Friday, April 20, 2018

April Paper Doll - Set 3

I managed to get a sheet ready for this week.  After tinkering I discovered that I can still draw in Photoshop if I hold down the button on my pen.  That's an ergonomic nightmare and I'm not sure how long I'm going to be able to do that.  I tried out some different software and it just didn't have the capabilities I need.  Right now I'm so deeply entrenched in Adobe products that I'm stuck. If I change to something else, I lose a lot of assets and capabilities that I'm built up over the years.  Guess I'll muddle through for now til it patches or I come up with another plan!

For this week, I tackled "chart" with a pie chart skirt and a mix & match top.  "Villain" is a sleek black gown with a skull choker.  The hair that went with that was so fun that I did it with and without sunglasses.  "Gratitude" was a challenge - I found a symbol that represents gratitude and made it a pattern.  Then I made a top & skirt that was very slightly influenced by Tibet.  For "mountains" I made a well-worn mountain t-shirt and fur-lined jacket.  "Bed" is a set of pajamas.  And "ladybug" is a polka dot top.

There will be another set on Friday so look for that!

Friday, April 13, 2018

April Paper Doll - Set 2

So....we're all friends here, right? Good. We need to chat. (If you don't want to read my rant, just skip to the end - the paper doll sheet is there!)

First of all, I am having an amazing year artistically. I'm more productive than I've ever been and I love it! My art has gained a little traction & a wider audience - all good news.  I was also asked to contribute to the 2018 Paper Doll Convention souvenir pack. (if you want a set, you can order it here.  I probably should!!) Pretty great, right?!

Anyone who has read this silly little blog over the years has contributed to this and I am forever grateful.

(Sounds like I'm quitting, right?! Don't panic. I'm not!!)

This week, I've been having some tech issues that have really affected my productivity.  I use a Surface Pro 3 with the full Adobe CC suite...and I pay about $800 a year for that "privilege".  Recently, Microsoft rolled out a Windows update that broke the way my digitizing pen works in Photoshop.  Adobe has not fixed it yet - I'm not the only one having trouble - and has not fixed it in the last six months or so that people have been complaining about it. It just hit me yesterday.  So basically, the only way I can draw in Photoshop is if I hold the button down on my pen while using it.  It's an economical nightmare. My wrist aches.  I may not be able to draw again until Monday!!

Essentially, this means my current year-long series is on hiatus until either 1) Microsoft fixes the pen software that it just rolled out (it probably won't) 2) Adobe patches the problem Microsoft created (more likely but not immediate) or 3) I find software to replace Photoshop, Illustrator, and Adobe Acrobat (not Reader, the full version - I use it to format prints and books). 

The good news is that this does not affect the collaboration project.  I mainly use ArtRage for that and I think I can do everything in ArtRage that I would do in Photoshop.  It also does not affect new projects because I can plan to do those entirely in ArtRage at least for the time being.  And I may be able to get this all back up and running in no time.

I'd LOVE suggestions for professional-grade software.  Really not happy with Adobe at the moment. If I find a suitable alternative, I'll share that, too.

Til then, here's the second sheet in the April set.  I'm hoping to get back up on track soon!!

Friday, April 6, 2018

April Paper Doll - Set 1

It's April and I'm on doll #4 of this doodle-a-day series.  This is the final doll and then I'll start back with the January doll in May. Hopefully I can shorten my production time by re-using dolls! I like all of the dolls and re-using them throughout the year will be fun. I'm also hoping to fall into a more consistent posting schedule.  We'll see how that goes...

For April I knew I wanted two things: a dark-skinned paper doll and a bright, pastel color palette. The first theme for this set was Easter, so I went with a floral dress and hat.  Next was rabbit - a bunny applique sweater.  Garden is carrot patterned leggings.  Rain is a bright yellow raincoat.  Picnic is a plaid shirt with a basket and capri pants.  And finally, logo is a farm logo in pastels.

Also, I just thought I'd share that I have a paper doll in the 2018 convention souvenir packet! You can find out more here or here.  I am truly lucky to be part of such an amazing group of artists!

