Who says social media is vapid?

It certainly can beI think we can all attest to thatbut it doesn”t have to be. It can be a seriously creative outlet and can also serve as an informal educational tool. It can also just be really fun and clever. That”s the idea behind Christine Mi”s Snapchat artwork.

If you don”t know, Snapchat allows users to take a picture, much like Instagram. With Snapchat, users can add in text and draw on the picture as well, usually to a humorous end. Mi, who”s known on Snapchat as “miologie,” uses it as a new way to have fun and socialize, as well as to promote art-making and storytelling on the Snapchat platform.

Mi takes a selfie using the Snapchat app, and then doodles on it to create hilarious but intricate portraits.


Caravaggio”s Bacchus

After a 1793 self-portrait by Joseph Ducreux.


Mi draws inspiration from many sources to create her images. She references traditional, academic art, such as paintings by Van Gogh, Frida Kahlo, and Jan Vermeer. Mi also uses modern figures from movies, manga, and TV shows. She”ll also usually add in a snarky caption for extra fun, often combining pop culture with traditional art.

Vermeer”s Girl with a Pearl Earring

Remember Tom?

Tauriel from the Hobbit trilogy. (In case you were wondering, her character was created specifically for the movies, and does not appear in the books.)

To create these images, Mi simply uses the app to select colors and draws on the screen using her finger. “I like to poke at my iPhone screen,” she jokes by way of introduction. Though the images are obviously simply produced, the amount of detail Mi can cram into each image is impressive. She also creates non-Snapchat art.

Frida Kahlo

Monsters, Inc.

Gandalf the Grey

There”s a lot going on here.

Aside from using social media as a way to create art, Mi is also using that much-derided form of self-expression: the selfie. By combining the ubiquitous selfie with pieces of celebrated art and posing as a variety of figures, she”s making a statement about how women are perceived in art and society. She also touches on how there may be layers of humor and depth to a person, despite the knee-jerk reaction that a person who takes a selfie is shallow and dumb.

Rapunzel from Tangled.

The Death of Marat

There are also holiday-themed images…

…and sometimes you just need zombies.

If Mi”s work charms you, you can follow her via Snapchat, where she uses the name Miologieyou”ll need to download the app, though. You can also find her work on her website, as well as on Tumblr, Twitter, and Instagram. If you do have Snapchat, this could also be a fun idea for you to try with your own creations.