To go with the evening gown, there’s a little clutch bag, but I confess the dress is really the fun part of today’s post.
I enjoy drawing evening dresses, but after a while I get tired of the strapless simple gowns. I find I am attracted to evening gowns with interesting shapes or draping. I really want a dress that I think would be fun to draw, as much as anything else. I totally realize that “fun to draw” doesn’t mean “flattering to wear”, but I am completely cool with that.
Paper dolls, as I have often observed, never complain about their clothing.
Friday there will be a circus themed set, which I think is pretty exciting.
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So, a few weeks ago I made a list of themes I hadn’t drawn for the Dames and Dandies yet and I have been gradually inching my way through the list. Today’s paper doll is one of those themes- the ninja.
I have to admit I do basically no research for this ninja paper doll outfit. Everything I know about ninja I learned watching martial-arts films in college. Most of which were subtitled from Hong Kong and only half of which I actually completely could follow the plot.
I wasn’t as much of a fan of the genre was some dear friends were.
Anyway, the films heavily influenced my ideas of what ninja might wear, though (as mentioned) there’s no historical basis of this interpretation. I also watched a lot of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles as a child and this probably impacted me in strange ways.
Can I level with you? I like you all, so I think I can level with you.
I drew two Aisha paper dolls when I created her. I figured one contemporary sorta neutral design and one fun cyberpunk design would be handy. I did not plan to post these two one a week from the other. I really didn’t.
But somehow between classes ending and homework (so much homework) and real work and travel, I kinda got way behind on my paper doll drawing habits. So, I have four B Pose paper doll outfits, a new A Pose doll (Maybe named Abigail? Still deciding) and two A Pose outfits all in process, but none of them are done yet.
Some will probably be done tomorrow, but they aren’t done tonight. I figured I could stay up for a few more hours trying to get them done and then posted. However, that tends to lead to mistakes and sleep deprivation.
So, I am sharing cyberpunk Aisha a little sooner than I had planned to. But no harm in that, I do love my cyberpunk. The white and pink strappy top was the first thing I drew for this outfit and then the rest of the design kinda followed. For the record, I think I wouldn’t mind living in a world where one could painstakingly match your hair to your outfit.
Also for the record, I am super lazy when it comes to dressing and if this was an option, I would probably never do it.
Somehow, I’ve managed to finish up all my homework for the semester (yay!) and now I have a few weeks off before summer classes rear their ugly head. I am not looking forward to another batch of classes, but the end is in sight and I can only hope I’ll get there soon. As much work as grad school was when I was working part-time, it is so much more work when I was working full-time.
But none of that has anything to do with today’s paper doll. Today’s paper doll is an A Pose girl named Aisha. Aisha is an Arabic name meaning alive, according to Behind the Name.
All right, so as I often do, this is first version of Aisha as all contemporary shoes. Eventually, I’ll add some more specialized versions of Aisha. I actually already have a cyberpunk version in the works.
Years ago, I collected a bunch of photographs of people from around the internet to try to create a skin-tone palette. I ended up with seven colors and you can see that palette here. I recently discovered the work of Angélica Dass. She’s been photographing people against the Pantone color background that matches their skin. You can see her work on the National Geographic Website. It’s really amazing.
I don’t think I’ll be creating 4,000 skintones to use on the blog. It wouldn’t be very mix and match shoe friendly, but I do find her project super neat and work checking out whenever you have a moment.
Meanwhile, go grab some clothing for this poor naked paper doll. She needs something to wear. After you do that, leave me a comment and let me know what you think of today’s paper doll.
So, I grew up watching Xena: Warrior Princess. I blame my love this old TV show for my love of totally improbable fantasy and pulpy warrior armor. I do realize that this armor would be completely useless in a fight, but that didn’t mean it doesn’t look cool and wasn’t fun to draw. This is my second set of pulpy armor and I think I should really draw some real plate armor one of these days.
For this armor, I wanted a thematic shape that could hold the whole design together and I chose this very simplified paisley/leaf motif that you’ll see on the belts on her trousers and in the pummels of the weapons. Once I had that shape, I tried to add color and create something that felt like it could be from one of the old Prince Valiant comics. I confess that I ended up thinking there was something a little East Asian in the whole design, but I can’t really explain why it feels that way to me. It certainly wasn’t my intention when I started.
