Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Brief Interlude


Greetings, all!


Well, at long last my moving ordeal is nearly over. I'm not sure if I jinxed myself by complaining about it (ahem, not whining) so much or what, but all sorts of things have certainly gone wrong over the past week. My new home needing to be cleaned again before I could move in (because the property management company is borderline negligent and did a terrible job the first time), the moving truck needing to be rescheduled, things getting delivered to the wrong address and so on... it has been a bit of a trying situation. But at least now, for the most part, I am moved in if not yet fully settled. ^.^ Which certainly has made my cat very happy.

In any case though! I  am actually writing this blog post more or less to let you all know that I will be absent for several days, as my internet service is not getting hooked up again until Wednesday. I haven't even checked my email today or yesterday, I have messages here to respond to and of course I have several commissioned projects in the works, but I assure you all I will do my best to get back to everyone in turn once I get my connection back. The commissions especially will be a priority to me, and indeed I hope to get some work done on a few of them while I am without my internet.

I guess that's all then. Oh yes, and if you all didn't know or probably couldn't have guessed it already, this past Saturday's episode totally rocked. That is all~

Until next time, stay fabulous all!


WD

179 comments:

TomTheRock said... Reply to comment

Glad to hear your moved in. I agree the new episode was amazing.

Forderz said... Reply to comment

KITTY!

I've helped a couple friends move in and out of their parent's place, and it's never a enjoyable experience. You don't really appreciate just how much junk you have until its time to move it all.

I hope you had some pals to help you out!

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

Ah, Ms Rarity continues to delight us with her upper class shenanigans. The be episode truly was impressive.

I'm glad the move turned out well (almost), and your cat does seem satisfied^^. I myself am headed out of town with no internet, so I guess I'll be absent too, lest I find a Starbucks within range =D. Hopefully I'll able to post something on my blog by then!

carfaxreport said... Reply to comment

It really was a great episode!

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

Glad to hear that you've moved in, even if it was a bumpy road getting there. The new episode was a lot of fun, wasn't it? If that unicorn with Fancypants when Rarity first ran into him looks familiar, it's because that's what Luna was supposed to look like (except with wings) after Rarity's makeover in "Luna Eclipsed".

Anyway, I'm sure you're still busy, so I don't want to take up too much of your time. It's good to get an update from you, and I hope you have no more problems while you get settled in!

Harwick said... Reply to comment

Congrats on surviving the move to your new place! I hope you can feel settled in and cozy there soon enough.

Looking forward to your return, especially with new artwork.

BossCrab said... Reply to comment

Ahhh kitty! Cats, especially happy cats, are awesome.

Sorry to hear about your difficulties moving in, but I'm glad to hear that you're finally on your way to getting settled! Moving is such a huge thing, but I'm sure you're fully and completely done with it it's a great experience to be living in a new home. I hope you really enjoy it, and I hope everything goes smoothly from here on out. :)

Thanks for checking in even during what's probably a hectic time for you! I look forward to your return, but be sure to not overwork yourself, nobody would want that! Speaking of which, I'm still more or less sitting on that email I've been meaning to send you. I've been incredibly busy lately as well, unfortunately! I'll try to send it along soon though.

I agree that the new episode was amazing. The song, the dialog, the outfits, just all so good. Rarity never seem to disappoint, and Sweet and Elite was definitely no exception.

Thanks again for giving us a heads up on how you're doing! Can't wait to see and hear more from you once you get all settled and hopefully things calm down a bit. I wish you all the best!

TapeDiggity said... Reply to comment

Right back 'atcha, WD.

Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

Okay, so here is a thing. We are Rarity Friends, so I totally have to discuss this with you. I could send it by email, but I suspect you wouldn't mind the public discussion of this issue at all. (This may be long.)

So, Sweet and Elite, right? I was a bit skeptical through most of it, because it's hard to imagine anything beating Rarity's love of her friends and willingness to give. But then at the very end there was one little thing that amazed me that I must discuss with you. When her friends find out about the party and Rarity is exhausted, the thing she blurts out is 'I didn't think you would understand.' The subtlety of this one line totally blew me away, because it's Rarity's tragedy in a nutshell. It's the same one I saw in Sonic Rainboom.

Rarity is right. Twilight wouldn't understand. Rarity can't tell her 'I'm sorry, I'm going to miss your birthday party this year because I have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to be the belle of the ball at Canterlot's biggest high society function.' Twilight would not understand how important that is. The fans don't. I thought back to Sonic Rainboom. The thing nobody ever mentioned was that making the most of three days of having the most gorgeous wings Rarity never dreamed could be hers was at least as important to her and meaningful as Rainbow Dash winning the Best Young Fliers Competition.

What did Twilight say? That this was an amazing business opportunity for Rarity? That's exactly the problem. Rarity's friends can understand a practical desire. Rarity's dreams don't make any sense to them, and poor Rarity knows it. The kinds of things she longs for are usually wanted by twittering idiots, so people think they're worthless - but why would reveling in magical wings or 15 minutes as The Most Fabulous Pony in high society be any less important than winning an athletic competition?

Poor Rarity. Nobody gets her. But since you'll totally get her, I had to tell you! Plus, I don't think this stuff is accidental. There's too much other deep, subtle characterization in the show.

Kateasaurus said... Reply to comment

Your kitty is adorable!

Glad to hear you're settling in. Especially after all the trouble you went through!

The episode was amazing! I simply MUST make a Rarity with a beret and sweater in the near future. ^_^

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@Kateasaurus
Yes, yes you must. ;)

Forderz said... Reply to comment

@Frankensteinbeck

I get Rarity too! Just because her desires are usually held by sniveling, air-headed sycophants doesn't make them any less desirable or important to her!

It also helps that Rarity episodes, so far, have been handled by writers that also seem to 'get' Rarity and the show.

Sweet and Elite did a wonderful job of showing that, sometimes, people lie to friends they care deeply about for personal gain. Nobody perfect, after all. That doesn't mean they aren't good friends, as long as if push comes to shove, they'll defend you.

The episode also impressed me by allowing the web of lies Rarity created remain a secret. Sometimes liars are never discovered, kids!

Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

@Forderz:

I've noticed that episodes are not merely about characters, but the theme and writing seems in tune with the character. The two Rainbow Dash episodes in a row were exactly what Rainbow Dash would have written. 'And now, GIANT EELS because they're AWESOME!'

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Greetings, everyone! I didn't know if I should really expect many or any comments on a non-art posting but I guess that notion was unfounded! So many replies to respond to!

@TomTheRock

Yes, thank you so much! My house is still in a rather terrible state of disarray (or at least, by my standards) but it's a definite relief to have that terrible move behind me!

And yes, yes it was. ^.^ Rarity bias aside I would like to think, it is now regardless one of my favorites.

@Forderz

Well my family and I all worked together, plus we had movers to help with some of the really heavy and awkward items, but it still took us several days. And yes, SO MUCH STUFF UUUGGGHHARGH~

It really had me wishing I lived a more spartan existence, I'll tell you. That and telekinetic unicorn powers.

@Favo

Cats do have ninja tendencies at times, it's true, even though mine isn't generally one of those. She's definitely more of a meditating (read: sleeping and immobile lounging) zen mindset. Her name is Grace by the way, and yes she really is exceedingly fuzzy. <3

And thank you so much my dear! Such a RELIEF, for sure! And I wish I had known you were interested in such things as Playstation Ones... I only just found one of those in the darkest recesses of my bedroom armoire when I was packing, sealed in shrink wrap. For the life of me I couldn't figure out how it had gotten there, but then I remembered a college friend had given it to me several years ago. He is a MASSIVE videogamer you see (as in, stacks of games overwhelm nearly every amount of living space he has, that is not already occupied by Japanese toys and like things) and I think he thought that if he bought me a system like that, I might actually get into gaming a little bit more. It's just not my thing though, for better or for worse. I could have mailed it to you or something if I had known you were interested... I still have it and am not quite sure what to do with it now!

@CaineScroll

Oh goodness, it really was. I mean, I know I'm completely biased in favor of Rarity anyway but it seems to me as though many of her episodes feel a lot more "polished" than most... the storylines seem a bit more mature or something. I don't know, perhaps it is just my bias talking after all.

