Animators from Disney to Warner Bros. created some of the most memorable art our world has ever seen. From Bugs Bunny to Mickey Mouse, their creations are just as famous as any real life public figure. That’s why I was surprised to learn what exactly went into bringing these characters to life. When you see what actually went into drawing them, you’ll wonder if your favorite characters are just cartoon versions of the animators themselves.

In order to get the expressions JUST right…

Alfred Eisenstaedt

The animators at Disney would study their own reflections.

Alfred Eisenstaedt

They would make faces they would then try and emulate on paper.

Alfred Eisenstaedt
Sometimes you need inspiration to draw an open mouth.

Or puckered face.

…and I guess drawing a terrifying smile is difficult, too, without inspiration.

Alfred Eisenstaedt

(via Bored Panda)

Can you believe animators used themselves to draw Tom and Jerry or Bugs Bunny? I had no idea. However, it made sense in order to give them the most human expressions and bring them to life. That doesn’t mean I’ll ever watch Looney Tunes the same way again…