Few things I should mention, I am traveling over the weekend and my life is about a crazy as it can be right now. I am really trying to avoid putting the blog on haitus as I work through the end of the semester and some major work things. So, wish me luck as I juggle flaming swords and/or herd my ducks into a corral. (My ducks are never in rows, but on good days I get them corralled.)
Meanwhile, support the blog through Patreon if you enjoy it.
And I am curious, should I draw some full plate armor for my lady and gent paper dolls? Let me know what you think in a comment.
I’ve stopped doing full paper doll sets with complex layouts, but I’ve found I missed the mix and match modern sets I used to create, specifically keeping to a limited color palette. So, I decided to create a little micro-summer wardrobe here for the A Pose paper dolls. These five pieces can all mix and match. They also share color from the Spring 2018 color report.
I love color. This should shock no one. One of my favorite things is looking at Pantones color reports each season to see what they’ve predicted for the coming season. The Spring 2018 color report had some really lovely colors in it. Ultra-violet is the Pantone 2018 color of the year. Since I love purple, I’m perfectly content with this choice. I’m not sure I buy all of Pantone’s hype about the color, but I think it’s pretty.
So, I used the Ulta-Violet color in every piece, except the pants (which I made one of Pantones suggested ‘classic’ colors) and the purse which is a very pale petal sort of mauve color. It looks white, I know, but I swear it’s a light pink. Very light pink.
I tried to be trendy as I could in these pieces. I’ve been seeing a lot of fringe on handbags and a lot of abstract, but almost tropical feeling florals. The off the shoulder top is still in, I think? And sleeve detail is still very hot. I enjoy sleeve detail, but I always worry I’m going to accidentally put a bell sleeve into my soup.
So, I’ve been having trouble coming up with things to write in these blog posts lately (I dunno why). So, I am asking for help. If you have a question they have been wanting to ask, or a topic you’re curious about, write it the comments and I’ll answer it.
Of course, you’re also welcome to just comment about today’s paper doll or any of the paper dolls. I love to hear from y’all.
When I first decided I was going to create paper dolls in period underwear, I knew it would slow down my historical paper doll dress drawing. After all, once you put a paper doll in period underwear you have to make sure that the clothing you create for the paper doll fits over whatever the period undergarments are. It’s much easier to work from the bottom layers to the top layers in paper dolls. You draw the doll and then the underwear and then whatever goes over the underwear and then you do coats or whatever.
I also knew if I was going to go to all the trouble of drawing underwear and affixing that underwear in Photoshop and printing the doll again, I was darn well going to make more than 18th century paper doll gown to go over it. After all, if I only drew one dress than the return on paper doll underwear time investment would be fairly low.
So, when I drew Alice in her 18th century underthings I drew two dresses. The first was the classic very formal gown I shared several weeks ago. Today’s 18th century paper doll gown is a lot less complex and generally seen as less formal. Today’s 18th century paper doll gown is a round gown. Round gowns were gowns that fastened in the front and had no stomacher.
But don’t be fooled, a round gown could be plenty formal if made of a sufficiently expensive fabric. The gown this dress is based off of is from The Met and is made of green Chinese silk. It’s lovely. Under the gown, she wears a chemise. The other round gown inspiration was styled this way from the FIT Museum. (They call it a Robe à l’anglaise which technically it is, but it is also a round gown. Aren’t clothing terms confusing?)
The bonnet with the dress is based on this portrait and lots of examples from my costume history collection. The matching shoes were also inspired by the Met dress, because that gown also has shoes that were made to match.
One more quick thing, if you hope over and grab 18th Century Alice, because an 18th century doll down might need an 18th century looking paper doll, the hoops will not fit under this dress. Round gowns did not have the huge wide skirts that those hoops were designed to support. So, just bare that in mind. Also the bonnet is designed to fit over Alice’s hair, I don’t know how well if would fit over the hair of any of the other A Pose paper dolls.