And thank you so much for that dear. I thought about taking my laptop to my favorite bookstore so I could stay caught up with things while my home was without net service, but honestly I didn't really have the time or luxury to do that, and I figured the internet wouldn't exactly blow up if I was away for a few days anyway. Glad to see that I was correct on that account!

Mmmmm, Starbucks~! <3

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@DJB123

Haha, thank you darling. ^.^ She is definitely cute, though like your cats, seemingly, she's not always the most gregarious companion. But it's okay; I suppose I stay too busy to be able to give a needier animal the proper time and attention anyway, so we work for each other.

And yes, I'm truly relieved too, thank you. Even if this place was still not at a level of cleanliness that I would consider acceptable after the property management's second "cleaning", my mother and I (the OCD Queen-extraordinaire and the reason that I am a crazy perfectionist neat-freak I'm sure... I think she invented the term honestly) got the place looking model-home ready in a couple days' time. Definitely a relief!

And yes, I know, it really was fabulous. The song was so flawlessly done in my opinion and I love the way that whole sequence was edited together/animated/can't think of the right term (art direction?); it was brilliantly done. I know you and I are both biased but I don't think it's merely our love for Rarity that had us give it top marks!

@carfaxreport

It really was! I loved that we got to see a little more of Canterlot and Equestria's upper-crust society, as well as the mini-fashion show of Rarity's with all of her different costume changes (even if many of them were tastefully recycled, I very much enjoyed it). And unlike sometimes when a song feels a bit abrupt or out-of-place in a storyline, I thought that one was beautifully handled!

@jodyjm13

Thank you... I'm so happy to have all the drama behind me, that's for sure. It's been difficult with trying to fit sorting things out around my work schedule and whatnot... I think it would have been bad enough if I'd had the entire week off to deal with things better. C'est la vie, though!

And hah! that's interesting to hear; I have no idea where you learned that information but I certainly wouldn't have guessed that. At least they made good use of the design concept! The whole idea and execution of the gorgeous supermodel trophy-wife unicorn was (and still is) exceedingly funny to me... I really loved so much about that episode. ^.^

And don't be silly dearest; I don't mind all of you "taking up my time" as this blog and my pony fangeeking in general is something that I indulge in to unwind, for the most part. It's all fabulous!

@Harwick

Oh, it's Harwick! Such an unexpected pleasure to be able to welcome you on my blog dearest; thank you so much for stopping by and for the well-wishes! And yes, I really am hoping I don't disappoint with my next several pieces, seeing as how they are commissions and all... hopefully I'll be able to get them done and posted soon enough.

Thanks again for dropping in!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@BossCrab

Happy cats are definitely awesome. Sometimes it's difficult to tell with Grace but this new home of mine definitely gets a lot more light than the previous one, so she has sun patches to lie in all day which is very much to her liking! Lazy furball.

And yes, you're right and I'm just relieved it's all over and done... thank you very much for the well-wishes also. As far as "checking in" with everyone I almost thought better of it because I didn't want to clutter up my blog too much with a bunch of personal posts, but seeing as how many messages and emails I tend to get from everybody (and again, especially in regards to commission matters) I figured it was a good idea to let everyone know I'd be absent for a while so nobody would think I was merely ignoring them! Because that would be terrible.

As far as the email goes, I think I've said before that whenever you get around to sending it or decide you'd like to move forward with things is fine by me; I'm definitely in no rush so no worries! And yes, I've probably gushed about it enough in all of my above replies but the episode was definitely great... I agree with you on every single point.

Thanks again for commenting and for all the support!

@TapeDiggity

Aw, thank you! You have always been quite supportive and I truly appreciate it... really, thanks. ^.^

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Frankensteinbeck

Ahhh yes... this post and topic really are deserving of their own email, not that I do mind discussing it here. But it is a surprisingly personal thing for me... surprising even to me when I really stop to think about it (and suffice to say my response was so long I couldn't fit it in with that last string of replies).

I really do get Rarity, so much so that at times I feel like I have some kind of crazy connection with her character. I honestly think (or okay, I know) that she was the thing that really got me to love FiM after I decided to give it a chance. I mean, silly as it may seem for somebody like me I've always enjoyed cartoons, for the entertainment value when I want to unwind (as opposed to going out for a drink or going shopping or something like that, even though I do like to indulge in those things as well on occasion) as much as for the artistry of the media itself. I enjoyed the episodes of FiM I'd seen when I first decided to give the show a chance, but it wasn't until I saw Suited for Success that I fell in love with the show and in turn, Rarity's character. Because that episode could have been written about ME! Aside from the idea of a harrassed seamstress/designer toiling away at her sewing machine to meet a deadline (and really, a harrassed seamstress/designer-unicorn with little red sewing glasses has got to be one of my favorite things ever; I cannot tell you how simultaneously hilarious and endearing I still find that image), the whole theme of an artist, and moreso a person, driving themselves into the ground to create something that will win approval just spoke to me so much. It really made it almost painful to watch Rarity fall into a depression when her designs were publicly shot down, because even though I knew it was just a cartoon series, and one aimed at younger girls even moreso, it really hit home with me and I could completely relate.

Because I have been there too. I will never forget a particular instance several years ago, when after talking with an art dealer I created several works for him that would have been distributed as prints in several national chain stores, and despite the fact that the pieces were designed with his specified criteria in mind and that he still "liked them", they weren't good enough to make the cut and weren't "right" and what he was "looking for" even after I'd put in several weeks of hard work and a whole lot more of my heart and soul. It was so incredibly devastating, I really think it's what made me connect instantly with Rarity when I first saw SfS.

And really, I think that's what the whole thing boils down to: Rarity really just craves approval and respect and hopes and wishes that everybody will like her and her work. She spends virtually every moment of her life trying to look and act her best because she really wants that approval, and so when she has the chance to obtain it (and from the kind of society that she admires most, no less) she's willing to give almost anything to get it. Almost anything, because as you say nothing can win out against her love of her friends in the end and her naturally generous spirit, not even her most heartfelt desires.

Do you know which was my absolute favorite scene from that episode? When Rarity is snubbed by Jet Set and Upper-Crust after they ask her about her hat, and she goes from sitting there crushed in disappointment with tears in her eyes, to going back to her room filled with fiery determination and forcefully etches her design onto the paper with confident strokes. Everything about that sequence was brilliantly done in my opinion, and I couldn't help but feel a bit of triumph for her in that moment.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

(And last but certainly not least--I couldn't fit my last response in that last bit my dear, so sorry!)

@Kateasaurus

Thank you, I'll be sure to give her a pet for you. ^^

And thanks for the well-wishes dearie! It's so nice to be able to get settled again after all of that upheaval. And I'll have to second jodyjm13's comment; you really must create your own fabulous representation of sophisticated hipster-Rarity. I don't think I'll be able to get the idea out of my head now that you made the error of mentioning it! ;)

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

My trip out of town will commence in a few hours time, so I guess I should make the most of it before I disappear from the internetz...

Welcome back! I've been checking this space every two hours despite your note, and it's been a little dull, I admit it.


I sent you an email a few days ago, really hope you can reply soon!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Ah yes, I did see it... you'll have to forgive me as I had about 40 emails to comb through and respond to (and not counting the mailing list-emails that tend to clutter up my box... all my beloved World Market and Godiva and Sephora and other delights that I don't seem to be able to stop subscribing to). You'll have to forgive me; I'll make an effort to go and do that right now so that you hopefully get my response before you leave.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I admit, I've been checking quite frequently as well. At least I'm not the only stalker here. Welcome back!

(If you don't recognize me here, I left a comment on your last entry.)

It was really nice having another song. They are some of the best moments of the show. Especially when sung by Rarity. Like you said, her episodes tend to feel more mature. I can sort of relate to her as well, compared to most people my age. I always enjoy her episodes because they seem more focused on myself and the kind of problems I might face. The same goes with her songs. Fluttershy sings about animals, Pinkie sings about everything. But Rarity more often focuses on her business and how she has to handle stress. If that is teaching anything to young children, it may be a warning about the working world. And making time for your friends, of course. She also has the best singing voice, I think.

