Pirate Nammu: Printable Paper Doll

So, back when I drew this paper doll, I was like “I’ll get her up for Speak like a Pirate Day” and now I’m like… “Clearly, that didn’t happen.” I didn’t even have her inked until last week which is a pretty fast turn around for me. I have been playing around with the Pixies lately, so here is the first two page one. I think I will do this again, I enjoyed building a larger pirate wardrobe than I usually can on a Pixie page.

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{Click Here for a PDF of both pages to Print} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG to Print of Page One} {Click Here for a 150 dpi PNG to Print of Page Two}{Click Here for The Rest of this Series}

Also, I finished inking a few Pucks yesterday and just got them scanned in, so people can expect some Pucks to be posted this month. I have been thinking it would be nice to do some Pucks aimed at boys just like the Dover Paper Action Figures, but I have no idea what little boys might want in a paper doll.

Anyone with a son want to help me out on this one?

Also, I get so giddy and excited when someone I don’t know at all links my site. NZ Ecochick posted pictures of her set of magnetic Marisole’s and it filled me with an unhealthy amount of glee. Paper dolls are so much fun to share and I love it when people do so.

Relatedly, one of the search terms that came up for the blog last month was “purple paper doll” and I am going to be honest. I have NO IDEA what that even means… we live in a strange strange internet, my friends.

Dead Roses: Gothic Paper Doll

I feel a little weird saying this is in color when the color is mostly black…

Not the most cheerful color scheme ever developed for a paper doll. I almost made it all black, but that seemed a bit much, even for Gothic Marisole. If you look closely, you’ll see one of my usual tricks for keeping things from looking totally “flat” is to use shades of the same color. So while everything is “black” there is still some definition between the various parts of the garments. I actually did this Marisole in four shades of very very dark grey which look black, but still allow the line work to be seen.

It’s all an illusion.

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So, Meredith asked: I think a ballerina paper doll would be cool or mabey a pool / summer themed doll also for some ting tiffrent you could do dolls theamed ot colors of the rainbow

how long have you been drawing paper dolls for?
could you do a cow girl paper doll that would be cool and diffrent

To answer the easiest question, I have been drawing paper dolls for as long as I can really remember. It began when my mother would draw me a doll as a bribe for cleaning my room or other activity and then I had to draw the clothing. Eventually, that evolved into drawing my own paper dolls, though I still prefer clothing to the dolls.

As for your requests, I have added them to my list of ideas. I usually keep a running list of ideas, but since most paper dolls are drawn weeks (sometimes months) before they eventually get posted, I can’t promise anything as far as doing any of those ideas. And I probably won’t to the ballerina, because tutu’s scare me.

To answer a related question, Tawny asked: What is your favorite sort of paper doll to draw? I mean… I think eeery thing you do is great, but what do you like to do the most?

I like drawing everything. I do find I tend to return to certain themes a lot. I like things that are a little alt-fashion inspired and a little fantasy inspired. I often draw from fashion magazines, because it makes deciding what to draw simpler. I always fear that I will fall into a rut and draw the same thing over and over again. I try to keep things interesting using reference images and other materials.

Got a question you want me to answer on the blog?Ask me here.

Silk and Steel: Printable Paper Doll with Armor

Color schemes are always challenging. I wanted to keep the colors simple, since so much of it was going to be “silver grey”. As I see it, the “leather” can either be brown or black, but I think it looks off when there is a mix. After some debate, I settled on black and then decided to use white as a contrast color, rather than the more traditional dark shade. The rich red color has a lot of blue into it which keeps it from feeling too “blood red” and softens it against the black and the white.

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Okay, so a question…

Dreamed asked: If you could travel to any time era, in any part of the world, when and where would you go? Why?

Wow… hard question. I have no idea… not very helpful is it?

I guess if I had to go somewhere and visit a period of history, I would want to visit Mainz in Germany when Gutenberg was printing his bible in the mid-1400’s, just so that I could see the press. A little odd, but as a rare books person, I just really want to see it.

I would not want to have to wear the clothing of the early 1400s… that just does nothing for me.

