April Showers: A Printable Paper Doll for Kids or Adults

Logo image for Marisole Monday & Friend Series. Printable paper doll with glasses and a gardening theme. First of all, I want to wish a Happy Birthday to my sister without whom I would not have ever started collecting paper dolls. She is the one who bought me my Christopher Columbus Paper Doll Set when I was eight and suggested it was too nice to cut up. This started my uncut paper doll collection.

So, thanks Sis. I love you.

And, speaking of paper dolls… here is last week’s printable paper doll in cheerful full color. I am pretty pleased with everything about her, except my concerns about her mix and match limited wardrobe. I really like how the rainbow shirt came out and the rain-boots and the bright yellow rain slicker, but I’m still feeling that the mix and match options are a trifle limited.

On the other hand, I’ve done enough plain colored tops over the years that surely there’s something that would match in the paper doll archives. I don’t always think of my designs as being “kid-friendly”, but I think this really is a paper doll for kids. She’s got bright colors, a fun theme and I can imagine that on a rainy day, she’d be great to pull out for a quiet inside activity.

The playabilty (is that a word?) of a printable paper doll set is always a major concern of mine. One of the reasons I work in series is because I think it’s more fun to have lots of little ladies and lads who can share clothing, than to have a bunch of paper dolls who can’t. (Of course, I also do it because drawing people is the hardest part of this gig.) There are times I confess that I fantasize about transforming this blog into one where I just posted one outfit a day, everyday.

Someone told me they thought that would be more work than what I do now… honestly, I’m not sure. I think it would depend on how much I had to write about the outfit in question. Post writing is sometimes harder than drawing, to be honest.

April Showers is a color printable paper doll for kids or adults. She's got 14 clothing pieces, gardening tools and a bright red umbrella. Free from paperthinpersonas.com

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Speaking of paper dolls for kids… Another little side project I’ve been working on is a magnetic paper doll for a three year old I recently met. Now, I need some help with this as I do not have children of my own…

How large would pieces need to be for a three year old to easily manipulate them? I want to be sure that she can play with her paper doll friend on her own without needing too much assistance from her mother. Thoughts from those with kids or experience with toddlers? Also, might she eat the pieces? I mean, I think at three most kids are past that stage, but I’m not sure… (Have I mentioned I have little experience with toddlers?)

Lastly, there will be a contest coming up, probably towards the end of the month. So, keep your eyes open for that.

Latanya, The First Pixie Paper Doll of the New Year

latanya-logoI am excited to introduce everyone to Latanya, the first Pixie paper doll of the New Year. I drew her last year, technically, but that’s not really so uncommon for me. It can take months (years…) for a paper doll to move from my sketchbook onto my blog. I’ve had a request to do a full paper doll tutorial which is a lovely idea, but considering how slow I am at getting things done… it might be a year before its finished.

So, I wanted to do a fantasy paper doll with a autmunal color scheme. So we have Latanya rocking some darn lovely fantasy gowns and a little bit of armor. She’s apparently both a lover and a fighter.

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Her colors remind me of autumn leaves and crisp fall days. I am really adoring her curls and the pattern on her dress which I am very proud of. I am trying to draw more patterns. I say that every year… And every year, I usually end up chickening out because patterns take time and I am lazy.

latanya-full-color-pixie

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My Drawing/Contest closes tonight at midnight. So, if you haven’t entered and would like too, please do so today. I’ll contact/announce the winner tomorrow. 🙂 By the way, I haven’t responded to any of the answers, because I didn’t want to skew the results. I have read them all and I appreciate everyone’s honesty. Winner will be decided using a random number generator.

Marisole Monday & Friends: Hearts, Denim and Bows in Color

marisole-hearts-denim-bows-paper-doll{Click Here for a PDF to Print} {Click Here for a PNG to Print} {Click Here for the rest of this series}

So, I thought I hated this color scheme. I really did.

Except when I opened the file late last night to check on it and make sure it would go up today, I discovered (to my own shock) that I actually rather liked the paper doll set all of a sudden. I’d planned to write a whiny post about how muddy it all looked…

And now I feel like she has a sort of funky 1970s vibe to her. (That might just be the little afro talking…)

Speaking of afros, there was this woman at the local Target yesterday who had the most amazing afro and I wanted to ask her to stand still so I could draw it, but I decided that would just be creepily stalker-ish, so I simply admired it from a distance.

