Fandoms rule on Tumblr. More than anything else, this platform is where most people come to feed their obsessions – from the latest TV shows, to a band’s new interview. And with that level of investment, you can expect some great works of art as well! Fan art has often been criticized for being unoriginal and childish, but not only is it super creative, it also responds to the need for better representation of minority identities in mainstream media. Without further ado, here’s some artworks that best represent the creative and questioning spirit of Tumblr:
While the campaign to see Steve Rogers as canonically bisexual continues to rage on in the tumblr-sphere, let’s take some time to appreciate this gender-bent version of Marvel’s classic superhero.
18 year old Brazilian artist Julia, who studies Architecture in São Paolo, carefully adds Indian textiles, bindis and dark hair to the original character design of the ‘Tangled‘ leading lady. And why not? Indian girls traditionally keep their hair long anyway, and wouldn’t it be nice for kids in India to watch a Disney movie where some of the characters look like them?
The CW’s decade old (damn, really!?) horror and action series ‘Supernatural‘ has come under fire time and again for doing terribly on diverse casting. While the show finally has some more positive female presences (who are not dead mothers or possessed by demons) art like this really soothes that fangirl-ache for some kickass female characters. Eskatoad’s gender-bent Sam Winchester and Castiel would have been so cool to grow up with. And we can’t not include the same artist’s take on Sam’s older brother Dean? Just look at those green eyes transcend the gender binary!
Racists on the internet may scream themselves hoarse about Noma Dumezweni, an actor of no small talent, playing as Hermione in ‘Harry Potter And The Cursed Child,’ but we celebrate the casting choice just as we celebrate this lovely art by Lila. And guess what – Queen Joanne Kathleen Rowling herself said Hermione was never canonically white. If you want to feed your soul on more, head over to the Race Bending Harry Potter blog.
We may not get to see many biracial bisexual couples on TV, but Asian artist Yanumii, who has “lots of feelings for fictional characters,” made this piece on commission to fill that gaping void, and hopefully it inspires someone to actually represent bisexuality and race diversity in an actual show or book or movie sometime soon!
When the BBC series ‘Sherlock‘ first aired, and Benedict Cumberbatch stole everybody’s hearts (and ability to think straight around purple shirts) it was hard to admit that the show did pretty poorly on the Bechdel Test. But ‘steventony’ shipper Krusca’s painting takes us into a world where Sherlock Holmes and John Watson are both women. This ‘fem!lock’ piece (in Tumblr speak) attention to detail is especially lovely.
This Japanese anime is often regarded as an iconic feminist series, featuring four powerful female leads with awesome powers. It is a Japanese production, and the characters are Asian, but it was dub made for American audiences that became as popular outside Japan, if not more. So it’s kind of cool to see freelance illustrator asieybarbie’s race bent version of Sailor Moon. #blackgirlmagic, maybe?
By picking up beloved characters and swapping their genders or imagining them as people of different races, fan art is definitely showing up television and film, where there aren’t adequate roles for actors of colour, men hog the limelight and better story arcs, and where heterosexual love. is the driving force of everything. And if you know anything about the Tumblr community by now, you’ll know it won’t let that slide.