The New York-based artist collective known as Mr. GIF is comprised of Mark Portillo & Jimmy Repeat. Since April 2011, the duo has been at the forefront of the resurgence of the GIF, or graphics interchange format.
Their quirky, topical, and downright beautiful animations have helped the college friends land GIF-making gigs with XXL Magazine for Rick Ross, American Apparel, designer Mark Ecko, Vice Magazine, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, MTV, Tumblr, and chef Anthony Bourdain. Their work is an eclectic and electric mix of hand-drawn art, photographs, and 8-bit compositions.
In the spirit of Disney’s new game Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, we asked Mark and Jimmy for insight into what inspires them and their unique artistic endeavors.
What is your favorite artwork you’ve ever created?
This GIF of chef Anthony Bourdain engaging in two of his favorite activities.
What inspires you as artists?
The Internet. It's always changing, always moving, and never the same. The Internet is serious business.
Describe your artistic style. Do you have something that’s signature, that makes it recognizable stylistically?
Images that move people. Infinity loops.
Describe your creative process.
Trial and error. Learn and relearn. Try, try, try. Release.
How has technology influenced your art?
The Internet is what feeds our imaginations and gives life to our artwork. Without technology, our journey through life would not be on the same path it is on today.
What was your first memory of the Disney Universe?
Bambi's mom's death. That makes even the hardest 8 year old well up with tears.
Describe how Mickey Mouse affected your youth and made you want to become an artist?
So much of Disney affected our youth, from the characters and personalities to the dreams realized and colors used. With Mickey and his gang, there are literally endless worlds to explore. And A Goofy Movie is the best thing to come out of the nineties. Have you ever seen the Walt Disney and Salvador Dali collaboration?
In Disney Epic Mickey 2: The Power of Two, you join forces with Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. If you could join forces with any artist who would it be and why?
Ai Weiwei, because art is all about disrupting the status quo and changing expectations—and that guy has the brass to do that in China. As an artist, you can't be afraid to get in a fight. The "never sorry" mentality is what will change the world.
In the game, you can use a magic paint brush to change the world around you and bring things to life. If you had a magic paintbrush what would you do with it?
Probably creating an endless amount of food for starving children in Third World countries.