Walt Disney World construction barrier

Disney cartoon characters painted in a mural by Paul Barker of Googleplex

When I decorated the plywood construction barrier, sometimes called a hoarding wall, around the construction site of a Rainforest CafĂ© in Disney World, the Disney folks though it was a great idea. So a bit later they asked me to decorate a similar wall for a large retail store in what was then called “Downtown Disneyland.”

I threw around some ideas, but they explained that they knew exactly what they wanted: Disney cartoon characters in particular poses using only specified colors. They explained apologetically that contractors often referred to them as the “Design Nazis.”

The contract called for eight-foot-high images of Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, et al, 550 feet long. When I paced off the finished wall, it came to 770 feet long!

I later learned that they took the panels down when construction had been completed and auctioned them off to their fan base of Disneyphiles, thereby making a profit on the endeavor.