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The Legend of Zelda series is already brimming with beautiful artwork across a 35-year history, but some of the most stunning examples come from the fans. From impressionist watercolors to the most detailed collages, this article will feature 20 pieces of the very best Zelda fan art: 10 renditions selected from the net, and 10 non-official pieces you can buy for your wall today.
Considering art for this series encompasses such a plethora of different styles, let’s first determine the criteria for judging it.
- By definition of being fan art, no official art or concept art created by Nintendo will feature.
- All styles are allowed, so long as they are original pieces: no edited or stylized versions of official art will feature.
- The list will be in no particular order.
- No NSFW content.
With that out of the way, let us delve in…
10 of the Best Pieces of Original Zelda Fan Art From the Net
First up is this piece from iliaspatlis. There is a mirage of fan pieces depicting forest scenes from Ocarina of Time and Majora’s Mask, yet this digital painting holds a particularly special quality owning to its vertical perspective. To me, it’s evocative of Link’s childhood innocence — one boy from a tiny village comes face-to-face with the majesty of the fantasy world around him. The dissipating of shadows to a faded light brilliantly illustrates the depths of this grand wood, as does the limited color pallet.
This design by Miyukiko is one of the more unique pieces so far as its concept is concerned. Beautifully rendered digital drawings of Link, Zelda, and Ganon are displayed in a form akin to what you’d find on a tarot card. I particularly like the way the artist has distinguished each character by assigning them their color scheme. Whether it be expressed through the clothing, lighting, border, or backdrop, the artist has done a superb job at individualizing these characters as three separate forces.
Turning now to Breath of the Wild, we have this digital painting by Jermy Fenske. What I love about this rendition is that it manages to perfectly capture the tone of the game; this particular entry in the franchise created a poignant depiction of an ancient time, and we see the same in this piece of artwork. Beautiful sunshine casts onto Hyrule’s delapidated architecture, as the hero emerges from the shadows — his task to bring peace to a broken world. The image encapsulates a feeling of hope: that the majesty of Hyrule Kingdom still prevails despite collapse.
Stained glass design has become somewhat of a mainstay within the world of unofficial Zelda art. You can find this style on everything from mugs to tea towels. Alongside an adorably rendered link – his style somewhere in between that of A Link to the Past and Wind Waker – we see also see a beautifully depicted Princess Zelda. I particularly like the way the glass has been arranged around her; it’s somehow precise yet unordered, and the different blues contrast pleasantly to the central focus.
Here’s another striking example featuring Majora’s Mask Link alongside the duplicitous Skull Kid. What stood out to me about this piece of art were the unorthodox colors. Where many forest scenes opt for a more somber, greenly lit version of the woods, this feels decidedly happier. Alongside the lush greenery, we see a vibrant blue sky and a piercing sun. The branches cleverly create somewhat of a stained glass effect. We get the feeling of symbiosis between the effervescent duet of Ocarina and pan flute and the crisp morning light — as if the two characters are willing all the life in the forest. It’s a nice change to see Link depicted as engaging in something which might constitute enjoyment, compared to what is, for the most part, a daunting and dangerous journey.
In real life, the relationship between Link and Zelda would be labored by his proclivity for muteness, yet Nintendo still manages to convey an unbreakable and unquestionable bond between the two characters. This image by AngelJasiel is one of the best representations of that sentiment that I’ve seen. An exceptionally detailed piece in digital pencil style, the artist conveys emotion without the need for words; a gentle touch between the two accompanies a similarly compassionate cast of sunshine, and the faintest of smiles are exchanged between the two individuals.
This stunningly photorealistic piece by studiomuku channels the majesty of Princess Zelda. The minimalist background contrasts with staggering detail, and we get the sense that this is how Zelda appears to link when she contacts him telepathically through his dreams and waking thoughts; her ultimate wearabouts are shrouded in the mystery of Link’s lost memory, but her beauty is still as piercingly vivid in his mind.
This minimalist interpretation of Link in battle is a powerful scene indeed. It captures both the formidability and brutal strength of the hero’s enemies, whilst also conveying those same traits in his ability to resist. We see him firmly anchor himself to the ground following what will have been a mighty blow – shield held defiantly in on hand, sword readied for what will no doubt be a perfectly executed counter-attack. The piece again utilizes greens — the color most synonymous with the series — but mutes them for a dramatic, grittier effect.