On an utterly unrelated note, I found this beautiful Valentine paper doll on Flickr. I love the way water color looks when it’s well done. Makes me almost want to try traditional media… almost.

On the Board Walk in Color: A Neo-Victorian Paper Doll Set

It is rare that I have the plan for a color scheme in mind before I start drawing, but I knew I wanted this set of paper dolls to be done in a red white and blue color scheme with a nautical twist.

I was playing around with my Photoshop settings on this one and I am not totally pleased with how the line-work came out on the color version. I shall have to look into what I did and think about it a bit more. I didn’t notice it as much on my smaller laptop screen, but working on it on a larger screen it has become very obvious.

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{Click Here for a PDF to Print} {Click Here for a PNG to Print} {Click Here for the rest of this series}

So, I think it’s now question time…

Gillian asked: when did you start drawing paper dolls? and how did you learn to draw?

Well…. I started drawing paper dolls… I don’t even remember when I started drawing paper dolls. My mother used to draw dolls for me and my sister when we were kids. She’d draw the doll as a bribe to get us to clean our rooms or do the dishes and then we would have to draw the clothing. So, that’s when the paper doll thing got started.

I learned to draw mostly by doing a lot of it. I took art classes in high school and middle school, but mostly I am self taught. I’d love to have some time in the future to take some figure drawing classes. I don’t think I do a very good job on my figures. I nearly always draw from a reference image. I don’t really have the ability to draw well without one.

I hope that answers your question Gillian.

By the way, I was trying to do a darker, maybe Latino skin tone here, but I think she came out looking sickly. Too much yellow in the skin, perhaps.

Flock Modern Girl: Magnetic Paper Dolls

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So, I know I said these would be up last week (or maybe the week before that), but some things came up and I didn’t get around to it. The irony is that I drew this set last year and it’s been sitting on my desktop waiting to be finished for a while.

I tried to make sure each page of this set was a consistent color scheme, so that each page can be printed and played with alone, along with combining with the other pieces in the set. I walso wanted to play a little with the options of a magnetic set of paper dolls which are different than the options for a non-magnetic set of paper doll. I think magnetic paper dolls have interesting options, but are not the same as paper paper dolls for various reasons.

The Modern Girl Set PDF Downloads
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Dove PDF Download Oriole PDF Download Phoebe PDF Download
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Robin PDF Download Starling PDF Download Wren PDF Download
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Clothing Set 1
PDF Download
Clothing Set 2 PDF Download Clothing Set 3 PDF Download
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Clothing Set 4
PDF Download
Clothing Set 5 PDF Download Clothing Set 6 PDF Download
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Clothing Set 7
PDF Download
Clothing Set 8 PDF Download

Marisole Monday: Sweet Cream

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The thing about this blog is that writing is hard. Drawing is hard too, but somehow less hard then writing. I think it’s because I draw in stages- pencil and then ink and then shade and then scan and then re-size. Sometimes those events occur in a slightly different order, but I always have multiple pieces in multiple stages of work. Yet, writing I find I stare at a white screen and have to think of something to say.

Ideally, something intelligent and nuanced to say… Okay, maybe not nuanced, but at least intelligent. Or coherent. I think I at least get coherent. Usually.

Boots wrote a really wonderful post a few weeks ago about momentum and how hard it is to keep it up. She’s right. When I get into a groove I can prep several paper dolls in a row and schedule them all and feel like I’m getting somewhere and when I’m not in a groove… well… it all takes much longer. Enjoy this pastel spring like Marisole. This paper doll is also available in black and white which I posted last week.

Circuits and Fishnet: Cyberpunk Printable Paper Doll

Today Marisole printable paper doll is going cybergoth since there’s just not enough neon and shiny in Marisole’s eclectic paper wardrobe. This is the first new Marisole in a depressingly long time… I confess I spent time I probably should have spent revising a paper on this, but after five hours in the library my mind is pretty much non-functional anyway. And it’s nice to come home to paper doll coloring as a relaxing project to work on.

