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Disney Art Academy review (Nintendo 3DS)

We review Disney Art Academy, a fun art package designed to help younger Nintendo 3DS users to draw their favourite Disney characters, from Snow White to Elsa and Anna.

Part of the joy of Disney and Pixar movies is the stunning character design. The care and attention that goes into even the tiniest details of random background characters never fails to impress, so it’s no wonder that dinky Disney fans are often inspired to pick up a pencil and sketch their favourite heroes and villains.

That’s where Disney Art Academy comes in. This fun design package aims to teach younger 3DS owners how to draw their own Disney-style creations, by combining a simple but effective paint tool with a number of smart tutorials.

Disney Art Academy is a great starting point for any kids with zero creative talent, as it very gently takes you by the hand and leads you through every step of the creation of a Disney character. You start by putting together faces, with a close look at expressions and how to convey emotions. Then you slowly build up to drawing an entire character, with tutorials split into different character types, poses, colour theory and so on. Eventually you’ll even learn how to draw a 3D character, complete with shading and other advanced techniques to give them depth and bring them to life.

These tutorials are filled with helpful advice and are very hands-on, so you can practice the techniques as you’re taught them. They’re also typically fun, as you’d expect from Disney, with plenty of random banter between your teacher and the rest of the virtual class.

Once you’re feeling a bit more confident in your drawing skills, you can attempt to draw a Disney character from scratch using Disney Art Academy’s Free Paint mode. This gives you some optional templates to help guide your 3DS stylus, although you can simply go for it with a blank page if you like.

Disney Art Academy’s paint tool is well-designed, making the most of the 3DS’ dinky touchscreen (we’d definitely recommend using a 3DS XL if possible, to make drawing as easy as possible). You can choose between a variety of sketching tools, including pens, pencils, spraypaint, brushes and even a magic wand which sprays glitter all over your creations. Slider tools allow you to change the thickness of your virtual brush and of course you can manually fiddle with the colours too, to get just the right shade.

If your kid is a Disney fiend but lacks the creative talent to sketch the characters, then Disney Art Academy is a great purchase. You can download the game from Nintendo’s 3DS store right now.

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