If you think pink can’t be badass, you obviously haven’t met Princess Love Pon.
Our latest guest on Artists Alley, Shauna Grant, grew up loving cartoons and everything cute. She still loves cartoons and cuteness, but now she’s been able to translate her obsessions into a webcomic, Princess Love Pon, that will have you seeing hearts.
“I’ve always been drawn to art ... but when Sailor Moon hit the U.S. when I was like 6 years old, I just fell in love with it,” Grant tells SYFY WIRE. “It was always my biggest inspiration and what really made me want to do comics.”
That inspiration is reflected by her character Princess Love Pon, a normal teen who has no idea what to do with her life and gets head-butted by a magical fairy bunny looking for someone to become an envoy of love. Rather than go on missions to save the planet like the Sailor Senshi of Sailor Moon, this magical girl is all about saving hearts. She'd be ever-so useful to have around for anyone ever turned down by a potential prom date or dumped on Valentine’s Day.
Frustrated by the lack of African-American characters in mainstream comics, especially female ones, Grant decided to create her own and avoid media stereotypes. “I wanted to make a story that was really focused on a black girl being cute and feminine but also powerful. I feel like those traits aren’t shown enough in the media,” she says. Princess Love Pon doesn’t fight with fists or weapons, but hearts and kisses.
She also purifies hearts that are stolen by an evil queen who intends to eat them. If you really think about Western media, how many times do you see an uber-feminine character like this turn out to be incredibly strong? They might be everywhere in Japanese manga and anime, but they're elusive around the rest of the world. This unexpected princess might have the power to change that.
Watch to see Grant sketch Princess Love Pon and explain all aspects of her process down to the pens she uses. If you're wondering what color she uses the most, that might be obvious by now.