I don’t really do balance that well. I tend to work in the grip of obsession and then realize I’ve just spent five hours looking through images of medieval manuscripts in the hope that one of them might show a 10th century women’s neckline which, of course, none of them did. (By the way, you can read all about my adventures in the 10th century here and see the paper doll result.)
So, when I want to draw and I don’t want to get wrapped up in fretting about whether or not my choice of red is the right shade for Turkey red of the 1800s, I often turn to contemporary fashion magazines, as I know I have mentioned before. I find these paper dolls are fun, because in many ways they are easier than fantasy or historical dolls. I can just draw what I see, which is simpler for me than trying to draw from my minds-eye or from actual historical garments.
Amaryllis’ evening gowns are based on actual evening gowns of the “real world”. I wanted to use a spring color scheme that wouldn’t be to heavy and dark. I feel like Clarissa, my last Pixie, had an awfully dark color scheme for a summer paper doll post. I wanted to make Amaryllis’ shoes neutral enough that she could wear them with other outfits in case she wanted to borrow some evening gowns from another paper doll or felt like rocking some jeans.
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.
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). 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 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.
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.
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…
Like Jaunty Summer Styles and Minimalism, today’s printable paper doll was the direct result of me purchasing a bunch of fashion magazines in March. Adannaya is rocking the “sporty” look which is very popular. Sort of high fashion meets gym wear and if that seems like an odd match to you then you are not alone (it seems an odd match to me too). Her hair is based on this fantastic updo which I pinned to my hair board on Pinterest. Lurking around my Pinterest boards provides sneak peaks on what I am currently obsessed with. Feel free to follow me.
Anyway, the name Adannaya is from West Africa, Igbo to be specific, and means “Her Father’s daughter” according to Behind the Name. I’m sure I’ve never used the name before. I liked that I could track it to a specific culture. I think calling a name “African” is just as absurd as calling a name “European”. There are about a hundred major African languages, so I wasn’t going to use a name if I couldn’t trace it back to the root language. For Adannaya the root language is is Igbo, mostly spoken in southeastern Nigeria. Someone who knows more than me about the region would know if it was a common name or not, I have no idea, but I liked how it sounded.
Anyhow, I’m traveling today, so I’ve pre-scheduled this to rule in my absence. I’ve nearly worked my way through my backlog that I spent so much of February and March building. I suppose this means I’ll be drawing a fair bit over the next few weeks trying to get caught up again. What I really need is another snow closing… but I doubt that’s going to happen.
One of the quirky things about working so far in advance is that sometimes I stumble across files I sort of forgot about. And today’s post is one of those files. Opps.
This set was completed last year and I actually thought I’d posted it, but when I was looking through my files, I realized I never had. After a few moment of, “Well, now I feel rather foolish…” I decided to put it up. After all, there’s no reason not to post it even if it’s a little old.
When I had started this series I had decided to stick to a pretty small selection of colors designed to provide the most mix and match options for outfits, but in hind sight, I seem to recall getting pretty sick of the color options before the set was completed.
So… I often get asked for more black and white versions to color of Marisole Monday paper dolls. Oddly, I have almost never been asked for black and white versions of other paper dolls, but that’s neither here nor there.
I forgot that I hadn’t done this in black and white. I would have sworn I had… but as it turned out, I was wrong. It’s odd to me to think this paper doll set in color was posted nearly two years ago. Wow… That was a while ago. I’m still not pleased with how the floral skirt turned out, but sometimes you just can’t win.
Walk in the Woods in color was a set which I wanted to do some more casual wear and as I recall someone had asked for East Indian coloring, so that was my attempt at that. In hind sight, I rather like the accessories with this set like the apple, map and backpack.
So, here they are. A few sets in black and white to be colored. Enjoy them everyone.
So, interesting fact for your day… Today in 1945, Tennessee William’s play the “Glass Menagerie” premiered in New York in 1945. Not that I suppose anyone really cares about that fact, but I have a certain soft spot for the “Glass Menagerie.”
Anyway, back to our paper doll, she would not fit in a 1945 theater opening, but she certainly could go to a show today. I am strictly of the view that one should dress up for theater, out of respect for the nature of live performance. A part of me winces, when I see people show up to Broadway shows wearing shorts and flip flops. Have some respect for the theater, people…
Wow, that’s quite the off topic subject… let’s get back to paper dolls, shall we?
I’ve decided, after quite a bit of dithering, to settle on Monica as my chosen name. I decided I liked the sound of Marisole, Mia, Margot and Monica. It’s different enough to stand out, but not different enough to be obvious. Minerva I think I should save for a fantasy paper doll and Miranda was a little hard at the end, but thank you everyone for your lovely suggestions. I really enjoyed getting to read all those M names.
So, spring has finally come to Alabama, it feels like. I enjoy the changing seasons of fall and spring. Also, I’ve been reading some 1920′s clothing catalogs and they use words like “jaunty” in their descriptions and I think we should bring it back as a fashion term.
Today’s paper doll set, which like my Mia paper dolls from earlier this month (here in black and white and here in color), comes out of the March fashion magazines which publish the new spring fashions of the year. I decided to do a little bit more “girly” for this paper doll set, focusing on the feminine styles that are popular right now.
My one regret is that I didn’t do more pieces with patterns on this paper doll set, but instead focused on the shapes. I sort of wish I’d done something in color blocking or even stripes to mix things up a bit. Still, I love the dresses and the purses which I think offer some interesting variety. I always carry the exact same purse nearly every day, but my paper dolls can afford to be a little more adventurous. Plus money is no object when the fashions are all made of paper.
I’m not totally pleased how the ruffled shift dress came out (far left). I like it, but I have mixed feelings about the execution, on the other hand I really like how both the other dresses came out and the high low t-shirt. I think I’ll come around to the dress once it has been colored.
I decided to use Magnolia, one of my new Marisole Monday paper dolls who I’ve decided to rename since someone pointed out that the Magnolia name is already taken. Suggest an “M” name in the comments and I’ll consider it. Right now, I’m split between Monica, Maureen and Mira, though I do think Mira is too close to Mia.