@Frankensteinbeck

When I thought about that, another thing came to mind; Rarity has a lot of big aspirations, and she isn't satisfied until she achieves them. Applejack, on the other hand, enjoys a simple job and life running the family farm in a village. While Applejack symbolizes honesty, maybe because she feels that there is nothing she can lose by lying, Rarity's ambitions often lead to dishonesty. And while Rarity is stressed as she pulls herself in every direction, Applejack has no responsibilities that are new to her and doesn't have to worry about something going wrong. She knows that she will probably always have the orchard as long as she does her job and takes care of it, but Rarity has to balance all of her responsibilities in order to have a chance at getting all that she wants.

This thread is now Rarijack. You're welcome, Diamonds.



Something quite unlikely happened here, just the day after I left my last message. My sister, who is seventeen, occasionally draws as a habit. She also happens to be AIM friends with a professional artist. I don't know if a friend suggested it to her, and I don't know if she was the friend that did, but that night, my sister asked to set the oven timer because she was watching an EBay auction. That auction turned out to be for a Wacom tablet. She has mentioned in the past that she wanted one, but that was easily months ago so I didn't feel like it was worth mentioning. But now, she is looking to buy one with her Christmas money.

Later, my father took an interest in her auction and looked for details on it. What followed was at least a half an hour of the two of them analyzing small details about the one she wanted. He sounded like he was badgering her, telling her things like, "So, it's just like drawing on paper." In the end, she found another one that was better, and for $3 less. It came to $50, not including shipping, so it was probably the same one as you have. Bamboo Fun Pen and Touch.

I don't know what its status is, if she got it or how long it will take to ship. Obviously, I can't ask. While I don't expect that I will ever learn to draw, but if and when a Wacom tablet arrives at this house, I will try to learn it. And you will be the reason why. I'm already spending 1:00 to 2:00 in the morning staying up late on a laptop to browse Equestria Daily, so I plan to take it during the nights. If it happens, I will probably get more use out of it than she does. And if I hadn't come to this blog, I would have had no interest in it.

(I warned you that I ramble.)

Anon said... Reply to comment

Oh, I forgot to address the good news of your settling in. My family moves about every three years. The houses to move into are always new though, so we don't have to worry about getting cleaners, but we have a lot of stuff to move out. It may not be in my best interest to live quite this far south, but at least we don't have to move things up stairs. I guess I should just be glad that we still have a house. You never know what you have until mortgage payments remind you.

Nevertheless, it's always an enjoyment for those of us frequenting your blog to see you back. Moving stress tends to disrupt the creative atmosphere.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Eeeep!! Oh yes I did see your post there, and I meant to get to it and the others but then I went to email CaineScroll and I completely forgot! I'm terribly sorry about that, I hope you didn't think I was ignoring you!

But yes, I do agree with you on virtually every point there! Very well said. And meep, Rarijack! <3 I've been under so much stress lately I'll probably have to do another one of those pictures soon after I make headway through my list of commissions... they generally do cheer me up to draw, I'm so bad. I suppose there are a lot of far worse addictions though so I'll try and be content and hush up about it already.

And oh, I do believe you're right and that is the very same model I have, it certainly sounds familiar! The most fabulously cheap little drawing tablet I was able to find that sounded like it would still suit my needs (this was before I was dabbling in digital painting mind you, but I think it works quite well for that task, too). My friend, who CaineScroll has come to know as PurpleKecleon on deviantArt has a Cyntiq, and while it certainly is nice I don't think I could ever justify spending that much on a tablet, or at least not for the sorts of things I'd use it for.

Whatever the case though, it's very flattering to hear that I would inspire you to try your hand at digital art if you ever get your hands on a tablet; thank you so very much for sharing that with me. <=) You'll have to let me know if that is the case; I'd be interested to hear how it goes for you! And thank you for the warm welcome back~!

@Favo

Oh, dearest that link you gave me isn't working for whatever reason... it's really a shame because I'd love to see your new little baby! What is his name? ^.^

And well yes, what I said was that if I had only known you were wanting one, I would have been happy to have sent you my Playstation that I found seeing as how I have never even used it anyway and likely never will! It wouldn't have been much of a trouble so you don't need to feel too bad about it, but you're quite welcome all the same. ^_^

Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

WhiteDiamonds and Anon:
I had different, but I think very compatible interpretations. You see, while I liked the cartoon already (I love cartoons, and it's well made), Suited For Success was ALSO the episode that stole MY heart. I listened to Rarity sing about art, and I understood her. I understood that passion, and the scales fell from my eyes and I realized that Rarity is not the shallow popular girl, she's the girl shallow popular girls pretend to be. She's more caring than any of the other ponies except MAYBE Fluttershy, she just deliberately hides it behind her Most Fabulous Pony mask.

And about that mask. While I'm sure Rarity does desperately want to be acknowledged, I think her melodramatic behavior is a natural result of her deeply creative spirit. Rarity loves beauty and glamor so much, has so much art inside her, that she's turned her entire LIFE into a canvas. Her image is a carefully crafted thing. It's fun, it's a way to constantly be artistic, it lets her integrate beauty into every moment of her waking existence.

What I did not properly grasp before Sisterhooves is that she's also young. She's still half formed, not always consistent, not always able to see through to what IS the most generous thing to do, or how to deal with conflicts. I knew the Mane Six were 'young', but I believe now they're barely more than fillies. College age girls. They're such strong personalities, it's easy to miss.

I do wish to argue one thing with Anon. We get occasional hints, and The Best Night Ever was pretty blunt about it, but Applejack has plenty of ambition. It's just all apple-related ambition. Applejack honestly does not get much character focus. I think it's because she's simple and has few flaws.

Which leads me to my final point. Applejack is EXACTLY what you see, and I think that's why she's the Element of Honesty. We assume that people will almost always tell the truth anyway. Applejack doesn't seem especially dedicated to not lying. But Applejack's honesty goes much further than that. She has no illusions and no need for them, and sometimes it makes her very wise. She can see truths that other people are too distracted to get, which happened in Sisterhooves. Pinkie has deep pain, Rarity wears a mask for pleasure and struggles with her gemstone addiction, Twilight is your average neurotic teen, Rainbow Dash is layer after layer of insecurity, passion, and bravado, and you could write a BOOK about Fluttershy. But Applejack is what it says on the box. She's an apple farmer.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

I should SO be doing something other than hugging my laptop to myself and posting on my blog (I have a jacket staring at me that really needs to be mended), but this is just so incredibly interesting to me that I shall post anyway, so there!

@Frankensteinbeck

As usual, I think I pretty much agree on most every point with you dearest. I do think Rarity genuinely craves acknowledgement, respect, and approval (especially in regards to her work, which is understandable considering the way that she pours herself into it wholeheartedly) but I think you summed up her personality quite nicely in regards to her theatrical mannerisms and tendencies. So many highly creative people are fabulously "loud" and eccentric like that (I know I have been accused similarly on more than one occasion *ahem*), and honestly I think the idea of turning one's own life and self into a canvas is exactly what I have always loved about style and design in most every application. Whether it's hair and makeup, fashion, theatre, interior decorating or whatever, art and design allow us to MAKE our lives and selves and bodies into whatever it is that we want them to be, to suit any mood or occasion, to be changed at any whim. It allows us to experience a lifestyle, or be whatever we choose for a period of time that otherwise we'd never have the ability to experience, and it is that that I love and adore with every fiber of my being and only hope that I can somehow, in some way share with all the world. Because it is just so wonderful. <3 <3 Lady Gaga might have said it far more concisely when she spoke similarly about fashion with Jean Paul Gaultier but that's okay; I am definitely passionate about the subject and am more than happy to ramble on about it when even remotely encouraged, so I must thank you for the opportunity.

I also agree with you in that I think the ponies are all quite young, including Rarity and despite the fact that many in the fandom seem to think of her as being middle-aged or something (which I've never really gotten, even though she and Applejack are arguably the most mature out of all of them). I also think you summed up all of their respective personalities quite brilliantly in so many words. Applejack is definitely just what is advertised, and I think she's quite proud of that fact; she knows who she is, accepts it and doesn't see any purpose in pretending to be anything she's not for the simple sake of winning others' approval or whatever the case may be, which is very much her honesty. I don't even know how many times I've come across bronies talking about how somehow, the creative minds behind the show obviously got confused along the way and should switch Applejack's and Rainbow Dash's respective elements, since Applejack seems more overtly loyal and Rainbow Dash is obviously more "honest" in her brash manner of speaking with no tact or diplomacy. You know better as I do though, and as usual you were able to relate that far more eloquently than I'm sure I ever could have done.