Friday, March 30, 2018

Paper Doll Collaboration 2018 - Then and Now

It's time for another round of the collaboration project! This month's theme was re-interpreting  an old fashion as a new fashion.  I wasn't really sure where to go with this, but I follow an author on Instagram - Lydia Edwards - who wrote a book called How to Read a Dress. I haven't picked up the book yet.  Based on her fantastic Instagram feed, I probably should! Sometimes she compares old and new clothing styles and that's where I started this project.

On the left, I have an Elizabethan gown, complete with ruffs at the neck and hands, circa 1575.  On the right, a Giambattista Valli gown from 2017.

This portrait was the inspiration for my Elizabethan gown. I wasn't super fussy about including all of the details.

And the contemporary gown.  Again, I wasn't super fussy with pattern, details, etc. I really wanted the overall similarities to stand out.

For more in the ongoing collaboration project series, go check out Rachel's contribution and Melissa's contribution!

Also, happy spring holidays to everyone celebrating! We're having Easter with my family and very much looking forward to it & getting rid of all the snow!

Thursday, March 29, 2018

March Paper Doll - Set 5

This is it! The last sheet in the March paper doll series.  I loved the colors this month & although I wawsn't crazy about the doll at first, it really grew on me over the course of the month.

The themes for this set were fun, too.  For "icing" I made a drippy cake-inspired top.  "Can" I decided to go a bit more abstract - I went with a "can-do" attitude with a Rosie the Riveter inspired overall set.  "Stretch" is a basic pair of leggings.  "Hair" is a fur vest.  For "house" I went with a 1930s inspired house dress. "Dance" is a ballet inspired outfit.  And then "fruit" is a pineapple colored dress. Finally, there's a random skirt just for fun.

April will have a new doll, the last of the new dolls. I'm eager to get started on the new set and I'll have the first one up sometime next week! 

Friday, March 23, 2018

March Paper Doll - Set 4

Every post I seem to start off with: "I meant to work on this but didn't......"  And I guess that's true today.  My posting has been a bit sparse but it's because I'm working on a bunch of stuff.

Today is set 4 of the March paper doll. I have one more sheet after this. Then I'll draw an April doll and cycle through the four dolls through the end of the year.

Right click to download and print

This doll was not my favorite, but the more I work on it, the more I like it!

For "roll" I made rolled up jeans.  "Spring" is a bright green sweater with a flower motif that coordinates well with leggings from the first set.  "Lettering" is a book lover's dream jacket.  And "treats" is a sweet shirt with cupcakes and ice cream.  "Space" is a star covered dress and solar system necklace.  And finally, "desk" is a business suite perfect for a corner office. I also included an orange skirt for some mix-and-match flexibility.

The next sheet will be the last sheet in this set.  I'm amazed that I've kept this up so long!! It's been a tough project.  I spend more time on this than I've spent on any other project for this blog!  It's worth it!!

Friday, March 16, 2018

March Paper Doll - Set 3

So Saint Patrick's Day is tomorrow.  I'm Irish on my mother's side but we've been here so long I don't know if that even counts! I live north of Boston in a traditionally very Irish place. Saint Patrick's Day is a big deal around here.

Because of this, I went a little more Irish inspired with this wardrobe sheet.

Once I finished with the themes for this set, I realized I had a bit more extra space on the page.  I threw in a couple of mix-and-match pieces (the green top and white skirt).  Aside from that, there were some fun themes! For "screen", I went with the silver screen and chose a Marilyn Monroe style dress.  "Jewel" is a bold statement necklace and that matches the "butterfly" shorts.  For "make" I created an artist (naturally!!) and for "green" I made some green jeans.  "Rainbow" is a shamrock and small rainbow. Finally, for "fresh" I thought of gardening so there's a nice basket of fresh veggies.  With that top, I'd suggest NOT cutting the interior spaces. It won't fit the doll correctly if you do.

I'm hoping to post Monday but with yet another Nor'eastern on its way, I'm not sure about that. Stay tuned!