Gamers often feel a need to defend their passion. My mom used to question the value of the stuff I played while growing up. I eventually convinced her that games were worth a damn when I explained the Civilization series to her over the course of two hours. It would’ve been a lot easier and quicker to just show her the work of artist Kathryn DeFeo (known as Juuhachi).
DeFeo and her fellow artist PaperBeatsScissors created a Tumblr blog to showcase their What Video Games Have Taught Us series of prints. Take a look:
Super Mario Bros.
Don't be afraid of the unknown. Dig through the mystery container and then eat whatever you find in there. This is a lesson I also learned from my dog.
Life ain't no video game and expect to hear endless rants from angry people when you mess up.
Mario and Sonic
Old rivals can become good friends if one of those old rivals really needs some work.
Let's be fair, the controls made this job the hardest not the dog.
The Legend of Zelda
I knew a guy who called his sword a "friend." He wasn't exactly brimming with mental health.
Sonic The Hedgehog
And then, if anything touches you in that next moment, it means instant death.
I think we can put a bit of a wedge between fleshy pink and Barbie pink.
You have to forgive anyone, no mater how serious their crimes, if they cry about it. That's the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution. Due process -- look it up.
No, I don't have that ability. I think I would know if I had the ability to transform.
Sonic The Hedgehog 2
Man, I'm gonna mail this image to the middle east. Consider that 2,000-year conflict solved!
I knew that Pikmin was a piece of pro-union communist propaganda.
That Garth Brooks song about having friends in low places is directly inspired by Super Metroid.
Pretty sure this is advocating suicide bombing, so yeah...definitely don't do that.
Super Mario Bros.
Yeah, because if you look just on the other side of your problems, you'll find a switch that'll send them into a pit of lava.
Mega Man X
Try telling that to my Roomba vacuum cleaners. Those robots may be related but they hate each other.
I'm only just now realizing how flamboyant Captain Falcon is.
Yeah, you can learn this lesson way faster by playing two or three games of Paper Rock Scissors.
Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!!
Right, size doesn't matter when you're boxing against a drunk socialist named Soda Popinski.
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“Video games are just starting to shake off this bad reputation that they’ve acquired over the past two decades,” DeFeo told GamesBeat in an interview. “People who are not familiar with games or gaming culture are finally learning that they’re not all about violence and sexism and that they can actually have a profoundly positive impact on an individual. Personally, I’m using visual art as a way to let people know that video games aren’t all that bad after all.”
Many of the lessons represent the types of things that any parent would hope a child would get out of their favorite pieces of media. Although, it can be hard for a mom or a dad to see through the confusing technology and flashy graphics. That’s something that Defeo says she dealt with.
“My parents never really understood how crucial video games were to my creative development as a child,” Defeo said. “However, they supported my decision to go to art school and still support my decision to pursue a career in illustration, so I hope these little drawings will help them understand. To me, video games are the pinnacle of visual storytelling.”
If you like the images so far, DeFeo is announcing plans to continue work on more.
“I got to meet Hideo Kojima at PAX Prime last weekend, so I’m thinking of featuring Metal Gear in the next one,” DeFeo said.
Check out RedBubble if you’re interested in purchasing any of these works. You can find more of Juuhachi’s work at her portfolio website, and PaperBeatsScissors’ portfolio at his.