By JESSICA SATHERLEY
Brought to life: The Monster Engine is an eight year art project by US comic illustrator Dave DeVries, which has grown into an internet phenomenon
At first glance these children’s sketches might not frighten or scare, but when a former comic illustrator brought them to life with his artistic licence, they suddenly transformed into creatures of nightmares.
Artist Dave DeVries, who once painted monsters for Universal Studios, was inspired to take youngsters’ drawings and transform them in realistic illustrations.
The US-based 45-year-old was inspired by his niece’s doodles and soon started bringing them to life onto canvas.
DeVries’ niece Jessica would continuously leave sketches in his workbook, which kick-started the idea behind the artist’s venture.
He then commenced his project in 2005, titled the Monster Engine, which has now turned into a 48-page book and an internet sensation.
Doodles on canvas: A sketch by six-year-old Max Peralta was transformed by DeVries into this scary creation
The artist, who has previously worked on Spiderman and superheroes at DC Comics, told Metro: ‘As a painter, I made cartoons look three dimensional every day for the likes of Marvel and DC Comics.
‘So why couldn’t I apply those same techniques to a kid’s drawing?
Cute not scary: This sketch by three-year-old Alyson DeVries looks more cuddly than terrifying
The studio: Artist Dave DeVries working on his masterpieces in his studio after being inspired by his niece
‘That was it – no research, no years of toil, just the curiosity of seeing Jessica’s drawings come to life.’
After becoming a hit online, art blogger Amy Windsor praised his work, saying: ‘I remember as a child being so frustrated that my hands couldn’t create on paper what I could see so clearly in my head, which may be why I find DeVries’ Monster Engine project so compelling.
‘I would love to see the reactions of children when they first see their artwork after being transformed – I imagine the moment could be transformative for some of them, spring-boarding them into life believing in the power of art and the ability to transform that which lives only in your mind into the real world.’
DeVries also accepts requests for commissions through his website.
The good man: This doodle of 'the good man' appears to be a skeleton in a graveyard at night
Devil ballerina: A seven-year-old girl originally sketched this hellish ballerina
Massive monsters: This green monster towers over a rainbow, drawn by a six-year-old, and appears in DeVries' The Monster Engine book (right)
Horrifying monster: A six-year-old boy had his scary creation transformed on canvas by DeVries
Mr Potato Head? This sketch by a young child resembles a terrifying version of the American toy