Thursday, July 1, 2010

Alice in New Fantasyland

The success of the Tomorrowland Banquets brought me to the attention of Fantasyland/Tomorrowland management. They knew that I could draw and they needed help on a number of special projects. The most exciting of those projects would turn out to be New Fantasyland (1983).

For the first time Imagineers from Walt Disney Imagineering (WED Enterprises at the time) had decided to ask for operational input to the new ideas they had in store for the park. After viewing the ideas management decided that they needed to communicate their ideas back in a form that Imagineering could understand -- drawings.

I was brought in to review the plans for (what would become) the Village Haus Restaurant and draw up some changes. I had previously worked in food service, I could draw, and I actually understood a lot about efficiency. The management knew which restaurants worked well and which did not. We worked together on a plan that ended up being (essentially) the same plan that exists today.

I worked on a number of other ideas as management continued to extend my special project. One idea that I worked on, in association with Imagineers, was a way to incorporate all of the Alice in Wonderland based attractions into a single area. To illustrate this concept I created this art. It was this piece of art that brought me to the attention of Imagineer Tony Baxter. He took one look at it and said that I should be doing this at Imagineering. The next thing I knew I had an internship show designing for the new Fantasyland.

The Alice art is interesting, but certainly not my best. My main goal was to illustrate the relationship between attractions. Incorporated here are the Alice in Wonderland ride-through, the Mad Tea Party and the Mad Hatter Shop within the White Rabbit's house. I doubt that the original art ever made it into the company archives. This may well be the only copy available.

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