One of the things people sometimes ask is where I get my color ideas. I’d love to say I create them all from scratch, but the truth is that I create a lot of them from scratch, but I also use Color Lovers. I mention this, because I just discovered a wonderful new site for color pallettes called Design Seeds. I haven’t used Design Seeds much yet, but I think I will soon.

A New Paper Doll Series… Sort of….

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So… sometimes, I end up with stuff and I don’t know what to do with it.

Originally, this paper doll was concieved at the first of a series of paper dolls in full color that would use my skintone color pallette which I had just created and was fine tuning (this was about a year before I actually posted the skintone color pallette) and it would be really neat.

And I drew some pages of clothing for them and then…

Well…

Then I lost interest.

But recently, I stumbled across the folder full of them and I thought… I’ll organize them all together and do a little stand alone paper doll set.

And then since I was working with them, I started drawing for them again and suddenly I remembered why I liked them.

So…. I have no idea how long this series will last. I have no idea how often it will update or what will become of it, but here it is, at least, a start with a paper doll named Tanya.

Oh… and I’m calling it Ms. Mannequin, because something about the stiffness of the pose makes me think of mannequins.

Pixie & Puck: Kalisha

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I try to be balanced in paper dolls. I want to have a variety of styles, a variety of skin tones, a variety of hair styles, a variety of genders (okay, maybe not the last one so much…), but I haven’t done a paper doll with glasses in a while.

kalisha-black-white-pixie-paper-doll

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Recently, I have been watching a lot of Black Adder, particularly Black Adder Goes Forth, which I have never seen before. I’m really enjoying it, though I don’t know if that has anything to do with today’s paper doll creation, actually, I expect it doesn’t, but it has allowed me to draw some paper dolls.

Kalisha’s color scheme was inspired by flowers and sunsets- warm soft tones. I love pale grey trousers which perhaps explains why they show up so often in my paper dolls (also in my closet).

Marisole Monday & Friends: Read Divergent by V. Roth…

So, when I was in Chicago last week I visited a good friend who works as a children’s librarian and she recommended a book she’d just finished called Divergent, which is a recent Young Adult novel by Veronica Roth. I read the book while I was riding the train from Chicago to Minneapolis and drew the paper doll outfits soon after.

marisole-divergent-color{Click Here for a PDF to Print in Color} {Click Here for a PNG to Print in Color}

In a slight change of pace from usual, the black and white version is posted today along with the color version. Each of the sects is defined largely by color and I didn’t think spacing out the two posts was really worth it. Plus I got both paper doll versions done at the same time, so I might as well show them off.

marisole-divergent-black-white

 {Click Here for a PDF to Print in Black and White} {Click Here for a PNG to Print in Black and White} {Click Here for the rest of this series}

In the distopian future of Chicago, as told by Divergent, all people belong to one of five sects. In alphabetical order- Abnegation (self-denial) wear grey, Amity (fellowship) wear red and yellow, Candor (frankness) wear black and white, Dauntless (fear-less) wear black punky style and Erudite (scholarly) wear blue.

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The story follows Beatrice, born into Abnegation, through her choice to join Dauntless on her sixteenth birthday and everything which comes with this decision.

I enjoyed the novels engagement in questions of identity, a topic I think that is important to a young adult audience, plus Chicago was shown as a swamp which, without the various canals currently in the city, it certainly would be. And we don’t get enough novels these days that pull out esoteric words like abnegation into common speech.

This isn’t a paper doll of Beatrice, since I don’t draw other people’s characters, but rather some other member of the society. I didn’t look at any of the movie promotional stuff, because I wanted to draw what I saw people in, not what the costume designer on the film saw people in. Though I did see the camera stuff around downtown Chicago where they are currently filming the movie.

I also went to the Chicago City Museum’s exhibit on the Ebony Fashion Fair and you can expect to see that in paper doll format soon as well.

Oh, and I haven’t read the sequel yet, so no spoilers in the comments please, though I’d love to hear that other people thought of the book.

Puck as a Super Hero… In Full Color

I’ve never really gotten into superhero comics unless you count Deadpool or watching the Batman cartoon when I was a kid. When I do read comics, I stick to the compilations and some of my favorites have been Lucifer and Hellblazer, and of course, Sandman, but then, who doesn’t like Sandman?

