Artist turns little girls in superhero costumes into comic book characters [10 pictures]

April 26, 2013 | By Abraham | 79 comments

As an ongoing side project, artist Alexandria Law finds pictures of little girls dressed up as superheroes and then draws them as if they were real comic book or TV characters…

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(via Boing Boing)

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79 Comments

  1. Nate says:

    I love the idea! The only one that concens me is that the female Hulk in a tutu doesn’t have a top on. Wierded me out a little…

    1. Bee says:

      That’s because the little lady hulkessa didn’t have a top on either, she was showing her 6 pack off.

    2. Samantha says:

      Most girls that are three years don’t have anything to hide on their chest. The artist drew her as she was dressed. If a person takes it to a “weird” place while looking at a three year-old. That’s not on the artist!

      1. Andrew says:

        Looks to me like the artist drew her as an adult woman hulk, seemingly topless. Those don’t look like just pectoral muscles, and the figure is too large to be a child.

        1. Sandy says:

          It’s the female anatomy in an unsexualised and totally anatomical kind of way. As the author said, deal with it.

          1. August Hahn says:

            Amen. If people have an issue with totally unsexualized nudity, that is the very definition of -their problem-.

          2. Cherie says:

            Said perfectly what I wanted to say. The naked, unsexualized human body is a beautiful thing, as is any mammals. She didn’t have her top off ready for a roll in the hay.

      2. Sara says:

        No one has anything to hide on their chests! Breasts are perfectly normal, everyone has them and no one has to hide them. -.-

          1. Cheryl says:

            Yes, you do, Rick. Men & women both have breasts. Males start out as females in the womb and then Mother Nature kicks in & gives you the dangly bits between your legs. However, you get to keep the breasts & nipples. Yours just don’t grow into more dangly bits. Until you get to be older & start gaining weight. Then, you actually get moobs.

          2. Zigz says:

            @Cheryl: You can’t say males start out as females (or females are default) because that would imply males are an advanced species to females (evolved/mutated from females). Since males are bigger, faster, stronger, and have oppressed females for so long the conversation would get messy and not go in the direction you hoped it would. Both males and females have pectoral muscles but only females develop mammary glands and the specialized fatty tissue to form actual breasts…btw, the naked female body is always sexualized; otherwise we wouldn’t have 7 billion people on the planet.

          3. Warj says:

            @Zigz: everyone starts out female in the womb. Several weeks into development the sex chromosome starts to take affect. It is either X, remaining female, or Y and the ovaries drop to form testicles and the clitoris turns into a penis. Regardless of societal factors everyone starts as female. It’s science.

          4. Kristin says:

            For one, Cheryl- no, men don’t have breasts, as Zigz said they lack the mammary glands. Two, Zigz, that’s NOT how evolution works. Just because something developed later than something else, doesn’t qualify it as “more advanced.” Evolution isn’t a ladder, and it doesn’t have goals. A mutation can only be better or worse for a given situation or environment. Further, “bigger, faster, and stronger” might not always be valuable traits. Example: “I’m the biggest dude here!” “Well, the only way out of this sinking ship is through this little port hole.” With humans, “smarter” has been our niche, and that doesn’t depend on physical strength. Three, Cheryl- men don’t start out as females. Just because the fetus doesn’t have a penis early in development doesn’t mean it’s “female” at that point. We are a kind of “neutral” or “blank” before the HOX genes kick in with messages from the sex chromosomes on what to make us. But even without genitals, if we have the chromosomes, we are already “male” or “female.” This is of course, excluding those who are XXY or XXX, etc.

    3. Diana says:

      I agree Nate :)The little girl is absolutely adorable. What a cute costume and beautiful little girl! But the drawing of the hulk did not convey the same feeling. For one, the hulk drawing as made to have breasts (albeit, hulk-like breasts) and yet there isn’t anything covering it. It sort of seems strange somehow. Also, for some reason, the hulk picture looks more like the masculine hulk cross-dressing in a far too short tutu and throwing his hair up into two pigtails. Not like a feminine hulk-princess. To soften the effect, it would have looked better if it had had the little girl’s longer more wild hair (which is absolutely adorable) and the longer tutu. The little girl’s tutu is floor-length. The hulk’s tutu looks like a tutu bikini bottom. It looks bizarre, and does not in any way capture the adorableness of this little girl. I’m glad the little girl liked it, and that is far more important than my opinion. But I just did not care for that hulk drawing at all.

