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Living Drawing

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"A powerful curse was woven into an ancient painting. After absorbing the spirit of a Yamask, the painting began to move."

This is a drawing, painting or wall engravement which is alive, usually due to some sort of supernatural presence or Demonic Possession. While in most cases normally attached to a wall, it will usually have the ability to move around, although this movement may be limited to two dimensions (meaning that the character is only able to move along walls or other surfaces). Due to their unsettling nature, these characters will usually be depicted as malevolent, although benevolent examples may also occur.

If appearing in settings based on Ancient Egypt, where supernatural themes are common, these characters may take the form of hieroglyphs. May also overlap with Art Initiates Life, which is when a character has the ability to create art that comes to life.

Subtrope of Anomalous Art and Super-Trope of Animated Tattoo. Compare Living Statue, Creepy Changing Painting, Spooky Painting and Living Shadow.


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    Anime & Manga 
  • Arabian Nights: Adventures of Sinbad: An unusual instance occurs in the episode "Thief of the Pyramids". Within a pyramid, there lies a treasure room with healing and restoring properties. The walls of the treasure room are decorated (either painted or in-laid) with the imagery of all kinds of plants. If anyone tries to take the treasures from the room, the plants wither and disappear as a gas trap activates. Once the trap has run its course, the plants reappear and bloom.
  • GeGeGe no Kitarō: In the tenth episode of the sixth series, the focus is on the Seven Mysteries at Mana's school. Among them is Beethoven's portrait. The Mysteries get taken prisoner by one of them, Yousuke, who is after Hanako. The protagonists defeat him and and allow the Mysteries to return to their parts of the school.
  • Haunted Junction: Beethoven's portrait is The Seven Mysteries one of the ghosts. It cries Tears of Blood.
  • Love Tyrant: In the sixth episode, the protagonists visit a school building at night. They are harrassed by the local spirits, among which a painting of Bach, but Guri and Akane beat them into a pulp.
  • Midnight Horror School: Hikky's wonder is that he can bring drawings to life, although it took him a while to get it completely perfect.
  • Naruto has Sai, a ninja who specializes in a ninjutsu style where he draws pictures that come to life.
  • One Piece:
    • Gecko Moriah's painting zombies are created to look like portraits and paintings, some of which look like real life paintings.
    • The Dressrosa arc introduces two more art-based devil fruit users. Giolla on the villain's side possesses the Ato Ato no Mi, literally the art art fruit, which can turn anyone or anything into various works of art rendering them powerless in the process. On the heroes' side, we have Kanjuro who has an unnamed devil fruit that allows him to bring his drawing to life... though ironically he is an atrocious artist before it's revealed that he was doing it deliberately (by using his non dominant hand) due to being The Mole.
  • In Puella Magi Madoka Magica, the Witch Albertine looks like a drawing of a girl. Her familiars, the Anjas, are also this, being simple scribbles in the shape of a girl fused with some vehicle. In the anime, the characters only run into a single Anja. Albertine herself makes a brief appearance in the Magia Record anime, just long enough to get utterly curb-stomped by Kaede's Doppel.

    Comic Books 
  • Art Ops: In the comic's world, every work of art, from statues to paintings to street grafitti, are living, breathing beings. They even have the ability to leap off the canvases they were drawn on and interact with the real world. Some of them, though, can be quite hostile. Hence the need for the Art Ops organization.
  • Douwe Dabbert: The story "De Dame in de Lijst" ("The Lady in the Frame") features several living paintings of long-dead wizards, including the titular lady. She can leave her portrait for short amounts of time, and can still use magic. At the end of the story, she makes a living portrait of Douwe since she grew fond of his company. This way, "Douwe" can stay with her while the real Douwe continues his travels.
  • In Hawkman #13, "Quest of the Immortal Queen", Hawkman is forced to bring the ship Naglfar to a halt by Alvit, Queen of Alfheim. Unlike the mythological vessel, which stands out because its made from the keratin of the dead, this Naglfar is normal except for that it's alive. Its oars are like tentacles, the heraldic dragon on the main sail can detach, and the figurehead, another dragon, can look around and breathe fire. Unlike Alvit's other toys, which are products of science, Naglfar seems to operate on magic. Hawkman sinks the ship by crashing the sail's dragon into it.
  • Labyrinth: Coronation: One of the Labyrinth's king's most trusted servants is a mobile mosaic that serves as their spy. The mosaic depicts a large, red face that glides over stone surfaces but can also break apart into its shards to teleport. For most of the story, it stalks Skubbin, but under command of Jareth is put to use for (slightly) more reasonable tasks.
  • Tharg's Future Shocks: One story concerns a trio of Stupid Crooks robbing a museum at night, and deciding that the Hieronymous-Boschian painting contained behind steel bars must be the most valuable item. It turns out to be a ravenous monster that disguises itself as a painting to lure in victims. The bars are not to protect the painting from people, but to protect people from the painting.
  • Wonder Woman (1987): A supposedly 10th century tapestry is sent to the museum Helena Sandsmark works at. Diana touches it while it's being examined causing the figures within to rise from the tapestry and start attacking those around them as it is actually a magical forgery sent by Morgan le Fay to capture Wonder Woman.