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So, for the coloring of my superheros, I decided to go with simple primary and secondary colors without a lot of complicated depth. I wanted to reproduce a little of the feel of the old fifties comics, before computer printing made a lot of depth possible. I think I will always think of comics as being bright flat color, even though I know there are some wonderful and skilled artists who bring so much more to the genre. I’m sensitive enough to color that badly colored or art I don’t like, can ruin a comic for me.

puck-superhero-paper-doll-1

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Needless to say, I really enjoyed drawing this set and I hope I will get to draw more sets like it in the future.

After I finished it, I did a little digging looking for other paper dolls aimed at boys and I found this nice list of free paper dolls for boys. And though it’s not a paper doll, I think one of my favorites was this paper city of paris. As I have mentioned before, I am a sucker for unusual and interesting paper toys of all kinds, paper dolls are just my favorites.

In the 1940s… Printable Historic Paper Doll

So, as usual the back and white version of this printable paper doll happened last week and this week we have the full color version. Somehow, in color, the paper doll looks less angry to me. Interesting how that works, isn’t it?

Marisole-1940-paper-doll-color

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On a totally unrelated note, a reader posted some images of Little Pixie colored in a garden on a French forum. I think she did a fantastic job and she has a blog, so check that out. Sometimes when I see my paper dolls colored by someone else, I sort of forget that they are my work.

I am thinking of putting up a page to show off some of the work other artists have done based on my work, like Toria’s Showcase. Are there people out there with photos or scans who would be willing to contribute?

Calla in Colors… Avacado and Cream

There’s something intensely 1970’s about this color scheme on Calla. Avacado is a color I’ll always associate with the 1970s. My highschool was decorated in avocado, burnt orange and sort of a muddy yellow color. Whenever anyone talks about how “classic” a color combination is, I think back to the rather horrid colored lockers and wonder if some design team thought that about them.

Of course, after I graduated, they did a remodel and now it’s a much more attractive grey, red and teal building.

calla-avacado-cream-10-16-12

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color-swatch-avacado (1)I have included the color swatch for this set, so you can see how the colors turned out when put on the actual paper doll. I usually collect colors on swatches if I am doing a large set (such as the Flock Modern Girl) and then keep them carefully saved as a file called something creative like “Color Palette”. I am particularly pleased with how nicely Calla’s warm mocha skin tone goes with the spicey orange red color and, in hindsight, I wish I’d used more of it in the set.

My love of Calla’s hair remains intense.

By the way, I just discovered a new paper doll blog. I am rather annoyed that I didn’t know it existed before this. I am so out of the loop sometimes… Yeesh. Paper Doll School is fairly new on the blog scene, only been around since June. I adore her tutorials and will probably be trying out some of her techniques myself, especially her advice on Photoshop, a tool I’m always trying to learn more about. Plus she has the cutest grinning bride paper doll on her blog. So, go visit her if you get a chance.

Pixie & Puck: Kadeem and Gabriel Ready for Dates

So, a few weeks ago before I dropped off the face of the earth, before I ended up sick, and before I discovered what fascinating colors old chicken curry can turn, I had a little drawing to celebrate the 65th Marisole paper doll ever. A wonderful reader known as Kat won by drawing and was so kind as to send me the following guidelines for what sort of paper doll she would like to see for her prize.

I was wondering if I could request a Puck doll. If so, I’d very much like to see him in a suit, so that he can take the gussied up Pixies to their soirees :). No real preference on the colors but I would like a boutonniere.

Now, I’ve never been pleased with the Puck paper dolls, but I was willing to try to make some dapper Pucks for her, so I set to work and it took a lot longer then I thought it should, but sometimes these things do.

punk-kadeem-suits

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It might be a few weeks late, but I am proud to provide two puck paper dolls in stylish suits. The first is Kadeem who I think of as a modern young man heading out for a date, though I suppose in his clean cut suits he could also be heading to work or something else. He has two different boutonnieres and a corsage for his date.

punk-gabriel-suits

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He’s joined by his good friend Gabriel, a slightly old fashioned gentleman, with a pair of black suits with red ties. Something about double breasted suits always makes me think of the noir movies, so I gave Gabriel an old fashioned hair style and shoes to go with it. Gabriel, Gabe to his friends, also has two boutonnieres and a corsage. If you slit along the dotted line on the suit jackets, the gentleman can wear their boutonniere.

I hope these guys were worth the wait, Kat and now any of the Puck paper dolls are ready for dates. Love maybe in the air.