      1. Stefan says:

        Are you for real Diana? It’s a representation of superheroes based on how little girls IMGAGINE them, not based on what the little girl would be like. And if you look at her picture she is wearing a mascualine six pack costume. So of course the Hulk(ess) is going to have masculine features. Jesus why does everyone have to be so pretentious over some fun artwork..

      2. Megan says:

        Agreed…the hulk is the only one where the picture seems completely devoid of the personality of the little girl. Sure, she’s dressed with a man’s top as a costume and a feminine skirt, but, considering she’s a little girl, why did that translate to something so animalistic? Do muscles on a female character mean a complete loss of femininity? A tight green top and hair that looked more like hers would have been an improvement Everyone else’s hair is almost dead on. Hers is way off.) I’d be willing to bet that the little girl wasn’t imagining herself as topless, but more that shew as imagining herself with muscles.

        1. Nerd says:

          *facepalm* In case you either haven’t noticed, or simply don’t read/understand the character, she’s dressed as THE HULK!!!! Sure you can throw in, “Well She-Hulk wears a top!”, but I put my bets on this little sweetie saw “The Avengers”, loved the Hulk in it (as did my son and niece), and thus wanted to dress up like him!
          The artist took not only account of the little one’s dress, but of the character she’s representing. 1)Notice, the artistic representations of these young ladies are based on almost exactly what they’re wearing and that little girl has a bare-chested Hulk top on. 2)The Hulk is a force of rage. 3)Have you ever seen the BIG female body builders? Few of them retain a lot of feminine features and many of them lose their breasts through the muscle.
          You can just as easily argue the age-old question of “How the heck do Bruce Banner’s pants not rip off when he (at least) quadruples in size during his transformation?
          I think this is a great and sweet artistic exercise and if the girls received their own copies of the pictures, I’m sure each one of them was absolutely thrilled.

      3. Sandra says:

        It is so ironic that you would post this, because this mentality is EXACTLY what the article and these pictures are trying to oppose.

  2. Janine says:

    Ballerina Hulk has to be my favourite – both the original photo and the drawing! Closely followed by the last one :)

    1. Miss Keely says:

      Just so happens I had the pleasure of having that lovely Hulk chica in my last preschool class – that is her personality to a T!

  3. Lynn says:

    I really did not like the hulk/ballerina thing. It looks WAY too masculine. How is that little one supposed to even recognize herself? That little girl probably cried.

      1. Miss Keely says:

        I happen to know that little girl and she would not of shed a tear – she would have LOVED the “Hulk Smash” drawing! lol

        1. sadreader says:

          Oh no. You’re a teacher? Did you really just write “she would not OF shed a tear…”??? Oh, this makes me so sad for the future of our children if even teachers can’t use proper grammar. Really, really sad. I hope you don’t teach this kind of writing to your students!!

          1. Helen says:

            I hate engaging in an internet convo this long after the thread ended but… um, “sadreader” are you for real??? This is the internet, my friend, grammar and spelling is completely irrelevant when you’re posting on threads like this. If what you have to say is comprehensible, that’s (a) tremendous compared to the general quality of things on the internet and (b) really just evidence of how unbelievably anal you are. I’ve been known pride myself on punctuation and such on occasion, but the internet is not the place to give a rats ass. Stop tearing a strip off someone you don’t even know for relaxing her standards a little in order to post on a website.

    1. Samantha says:

      As the mother of the hulk princess I ask you to open up your mind. My daughter loves the idea of the hulk and she loves the idea of being a princess… Who says she can be masculine and strong while still being a princess. The actual female Hulk is thrown into a tiny one piece and sexualized… So expand your horizons and realize that there is no wrong or right, there are only little girls wanting to super Hero’s and princesses. I love the drawing and so did my daughter!!!

      1. Andrew says:

        The costume totally works. It’s cute, creative, and fantastic. The drawing is odd. The tutu is too small, it’s not dress-like as in the photo, it doesn’t convey a Hulk-princess. More like an insane Hulk, Hulk-Ace Ventura. The artist gets points for trying though.