This scene depicts Link as he faces one of the most enigmatic enemies in the series – the only foe besides Ganon that truly matches his skill: Dark Link. The piece conveys great use of perspective, creating a distorted, ethereal appearance to the environment and characters. The use of digital watercolor pencil evokes a grainy, sinister tone, which is fitting for a fight between Link and one of his most deadly opponents.
There is no other piece of art quite like this one from Ag+. It’s an uncompromisingly detailed overview of the entire history of the series — a breathtaking, passionate homage. Many months must have gone into finishing this piece, and its creation will have necessitated extensive knowledge of Zelda’s history. The more you zoom in, the more granular detail emerges. While there’s no objective measure for the best piece on this list, this one wins the award for most visually impressive.
10 of the Best Pieces of Zelda Wall Art you Can Buy Today
First to come on our product list is this dazzling wall clock from FANCYLIFE. Link’s shadowy silhouette is emboldened by the crest of the moon which forms the base of the clock. It’s crafted out of an old vinyl record, and the whole thing is illuminated by a subtle purple hue on account of the LEDs. It’s an understated gem for any fan’s wall.
This canvas by FanArtGalleryVN is an excellent addition to any room – gaming-related or otherwise. Being the first on the list to feature as a handmade oil painting, the scene depicts Link emerging from a cavernous body of water, Navi by his side. The environmental hue of golds and greys is sure to match the aesthetic of all walls.
Turning now to a more minimalist art style, we have this movie-style print from Golden Planets. Not only has the artist included striking depictions of both Link and Zelda, but the Hyrule skyline has been embedded into the center. Topping it off is a color pallet of soft greens and off-whites which allow each element to be distinguished. A choice of frames is also available.
Here’s another awesome canvas by Mild pic: perfect to include in a room with warm colors and autumnal undertones. The creator takes the originally green and blue color pallet of Breath of the Wild and recreates it with deep oranges, watery yellows, and subtle purples.
This poster by Law & Moore injects a little gaming history into its design. Featuring the appearance of a gaming anthology entry, the piece references Nintendo’s 1991 Super Nintendo hit: The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. It depicts the seminal scene in which Link retrieves The Sword of Time which is offset by crisp attributions to the game’s title, developer, and year of release. Referencing one of gaming’s most revered titles, it’s a great addition to a room showcasing video game memorabilia.
This next piece is not only the first to feature the style of Wind Waker but is also unique in its approach to three-dimensional art. The artist has carefully arranged separate pieces of card and foam in layers to create depth and dimension to an otherwise flat work of art.
Owing to the distinct, vibrant color pallet of the Wind Waker aesthetic, the design itself will be a stand-out piece on any wall.
This oil painting is so impressive! Despite being hand-painted, the artist has managed to capture the aesthetic of 16-bit pixel art, beautifully rending A Link to the Past’s Hyrule onto a vivid canvas. This is a real show-stopper of a piece; it’s great for the centerpiece of a room.
In this piece, artist Denis Orio Ibañez has merged Van Gogh’s starry night with the aesthetic of Breath of the Wild’s Hyrule. This piece of art pairs best with blue and turquoise-oriented rooms, making for a surreal addition to the creation of a moody atmosphere.
Next, we have a unique, five-piece wall art of the Hyrule landscape. Depicting a detailed, oil-style version of expansive planes and mountains, this is a great choice to be positioned above a bed (or similarly central area in a room). Owing to its scale, the piece allows for the illusion of a room looking bigger than it is — as well as featuring a nod to one of gaming’s most famous fantasy worlds.
Last but not least is a hanging tapestry denoting Breath of the Wild’s lore. Any fan of the game will recognize this historical deception of the battle of Hyrule — and what better way to denote that scene than through the authentic medium of tapestry? A variety of sizes are available.
We hope you enjoyed this sample breakdown of the ever-expanding fan works that pay homage to the series. Maybe they’ve inspired you to give it a go yourself – or at least to go back and play those fantastic games! We’ll certainly see a whole new collection of work following the release of the hotly anticipated Breath of the Wild 2, and we’re sure to have another list to compile when the time comes.
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