Today’s paper doll is, as expected, a Marisole Monday & Friends paper doll in full color with a stylish spy wardrobe.
My mother wanted me to mention, after reading my last post about Secret Agent Man, that she did not like Johnny Rivers and it wasn’t her fault that it came on the radio. And that in the days before playlists I should be happy that I get to pick what music I listen too.
Apparently suggesting that she was a Johnny Rivers fan was a deep insult to her hippy, anti-establishment ways.
So, I went back and forth about the right color scheme for this paper doll set. Part of me thought that yellow and pink were a little bright for a super spy, but then it occurred to me that no one would expect a super spy to be wearing yellow and pink. By the way, the short hair style Marisole is sporting is actually her base hair. These days I often draw my base dolls bald which helps when I have to draw hair for them, but back when I drew Marisole I didn’t do that. In her first post ever, she is sporting this hair style. That was back in January of 2010, though I actually drew Marisole sometime around 2008. She sat in a pile of unused base dolls for years before I finally decided what I was going to do with her. I think that’s sometimes the odd thing about working with her. She’s drawn in a style that I don’t know if I would, or even could, use today as my art has evolved.
Oh, by the way, something I am curious about this whether people like colored paper dolls or back and white paper dolls better, so I have changed out the poll in the sidebar. Vote if you want and also consider entering my current contest/drawing if you haven’t. 🙂
Melissa Smith of Miss Missy Paper Dolls colored my Vivid Victoriana paper doll and did a lovely job. I’m always so flattered when people send me their colored in paper dolls. I have a few more paper dolls colored by other people to get up which I am going to try to do in the next few weeks.
I love Melissa’s coloring style. It feels very painterly to me, which is something I very much admire in other people’s coloring styles.
Today’s Marisole Monday paper doll is Marisole as a super spy. An idea suggested to me by my Aunt. I confess that I had never thought about drawing a spy paper doll before and there’s nothing realistic about my spy paper doll, but I think action heros are fun subjects for paper dolls.
And on the subject of action hero paper dolls, if you haven’t seen them, Bruce Patrick Jones did a really beautiful set of Action Stars paper dolls. I highly recommend them.
The title is supposed to be a reference to the song Secret Agent Man, but maybe I’m the only one who remembers all the lyrics to that song… Okay, so I only know the lyrics because my mother has the most amazing memory for lyrics and I inherited that trait. It’s not like I actually listen to Johnny Rivers actively.
Like any classic spy, Marisole has catsuits for breaking and entering, a trench coat, fedoras and, of course, weapons. She also has two wigs for covering her short hair and some simple office wear. All in all, I’m quite pleased with how she came out, though I confess that those fedoras took far more drafts than I’d care to normally admit.
I think today’s spy would be good friends with the ninja paper doll that I drew… wow… three years ago.
So, here I am kicking off June with a new Poppet paper doll named Posey.
I’d originally intended to give all my Poppets flower names beginning with P; however, I find I am rather running out of them. The only other two I can think of are Pansy (which I would use, except for that fact that it’s a rather derogatory name for an effeminate man and I just don’t like the connotation) or Peony which I will use one day, but calling the Asian paper doll Peony seemed horribly stereotypical. So, this leaves me with Posey for our new paper doll.
Anyone know of any other P flower names? I suppose I could branch out (pardon the pun) into other P girl’s names or simply other flower names.
Now, Posey’s outfit is based, very vaguely, on a some of the school uniforms I saw when I was studying in England, though it lacks the jacket. I drew the blouse first and I didn’t want to lose the sleeve detail by sticking it under a jacket.
Poor excuse, perhaps, but true none the less.
I confess that I’m not totally pleased with how the skin tone turned out… I recolored it at the last minute, because the other skin tone was horrible. Still, I don’t know how much I like it.
When it comes to pattern building, I find geometric patterns are easy if you have a drafting stencil handy (which I always do). For today’s printable paper doll to color, I wanted to create something that played with pattern, but in a distinct style. I tend to prefer florals in the real world over geometric patterns, so I often draw them instead for my paper dolls. I think geometric patterns are a little more urban and hip than my vintage inspired funky floral patterns tend to be.
