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Category Archives: Work-In-Progress
I haven’t done one of these in forever, but since I just filled a sketchbook, I thought I should share some of it before I start on my new book. If anyone cares, I use Canson Universal Sketchbooks in nine by twelve inch size. Each book has a hundred pages, though I usually tear out a few and quite a few never get onto the blog, since I do some drawing that isn’t paper doll related. I like the Canson books, because they are fairly inexpensive and they take both ink and pencil well.
Some Pixie costumes in a Steampunk/Neo-Victorian style. The skirt was going to have a pattern on it, but I think I decided against it in the end.
Speaking of all things Neo-Victorian, here is a set for Marisole Monday and Friends in a similar theme. I’m not totally pleased with the trunk and it might not survive the coloring process. I hope to have this set up next week. I plan on making this set for Mia who I feel like doesn’t have enough sets.
Another Flock set, this one for Snow White and Rose Red. The idea is to have the two sets of clothes match with different color schemes. One in a blue and white scheme (Snow White) and the other in a red and white scheme (Rose Red), though I have begun coloring them and they’re not coming out terribly well. We’ll see how long I can keep up my theme ideas.
So, that’s all the previews for this sketchbook set.
So, several months ago I mentioned that I was collecting skin-tone colors. To the right is the palette I pull nearly all the skin tones I use on the blog. On top of each color block is the alpha-numeric hex code that defines each color. These tones were collected by looking at photographs of actresses and models from a variety of different ethnicity and than simplified from an original image file of over fifty different colors.
After a while, shades of peach and brown start to meld into each other until they all look the same.
Generally, I don’t think in ethnicity when I’m coloring paper dolls. I think in color. How much red is there? How much yellow? How much grey or blue? Is it a warm color or a cool color?
The human species is hundreds of colors, the differences subtle and complicated. Paper dolls on the other hand, especially those who are supposed to share shoes, need to be a smaller collection of colors. I thought someone other than me might find this set useful, so here it is. The other nice thing about this set is this: Each of the colors prints out clearly different from the others on my cheap color printer. That is an advantage which is well worth the limited palette to me.
It’s all Flock stuff today in the preview department.
I’ve been working on a set of Flock’s based on the classic “warrior, thief, wizard, cleric” thing from epic fantasy novels (also Dungeons and Dragons, but I was trying to avoid admitting that). These pieces are part of the “cleric” set which is inspired by the cliche oracle who sends hero on their missions.
I generally don’t think a lot about children, but I wanted to work on a set of pieces that would be easy for kids to manipulate. That’s why I created these fantasy dresses in one piece rather than layering the elements like I did for the Oracle above.
To go with my Little Red Ridinghood, this is a different set of fairytale clothing. I think the story is obvious, but I was told by others it wasn’t. Anyone care to guess?
I’ve been doing a bit of drawing, but have been having trouble getting it from sketchbook onto scanner and then onto blog. So, here are a few pics of things I’ve been working on.
Alice is a re-occuring theme in my paper dolls. I think I have Alice paper dolls from high-school somewhere in my collection of stuff. I want to get this one done in time for the anniversary of the publication of the book which was in January, I think.
Another page of Alice. There’s a third page, but its still being inked right now, so I think it will have to wait.
I’ve been working on this sort of odd Flock modern/punky fairytale thing lately. This is Little Red Riding Hood. Hence… you know… the hood. I also had two requests for new Flock paper dolls- one with lighter brown skin than Wren and another with long straight blond hair, so I am working on those as well.
I’ve been trying to do more historical stuff, but it always takes longer. Theses are for Marisole and both date from the 1860s. I might get them done for Thanksgiving, but I wouldn’t hold your breath.
So, here is Puck, rocking some historically inaccurate 18th century gear. I love the hats. I wanted to make a Prince for all the fantasy Pixie paper dolls I have done.
And in a total contrast to the 1860′s… Marisole in SPACE! (Yes, the exclamation point is entirely necessary.) She’s going to be a pink haired alien chick with guns and this fills me with a sort of unhealthy manic glee.
Today, I did a lot of inking after work… and photographed it on an empty box left over from the move… I do seem to still have a fair number of those laying about.
A pirate pixie set I have been working on… I listened to Treasure Island on audio book during the drive down to Alabama and well… I got inspired.
I almost gave her a peg leg, but I restrained myself.
I’ve been working on more one-shot paper dolls. I like the freedom of the new less scheduled system, because it allows me to play around with things I wouldn’t normally do. I’m not too keen on her lips though, I have to confess. I think she looks angry.
So, I decided I wanted to photograph my sketchbook on something more attractive than my carpet. Hence the pretty quilt (Thanks, Mom). Along with the quilt, here are the Shadow and Light paper dolls I spent the day inking.
Gothic Marisole paper doll set which I think will be up sometime in October. I wasn’t thinking of Halloween when I drew it, but if the shoe fits…
Punky Marisole set meant to be the counter part to the Goth Marisole set above… I need about a page and a half of sketchbook to fill up a Marisole page (or between 11 and 13 pieces), so I usually draw in pairs having the two sets take up three pages.
A stand alone paper doll who needs both more clothing and some ink… I thought I would give her modern clothing mostly, though I might change my mind later. She’s not even close to being finished- clearly… I really like her pose though and I think I will use it again for something else or for a friend, though maybe I should just finish her first before I start planning other editions to my paper doll nation.
Every single paper doll I draw begins as a penciled template in my lined notebook. I don’t have a paper doll today, so I offer up random iPhone photos of drafts. See here is one.
And another one.
I’ve been working this way since middle school… I also haven’t had a formal art class in a decade (depressing, but true), so my art skills aren’t exactly as up to par as I would like.
The dolls go through a lot of drafts. A lot of drafts.
This is what I’ve been doing. Paper doll drafts. Some of them might grow up into paper dolls. Most of them won’t get out of my notebooks.
The Dictionary Girls get to be a little modern here with a set of nautically inspired clothing. I love the stripes and the flared trousers. Behind this set, if you look closely, you can see the hints of the next page which holds some other pieces of, as of yet, un-inked dictionary girl attire.
Further examples of things I have been working on that are not really blog related. The idea so far is sort of a Marisole styled paper doll, but in a different pose. At first, I thought I would replace Marisole, but now I’m thinking of just creating this new doll as an associate… or something totally unrelated. In my mind, I have named her Magnolia. At first, I thought she would be a specifically magnetic paper doll, but now I’m less sure that’s where I want to do with her.
Magnolia has, obviously, a page of shoes and not much else, I’m afraid. Originally, I thought she would have four different skin tones- hence the four pairs of sandals, but now I’m not sure if four is enough. In my skin tone color gathering I have collected over 36 skin tones, but I will narrow things down to a smaller selection soon. The truth is that many of them are so close in shade, I doubt very much there would be any difference when they printed out anyway.
As I sit here prepping this post, I have giving out candy to small children. Is there anything cuter on this planet then children dressed up for Halloween? I don’t think there is.
Shadow and Light clothing for the paper dolls. Some pirates and some fantasy Gothic attire. As always, I draw heads separately and attach them to the doll as needed. With Shadow & Light, I also tend to draw the heads a little bigger then needed and re-size them- it helps me get in more detail then I usually can.
I’ve been working on some child paper dolls. This is some clothing I have drawn for one. I’m not totally pleased with the doll, but then I’m never totally pleased with anything. All of these dresses are based the clothing of Lenci dolls from the 1920s and 1930s.