    Fairy Tales 
  • The Boy Who Drew Cats: A young boy is obsessed with drawing cats, scribbling them wherever there's space. He's sent away from his family's farm to study for priesthood, which does nothing to quell his need to draw cats. His mentor therefore decides to send him back home, but needing time alone to cope with the rejection, the boy wanders off to another temple for shelter. He finds it deserted. All the same, he stays for the night and resumes drawing cats all over the place until sleep gets the better of him. That night, the vicious rat demon who'd chased away the temple's former population returns, triggering the cat drawings to come to life to attack the rat demon en masse. The next morning, the boy pieces together what happened from the giant rat corpse and the tidbit all his cat drawings have dried blood on their paws and mouths. He returns home a hero.
  • The Tale of the Young Samurai and the Beautiful Ghost: Shorei from the Chinese town of Kinyo lived during the Qin dynasty. One day, she was abducted and sold as a slave. Her fortune got a little better when a talented painter made her the subject of one of his works and her beauty attracted good attention, but heartbroken from the separation from her parents she died half a year later. Her spirit would be restless until her painting made its way to Japan and came in the possession of the aristocratic Toshika, an art enthusiast who immediately felt attraction for Shorei's image. He gave the painting a spot near his futon and wrote a poem in her honor. Drawn by his devotion, Shorei manages to leave the painting and meet with Toshika. Although each morning she has to return to the painting, they meet night after night to indulge in art together, until mortality pulls on her once more. Shorei promises Toshika she'll see him again soon and never emerges from the painting again. The painting itself becomes more lifeless by the day, which makes it easier for Toshika to accept the marriage his parents have arranged for him. When he finally meets his bride, he finds that she's none other than Shorei.

    Films — Animation 
  • After School Midnighters: Four living paintings of famous composers make up one set of midnighters at St. Claire Elementary. They are Johann Sebastian Bach, who won't let a single chance to call himself the Father of Music go unused, Ludwig van Beethoven, who is the passionate one, Franz Schubert, The Quiet One, and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, the young Cloud Cuckoolander. The protagonist trio knows little of their music, amusing Mozart and deeply angering Beethoven. The challenge the group sets for the girls is to compose a work that impresses them. Miko, who has a high class upbringing, wants to take it, but the midnighters are the ones who pick the challengers and they choose Mutsuko. By coincidence, her fly escapes and rests on the piano's keys. In recapturing it, she smashes hard on one of the keys. This display of minimalism is heralded by the paintings and they concede defeat.
  • The Painting (Le Tableau) is set in the world inside an artist's unfinished painting and features the characters traveling through several other works of art on a quest to get their creator to finish his work.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Gakkou no Kaidan: Shouta and Kaori hide from the ghosts in the music room of the Old School Building. Shouta decides this is a good moment to confess his feelings to Kaori, but as he stumbles over his words Beethoven and other musicians emerge from the paintings and start to play music. They do this to help out Shouta's romantic attempt, but at least he doesn't get that and the two children make a run for it. In Shouta's defense, Beethoven didn't look too well.
  • It (2017): One of the forms assumed by IT is that of Judith, from a painting known as The Flute Player. note  Judith is a crooked, elongated human figure whose deformed appearance terrifies the painting's owner's son, Stan Uris. IT uses Judith specifically to terrorize Stan, making it 3-dimensional and adding More Teeth than the Osmond Family and the ability to extend her gums beyond her lips.
  • Young Sherlock Holmes: The stained-glass image of a knight becomes alive and literally leaps out of its frame to attack a victim, although that was later revealed to be part of a hallucination.

