Pixie & Puck: Blossom and Pavall

Blossom is not named after the show from the 80’s, though after I mentioned what I was going to call the paper doll my friend commented about that and I almost renamed her. I can’t really say why I named her Blossom, except that she looked like a Blossom to me. I suppose that answer will have to do. Her costumes were inspired by anime costumes, more then anything else. Several of my good friends are heavily into anime, though I openly confess to not being much of a fan. I do like the outfits though.

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I have been thinking a lot about process lately and about ways to make this blog about more then just the paper dolls I post every few days, so I thought I would also scan the thumbnail doodles that became these costumes. As you might notice, there are some differences between the finished product and the draft. PallavtheElfThat’s fairly common for me. I tend to change things as I am working on them. My only frustrating with this paper doll was the color schemes for the dresses. I went through several dozen and I am still not sure I like all of them. Maybe I’ll published a black and white version as well… Something to think about.

Also, I am very excited to present two paper dolls today. Along with Blossom, there is a version of the Puck paper doll done by Toni L.A. Cross, www.thinkinlikegavroche.wordpress.com, with a much different chin and a quirky expression. He’s an elf and his name is Pavell which is apparently Sanskrit and I think he’s wonderful and very inspired. I especially like what was done with his hand, so he could hold the bow. I want to thank Toni for kindly letting me share him with all of you. It was really fun for me to see what someone else had done based on my work and quite flattering.

Fashion Doll Friday: Flora’s Stripes and Pleats

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It’s nearly Saturday and I am quite wiped out. I went out for drinks with some people after work and then came home and did a bit of cleaning. It was fun, but also tiring after a long intense week of work. This weekend I’ll be taking it easy and hopefully getting some more paper dolling done. It’s humid and hot here- so hot I can feel it on my skin. I very much dislike the heat and would take a rainstorm over this any day.

I am not at my most coherent today, so I offer up these dresses and a reminder that I have a poll in the sidebar.

That is all. I am crawling into bed now.

Curves: Fur Trimmed Gothic

So, this is a stupidly titled paper doll, but her sleeves are fuzzy, so that should be worth something. 🙂

Curves is a complicated series for me, in part because it fore fills two goals. I began it when I did all my paper dolls for the blog in the heavily shadowed style of Curves, but I wanted to do a full figured paper doll since the ones I had seen online were not very attractive and I thought I could do better.

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Two years later, Curves is my only regularly updating paper doll in the heavily shadowed style I developed in college and still often use for non-paper doll drawing. I like the style, because I believe it doesn’t need to be colored, it has a strong enough graphic presence without adding color. A lot of people color them, and that’s fine with me, but my goal was to make a black and white paper doll that didn’t need to be colored.

There were some side effects of this. The heavy shadows, strongly influenced by Frank Miller’s graphic novels, make for a fairly “dark” paper doll. In several ways, the details are often obscured and lost while the tone is also distinctly heavy. Being a bit of a noir movie lover, I don’t mind the tonal shift, but I do think it lends its self to some styles better then others. Gothic, vintage, and some fantasy clothing comes out looking wonderful, but the average jeans and t-shirt leave something to be desired.

I don’t want to give up my heavily shadowed dolls, because I do like them. I also don’t want to stop drawing a full figured paper doll since I think its important. Unfortunately, I also getting somewhat bored with Curves after two years. I think there needs to be a Curves 2.0. I just haven’t figured out yet how to pull that off or what it’ll look like when I do.

Progress reports and thoughts on the subject will be forth coming. Until then, enjoy the furry Gothic costumes for this new Curves doll and anyone’s thoughts on the matter are welcome.

Marisole Monday: Enchanting Evening

It’s 90 degrees here today and while I’m enjoying my day off, I do wish it wasn’t quite so hot. I spent most of the day roasting in my apartment debating turning on my air conditioner- I am glad I eventually did- and working on this post.

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I could have done it yesterday and had it up by midnight, but I decided to go to a friend’s house and play board games and eat burgers. I do not regret this decision. I did have my sketch book with me which caused the following conversation.

Random guy: What are you drawing?
Me: Paper dolls.
Random guy: Long awkward pause.

I love that pause. 🙂

In other news, Paper Doll Garden is a new paper doll blog I found (Okay, new to me, it’s actually been around for a while) and the art is very good, plus there are males. Males, I tell you. This is highly exciting to me. I do wish she’d post in larger images as well as PDFs since I don’t usually print out, I just like to look. Though there was a time when I only had PDFs on the site, so I won’t judge too loudly.

I love her watercolor based style and I wish her much luck with her blog. The more paper doll bloggers the better, I say. Speaking of paper doll bloggers, if you have a blog of any kind, paper doll or otherwise, please comment and let me know. I’m always looking for new paper doll or paper doll related blogs.