I also wanted to contrast Hazel’s vintage paper doll set with something much more urban chic, so I did this set which I think came out pretty well. I particularly like her braided hair that comes back to a tight set of curls. I saw that on a student on my campus recently and I thought it was a really neat way to style box braids. (Forgive me if I get my braid terminology wrong- I’m still learning.) I will confess that I am beginning to feel, as I often do when I work with one paper doll style (contemporary) for too long that I need a break.
So, things might be getting a bit more fantasy and strange around here soon enough.
Of course, considering how far ahead I tend to work, soon enough might be several months…
(Actually less, as I have worked through my backlog leaving me dangerously low on content.)
Not having any backlog is always a rather dangerous place for me to be, as I tend to dislike working against a wire.
Plus, I have busy academic things happening in this month, so I might have to put the blog on Haitus. I had hoped to not do that at all this year, but my academic (and work related) life comes before my paper dolling.
First of all, I want to wish a Happy Birthday to my sister without whom I would not have ever started collecting paper dolls. She is the one who bought me my Christopher Columbus Paper Doll Set when I was eight and suggested it was too nice to cut up. This started my uncut paper doll collection.
So, thanks Sis. I love you.
And, speaking of paper dolls… here is last week’s printable paper doll in cheerful full color. I am pretty pleased with everything about her, except my concerns about her mix and match limited wardrobe. I really like how the rainbow shirt came out and the rain-boots and the bright yellow rain slicker, but I’m still feeling that the mix and match options are a trifle limited.
On the other hand, I’ve done enough plain colored tops over the years that surely there’s something that would match in the paper doll archives. I don’t always think of my designs as being “kid-friendly”, but I think this really is a paper doll for kids. She’s got bright colors, a fun theme and I can imagine that on a rainy day, she’d be great to pull out for a quiet inside activity.
The playabilty (is that a word?) of a printable paper doll set is always a major concern of mine. One of the reasons I work in series is because I think it’s more fun to have lots of little ladies and lads who can share clothing, than to have a bunch of paper dolls who can’t. (Of course, I also do it because drawing people is the hardest part of this gig.) There are times I confess that I fantasize about transforming this blog into one where I just posted one outfit a day, everyday.
Someone told me they thought that would be more work than what I do now… honestly, I’m not sure. I think it would depend on how much I had to write about the outfit in question. Post writing is sometimes harder than drawing, to be honest.
Speaking of paper dolls for kids… Another little side project I’ve been working on is a magnetic paper doll for a three year old I recently met. Now, I need some help with this as I do not have children of my own…
How large would pieces need to be for a three year old to easily manipulate them? I want to be sure that she can play with her paper doll friend on her own without needing too much assistance from her mother. Thoughts from those with kids or experience with toddlers? Also, might she eat the pieces? I mean, I think at three most kids are past that stage, but I’m not sure… (Have I mentioned I have little experience with toddlers?)
Lastly, there will be a contest coming up, probably towards the end of the month. So, keep your eyes open for that.
This is a more wintery than summery paper doll, I think. Clarisa is a version of the German name “Clarice” which means bright, brilliant or clear. Clarisa is the Spanish form of this name. I think it’s a beautiful name for today’s Hispanic paper doll.
Lately, I have been struggling on the blog. The hardest thing for me to learn how to deal with in the last year has been this:
Life is Not Ideal. Deal with It.
Though it might not be the most stirring life motto, I find I need it more and more. Every post isn’t going to ever be perfect. Every paper doll isn’t going to be perfect.
And maybe that is quite all right.
I started this blog, because I drew paper dolls and I thought it would be worth it to have an outlet for that art. I have to learn to accept that everything isn’t always ideal.
So, I might have concerns about the lace and how it turned out. I might have concerns about her lips. I might not really be pleased entirely with everything… I might have wanted to post a different series after last weeks Pixie paper doll…
In my head, Clarisa is a Hispanic paper doll or Latino, if you prefer. Why? Because I was chatting with a friend whose half-Mexican, and she was complaining about how I didn’t do enough Hispanic paper dolls. So, this is for her. 🙂
Originally I conceived Clarisa as being on her way to some sort of party- maybe a holiday party, but that was several months ago when I first drew this paper doll. Obviously, a hoiliday party is less likely in May, at least not one where such dark clothing would be appropriate.