And yes Applejack is definitely ambitious, though she is practical and prefers to set her sights on what she knows are realistic and attainable goals, while Rarity is truly her polar opposite and is a total artistic dreamer is every sense of the word (preferring to shoot for the moon and often setting herself up for equally dramatic, plummeting falls should her dreams not come to fruition). I guess that's why I enjoy pairing them up even if it is in a purely friendshipping-sense... I'd like to imagine that their respective strengths and weaknesses balance each other out quite nicely, and make for some great character growth in the process.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

WhiteDiamonds:
So much to say!

I am always surprised when by artistic people who are not Rarity fans. Rarity is MY pony. She is art and style and passion and caring about others, in a way that is deep rather than obvious and superficial.

When I saw the first couple of episodes of MLP I described the plot as 'Twilight Sparkle is the least shallow pony in Ponyville'. I LOVE that they spent the season turning that on its head. Twilight is the callow and naive pony, (although Rainbow Dash is pretty bad), and Rarity and Pinkie Pie and Applejack and Fluttershy are complex, textured, and GOOD people. They're so much more mature than they seem, which is how it should be.

Pinkie Pie is my #2 pony. I understand her pain and how it created her joy. That mix of extreme darkness and extreme light calls to me. She's no Rarity, but I love her.

I didn't know Rarity is often mistaken for being middle aged (although I'm betting they really think about 30ish), but I'm not surprised! I'm 99% sure all the girls are late adolescent, 19ish, but they're emotionally mature for their ages. Rarity is the most mature, the most sophisticated intellectually and emotionally and morally, but I think that's only the smaller part of it. I think they think she's older because Rarity is a... full figured pony. She has a broader body and more rounded limbs and butt than the others. I suspect this is a 'voluptuous' rather than 'heavy'. It would fit the character. But you know, they're ponies, so who knows? It makes her look older than the beanpoles.

Must run off!

Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

WhiteDiamonds:
As for Rarijack, I am not a big shipper. It is crucial to me to maintain the canon and the characters as they are. If you have to change them to ship, I start losing interest. In MLP, the characters' romantic lives are (deliberately, Lauren confirmed it) not discussed anywhere. I don't object to adding, as long as it completely agrees with what is already known, so figuring out how Rarity and Applejack could have a romance was an interesting writing puzzle! When they interact it's mostly antagonistic, but they do fight like the people you expect to start kissing any minute now. They have that 'complementary opposites' thing going on, and value caring more than anything else.

I personally think Rarity's gemstone addiction is the most fascinating underexplored issue in the show. Everyone else's cutie mark and the connection to their talents and strengths is obvious except Rarity and Twilight. Twilight's, frankly, refers not to her love of astronomy (a minor personality trait) but her position as inheritor of Celestia and Luna's power. Rarity's is her connection to gemstones, but her personality is not built around gemstones. It's built around art. The way she acts with gemstones, it's like they're a drug to her, one she's trying to beat. That *fascinates* me.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Favo

Oh, there he is, d'awwww~~!! <3 What a fuzzy little one indeed! What is his name dearest? ^.^ He is certainly very cute.

@Frankensteinbeck

Were you speaking about me when you said so much to say? Because yes, I don't generally run out of topics, that is very true.

And... *sputters* 30-ish!?!? 30 isn't ooooold, *I'M* not old! I mean, I suppose looking at it from a teenage perspective it might seem that way, but I'm warning all of you cute little 16 and 17-year olds right now, as soon as you hit 21 they FLY after that. So be warned my dears, all of you!!

Not to say that you feel 30-ish is "old" or middle-aged darling, I know that and I appreciate it. I always figured it was Rarity's manner of speaking and some of her various eccentricities that led people to make that assumption (her love of full-body spa treatments for example, and people think her glasses make her look older which I suppose I can understand). I actually never really noticed much difference in any of their body types/shapes on the show itself (something which I considered with a scrutinizing eye when I first began drawing them all, as I wanted to get them right), though I do think Rarity's posture and some of the poses she's prone to striking do accentuate whatever curves she actually does possess. She definitely carries herself much differently than the rest of them do and it affects the way people perceive her I think... that is something I'm always very conscious about whenever I draw any fanart of her.

It doesn't surprise me that Pinkie Pie is your second-favorite pony... you like strong concepts of light and dark don't you? ^_~ I'm not even sure why Applejack is my second honestly, and especially when I consider the reasons that I love Rarity so, but I guess there is just something about her simplistic, honest self that I find so strangely charming! <3

On that note, and as I'm sure you have seen me say before I never had been a shipper at all until I got into ponies (I mean, I don't think rooting for my favorite soap opera couples counts because you're supposed to do that, and when it came to Mulder and Scully everything about their dynamic was a tease and they ended up getting together in the end anyway so yeah). I do agree with you in that I really hate people trying to twist and change characters to make them work together, because honestly at that point they're not even the same characters anymore, are they? What is the point? I think that's why I'm so picky about the shipping fanfictions that I actually do like because so few people seem to be able to make canon-universe relationships work out in a way that's believable. But yes, I quite agree with all your thoughts about Rarijack.

And do you know, I've pondered Rarity's cutie mark in much the same way as you have before, and I came to the conclusion that perhaps it's not so much just the gemstones themselves that they represent (though obviously, she loves those too and I don't blame her), but perhaps a sophisticated, high society lifestyle in general. In other words, more of a metaphorical symbol. That would certainly make sense if you look at her "addiction" and desire as something which the last episode sort of touched on, don't you think?

Harwick said... Reply to comment

Apologies for butting in on the cutie mark conversation, but it's an interesting subject to me and I wanted to throw my 2 cents in. I kind of see Rarity's magical talent, cutie mark and generous nature all revolving around the "diamond in the rough" concept. Her "destiny" was to find a big, dumb rock and reveal the fabulous nature that was inside of it all along and share it with the world. She's constantly driven to do this with with any and everything... Twilight's mane, her friend's appearances, bird nests, whatever. Find that diamond, polish it up and let the world marvel at its beauty and earn it the attention it deserves, because she truly believes that any and everyone is deserving of such attention.

And since she represents the element of generosity in the group, I think the adage "We give away what we want most for ourselves" applies especially well to her. She's a small-town girl who constantly strives to put forth the most polished image in the hope that someday, someone will appreciate her as more than a simple dull grey rock herself.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

Oh, and Twilight's cutie mark is the Element of Magic, aka Friendship itself. A six-pointed star to represent the sixth Element of Harmony, orbited by five stars (representing the other five elements, or more directly her five best friends.)

It's a really nice symbolic design to sum up the prophecy as given in the first episode. One has to assume that Celestia recognized who Twilight was from the moment they met because of it.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Favo

Oh blimey. That is one adorable kitty. What's his name?

Sorry for the absence, I've been away from internet access lately, and still will for the next week, aside from a few short, sweet opportunities. That means I'll probably miss the episode, though...T.T

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

UPDATE: New stuff on my blog! Check it out here.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

It looks quite close to the style of our own WhiteDiamonds'. Taken a leaf out of the master's book?

I think it looks like it was made with a tablet. Especially the brush shading. I notice that the outlines (particularly around the hair) have less of the brush and paint look, which might be an evidence against it. The rough texture on the clothing makes it look like leather, which I think is what you were trying for.

It's always interesting to see everyone's interpretations of ponies and how they draw them. I think you mentioned earlier that you aren't exactly new to graphic art, but you are certainly way ahead in it.


@WhiteDiamonds

Just to throw in my consensus here, as a younger person; I don't see thirty-year-olds as exactly "old". Just not young.

I imagine that once everyone is 21 and legal, they would go years without remembering a single day...heh.

For some reason, whether it is a comedy or an adventure, the fanfics that I read often have a shipping undertone. I don't mind it, and sometimes it is enjoyable, but I don't tend to read complete shipfics since I don't have any preferred pairing. I see the genre as quite niche and specific. A FlutterMac fan may not be able to read a shipping story about Fluttershy and Braeburn, despite the outcome probably being quite comparable. When the average person might not see much difference between the two, a fan of that pairing would argue that there is much more depth in the characters than we can see-- Defined by the canon, the fanon, or that particular person's own headcanon.