      2. Sara says:

        Honestly, the photo of your daughter in a Hulk torso and ballet skirt is one of the sweetest, coolest, and most uplifting photos of a kid I’ve ever seen! How wonderful for her to not see anything weird about being strong and wearing cute clothes at the same time, and how cool for you to encourage her. And I love the drawing.

      3. Christy says:

        I love the tutu Hulk pictures and I love the Mother’s attitude even more! Your daughter will go so much farther in life because you encourage her imagination and creativity! I applaud you and I wish more kids had Moms as awesome as you! (My Mom is like you – she taught me that the sky is the limit and now I am a well adjusted, very happy 39 year old woman!) Moms rock! Happy Mother’s Day to all you great Moms out there! :)

      4. MaryF says:

        You are right on point. The illustration and concept are beautiful. Your daughter has a better imagination than people posting here about a “missing top”. There’s nothing missing. Let’s hope your daughter keeps her imagination intact!!

      5. Jen says:

        That She-Hulk drawing is nothing but bad-ass. I don’t know why people had to take it to a weird place. I bet your kid was completely psyched about it. I love all three of you (you, your daughter, and the artist)!

      6. Aislinn says:

        As a female powerlifter, I’m so glad there are mom’s like you letting their daughter’s be themselves. I wore a tutu to my last meet and then deadlifted 303lbs. You can be strong and feminine. I’m an archetype of femininity right now (19 weeks pregnant) who lifts heavy weights and is proud of my muscles. The only people who think you can’t be a little masculine and a little feminine all at the same time must live terribly boring lives.

        Rock on mama! You have an amazing little girl!

    2. Johanna says:

      Don’t presume to know what that little girl likes or doesn’t like – for all you know, she thought it was awesome. I probably would have!

    3. Noggin says:

      Too masculine? As opposed to what? Not feminine enough. That is the thinking that is being challenged, I believe. But thank you for highlighting exactly what the problem is: Adults judging the creativity of children and trying to “box them in”. I think the hulk ballerina is a wonderful representation of the creativity of children. May she always feel powerful thar beautiful girl.

    4. Cherie says:

      The little girl obviously LOVES muscles, which is why she was wearing them. More power to her, rather than conforming to some ridiculous stereotype of a woman you or others think she should stay bound in.

  4. Sam says:

    Omg I love this concept. Every little girl has an image of her superhero moment, and this captures them fantastically.

  5. Liz says:

    My little 4 year old girl loves to dress up as Spider Girl and Super Girl. Can I send you a picture!! Will you draw her? I love your work!

    1. Mary Beth says:

      Totally! I loved The Green Lantern Girl & Dog. I think the stories in her head are so much fun. As an early childhood teacher I would love to be these kids preschool teacher.

  6. Carol says:

    Liz, you’re kidding right? The She-Hulk was Barbie proportioned?? The Green Lantern?? None of them were Barbie proportioned, these were well done and captured the character as the children saw them nicely. You’re a fool.

  7. Dustin says:

    The little Powergirl is one of the cutest things I’ve ever seen in my life. I pride myself on not being easy to dupe into “awwwww” moments, but that face one warmed even my heart.

  8. K.S. says:

    Wowwww. So, so cool. The Thor drawing actually gave me chills!
    SUMMONIIIIING!!
    :D
    You just know that’s *exactly* how that little girl feels when she plays in her Thor costume.

    1. Anna says:

      Wow, it would be great to see your little girl with the bow made into a cartoon character! Catniss Everdeen, watch out!

  9. tink says:

    I can kind of see where the hulk-princess controversy is coming from, but then again, disagree.

    Yes, the adult-hulkess picture isn’t that much like the little girl, but the core of each picture is to draw the adult, badass superhero based off the girl, not necessarily her herself.

    Hulk Isn’t sweet, sugary and well-dressed, hulk is angry and unfeminine (hell, uncivilised in general, hulk is just pure primal anger, after all!). And to those who say she’s not feminine, they’re missing the point. An incredibly muscly woman isn’t necessarily trying to be feminine, she may just be trying to look muscly and badass. Having seen plenty of pictures of female bodybuilders trying to look pretty much the same, I don’t see anything wrong with the picture. Complaining that a picture of a she-hulk isn’t feminine is missing the point of what hulking out actually is! Plus the idea of a tutu-wearing hulk is so much funnier and more awesome if they are a completely unfeminine rage monster.

