You've probably seen this before. This painting (above) is not a copy. This is the real deal. This is "The M.K.", which appeared at the very first I Am 8-Bit art show in 2005.
This painting (below) recently popped up on eBay with a starting bid of US$1,500. It is not the original M.K. painting, but rather, a hand painted copy. From the eBay page: "I'm selling my awesome painting of Mario an Princess Peach it a large painting and awesome for any video game collector. The painting depicts Mario and peach sitting on a question box looking dark and sinister. This is hand painted by me and it awesome i have many complements on this I hate to sell it. Have fun bidding"
Nice painting! And while the seller does admit that he (or she) painted it, there is enough ambiguity to assume that this is the painting that appeared at I Am 8-Bit. How do we know it's not the real deal? Let's compare:
Still don't believe me? "I personally own the original, so there's no doubting this as a fake," Jon Gibson, founder of I Am 8-Bit, tells Kotaku. "It hangs right above my fireplace."