  • One of the popular school ghosts in Japan is the portrait of Ludwig van Beethoven, a common sight in the music rooms. The usual story is that the ghostly duplicate of the composer comes out at night and plays "Für Elise" on the piano. Those who hear it four times will die. The portrait is often cast as one of The Seven Mysteries.
  • Another painted school ghost in Japan is the Mona Lisa in the art room, but she is rarely featured in fiction. Her thing is that she has More Teeth than the Osmond Family and will eat anyone she can.
  • In Korea, it's common for schools to have a portrait of Ryu Gwan-Sun on display. At age 16, she was an organizer of the March 1st Movement against the Japanese occupation. She was imprisoned, tortured, and died in 1920 at age 17, never giving up on the fight. A symbol due to her young age, her portrait's reoccurrence is to inspire the students to heroism like hers. The ghost story regarding it is that every March 1st, if you stand in front of her portrait and call out to her by name, the portrait will fix its gaze on you.

  • On Cole's urging, Kay draws various things into existence in The Box of Delights. To undo the chains holding Cole, he wants Kay to draw two men with hammers and chisels. Kay argues he's only reasonably able to draw horses and Cole is just fine with him drawing two hell horses to bite the chains to pieces and serve as mounts for the duo to escape. Kay does a masterful job, but too slowly to escape before the tide comes in and the hell horses refuse to go near the water. As such, Kay forces himself to draw a boat and ferryman to continue their escape.
  • Harry Potter: Paintings and pictures often talk and even move into other paintings. According to Pottermore, the degree to which they can interact with the real world depends on the power of the wizard or witch in the picture. This is seen as a fact of life to the magical community, to the point that Ron is surprised when he sees a sports poster brought by Muggleborn Dean Thomas. One of the most notable is the fat lady who acts like a gatekeeper to the Gryffindor dormitory.
  • The Rithmatist has chalkings, chalk drawings that behave as living creatures and can move on any two-dimensional surfaces. Chalklings created by Rithmatists are tame but the wild ones can be deadly, even to humans.
  • At the seventh minute after midnight on the seventh day of the seventh month in The Summer of Magic Quartet: The White Horse Talisman, a shooting star simultaneously brings to life two English hill figures: Equus the Horse and Worm the Dragon. Equus, who represents Good, goes in search for his family and titular magical talisman while Worm, who represents Evil, tries to thwart Equus and cause ruin in general.

    Live Action TV 
  • In Beauty and the Beast (1987), Beauty accidentally wishes for the paintings of entertainers to come to life, which they subsequently do. This makes her understand that when she was told she can have everything she asks for (except freedom), that honest-to-goodness meant any wish or command of hers will be answered by the castle's magic.
  • Doctor Who
    • In "Fear Her", the Monster of the Week, an Isolus, is able to turn real people into these. Kids on the street, pets, entire crowds at a stadium, even the Doctor and the TARDIS, all turn into graphite pictures drawn on paper and all of them are still alive. Conversely, a random scribble becomes an animated three-dimensional entity.
    • In "Village of the Angels", a Weeping Angel manifests itself as a projection from a drawing (even though the Doctor tore it up to prevent this). Another Angel manifests by manipulating the readings on the EEG printer to draw an angel on the paper.
  • McGee and Me! is about 11-year-old Nicholas Martin and his six-inch-tall cartoon character, McGee.
  • Ultraman: One episode's Monster of the Week, Gavadon, was a child's chalk drawing brought to life as a kaiju by a strange form of cosmic radiation. Fortunately, the creature was completely harmless, due to wanting to do nothing except sleep.

    Music Videos 
  • a-ha: In the video for "Take On Me", a woman gets sucked into a comic book and falls in love with the protagonist. When they are menaced by the villains, he gets her to escape back to the real world. Some time later, he finds a way to the real world for himself, a far more arduous process, and reunites with the woman.

    Tabletop Games 
  • Pathfinder:
    • Trompe L'oeil paintings are magically-enhanced copies of an original creature that can step off the canvas, assume solid three-dimensional forms, and even inhabit other paintings. These entities can only be permanently killed by destroying the painting that generates them.
    • Living cave paintings are animated figures drawn in ochre and charcoal on cavern walls. They're believed to have been created as protectors of sacred sites, as they're highly territorial and become extremely aggressive is regular cave paintings are damaged. They're able to "eat" small quantities of coal or pigments to vivify and restore themselves, and older ones are know to grow faded and restive otherwise — some may even become permanently still and join the ranks of intimate cave paintings.
    • Living graffiti are animated painted figures capable of moving onto any flat surface and even entering three-dimensional space for brief bursts, and seem driven to making the real world as much of a caricature as the simplistic drawings they were born in.