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{Click Here for a PDF to Print} {Click Here for a PNG to Print} {Click Here for the rest of this series}

Now, I did recently get my hands on Gothic: Dark Glamour by Valerie Steele. While I normally I like Steele’s work, I was a bit disappointed by this book. It didn’t have the lavish pictures I have come to want in any costume book I buy. Still, it did have a fairly nice description of cyber-gothic and helped me narrow things down to black with neon accents. The hair was the hardest part of this paper doll, but I am actually quite pleased at how it came out. The other piece I am most proud of is the shiny black corset. Shiny fabrics are something I am still practicing and I am totally excited at how perfect the corset turned out to be. It’s rare that I really feel like I’ve achieved what I wanted with texture. Texture is hard.

So, I’ve done a dark steampunk paper doll over the years, a gothic Lolita one and one punk paper doll, but I don’t think I’ve ever really done a traditional gothic paper doll unless you count my vampire paper doll in 2010. I wonder if I should? What do other people think?

New Full Color Paper Doll Named Mara

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{Click Here for a PDF of the Paper Doll set to Print}{Click Here for a PNG of the Paper Doll set}

If this were a dating game show, I would describe Mara as a charming young woman with a love of flowers and long walks through the woods. Since this isn’t a dating game show, as far as I know, I think I’ll just stick with saying that Mara is a one page paper doll with a wardrobe of nine pieces that can be mix and matched to make up 18 different combinations.

In case you’re wondering how I got to that number, the calculation looks like this:

((Number of Tops * Number of Bottoms)+ Number of Dresses)*Number of Shoes= Outfit Combinations

It gets a little more complicated if you add in jackets and other layering pieces, but usually it works out well and, of course, it doesn’t consider things like how well the pieces match with each other. Yes, I might be a little OCD to have come up with a formula for calculating paper doll wardrobe options. (Only sort of math I can really imagine doing…)

Later or tomorrow, there will be something fun and new for the first day of Hanukkah (a holiday no one likes to try to spell) which starts tonight at Sunset.

Pixie & Puck: Alexa

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I am crazy busy getting ready for classes. I have nothing intelligent to say about this paper doll. Enjoy her. Play with her. Cut her out. Get her married. Take her home to meet your Mother… (Okay, maybe not the meeting your Mother thing, cause that could be kinda creepy)

Anyway, the point is to enjoy her.

On a quasi related note, I really do like how her hair came out. I am less sure about her dresses, but I think the hair makes up for it. I’ve been wanting to do a darker skinned Asian doll for a while. Her coloring is based on a lovely visiting Chinese student who was in my courses with me last year. We did a project together during which we both brought food to group meetings. I brought oatmeal chocolate chip cookies and she brought the most wonderful meat filled dumplings. As I recall, she was somewhat suspicious of our insistence that we dip the cookies in milk. I guess it’s not something they do in China.

Marisole Monday: Empire Fantasy

It is entirely possible that my least favorite part of posting paper dolls is coming up with the title. (Adding tabs is a close second on the list of least favorite activities, I should just draw them rather then using Photoshop. I don’t know why I insist on Photoshop. It just makes things more annoying.) I think I might just start numbering the things. Or using some strange code…. Seriously….

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So it’s very late and it’s been over 90 here for the last week. I am hot. I am sweaty. I am dying from a combination of humidity and heat. We had a thunderstorm this morning which woke me up and dropped the temp, so that it was only 90 degrees today. How nice.

It’s times like this when I miss the cold damp climes of my Alaskan home.

Anyway, enough about the weather. There are paper dolls. They are wearing stylish fantasy dresses. These dresses were inspired by the Renaissance in the same way Disney’s Hunchback of Notre Dame was actually inspired by the novel, which is to say only in the smallest and slightest way. Truly, I don’t know what Disney was thinking turning a book in which all of the main characters die into a children’s film, though I recommend the novel to anyone who has a really long plane ride and doesn’t mind being depressed during it. Does it show that I’m not a huge Victor Hugo fan? In the novel’s defense I should say the language is beautiful, but the plot is rather depressing. I can’t fault Hugo’s skill as a novelist, but I’d rather read Dumas.

Hmmm… I think that’s enough literary criticism for one blog post. Enjoy the paper dolls. (You can decide if she should die in a mass grave while clutching the dead body of her love. I won’t judge.)