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James and Oliver Phelps launch ‘Harry Potter’ exhibition in Portugal

The Phelps twins and MinaLima open ‘Harry Potter: The Exhibition’ in Lisbon

Actors James and Oliver Phelps (Fred and George Weasley in the Harry Potter films) and graphic design duo MinaLima (Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima) were on hand over the weekend to officially launch Harry Potter: The Exhibition in Lisbon.

For a decade, twins James and Oliver Phelps played Fred and George Weasley.

Since 2009, Harry Potter: The Exhibition has been touring the globe bringing Wizarding World props, costumes and artefacts in front of Muggle eyes. The Weasley twin actors have travelled the globe promoting the travelling exhibition and when I spoke with them at the Sydney launch in 2011 we learned that 23 shipping containers were required to carry an enormity of magical props to locations across the world.

Portuguese fans can catch Harry Potter: The Exhibition at Lisbon’s Pavilion of Portugal through until April 8. Tickets are available over at the exhibition website. (If you’re walking through the Great Hall set, make sure to look out for authentic James and Oliver Phelps graffiti carvings on the Gryffindor table.)

Jim Kay talks about inspiration and processes for illustrating ‘Potter’

Jim Kay, the talented artist behind the Harry Potter illustrated editions, was recently profiled in a wonderful piece by the New York Times. In the profile, Kay talks about his artistic processes, character inspiration and the challenge of giving new illustrative form to a franchise already marked by such recognisable visuals.

Jim Kay: ‘you’re trying to get people to buy into an alternative world … the more you can seat it in apparent reality, the better it works’.

On illustrating a story like Harry Potter, Kay explains, ‘the problem with fantasy books is these things don’t normally exist, so you have to create them to give them a sense of reality’. Adds the illustrator: ‘you’re trying to get people to buy into an alternative world. The more you can seat it in apparent reality, the better it works. On a more practical level, it’s much easier to draw if you have something in front of you. If it doesn’t exist, I make it’.

Jim Kay starts with 3D models. These in-progress sculptures of a Thestral and Kreacher will serve as inspiration for the Order of the Phoenix illustrated edition (2021).

The wealth of existing ‘Potter’ imagery (courtesy of the Warner Bros. film series) presented interesting challenges for Kay. ‘It was very difficult because I’m very fond of the films. The only way to do it was to start from scratch. I built the landscape first, really physically built it with models … after that, I recast the film and I used people I know’. Kay modelled Ron, Ginny and Molly Weasley on real mother, daughter and son, and adds, ‘my niece is a perfect Hermione … it took about two years, but now I think of my world and not the film one’.

And the hardest character to draw? ‘Harry’ says Kay. ‘Also because he wears glasses and glasses are a nightmare to draw … I’ve literally smashed up and thrown stuff across the room in frustration trying to draw Harry.’

The Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire illustrated edition — the fourth in the series — was released last month. Jim Kay is currently hard at work on the Order of the Phoenix sequel (he mentions the Thestrals as a favourite character) which will be released in late 2021.

New MinaLima print celebrates Harry’s first Quidditch match

MinaLima, the graphic design duo behind all of the graphics in the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films, have revealed the fifth in their series of magical ‘Potter’ moment graphic prints. Titled ‘Another 10 Points to Gryffindor’, the numbered print celebrates Harry’s first Quidditch match and is available in both a standard and premium finish over at MinaLima’s website.

The first four prints in the series commemorate iconic moments from Harry’s first story and are also available from MinaLima’s website.

MinaLima release ‘Harry Potter’ wrapping paper collection

Graphic design magicians Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima (MinaLima), the designers responsible for all of the glittering graphics in the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films, have released an enchanting collection of Wizarding World themed Christmas wrapping paper.

Five of the seven designs (above) — the Marauder’s Map, Black family tree, Quidditch, Hogwarts Library books and Daily Prophet newspapers — were unveiled in a recent wallpaper collection. Two new designs, Santa’s Sleigh and Christmas Elf, were first seen onscreen in Order of the Phoenix (2007) when Arthur Weasley and family exchange Christmas gifts at Grimmauld Place following Mr. Weasley’s snake attack.

Each design includes two sheets of single-sided folded gift wrap measuring 50 x 70cm and costs £5.95. All of the amazing designs can be pre-ordered over at MinaLima’s website or at their House of MinaLima London gallery at 26 Greek Street from Monday 4 November.

Cast portraits for San Francisco production of ‘Cursed Child’ revealed

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will debut later this month in San Francisco, the second US and fourth worldwide location for the ‘Potter’ stage play. Today, we have our first look at the principal cast in costume.

Cursed Child San Francisco: Angela Reed (Ginny Potter), Benjamin Papac (Albus Severus Potter) and John Skelley (Harry Potter).

The Potter family

  • Benjamin Papac (Albus Severus Potter)
  • Angela Reed (Ginny Potter)
  • John Skelley (Harry Potter)

The Granger-Weasley family

  • David Abeles (Ron Weasley)
  • Folami Williams (Rose Granger-Weasley)
  • Yanna McIntosh (Hermione Granger)

The Malfoy family

  • Lucas Hall (Draco Malfoy)
  • Jon Steiger (Scorpius Malfoy)

Cursed Child will begin showing at the Curran Theatre in San Francisco from 23 October. Tickets are available from the official website.

MinaLima’s fourth ‘Harry Potter’ print celebrates the Boy Wizard’s sorting

Harry Potter graphic design duo Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima (MinaLima) today announced the fourth print in their limited edition ‘Potter’ magical moments graphic series. Titled ‘Better be…Gryffindor!’, the new print celebrates Harry’s Hogwarts Sorting Hat experience.

The numbered print is available in both a standard and premium finish over at MinaLima’s website. The first three prints in the series celebrate Harry’s discovery of his magical abilities, as well as his journeys to both Diagon Alley and Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

MinaLima are the talented team behind all aspects of graphic design in the Wizarding World (that’s both Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts). Earlier this year I had the pleasure of profiling the artists for a behind-the-scenes look at their Harry Potter craft.

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