That is likely making derivatives, which are defined in 17 USC 101 as works based on the originals. One of the bundle of rights that comprise a "copyright" under 17 USC 106 is the exclusive right to make derivatives. Under 17 USC 501, violation of one of the rights under 17 USC 106 is copyright infringement unless an exception applies, which seems unlikely in your situation. It is unlikely you can legally sell these. However, a clever IP attorney should be able to help you avoid the copyright and yet achieve your objectives.
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You should contact a copyright attorney in your NEO area (there are many good ones) to help you address whether your work is a derivative work which may subject you to liability.
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Attorney Burdick is correct. However, even beyond the issue of copyright infringement, using another's materials opens you up to suit. So, at the end of the day, it may not be enough your use is 'transformative' if you have been dragged through the courts.
This is something I would have an attorney review before you put out.
You've asked whether it's lawful to sell "graphic art" displaying images of "Disney characters" that are "not direct replicas." NO, of course that's not lawful. Much more could be said -- but if you had to ask that question more would not be helpful. Query Google for [ "fair use" copyright ] and read. Good luck.
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