    Video Games 
  • Arabian Fight: The pyramid stage has hieroglyphs that comes to life to attack the players.
  • Arcana Heart: The orphan Eko has the ability to make her drawings come to life. This power is what got her kidnapped by the Drexler Institute, but she was rescued and adopted by Petra. As a combatant, she does have a few moves that utilize her powers, but most of the fighting falls on the shoulders of Kazu, the protective and loving brother she drew for herself. He's a huge green doodle that can shapeshift into anything.
  • Astra Superstars: Test-kun, an Optional Boss and Unlockable Content, is a blue stick figure doodle. Having no defined form, he fights as a mild Rubber Man.
  • The original name for Aztec Adventure is Nazca '88: The Golden Road to Paradise, which makes it much more logical that the final boss is a Nazca Line bird. Unlike the prior Nazca Line drawings, which aren't alive, the final boss is done pink lines. Its body is static and it moves and elongates its neck to peck at Nino.
  • Baldi's Basics in Education and Learning: Chalkles is a chalk drawing of a grotesque face. If the player sees him on a chalkboard in a room, the player must leave that room quickly, or else Chalkles will float off of the chalkboard and lure Baldi towards the room and trap the player in it, all while laughing. His description on the character posters sums him up well:
    Some kid drew this face and next thing you know it's floating around, laughing and making mischief.
  • The Mage's Tower of Seastone in The Book of Unwritten Tales: The Critter Chronicles is the local archmage, Mordred Michael Matilda Alastair. It is filled with living paintings, foremost a portrait of the archmage himself located by the entrance. It doesn't have the power of the archmage, but it thinks like him and may make decisions in his stead. In return for a painting of food for Mordred to dine on that Nate draws himself (which suggests it's the tower that imbues the paintings with life instead of them being alive on their own), it gives Nate the secret to getting to the archmage's office. Nate has to talk with the painting of a crying clown up in the tower with more living paintings to get a piece of metal needed to get through the office's doors.
  • After his death, Aaron Covenant of Clive Barker's Undying gains the ability to create monsters by painting them. He demonstrates this power once in his studio by painting a Big Monto Shonoi and then siccing it on Patrick when it floats out of the canvas.
  • In the pyramid stage of Crypt Killer, hieroglyphs are among the enemies encountered. They leave an otherworldly blue silhouette behind when they step out of the walls and remain flat even as they engage in combat.
  • Devil May Cry: The first Sin Scissors demon encountered comes off from a painting of a dark hooded Grim Reaper-esque being.
  • Do Re Mi Fantasy: Maybe. The Chef who serves as the boss of Candy World is drawn into the arena. He did exist prior to the battle, so it's not clear what the signifance of him being drawn in is. He does not have an art theme either, but rather a cooking and a constellation theme.
  • Drawn to Life and it's sequel prominently features the protagonist as a living drawing of your own creation.
  • Echo: Secrets of the Lost Cavern has plenty of cave drawings that move about like they were alive. This is justified In-Universe as the spirits communicating with Arok through paintings.
  • Flash of the Blade have rooms containing paintings of demons and ghosts, which will come to life the moment you're near. These enemies have an ethereal, two-dimensional appearance, floating around you to attack.
  • Forgotten Worlds: During the first Egyptian level, three Anubis hieroglyphs jump from the wall to fight the protagonists.
  • Liete from Grandia and Grandia: Parallel Trippers has a spell called Magic Art, which is unique and iconic to her. If used, she paints a dragon into existence to attack for her for one turn. It is possible but unconfirmed that she used the same magic to create all the copies of herself that keep Alent lively.
  • There are several living drawings among the enemies encountered in the Mother games.