    Power to the lil superheroines and props to the artist, i say :)

  10. Lauren says:

    Love the creativity and imagery. One comment. The only professional female body builders who have breasts are those with implants.

  11. Bess says:

    PLEASE scroll down and read “Samantha”. She is the mother of Hulk Princess and speaks well. Please.

  12. Viv says:

    No one is casting negativity on the little girl dressed as Hulk, only on the artist’s interpretation of her costume. For several reasons that I agree with:
    1. She’s the only black child
    2. She’s the only one interpreted by the artist as naked
    3. It seems unlikely a child that age would purposely put on a full-body costume and intend it to mean to observers that she’s naked
    4. She’s the only child who’s artistic version looks like a villain
    5. She’s the only one who’s illustrated character even if it weren’t intended to appear to be a villain, appears very much to be menacing and frightening
    6. The other characterizations may have curves, but none have a significantly truncated version of the costume they are wearing in their photo.

    1. ACP says:

      Why don’t you just say you don’t know anything about the Hulk. If you did, items 2-4 wouldn’t even cross your radar. Hulk is the incarnation of rage. He tries to only use it for good, but truth is when he really goes off, he’s basically an out of control juggernaut. And in that form he wears… A pair of purple pants and nothing else. The girl knew what was up with the torso costume. Hulk literally bursts out of his clothes (except the pants… it is a mystery) when he transforms. Thus, she is very much in character in her representation.

      As for point 1… So am I, but what the hell does that have to do with the price of tea in China? You think she’s somehow being treated differently? Why not pick up on green lantern girl for being the only one drawn in that excessively cartoon-y style while (most-notably) Thor-girl got to look full badass?

      And as for point 6, there are actually options. 1. Comedic exaggeration. The point was for the tutu to be tiny and funny, like when people draw the actual Hulk in tutus for giggles. 2 . Cartoon stylization. Think of all the tutus that have been in cartoons. How many of them were long, elegant, wispy things? They tend to be short and kind of wavy because that’s the cartoon shorthand for ‘tutu’, the same way a ponytail (especially braided, thanks Tomb Raider) is visual shorthand for an action girl. 3. The Hulk gets HUGE when he goes full rage mode. Big enough to pick up regular people and fling them like rag dolls. Now…if the little girl were to actually go into Hulk Mode.. would the tutu not become smaller in comparison?

  13. Carolyn says:

    The Hulk Princess is just a costume. That’s all. It’s awesome that the little girl likes the Hulk. And it is entirely possible to be strong and feminine.

    People need to take a breath and calm down. Enjoy the art of art’s sake.

  14. Peg says:

    I think the adults are missing the point entirely which does not surprise me at all. The artist was empowering young girls to believe in the magic of imagination by giving over to the role models of superheroes. This has nothing to do with the cognitive realizations of adult sexuality. The only sexuality that comes into play in this realm of art is the empowerment of gender of the preadolescent female. For years we have witnessed the imbalance of male superheroes to the ratio of female superheroes. The artist is simply projecting the costuming being worn and embodied by the youth themselves as she interprets the message the individual child is portraying. Chidren do not equivalate any sexual messages into the costuming. In fact, this is done by the adults who believe that sexuality must be impressed by the amount of seduction one displays but to enlighten the adult forum. Sexuality is in its simplest form being born of a gender. I believe that males are probably most schooled to believe that female superheroes need to exude seduction in the costuming. Perhaps this is why the elimination of any female without upper body wear disturbs the males in this forum as she does not display seductive attributes, which neither would the preadolescents which the artist is portraying.

  15. Helen says:

    I can’t believe I only just stumbled across this post. New favourite thing. These girls are all well outfitted and ready for action, unlike their comic book counterparts. This is so inspiring. I want to be the Hulk princess girl when I grow up, she clearly has it all figured out! :)

  16. GM says:

    My 9-year-old neice’s “The Curly Girlie” (a superhero she created), which was not included in these pics, is part of Alex Law’s project, as are many other “Girl Power” superheros, proving that female heroes don’t have to be mere extensions of or sidekicks to a male hero. You GO, Girl!!!

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