Anyone who has ever walked through the gates at a Disney Park knows that there is a magical experience waiting to be had on the other side. All of the telltale signs are there: the sound of joyful music pipes across the promenade; the smells of popcorn and cookies waft through the air; and the colorful attraction posters depict all the wonderful rides and shows created for Guests by the Imagineers. Poster Art of the Disney Parks is a tribute to those posters, which begin telling the story of each attraction even before Guests have entered the queue area.
Disney attraction posters have been an important means of communication since Disneyland began displaying them in 1956. Not only are they eye-catching pieces of artwork that adorn the Parks with flair and style, they are also displayed to build excitement and disseminate information about the newest additions to the Disney landscape. When the first attraction posters made their debut at Disneyland, one such piece of art proclaimed that Guests could have a “true-life adventure” on the Jungle Cruise. And in 2012 at Disney California Adventure, a poster announced the grand opening of Cars Land — the newest thrill-filled destination at the Disneyland Resort. Both of those posters are reproduced within this book, along with posters from every decade in between.
As evidenced by the evolution of the attraction posters, art styles and design techniques have certainly changed over the years. These characteristics also differ from continent to continent. Posters from Tokyo Disneyland, Disneyland Paris, and Hong Kong Disneyland exhibit the nuances in presentation that give each Park’s pantheon of posters its signature look. But while artistic interpretations and color palettes may vary from Park to Park and from year to year, the spirit of Disney storytelling is a constant that ties them all together.
DANNY HANDKE makes the magic at Walt Disney Imagineering as an Associate Show Producer for the Tokyo Disney Resort, Disney Cruise Line, and Hong Kong Disneyland portfolios. His creative talents have been utilized on many exciting projects and attractions worldwide, including Goofy’s Paint ‘n’ Play House and Monsters, Inc. Ride & Go Seek! at Tokyo Disneyland; Mickey & Friends’ Greeting Trails and Village Greeting Place at Tokyo DisneySea; Goofy Golf on the Disney Dream; AquaLab on the Disney Fantasy; and numerous other attractions unannounced at this time. He also designed an attraction poster for Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride that is currently being showcased in Disneyland Park.
VANESSA HUNT is a Disney Imagineer and a lifelong Disney aficionado. Her education is in art history, and she is part of the group responsible for the more than 100,000 pieces of original artwork preserved in the Art Library at Walt Disney Imagineering. She has been curator of several Imagineering exhibits featuring the works of many of the Imagineering legends, and she has consulted for The Walt Disney Family Museum. Vanessa has also contributed her skills as a researcher of Disney and California history to the Disney California Adventure Buena Vista Street team.