    • Within the Pyramid in Scaraba in Earth Bound, two enemy types are hieroglyphs. The first are the Guardian Hieroglyphs, which are Anubis-like, wield PSI Thunder and PSI Flash, and may cause uncontrollable crying as a result of their "hacking cough". The second are the Lethal Asp Hieroglyphs, which are snakes. Like normal snakes, they can coil around a party member to immobilize them. Both hieroglyphs can leave the wall they're on as they please.
    • Also found in EarthBound is the Abstract Art class of enemy. These are found in Moonside and fittingly depict moon-headed people. They can cast Hypnosis, but aren't dangerous and may be missed altogether.
    • The Artsy Ghost in Mother 3 is a ghost holding up a painting that is their upper body. Its face is a combined sun-and-moon. These creatures are encountered in Osohe Castle during Chapter 2, because in Chapter 3 the Pigmask Army has destroyed Artsy Ghosts. Artsy Ghosts can cast PK Freeze, but they aren't very strong and may opt to take a turn talking about art instead of attacking.
  • The mid-boss of the Haunted House in The Great Circus Mystery is Pete's Portrait, which depicts Emperor Pete, the final boss of the previous game. The painting is in sepia tones at first, then gains color when the candles light up. He's got two means of attack. Firstly, he can cause the books from the surrounding book cases to fly at the player. Secondly, he can breathe fire because he's placed above a fireplace. Both moves require Pete to lean out of the canvas, which makes him vulnerable. When beaten, the painting returns to its sepia tones, but Emperor Pete is visibly injured.
  • Graffiti Kingdom and its prequel Magic Pengel are about people with the ability to draw creatures into reality.
  • Hamtaro: Ham-Ham Heartbreak: Boo Manor is a haunted house in both senses of the word: it's really haunted, but the ghosts hope you're having a great time. Two of these are a mother and son who reside in the manor as a painting but can step out as ghosts. Hamtaro and Bijou meet the mother when she is crying over her missing child. Turns out he's off to Fun Land to see the Ham Rangers and in particular leader Ham Red. When the actor refuses to perform, the mother takes on the role to fulfill her son's wish. They return to the painting afterwards with their love restored.
  • Ib has the player explore a world where the In-Universe artist Guertena's many artworks have come to life. Most of them don't seem to have human intelligence, though, acting more like silent and unknowable monsters. But it's revealed later on that Mary, a girl who the player meets in this world, is actually a painting herself, and she'll do anything to escape.
  • Kabuki Z have the Black Knight boss who firstly appears as a life-sized portrait, after you killed off every prior enemy. Then the knight comes out of the portrait to fight you.
  • There are several female characters in the Kirby series who can either make what they draw real or who are art themselves.
    • Adeleine, also known as Ado due to character limitations, serves as the brainwashed boss of Cloudy Park in Kirby's Dream Land 3. The last stage before her is filled with living painted versions of common enemies, foreshadowing that Adeleine battles by bringing her paintings to life. To defeat her, first painted versions of bosses from Kirby's Dream Land 2 need to be unmade. After that, Adeleine only needs one hit to be taken out. The scenario repeats itself in Kirby 64: The Crystal Shards, although here she helps Kirby after becoming herself again by painting useful items for him. In Kirby Star Allies, Adeleine forms a single playable character with the fairy Ribbon. She retains her painting powers and can create mobs to attack enemies with or to ride on.
    • It's revealed at the end of Kirby: Canvas Curse that Drawcia, the witch who turns all of Dream Land to paint, is actually a painting herself, having escaped from her frame. At the end of the game, she is sucked back into her frame, sealing her away.
    • Elline from Kirby and the Rainbow Curse has a second form as a paintbrush. It is this brush the player creates rainbow ropes for Kirby to ride upon with.