Overall, though, I don't flinch and stick out a tongue like you might expect. I just haven't fallen for anything yet.

I have also suspected that Twilight will inherit the throne. After all, what comes between night and day? Dusk, or twilight. She is also the right color for it. It may represent a partially lit sky, and the stars might "sparkle" more the longer they are out.

Though Rarity's cutie mark does work as a symbol of her personality, it is obtained when one finds their "special talent". So I think it represents the job that they are good at doing. The personality likely has an effect on what your special talent will be though, so it could be a metaphor in that sense as well.

I wouldn't call myself an "artist" due to a lack of talent (it would be too much of a compliment to myself), but I do start up plenty of creative projects. I have a couple music development programs and I have had to do some vector tracing for a sort of game project (I am also a programmer), which you might find on EQD if it turns out well enough. Going into any more detail about my creative history would be a long story, but aside from that; I definitely know what you mean when you say that our creative projects allow us to form ourselves in accordance to our own design. All my friend(s) (if I still have any, that is) came from a game development group, populated and run by people my age. It crashed and burned a year or two ago when the admin's family website was traced and all his personal information was leaked, but I always enjoyed seeing each others' creations. Be they interesting programs, background music, pixelated sprites or 3D models. I always saw a special kind of self expression in them that you don't get in anyone else that does not create anything. As you can imagine, I don't know what to do for a career, but I think I'll be disappointed if I don't get to use creativity. It's a shame that the entertainment industry is so hard to make a living in.

Practical, realistic, attainable apple-related goals!

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Oh no, please do feel free to join in whatever conversations you see fit to on this blog. They are certainly public and all are welcome, of course!

I have to say I agree completely with your thoughts on Rarity's character, and think you present a very good way of tying these interpretations in with her cutie mark. It does seem more likely to me that it symbolizes much more than her love of actual gems, or her ability to find them for that matter, even though I know both of those things are part of the meaning as well. Especially after today's episode, it's quite obvious that she really does get googly-eyed when presented with a nice gemstone (and again, not that I blame her). But I'm sure it's far more than just that, as well.

And yes, I actually figured Twilight's mark out when I first saw the original two-parter (which, by a lucky chance for me happened to be the first two episodes that I stumbled across on television). You're right, we can only assume the Princess must have known even then... and now I'm totally reminded of Harry Potter and Dumbledore, hah..

@CaineScroll

Oh, will do then dear~ ^.^

@Anon

Mmmmmm well... wait until you get here I suppose. At least I still get carded every time I do go out, which is at least some comfort to me... *sniffle* ;_;

On that note, I didn't actually start drinking until I was 26 or 27, I don't think. I mean, I had tasted things before and had indulged in the occasional mudslide or whatever on a special occasion, but that was about it. It's not like I drink all that often now either, but I know I enjoy it much more when I do.

And yes, I suppose you present a valid point there in that shipping frequently makes its way into every genre of fanfiction, either in a subtle/implied sense or far more blatantly. I guess I used the term "shipfic" to distinguish stories that are all about establishing some sort of relationship or showcasing one that is supposed to exist as a main theme, though these can be of virtually any genre too.

Huh... I must confess I had never considered the whole day/night/dusk thing with Twilight and the two princesses, but now that you bring it up that is a very valid point.

And well, as you say my dear "artist" can mean a whole lot of things, or at least I have always thought so. To me it is not strictly speaking somebody who is good at drawing or painting or something like that as the traditional definition dictates, but moreso a person who possesses a certain kind of spirit and creative energy. Artists are people who get fabulous ideas and long to bring them to life to share with all the world, in any way that their talents and abilities allow them to do! Or something like that, you know. But I'm quite certain you fit the bill in your own right.

@Favo

Well dearest in all fairness we did ask! No need to feel bad about discussing it!

And oh! Heehee well, I suppose the name does fit him at least, doesn't it? ^.^

What did I mean by that? Nothing more than after you reach that age, time mysteriously seems to speed up and all of a sudden your birthdays are coming faster than you ever remember them doing previously in your life, my dear, quite simply. And I know I'm not the only person who has found this to be true. So enjoy the remainder of your teen years while you still can, is all I'm saying!

Frankensteinbeck said... Reply to comment

WhiteDiamonds and Anon:

Twilight is awesomely powerful (witness her breakout in the cutie mark episode and the way she flings around magic like only Luna and Celestia do), Celestia's personal and only student who Celestia is grooming to be a good person, her parents were day and night themed unicorns, she's the centerpiece of the Elements of Harmony (which Celestia and Luna used to share), she has a star themed cutie mark and yet only a mild interest in astronomy, and her name is 'Twilight'.

I don't know if she'll actually become the third goddess. I don't know if Celestia was considering her as a replacement for Luna if Luna couldn't be saved. I'm damned sure Twilight's being groomed with goddessness in mind, and we're in the 'make sure she's emotionally healthy so she never goes nuts like Luna did' stage.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Blimey, I hope I didn't keep you waiting, sorry 'bout that!
Yes, I have been researching WD's work to aid my own, and I definitely take enough leaves out of her book to fill a photo album! (chuckles)

By the way, very intriguing theory of Twilight being a goddess. However, there's a whole "brilliant, well loved hero mentoring a typical nobody who is later discovered to be destined for great things" gag going on if you ask me, so Celestia might not be actually training Twi to be an actual goddess, even if she's passing on a goddess's philosophies. I don't see Dumbledore teaching Harry to be a bearded headmaster sitting in an office all day trading wisecracks with a phoenix. (Could Celestia be doing that? Interesting.)

Oh yes, finding a career in the entertainment business is a challenge indeed, but personally I can't picture myself doing anything but. And "artist" doesn't necessarily mean visual arts, mate. There's music, there's literature, there's cooking...the list goes on. I think people would rarely call cooking an art, but there you go. Culinary ARTS. And besides, being an artist involves crafting physical products, yes, but it also involves having the spirit to create, the passion to satisfy others, and of course the desire to please oneself. If you have the mindset of wanting to be an artist, you're already halfway there.

themagicwalrus said... Reply to comment

Um I'm not sure else how to contact you but... I just wanted to let you know that I love your art style. With the ponies that is I haven't seen anything else though I can imagine it to be just as good. I envy even your quick sketches and how well they are. I try my best but my art always turns out looking like it came outta paint lol But anyways I just wanted to let you know how much I love and appreciate your work Mrs. Diamonds :)

Anon said... Reply to comment

Looks like your fanbase is growing, Di (Her nickname as referenced on her profile. The only one that we never use.) I followed this blog before it was cool.

I understand that there is a broader meaning to the term "artist" (Though Google lists is as #2, with the first one referring to drawing and painting), it just sounds like such a favorable thing to call yourself that I feel like I don't deserve it yet. Many of us here have the potential, it seems. We have the vision, but we (with the exclusion of WhiteDiamonds and CaineScroll) have yet to prove it.

I overheard my sister say that the tablet is coming "in a week", so I have that to look forward to. Somehow I think that the sketching would be the hardest part by far. I wonder, do graphic artists visualize what they would create and pretend to trace what they see, or is it more of making it up as you go?

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Coincidence? I might be getting my tablet in a week, too!

For your last question, I reckon that graphic artists do a little bit of both. There is no fixed rule to creating a finished piece (with the exception of plagiarism), and the methods are extremely broad. Come to think of it, maybe that's why I decided to take design as a major: not having to deal with pesky laws and formulas and whatnot. Yay for art.

And I do hope you don't mind me asking: what trouble are you facing in art, exactly? I might be able to lend a hand (not literally).

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Thanks for asking, but so far I haven't really tried it yet. I'm just sort of spectating and speculating. I never picked up pencil and paper drawing, preferring software and technology whenever game development called for some 2D images. Usually, that meant pixels and simple vectors. Once I have access to a tablet, though, I will have no excuse. This blog is really what convinced me that it was worth learning. Not strictly for games, either, but to put what I imagined into a picture and feel satisfied with the product. Ask blogs and comics are just bonuses.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

That, mate, is a worthy cause. I wish you ask the best, and do let us know how it goes for you! ^.^

(Whoa. Deja vu.)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Frankensteinbeck

Yes, I do believe you're right. And I don't know that the Princess was/has ever intended godhood or anything like for Twilight either, but it seems quite clear to me she has always been grooming her for some greatness (some of which we have already witnessed on the series of course, and I don't doubt there will be much more to come!).

