Canadian illustrator Sheharzad Arshad is taking an unexpected, and totally adorable approach to fan art. In his series Young Heroes, Arshad draws some of our favorite video game, movie, and cartoon heroes as young children. The portraits are designed to create a sense of innocence, to glimpse who these characters were before all their hardships as adults.
Tiny Chell with her GLaDOS potato from Portal 2 is insanely cute. Each character is easily recognizable from their outfits and hairstyles, yet their expressions are still so sweet and innocent. Maybe that’s why children cosplayers are the best thing ever.
“Picture a battle worn Lara Croft in your mind. Or Samus from Metroid Prime. Or any of the characters from League of Legends. Some of those video game characters are designed to look so tough that we don’t even imagine that they could have been innocent looking kids once. That’s because they were only ever designed as the versions of themselves that have gone through a lot of hardships and battle training.”
You can preview some of Arshad’s darling illustrations in the gallery below. If you like what you see, you can check out more of his works through his Deviant Art page, follow him on Instagram, and even purchase pieces as tote bags, phone covers, prints, and more via Society6.
Which character would you like Arshad draw as a cute kiddo? Let us know in the comments!
Image credits: Sheharzad Arshad