  • The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds: The game's main mechanic is Link's ability to turn into a painting which can move horizontally along walls, allowing him to solve puzzles and move to places which would otherwise be unreachable.
  • Living drawings play a role as bosses in Laser Ghost, but what kind of drawing is featured depends on the version. In the arcade version, the first boss is an abandoned movie theatre of which the banner depicts a couple and the title reads Monster Monster: The Movie. In turn, the male face and the female face look at the player and become monstrous. In monster form, the faces leave the banner and arms emerge from the darkened entrances. In the Master System version, the second boss is a portrait above a lit fireplace. It'll send fireballs after Katherine and then descend from the wall to smash into the girl itself. Only when its personally attacking is it vulnerable to the player's laser. There's also a few paintings encountered beforehand, one of a man and the other of a table. These paintings also try to smash into Katherine, but they go down easily. The image within the painting is not animated, unlike the boss painting.
  • The mid-boss of Stage 4 of Magical Pop'n combines Living Drawing with a Snowlem. Inside the boss room hangs an apparently haunted painting of a regal snowman. As Princess enters, his minions put together a snowman. Once complete, the painting's eyes flash and the newly made snowman takes on the painting's visage and comes to life.
  • There are two categories of living drawings in Miitopia. The first are the glyphs and the murals, which are animated. The glyphs consist of the Hieroglyphs, found in the Great Pyramid of Neksdor, the Silver Glyphs, found in the Underground Labyrinth and Peculia, and the Gold Glyphs, found only during quests. Glyphs are stone slabs with glyphs carved into them and Mii parts for final decoration. Hieroglyphs and Silver Glyphs have Mii sets of eyes, while Gold Glyphs have an eye, an eyebrow, a nose, and a mouth. Murals are stone slabs too, but they have portraits of Ancient Egyptian people painted on them. There's the Lady Mural and there's the Man Mural, both of which are in the Neksdor Desert and the Wetland Way. They have each only one Mii eye. The second category of living drawings are the living paintings, which are bosses. There are five of them and they are encountered during quests to retrieve the faces of specific Miis. The Mona Lisa has the Dancing Guide's face, Fine Wind, Clear Morning has the Desert Celebrity's face, the Lady with an Ermine has the Noble Lady's face, Otani Oniji III has the Traveler's Friend's face, and a fictional painting of the Darklord has the Teammate's face.
  • Doodles in Monster Rancher are monsters born from graffiti scribbled onto Monols. Being based on the main character of an arcade game Tecmo made several years before the first game, they're humanoid in appearance and usually appear as a mass of white lines with depth. Their techniques are known for being extremely surreal by the series' standards - being based on the minigames in the aforementioned game, and tend to have superb guts recovery rates but poor accuracy with their attacks, not at all helped by their subpar growth in Skill.
  • Nosferatu: There are three types of haunted paintings to make survival difficult. One attempts to grab Kyle, another tries to trip him, and the third is armed with bow and arrows. They let out a creepy laugh when they attack.
  • Paper Mario: Sticker Star: In the Ancient Egypt-inspired level Drybake Stadium, the Mural Koopas and Mural Goombas are living wall engravements of the normal Koopas and Goombas from the Super Mario Bros. series. While initially immobile, they will detach from the walls and attack Mario after a certain point in the level has been reached.
  • Pokémon: Runerigus, a Ghost/Ground type Pokemon which evolves from a Galarian Yamask, is actually a cursed painting which gained sentience after absorbing the Yamask's spirit. It resembles a drawing of a red serpent on a rock formation with a shadowy spirit inside of it.