@CaineScroll

You just had to mention that bit with the phoenix and all didn't you. I've obviously never drawn any Princess Celestia fanart to date nor have ever really had the desire to, but now I can't get the ridiculous gag-idea of Dumbledorestia with Philomena out of my head. I doubt I'll actually ever end up drawing it, but for a moment I did feel tempted.

@themagicwalrus

Oh, well hello and welcome to my humble little blog... thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment! I so appreciate the kind words (oh and I like your username I must say; it gives me entertaining mental images ^.^). I am always happy to hear about other people being filled with creativity and the inspiration to make things, and if you think I can be of any help in offering you support in your future endeavors, I hope you will not be afraid to ask.

Thank you so much again for replying, it means a lot to me!

@Anon

You're right, I did encourage people to call me that if it's easier for them, though I must admit I like the sound of "Mrs. Diamonds" quite a lot. ^.^ My username was chosen with many different things in mind, but "Di" in particular can work on multiple levels... you see, I happen to share my middle name with Pinkie Pie and a certain famous British princess... ^_~

In regards to your question, in my experience at least graphic designs generally begin life in sketch form as well, and are later refined into nice vectors or whatever the case may be. That's how *I* always worked, anyway, but I'm hardly an authority in those matters.


And congrats to both of you, gentlemen, on your incoming tablets! You'll have to keep me updated on how those work out for you, then!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Addendum: Oh and I forgot to ask, is it really "cool" to follow my blog? You are so incredibly sweet! =^.^=

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I second Anon's comment. You are incredibly cool, even for a lady your age (though I have only a vague idea, sorry)! I have a cousin nearing her 30's, and she's one of the coolest individuals I know (going for a masters in languages, a fellow artist, AND keeps her iPod with her 24/7), so yeah: age is not a barrier to coolness. Or anything for that matter! =D

Now that I think about it, Lady Diana was also cool in her own way, and I positively adore her---it's tragic, however, that she died at such a young age. Therefore, it was only natural that I felt happy for her son back in April. You're so lucky to share a name with such a influential person. My name, however, is derived from a certain Potter character if you look close enough. =P

By the way, I'm getting a Bamboo Pen and Touch...probably the only tablet within my budget range and can actually perform artistically. Again, work on my next projects are currently delayed due to a minor slip-up on my account, but I'll get on it as soon as possible, I promise!

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Pretty much the only thing I know about Princess Diana is the story of her fatal car crash, caused by the paparazzi, and how people only cared to snap pictures while she pleaded for help. That incurred a mental wince. On the topic of middle names, however, my mother prefers the royal-sounding names. I really wish I could give out my full name, since even my last name is comically long and regal (It has the "Fitz" prefix), but my middle name is Anderson. Both of my names happened to be named after my parents' parental figures; Her father, and a friend of his family (Because he never liked his parents, for good reason). My father's name is Andrew as well, which is the meaning of Anderson; "Son of Andrew".

The tablet arrived! It came in a small, white retro/classic-looking car. That delivery man looked like he was showing off. My sister was in her room at the time, while I was in the office near the door. My mother was in full view while she quietly took the box from my father and brought it to their room. I knew exactly what that meant; She was planning on storing it away for Christmas, even though my sister bought it with her own money. A few moments later, she quietly asked my father if he was okay with letting her have it early, because "she's almost an adult". I don't see why he would have a problem with that, and he didn't. Then he scared me by asking if it would work on "that small computer", because if she knows that she can use it on the laptop that I had planned on using then she can just store it in her room. Thankfully, she put it on her own, desktop, not-in-any-way-small computer. I have to worry if it will work on the laptop as well, but I think it will be fine. I'll be installing it on the laptop tonight if I get the chance (i.e., if my father doesn't stay up late). And if I ever do wind up creating anything, some day I will make a comic to recreate the moment that I install the tablet software and say, "...Okay, so now what?"

Huh. When I read it, all I thought of was "I Am The Walrus".

Ah, I was wondering if my pitifully minuscule masculinity was showing at all. I guess a blank avatar and the name "Anonymous" isn't very telling. I really need to get around to changing it...

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

**types with poise and dignity** I am going to take that as a fabulous compliment. Thank you so much darling.

And yes, Princess Diana's death really was such a terrible tragedy... this world really needs more people like her, not fewer. If I ever make it to any position of influence in life as she did (not that I ever imagine I'd be princess of anywhere, though wouldn't that be AWESOME), I only hope I could conduct myself with such admirable generosity, dignity, and grace.

And really, it is?? *squints and stares for five minutes* Aghh I can't figure it out, I guess it's been too long since I last read those books! For shame~

Ooh, yay! Congrats again to you dear... I'm sure you'll let me know when it finally is in your possession. ^.^

@Anon

Yes, I think I commented on your other post about that by mistake as I was thinking about British children's literature and what you said about 'sophisticated subcultures', but I do so love fancy names. ^.^ LOVE them. Lucky you!

And oh, the tablet arrived then! And in fabulous high style by the sound of it; I would have liked to have seen that. You'll have to let me know how it goes for you then once you do get it installed and working!

Well yes, I suppose I made an assumption which I try never to do, but somehow it seems I was able to guess correctly just by your style of writing. I normally am a very good judge of such things, I will say. ^_~

Anon said... Reply to comment

The car looked something like this and this. Clearly 1960s, anyway. Since the automobiles that our packages usually come in tend to look more like this, I was better expecting that he had come to sell Girl Scout cookies than deliver a package.

I noticed my sister playing some games that come it just to get used to the pen. Instead, I think I'll try recreating others' tablet creations in speedpaint videos and work on getting a basic imagined image on a screen. I hope you don't mind if I use your work as a reference. What you have on your blog is my goal, if I could ever achieve it. Half of it, even.

themagicwalrus said... Reply to comment

I picked my name for that very reason Mrs. Diamonds. I use it for pretty much everything I do on the interwebs. So thank you for liking it, its always nice to hear... er read :)I will most certainly get into contact with you if I have any questions at all. Right now I'm just trying to get what I picture in my head on to paper at the moment to see what I can do. In all honesty I have never really sat down and tried to draw anything until a week or so ago. I have drawn doodles and stuff and in art class I did things that made people laugh rather than look nice. But any who thanks again and I look forward to seeing more of your wonderful work! :D btw Rarity and Applejack are the best jsyk ;)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Oooh, pretty. <3 I am the first to admit that I don't know much of anything about cars, but I do enjoy things that are aesthetically pleasing.

And huh... I don't know if my tablet ever came with any little games or not but I certainly never played any if it did. For me, constantly playing Free Cell (a terrible bad habit of mine when I'm on the computer, I will confess) probably did me as much good though.

Oh and you know I wouldn't mind at all if you used any of my work as a reference, I only hope it helps you is all. ^_^ Let me know how it goes for you!

@themagicwalrus

Heehee, well they're certainly my favorites as I know you must be aware of... it's always nice to meet a fellow fan though. ^.^

I see, I know what that's like (I go through a similar process when I'm trying out a new character or style or whatever the case may be). But yes, please do let me know if you think I can be of any help to you.

You're very welcome by the way, it is quite charming!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Congrats on the new tablet, mate! I just got mine this afternoon, but I haven't really taken to using it just yet. You *have* to share the experience of using it with me!

I don't know if I present anything of a personality online like Di resembles Rarity, but I find your way of speaking (typing) strikingly similar to my mate Chatterbox. Except, uh, well...he's not a straight A student and you are. In any case, I feel like I could talk to you for hours and never get bored! Don't worry about having to develop a style of writing just for blogging purposes; you're doing it just fine, mate. All you need is a picture and you're good to go!

By the way, I recall it was a Bamboo Fun Pen & Touch your sister purchased? In retrospect, it should be better in performance compared to mine. Anyway, I wish you all the best and I'm waiting in anticipation of your first project! =D

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@themagicwalrus

That is an immensely cute name, mate. Though I must admit, the two words that popped into my head before all thoughts of cuteness were: Arctic Circle. I know. I can be a bit of a nong sometimes.

