Today’s Google Doodle celebrates the life and works of Disney artist Mary Blair. Born in Oklahoma on October 21, 1911, Blair was “best known for the artwork she contributed to animations including Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan and Cinderella,” the Guardian reports. They note, “Blair’s colourful, childlike images vaguely reminiscent of the cubist movement are credited with bringing modern art into popular animation and influencing a generation of illustrators.”
Blair shared a special relationship with Walt Disney, who recruited her to work on the 1964 World’s Fair version of It’s A Small World, which has since been recreated in all of Disney’s theme parks. “Other commissions for Blair, who died in 1978, include giant murals at Disneyland and Disney World,” according to The Guardian.
Blair also illustrated children’s books, advertisements and theatrical set designs. One of her fellow Disney employees, animator John Canemaker says, “Though much of her art veers away from naturalism toward abstraction, she was one of Walt Disney’s favorite artists; he personally responded to her use of color, naïve graphics, and the storytelling aspect in her pictures, especially the underlying emotions palpable in much of her art.”