Also, I have a poll as many of you know. It can be found on the sidebar. Is sticking a poll about my blog schedule on a late post ironic or just amusing?

Edit (10/7/2013): I just posted this paper doll set in black and white, so if you want to color her- now you can!

Pixie & Puck: Jay

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Obviously, I have been watching to much of Demolition Man while practicing my shiny textures. Actually, on Friday, I did just that. A girlfriend and I got together for pizza, a cupcake each from the bakery and movies.

First we watched Demolition Man which is basically everything good about a Sylvester Stallone movies distilled down in to a thick glorious syrup. After Demolition Man (I kinda want to draw the police uniforms from the future now, but I need to make more notes before I try), we watched My Fair Lady.

Yes, a bit of a change of pace but there’s dancing and singing and Rex Harrison in tweed. How can Rex Harrison in tweed ever be a bad thing?

I might have a thing for tweed.

Moving gracefully away from my thing for tweed, I have a poll right now up about the blog schedule. People should vote. Its more for my information then for any major site changes.

Fashion Doll Friday: Flora’s Spencer and Day Dress

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The spenser is based on a fashion plate from 1819. The dress is based on a different fashion plate from 1811. I totally loved the sleeves and knew I wanted to draw it. The bonnet needs to have the back piece pasted on around the edges so that it can slip over the dolls head.

For another sort of paper fashions, check out Pulp Fashion: The Art of Isabelle de Borchgrave, a show organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco featuring fantastic costumes made from paper. The word “astonishing” comes to mind when describing them.

Curves: Spots & Dots

When I don’t know what to draw, I tend to fall back on casual contemporary clothing. It’s easy. I usually have plenty of references by looking outside the window or drawing from fashion magazines. Since I didn’t know what to draw tonight, and I was tired after a long day at work, I decided to go with my casual fall back position.

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I have to confess to not being totally happy with them. There is an argument to be made for only ever putting out your very best work, but I’ve never believed it. Part of the point of this blog is to make myself drawn more, so if I only posted my best work, I wouldn’t be posting much. I’ve been drawing for Curves for over two years now and I wonder if perhaps I’m just becoming tired of them. I love the heavily shadowed style and I think its important to have fuller figured paper dolls on the blog, but I won’t deny that they frustrating at times.

Perhaps its time for a Curves version 2.0… I shall have to give it some thought.

Marisole Monday: Gypsy Rose in Black and White

So… Yeah. I spent my weekend not working on paper dolls. I have many things sketched, but not many things any further along the process. The choice was between posting a black and white Marisole or posting a doodle.

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I settled on the black and white Marisole, a version of the Gypsy Rose paper doll, because at least it’s a paper doll- even if its not in color. And I know I have some readers who really like to color. Late posts like this make me wonder about the point of keeping a schedule when I continually fail to keep it. Does it help people? Do people care?

I suppose it rather helps me in so much as it gives me times when I should have things done, but I’m not sure how helpful that really is.

I will have to give the matter more thought. I have been thinking a lot about the site’s structure and layout recently. And even wondering if a blog is the right format for what I want to do with this site in the future… Considerations, considerations. But that’s thoughts for another day, I think.

Pixie & Puck: Gloria

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I was in middle school in the early 90’s and, being stuck in Alaska, I tended to believe the outside world really was like what I saw on Saved by the Bell (for those of you too young to remember Saved by the Bell, you have missed out on some classic high school tv soap action). Anyway, a big part of that was beach life and the belief, however grossly incorrect, that extremely tanned bleach blonds were both A: very beautiful and B: very common.

Since then, I have come to feel that very tan bleach blonds are A: Asking for skin cancer and B: kinda wonky looking.

Despite this, I felt a need to relive my childhood with this post. There is no better excuse.

On the upside there is a towel and a pink drink and lots of swimsuit pieces.

Fashion Doll Friday: Flora’s Walking Dress and Day Dress

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There’s quite a few other Regency paper dolls out there. I thought I would call attention to a few of them along with today’s Flora post. Monica posted a regency dress of her own over at her blog. It’s a beautiful blue and brown one. I feel like I should promote other regency paper doll costume since that’s what Flora is all about. Liana has done some regency paper doll dresses as well with this white one being my favorite. Or, if you want something full color and beautiful, there’s always Helen Page’s Regency Lady of Quality which is lovely, if not terribly historically accurate.

As for the current set of dresses for Flora, we have a walking costume based on a fashion plate from 1812 and a day dress based on the fact that I have a circles template that I don’t use often enough. Also, I wanted to do something with a pattern. Patterns kinda scare me, so I am trying to do them more often, but they are time consuming. Despite the tendency to assume the entire Regency era was white, there was actually quite a bit of color in fabrics. Turkey red fabrics were especially popular.