As for the whole art class experience: Don't worry. I've been there myself. I think the way I gradually improved---in my sketching skills, anyway---was by doodling. So here's my suggestion: take a random piece of paper, and take a pencil, and just do it. Don't worry if it looks off; it's all part of the learning process. I would know, as Di helped me along the way herself. Also, I'm always available along with Di if you need any help...that is, if you're content with accepting help from a 17-year-old!

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, it's time for me to "let you know that it's finally in my possession". The tablet's here. Dum dum duuuum~

And while we're on the subject of names, I noticed that Diana is also the name of the Roman goddess of the moon, similar to Artemis in Greek mythology (I know my gods! ^^). I'm expecting people to start calling you Princess Luna in a few months; that way you ARE Princess of something!*

Once I get home, work will commence at last. I believe I will improve gradually, now that I've got the tablet, and of course the support from those who've stood by me when I first started out in digital art. You are all amazing people! ^.^

*This is a joke

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I don't know anything about cars either (which I think may be somewhat to the disappointment of my father), but I can say I was I want: I want an electric car, a jetpack (It isn't what you're expecting. It's better.), and/or a wingsuit (It was so hard deciding on a video for that. Yes, that is how I will get to work).

Alright, the tablet. I would have made a post here yesterday, but since I already had one up I didn't want to look like stalking creep taking over your blog. Even if I am.

Last night was the second night I had it. The first night, I spent so much time trying to get a driver to work that by the time I had it sort of working, it was 1:50 and I only had 10 minutes to try it.

After turning my computer back on in the pitch black office so I can run the driver disk and put its contents on an SD card, I found out that they have the drivers for download on their site. That got me two drivers to choose from. The first seemed like the one on the CD, and had the same problem: It stops at exactly halfway with an "error code 4006". I looked that up and got two people with the same problem, but no answers. The second driver option seemed quite older, but it sort of worked. Maybe because it was made more for Windows XP. By "sort of", I mean that it spontaneously turned itself on and off, leaving me confused and trying to deduce what I may have just done to change it. And then, last night, it works right away when I turn the laptop on. So I catch up on EQD, as I didn't get to do at all the night before. And when I'm done and I plan to get some real drawing practice...it doesn't work. The pen does not move the mouse. No signal. After probably an hour of fiddling with it, it comes back on...but it cuts in and out, only working about every other second. It's an easy way to make a dotted line, but not quite what I had in mind. In the end, I went to My Computer->Properties->Device Manager (or Hardware->Device Manager on XP), uninstalled every driver that was foolish enough to title itself "Wacom", and tried at the first download again. And...then it worked. (Inconsistent data! (Unfortunately, they don't show him saying it in this clip D:))

So, since I now have the newer, intended driver seemingly working, it should not break anymore. Being that I have only had about 10 or 20 minutes of time to practice despite forcing myself to stay up past 3:00, I don't exactly have anything to show off just yet. Unless you'd like to see some circles with curvy crosses through them. My sister is using Sketchbook Pro, but instead I am using Paint Tool Sai because I am a rebel and I am loyal to WhiteDiamonds. Now that I have my pen tool set to size 4, all my questions have been answered so far. I expect that your "rough" (I say that with exaggerated skepticism) sketches will be very helpful if I want to sort of recreate what you have here. You can't see the bones on a polished finished product, so they can't help much with sketching, which is really what I need to know at this point. I still don't entirely understand how to make good circles or do those general sketch lines, though...

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

My trouble with drivers is probably because I'm trying to run it on a Netbook. It's extremely small, for a laptop. Any smaller and it would be a tablet with no keyboard. It runs surprisingly well, but its hardware is contrastingly (Blogger, Y U NO recognize that as a word?) low-end. My sister's desktop computer is slow and not exactly new, but it worked on her first try. So unless you're trying to put a tablet on a computer that is a few millimeters away from being a tablet itself, you should be fine.

When I saw the box that it came in, it said "Bamboo Connect", but it doesn't really matter to me. It's a pressure-sensitive board and we love it so.

"Anyway, I wish you all the best and I'm waiting in anticipation of your first project! =D"

o.o"

If you are any of the mane 6, your avatar represents it like WhiteDiamonds. I think it's safe to assume that you learned English in Australia, or at least have a strong affiliation with it, because I'm noticing some Australian slang terms including "mate", "heckler", "blimey", "grazie", "ooroo" and "g'day". I haven't heard you say "mighty" or "crikey" though. For shame. I know that some of it comes from Britain, but no one does British like Diamonds. Don't even try. Anyway, I know that Australian and Southern American aren't exactly the same, but they both have a rustic feel and often have a sort of positive, welcoming attitude. While Diamonds is sure to be gushing about her current feelings and what she thinks of certain things, which is welcoming because she explicitely speaks in a welcoming manner, I get more of an understood feeling of acceptance from your writing.

I'm surprised, though appreciative that you would find my words interesting. My most obvious trait as far as I can tell (aside from commas and run-on sentences) is how much I choose to write. I don't just write word walls; I'm a word architect. I have a long memory and pick up detail well, and I always feel like if there is detail, it should be told. I recognize that this could be a flaw (Just because you want to know what setting a tablet up is like does not mean you want to know about sneaking through the house at midnight and the driver incompatibility of Netbook computers), but it's kind of hard to stop. It isn't that I want to be the person that won't stop talking. I'm not really.

Aside from that, I'm also probably the most introverted of anyone on this blog. In real life, I give short answers and avoid conversation. Any real friends I have ever had were online, and that's what I'm used to. If I didn't have a computer, I don't know what I'd do.

One thing that The Walrus (sorry) has over me is the ability to pick out a name. We already have a great Rarity, so unless I had any art to put as my avatar, it would probably be Twilight. Unfortunately, I have no suitable perfumes to name myself after, so I'll have to stick with Failo FitzUnoriginalname for now. That won't be acceptable if I ever start a small blog (Don't get your hopes up...), so I guess I should be looking for fancy words to use to create a fancy name in place of my already fancy name. Just probably not "Diamonds". (I mean, it sounds good and classy, but it would give people the wrong idea...)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Yes, excellent! I sort of commented on your blog about it already, but just play around with it a bit (much as you have just suggested to dear magicwalrus there!) and I'm sure it will be coming naturally in no time! All of you young teenage people have been messing around on computers for what must be the majority of your lives, I would imagine (as opposed to myself, who did not own a computer at all until I bought myself one at 18), so I have total confidence that you'll pick it up more quickly than I even did. It's all lovely.

Yes, you're right and I do share my name with a Goddess as well (my favorite goddess might I add; I have always adored the moon and the night sky). I'll have to make a point to thank my father for that again the next time I speak to him; he did an admirable job on that one.

I'm so happy that you've come so far even in the short amount of time that we've been corresponding...it's like watching a baby dragon transform into an adult behemoth right before my eyes (I mean that in a good way in this instance; it's a good analogy for how quickly this has all transpired)! Just amazing, and I'm so happy I could be a part of your experience... kudos, darling!

@Anon

Oh, my, nonono! Or at least not for me; I would surely pass out from fright and even just watching those videos makes me jittery! I'm the sort of girl who's never even liked roller coasters when I was younger, and my plane flight to Japan (the longest I've been on to date, at 16 hours) was torturous at times to me. I seriously thought I was going to die when the plane started experiencing turbulence over the Pacific Ocean... eeeeeeee~

I have too little faith in much of human technology, I suppose is what it is. But yes. And I guess this means you were right when you talk about how I "gush"... I'm probably doing it right now aren't I?

I'm sorry to hear about all the drama that that silly thing gave you (computers are so good at that aren't they? They're the original high-maintenance divas), but I'm glad to hear everything seems to be working fine now. I hope and expect you'll get the hang of the tablet itself soon enough.

And now really, do I really come off as sounding so convincingly British to you my dear? If so I really must take that as a compliment... I'll confess I'm a little bit of an Anglophile you see, or at least I have always dreamed of traveling to the UK and think I would love to live there someday (it is just such a beautiful green country with such a rich history and culture. And a monarchy! <3). So yes, that's kind of you to say even if you didn't necessarily intend it as a compliment.

And CaineScroll really does come across that way, doesn't he? It's a very... casual aura of "warmth" I suppose, or maybe that's just the Aussie jargon talking. Either way, it's most endearing.

