’s talk about where you can get some of your own!
My favorite place to get Disney art is at the parks themselves. This way, my art is more than just a print on the wall and brings with it a memory of being in the parks with the people I love. It brings back that feeling of childhood magic that I get from going to the parks. Nobody should be surprised when I say that art from the parks has the downside of being more expensive. Make sure to take advantage of any discounts that you can (Disney Vacation Club, Annual Passholder, Disney Visa Rewards Cardholder, etc.) Oh! And speaking of Disney programs, make sure to always ask about exclusive art only available for people who are a part of these programs!
While you might be more accustomed to seeing pins and Mickey ears in the Disney gift shops, there really is art all over the place. If you call a particular resort “home,” be sure to check in that resort’s specific gift shop for some amazing prints of various areas of the resort. I’ve seen art in 8×10 or smaller so it’s easy to transport and less expensive than some of the larger pieces.
Last January, I was lucky enough to visit the parks during the International Festival of the Arts. Epcot became (among other things),
an enormous, outdoor art gallery. If I could dream it, I could find it printed on paper or canvas all around World Showcase. As a bonus, the artists were often sitting with their art, ready to tell you the story behind a particular piece or sign the prints you purchased! This was an incredible experience and added even more depth to the art I brought home. I showed some incredible restraint in not buying enough to wallpaper my whole apartment; though, would that really have been such a bad thing?
While the International Festival of the Arts was incredible, it’s seasonal, so my hands-down favorite place to pick up art any time of year is Art of Disney in Epcot. (It’s just past Spaceship Earth on the right, in the building before the walkway over towards The Land – you know where I mean, right? … What do you mean “That made no sense”??? Ok, fine, here’s a map. Does that help?) This little gem has an excellent selection of media from statuettes, to prints, to paintings, to Christmas ornaments, and more. They’ve also got all sizes, shapes, and different levels of detail – all of which means there will be options for any taste and price point. If you’re lucky, you’ll stop in when an artist is working and you can see the magic being made!
Fun fact to remember for any of the Disney shops: they’ll ship to your Disney resort room for free or to your home for a shipping fee. I’ve taken advantage of this option and my art has always been wrapped up safely and delivered quickly!
From Small Shops
The internet can be a wonderful and beautiful place. Social media websites have opened up some amazing new opportunities for those of us who can’t always hop into a park as often as we’d like. Small shops cared for by the most creative and wonderful people are everywhere. If you haven’t poked around the Disney Instagram community – do. You’ll be amazed!
The wonderful advantage of working with a small shop owner is the personal connection. Small shop owners have their shops because they love what they’re doing. From my experiences, these people love to work with their customers to create the perfect product, so if you’re looking for something particular, this is the avenue for you. You can rest assured that every piece is made with care and love.
From Major Retailers
If you keep your eyes open, Disney is everywhere. I’ve found Disney art all over the place – Michael’s, Target, Amazon.com – everywhere. Disney is unbelievably accessible if you keep your eyes peeled for that hint of magic. It can pop up when you least expect it! Something more generic – like a movie poster – can brighten up a room without breaking the bank.
Even if you’re not the crafty type, don’t skip this section. I’m not going to say “Just go paint the next Disney masterpiece yourself!” (Though, if that’s your thing, please do. Also, call me. I’m looking for more art.) There are plenty of ways to express your own creativity with Disney Art.
Think of all those pictures you took with goofy faces (or with Goofy himself) throughout the parks. Even if you’re not terribly creative yourself, you can find picture frames that create the perfect collage just for you. All you’ve got to do is pop your favorite pictures into each slot!
If you have the opportunity, Disney itself will even help you put pen to paper! I know the Art of Animation resort offers free drawing classes (even if you’re not staying at the resort!). Consider checking those out for some guidance next time you can make your way to WDW.
A last option that I’ve taken advantage of before (fancy dorm art for the cheap college student!) is to frame puzzles. There are some absolutely gorgeous Disney puzzles and with a few layers of puzzle glue, you’ve just created a wonderful piece of hangable art without an ounce of artistic ability (but those glue brush strokes look GORGEOUS! That’s real talent).
I guess my point is that the options are endless for bringing Disney back home with you. Take a look at your walls, decide what you’re looking for, and I can guarantee that it’s out there waiting for you.
A special thanks to @DougDoesDisney for the use of his photos in this post! Photos not otherwise credited are my own.