    Web Animation 
  • Animator vs. Animation is all about animated stick figures coming to life and rebelling against their creators.
  • Both Oodle the Doodle and Tivo from Animated Inanimate Battle are this, though the latter's sentience is ambiguous even to Oodle himself.


    Web Original 
  • Goodbye Strangers: A few stranger strains appear to be living or semi-living drawings. One example is the satsumon, which is just a stranger-shaped Chalk Outline. And the contrivodrone just appears as a cartoony drawing of a stranger. The contrivodrone can't actually move, but it can make sounds and can temporarily mess up your spatial awareness. It can easily be killed by erasing it.
  • SCP Foundation: SCP-085, "Cassy", is a living drawing of a woman. She can move from one paper or canvas to another if their surfaces are flush and can interact with drawn objects as if they are real.

    Western Animation 
  • On The Cattanooga Cats, Scoots has a magic crayon that's able to create them. One adventure saw the cats chased by an angry pirate; Scoots drew an exact copy of the pirate to fight him off.
  • ChalkZone: The premise of the series is that every chalk drawing lives in a dimension made of chalk, brought to existence there as soon as they're erased in the real world. The chalk-drawn characters, then, are all sentient beings within the ChalkZone.
  • Chowder: In one episode, Chowder creates a world using special crayons in an endless blank space behind his bedroom. The citizens are all living beings.
  • In the Courage the Cowardly Dog episode "So in Louvre Are We Two", the paintings and statues in the museum come to life. Mona Lisa leaves her framed picture and traps Muriel inside.
  • Darkwing Duck: Splatter Phoenix was an art thief who used her powers to ransom works of art and could move through paintings to circumvent museum security (revealing the painting to be alive inside the frame when chased). When she stole the Mona Lisa's smile, the lips became animated in the real world, even helping to exonerate one of the people she'd framed for her heist. She met her end when the heroes splashed turpentine on her accidentally, causing her to melt and hinting that she herself was a living painting.
  • Family Guy: In "Breaking Out Is Hard to Do", a parody of "Take On Me" by a-ha occurs when Chris is pulled into a comic book world through the shelf with milk. He escapes on his own, being rather distraught about the weird place he'd been taken to.
  • Gravity Falls: In "Double Dipper", Mystery Shack's copy machine can do the regular copying work, but if one is to scan living items, the copy machine will create a living copy, even if it's just a body part. The clones start off as flat paper and then pop into 3-dimensional form, which retains at least one trait of its paper origin: a vulnerability to liquids. Dipper uses the machine to create a Clone Army of himself to woo Wendy, but he has to destroy most of them when they rebel against him. Only #3 and #4 survive the ordeal. The original #4, known as Paper Jam Dipper, is the result of one piece of paper getting stuck during the copying process and the clone it produces is deformed and incapable of normal speech.
  • Jumanji: In the episode "Mud Boy", Peter draws a figure into the mud that springs out as Mud Boy. Mud Boy personifies Peter's frustration with his older sister Judy's authoritative attitude and therefore is selfish and irresponsible and wants Peter to be so too. When Peter refuses, Mud Boy tries to kill Alan and Judy to have Peter to himself. This doesn't work out, so Mud Boy hulks out by adding more mud to himself. Deeply in trouble, Peter can think of only one solution and draws a Mud Girl to be Mud Boy's older sister and demand that he stops. It works, though still sympathetic to Mud Boy, it is revealed that Peter did add a "Kick Me" sign to Mud Girl.
  • Legend of the Three Caballeros: The Nazca Lines in "Nazca Racing" are drawn in enchanted soil, which is a gateway into the Nazca Realm. The Nazca Realm is one big living drawing. The reality created from drawing is the only magic that exists there and the inhabitants themselves exist as Nazca Lines on the surface. The inhabitants can only move across surfaces, can only leave through their respective Nazca Lines, and are killed if their Lines are erased, although redrawing them will resurrect them none the worse for wear. The Caballeros meet Mono, a mokey, Handsy, a giant, and Clementine, a huge spider. They guard the Nazco Gyroscope that keeps the planet balanced. Feldrake uses it to lure the Caballeros into the Nazca Realm with the intent to erase their Lines on the surface in order to kill them, but he only succeeds in erasing Handsy. She is restored when the Caballeros redraw her, with Donald gifting her a much desired second thumb.
  • My Little Pony 'n Friends: Hydia's extended witch family shows up in My Little Pony: The Movie (1986) and "The End of Flutter Valley" as paintings. In the movie, they are depicted in scenarios that become animated and interact with Reeka and Draggle. In the multiparter, they step out of their paintings on Hydia's request to come up with a plan to destroy the flutterponies.
  • Simon in the Land of Chalk Drawings (2002) is a revival of a 1971 English cartoon series, the Spiritual Predecessor to ChalkZone. The denizens of the titular land are living chalk drawings, and Simon can add new things to said land by drawing on his chalkboard at home.
  • SpongeBob SquarePants: In "Frankendoodle", SpongeBob and Patrick find a magic pencil that creates real objects out of their drawings. When SpongeBob uses it to make a self-portrait, the result is the evil "DoodleBob", who is eventually defeated by being trapped in a piece of paper. Later, in "Doodle Dimension", SpongeBob and Patrick enter the Doodle Dimension by means of a portal created by Sandy. They recreate DoodleBob, who attacks them. They try to fend him off by creating doodles of Squidward, Mr. Crabs, and Gary to fight for them, but DoodleBob makes them side with him instead by adding mustaches. In the end, SpongeBob and Patrick escape the Doodle Dimension by drawing a doodle of Sandy to build them a portal homewards.
  • Tom and Jerry: In "Designs on Jerry", the mouse on Tom's blueprint comes to life and interacts with Jerry while Tom sleeps.
  • Walter Lantz: In "The Shriek", Oswald plays Tic-Tac-Toe against a hieroglyph upon another hieroglyph's skirt. Oswald wins.


Video Example(s):


Young Sherlock Holmes - Knight

In this (hallucination) scene, a knight from a stained-glass window leaps out of its frame and attacks the priest. Notable for being the first fully-CGI character in a movie, ever.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / LivingDrawing

Media sources: