Microsoft Paint is a program that millions of PC users avoid every day. Its no-nonsense functionality has remained virtually unchanged since the introduction of Windows, with tweaks here and there along the history of the platform, which few people have really had use for since VHS tapes were around. So why does it still appeal to some? Perhaps nothing becomes nostalgic as quickly as relics of the short history of personal computing and video games. We see it in chiptunes and retro gaming, and probably a big part of that is the 'uncanny valley' of computing - the better they are at emulating realistic audio/video, the less computerish they feel.
Where was I going with all this? Oh yeah. to Brian Blessed punching a bear.
Bristolian Jim is an ussasuming guy whose Tumblr assortment of MS Paint grotesques started life as a shout-out to his Facebook friends (now in the thousands), asking for ideas for funny pictures he could draw. People across the world now inundate him with requests for anything that goes through their addled brains, from the surviving Ghostbusters battling the late Harold Ramis (below) to Susan Boyle in a power exoskeleton a la Ripley in Aliens (bottom).
Jim has been featured in various print and digital media, with endorsements from some Brit-comedy big-hitters such as The IT Crowd's Grahame Linehan. He's had such huge acclaim that he's even releasing a book (later this year), and put on his very own exhibition.
Jim affectionately calls his work "the single greatest library of bizarre ideas in existence", and these days spends up to 8 hours on each creation. the humour is very Brit-centric, so it may not translate well, but for fans of the surreal, it's a real treat. You can read more about Jim at Crack magazine, but why not give him a shout and see if you can do better than an anthropomorphised New York skyline battling a giant religiously fanatical prawn, or Moby throwing ninja stars at a melancholic badger (below). Although he probably won't answer you as he has 347,000 followers.