Detective Pikachu is coming out in just a few short months. May 10, 2019 to be exact. The film is centered around the world of Pokémon, a franchise known across the globe. But, these aren’t normal animated Pokémon – this time around they’re hyper-realistic!

The team making the film has even gone so far as to bring RJ Palmer (known for his realistic Pokémon illustrations) on board. It’s obvious the people behind the film love their creatively-inclined fans, and with the winners being announced from the art contest, we can see how they show their appreciation.

The contest has come to an end

Talenthouse, the studio behind the Detective Pikachu film, launched a call-to-action for artists last year. The mission? To create a piece centered around the setting of Detective Pikachu. Basically, use the trailers, tone, and overall aesthetic of the upcoming box office hit to create a work of art.

Five winners from around the world would be picked and their art would apparently “be featured across the film’s marketing campaign, including social accounts, print materials, and merchandise.” So let’s take a peek at those esteemed winners!

Some beautiful works of art!

And, just like how Pokémon is loved in all corners of the globe, these winners are pretty spread out as well. We’ve got incredible works from artists in Spain, India, Italy, the UK, and even Malaysia! Personally, I think the team behind this contest did an amazing job picking five very diverse winners.

Each piece has its own style and theme, and I can easily from the text in their tweets that they have an appreciation for fan art. Well, that, and the fact that the Twitter page itself is constantly retweeting fanart.

Just one teensy problem

Now, this contest is heartwarming, don’t get me wrong. In all honesty, the only issue I have is the fact that this is essentially the classic “paid in exposure” scenario. Granted, the artists signed up for the contest and knew what they were getting into, but I can’t help but feel like a company that is confident enough to already start work on a sequel could’ve splurged more for the winners.

A move like this just keeps the stigma going that artists are okay with unpaid work as long as you shout-out their social media pages. On the other hand, I read through the comments on each of the winner announcement tweets, and the artists themselves are overjoyed that they won, which is what really matters.

But what do you think? Which is your favorite of the winners? Do you think the prize Talenthouse offered was enough? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Jacob Buchalter
Writer, Illustrator, Graphic Designer, and "geek culture" aficionado. Jake B is an avid art lover based in San Francisco, California who has been hooked on video games and animation since he was just a wee lad.  As one of those so-called "creative types" Jake obsesses over art in any medium, whether it's video games, cartoons, or anime. Ask him about any artist, they're probably already in his bookmarks. Gaming is one of his biggest passions, and an industry he takes seriously.

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