The best thing about the photocopier at my job is that it can scan and email me things. I don’t use it for paper doll scanning (the resolution isn’t high enough), but it makes these sketchbook and doodle posts really easy.
I am someone who struggles with expectations. What are people expecting me to do or expecting me to complete? I worry often that I am letting people down, though I know intellectually that I am my harshest critic. At times like this, when my actual real life and my blog are in conflict (as they are at the moment), I struggle with letting go and relaxing enough to get anything creative done.
As I post doodles rather than paper dolls, a part of me feels guilty. This is not, a little voice in my head says, what people come to your blog for. This is not what they want.
I do my best to ignore little voices like that, though today it feels harder than other days. (Also I know it’s not true, because I have had readers tell me that it is not true.)
A while ago, I posted Lady of the Manor V.2 sketchbook images. So here are two pages of the doodles which lead to those sets. I’m still working on cleaning up the line work, but I have high hopes that she will be up soon.
The blog will continue. It’s been around for a long time… longer than really any other project of mine. I have no intention of abandoning it, I just am having some pretty serious trouble getting motivated at the moment.
On July 18th, the New York Times wrote a great obituary of Tom Tierney, who died on July 12th. I’ve been debating what to say about his passing for a week, because I feel very odd speaking of the death of a man I never knew, nor knew anyone who knew.
I guess what I can say with confidence is that I will miss his art and that my thoughts are with those who knew him. I can trace my love of paper dolls back to my mother, but Tierney’s historical research made his paper doll books wonderful resources for learning about fashion designers and historical figures and I learned a lot from them as a child. For that, I am very grateful.
Meanwhile, you might have noticed that this is not a paper doll post. Instead, I’m pleased to offer some doodles from my current “doodle/notebook” for two future and one past Marisole Monday paper doll sets.
I am in this rather frustrating state with my paper doll activities where I have a lot drawn and a fair bit scanned, but very little that has crossed the threshold into the DONE category. So I am on my way to rebuilding the blog backlog, but it is going to take time. These things always do. In the mean time, here’s a sneak preview of what I have been working on.
Also, on a totally unrelated note, one of the things I plan on slowly doing is going back an enlarging some of the images on the site in posts. I really think some of them are too small and I have been reading about proper image sizing for blogs a lot lately. So, there might be some changes around here. Nothing major and unless you spend a lot of time lurking about the archives, I doubt most people will even notice. 🙂
And now for a quick poll…
So, I have been busily trying to rebuild my comfortable buffer of paper dolls and planned posts (a very difficult process actually) and so am pleased to share some of the paper dolls in my sketchbook which will eventually be making it onto the blog (or not… sometimes they seem to just stay in the sketchbook and never make it onto the blog.) Also, I’m pleased to say there will be a new Featured Artist on Friday. (Assuming I get my act together and get it done.)
Thoughts on these new paper doll sets?
I got an email a few days ago from a reader who wrote:
I was wondering if you ever do requests you get. Not to sound mean or anything, but I know people request things, but it seems like they don’t ever get done.
Now I know this excerpt sounds kinda snarky, but it wasn’t a snarky email at all. It was a very nice email. Anyway, I thought I should explain what happens to requests and why I promise nothing…
So, what happens to things on the List?
Well, not a whole lot. I pull it out when I feel like I need an idea or I want to draw something, but I’m just not sure what. I use the List when I’m low on ideas. I use it to both keep ideas that readers have given me, but also ideas I’ve had myself that I want to remember. I used to keep a list in the beginning of each of my sketchbooks, but I found that I tended to forget about those ideas once I filled but the sketchbook. Ideally, the List should be the master-list of all the ideas I had or have had suggested, in truth it is closer to a list of things I think I should do someday.
Some of the ideas have been done, like a fairy Marisole Monday and Friends paper doll, while some haven’t and probably won’t ever be. At times I forget it exists for weeks, or I stare at it when I’m having a hard time doing art and decide I hate every single one of the ideas.
Every few weeks, or months or whenever I think the paper is too old or too crowded, I transfer everything I haven’t done on the old list onto the new list. Somehow ideas I have no intention of ever doing manage to migrate to the new list despite myself (Ballerina, Hogwarts), but the list continues.
As for how long it takes, all I can say is it always takes me a long time to finish things. I posted this steampunk pixie in my sketchbook in October of 2012 and she was posted in January of 2013. Three to four months is a pretty normal turn around time for me.
As for requests, keep them coming. I love to hear from my readers and I love to get ideas from my readers. I just can’t promise anything. 🙂
Lately, I’ve been working a lot on Greta’s Trousseau… mostly trying to come up with more ideas and make a list of planned outfits.
As I mentioned the last time I posted doodles, I actually draw these in a lined notebook, but I use a Xerox machine to scan them and it doesn’t scan the blue colored lines on the paper. Odd, but true.
I had to make a tough call today.
I was working on my Marisole Monday paper doll, coloring the set, and I just didn’t like it. It was 8pm on Sunday night when I decided this. Now sometimes when I decide I hate things, I finish them anyway, but this set is for the one of the winners of my drawing and I would feel horrible giving as a drawing prize, as set I didn’t like.
So, instead, here are some doodles for future Marisole Monday & Friends sets.
All right, I hope everything enjoys these doodles. There will be a real paper doll tomorrow (an Ms. Mannequin post, I think) and something on Thursday as well. 🙂
If you’d rather get an email when the site updates, just stick your email in the upper left corner of the sidebar and you’ll get an email each time I do a new post.
One thing to start off with before I forget, I set up an email service that will email you when the site updates. There’s a place for an address in the sidebar.
During the January polling period, several people expressed interest in seeing more of the nuts and bolts of the paper dolling process. Eventually, I hope to write a full tutorial, but that’s a very time consuming process and I need to think about structure. In the meantime, I thought I would post some of my thumbnail doodles.
I carry a half-sized lined notebook (the lines don’t appear on the scans… I’m not sure why) in my purse and often doodle designs in it when I’m planning a paper doll set.
The bird gown was the idea that started the whole set, so it got several pages of doodles as I tried to figure out the placement of the shoulder mounted birds, so they wouldn’t look dead or like they were about to attack her or something.
I’ve been hesitant to post doodles like these before, because I doodle a lot of paper doll sets that never get made. Still, I’ve scanned some sketchbook images that never got posted or finished, so I think that’s okay. Would people like to see more of these?
The first preview from the my sketchbook in a while. As usual, the photos are poorly taken by my iPhone, but the advantage of the sketchbook is that it doesn’t move or complain about being photographed.
Do any of these potential paper doll sets excite you? I’m excited about the fairies, personally.