Anyway, I suppose I'm starting to get wordy again here. When it comes to your username my dear, just picks something that inspires you and/or that you purely love the sound of! That's what I did, and you are a creative person so I'm sure it won't be too difficult for you. ^.^

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds


I started using the computer when I was anywhere from 3 to 6. I used to play old, underrated games like Lego Racers and Toy Story 2 (Big nostalgia fuel for me). Despite this, I can imagine what it would be like to be without them for so long. You still see kids going outside and kicking balls for entertainment. I cannot relate to them.

My father always wanted to be a pilot, but he never got to learn because his parents wouldn't let him take the training (They claimed he was too tall because he was 6 feet by the time he was 12, but he thinks that they were just cheap and didn't want to pay for it). I share some interest in flying with him, but what started it was actually Buzz Lightyear, as Toy Story was my favorite movie for a long time. I don't see flying a plane as actual flying, though. It's just sitting on a moving platform. That jetpack really makes you look like Buzz Lightyear, anyway. I would never get tired of walking around with that. I'll probably never get to try it, and I'm not looking to get into that line of work, but I like the thought of it. To be honest, I would be nervous the first time, once the reality sets in.

The longest flight I have been on was just visiting our family in Canada; Only three hours. I know that just that was kind of miserable. It would be even worse these days, now that airlines are making you pay for every little thing.

I'm a pretty scientific thinker, so if technology is tested, I think it will probably work. Plane crashes are rare compared to car crashes, and car crashes are almost always caused by human error. My mother is like you, though. She doesn't like listening to the music that plays on EPCOT's Soarin Over California because it reminds her of the visuals of the ride. (You can even get the visuals on YouTube, but it isn't like actually being on it.)

Computers? Problems? You don't even know computer problems until you try programming. It's like writing an essay with a strict English teacher. If you spell or punctuate anything wrong, or make any sort of tiny error, she gives you some obscure, one-sentence explanation of what you did wrong and the general area that you did it, and leaves you to work it out. And that isn't even considering memory and CPU usage or avoiding memory leaks. This is why I don't particularly want to be a programmer. Anyway, last night it did cut out again, but restarting fixed it and it didn't break again after that. So no real problems.

I mentioned it the last time we talked about it, but I really do appreciate your way of speech. The English do tend to write in that proper manner, and like I said before, I can only wish I was more like that. Though I'm surprised that you would be able to stay that way when everyone around you is from the south. I worry that it might have happened a bit to me. So yes, it was a compliment. If you were like any other artist off DeviantArt, I probably wouldn't be here in the comments section. Which makes me think; If you used DA, then you wouldn't have time for all of us...That's kind of depressing.

You don't have worry about writing too much; We all enjoy every word.

Anon said... Reply to comment

Uugh, typos.

As for my drawing progress, I have faced my first challenge; Draw a circle. Yes, draw a circle. I know that you have done it for years, but do remember that I have only actually drawn a couple times in my entire existence. Twice I copied a flat image onto a piece of paper without tracing (One of which was a picture of Spider-Man on a cereal box), but that's about it.

Whenever I look for guides on how to draw characters, "Step 1" is always "Draw a circle". But whenever I try, it almost always comes out as some kind of asymmetric pear shape or oval. That's if both ends even meet. It isn't surprising, since I have almost no control over how big it is or where the line will go. Can most people just draw perfect circles naturally? Am I really that bad? ;_;

I know that I must be doing something wrong. This guy brings up an interesting point; I am trying to draw with my wrist instead of my shoulder. But whenever I see other people do it, they sure seem like they are using their wrist. Not only do artists like you manage to draw ones that look good, but you have control over how it will turn out. On the Rarity in your sketchdump, the bottom of the circle is wider than the top to show perspective. Not only is that good visualizing, but you knew how to make it look that way.

So, how do you generally make them? Do you use your shoulder, or just your wrist? Is it mostly just muscle memory? I know that you make repeated circles, as with any sketch lines, but that doesn't seem to help me make consistently good loops. It's like rolling a dice.

I know that I'm not paying you to be a teacher, and I don't want to be accommodating, but that's just what I'm trying to do at this point.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Don't worry dear, I always delete any 'content removed' comments. My apologies and I hope you don't mind, but I just hate to see them cluttering up a page, do you know what I mean?

And yes, I suppose I already would have figured that considering the generation gap between us, though nevertheless it still somewhat amazes me. Even now if computers suddenly disappeared from the face of the earth, I really don't think I'd mind too much (and I mean, disregarding the fact that our society would essentially collapse as-is without computers running all the systems we rely on; I was referring to computers more in the PC/smartphone sense when I said that). It does make many things in life much easier, and I would miss the ability to network so easily and have so much inspirational material at my ready fingertips, but I think I would adapt quite easily, honestly. There are times I do wish my life was simpler and I'm sure that would be one way to achieve that.

Hm, flying. It's funny, because I am currently living in an area of southern California known for its wineries and hot-air balloons, and I would honestly love to be able to go on one of the balloon flights over the vineyards and have a nice mimosa on the ground afterwards (g'ahh sounds SO good right now..). It doesn't sound scary to me in the slightest. Maybe because there are no loud roaring engines or high rushing speeds or tons of metal and equipment involved (that honestly, shouldn't be able to get off the ground to begin with--technology amazes me), who knows. But I am afraid I am most definitely afraid of airplane flights, I cannot lie. ;(

Hmmmmm so much to respond to... you'll have to forgive me it's been a very long day. In regards to programming, I think that's exactly why I dislike it so, as well as mathematics as I have mentioned before: too many rules to have to live by, bleh! Give me freedom of expression and the ability to make something my own any day. The way I speak and write? Honestly I don't know how I developed it either, as I have said before, nor how I maintain it when I am constantly surrounded by people greeting one another with "dude" and any number of other soCal phrases/slang, but I think my parents probably had something to do with it (it was always "yes, not yeah" when I'd say the latter growing up, for example, and I suppose after all the repetition over the years the corrections actually stuck). That having been said, if more "proper" speech and grammar is important to you as it is to me, I don't see why you can't make an effort to utilize it more if that's what you'd like to do... things like that really shouldn't be dependent on where or how one was brought up, just like good manners shouldn't be! It's whatever makes you happy, really.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

And lastly, let's see... circles. Oh dear, I can already sense that I probably won't be much help to you here, I'm afraid... I've never really given much thought to the matter before, and certainly not to the extent that those videos try and break it down! ^^; Drawing circles or most any other shapes is not something I consciously think about doing so much as I just... do it. I've never thought about whether I'm using my arm or my shoulder (thought just now, doing a testing motion it seems to be shoulder/arm more than wrist, but that also might depend on the size of the circle and maybe it's actually arm, wrist and shoulder altogether), and I suppose a good deal of it must be just ingrained muscle-memory after all. Sort of like when I knit/crochet or am able to sew a nice straight line when hand-stitching; it's just a lot of repetition. If it helps you at all, I can tell you *I* am virtually incapable of drawing one clean, perfectly rounded circle in one stroke as well... generally when I am sketching, circles and most everything else are formed by a build-up of many softer lines over one another to achieve a proper form. In other words, don't overthink it or stress about it too much and just loosen up when practicing? I don't know but I hope that helps at least somewhat!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Oh my lord. Have I been gone *that* long? I've been trekking through a jungle with no modern commodities. I'm serious. More of that soon.

Well, I started getting exposure to computers when I was 9. An old hunk o' junk that might even pass for a museum exhibit. Instead, it's sitting upstairs as a paperweight and a guest house for dust bunnies. Room service, too.

I tend to speak in more civilized manners compared to my peers (who speak "Manglish"; sample upon request), and I usually speak in a semi-American accent. However, I attended an Aussie education fair last year, and my host was (duh) an Aussie. After 20 minutes into the conversation, I found myself speaking in an Australian accent. I stopped talking for 10 minutes after the enquiry just to get rid of it (not that I hate it, but being an Aussie in a Japan/Hong Kong influenced student body would be anything but fitting in). If I speak in an Aussie accent after a 20 minute conversation with ONE Australian, imagine how I'll speak when I'm staying in Melbourne for a year in an Australian community.

As I write this, I'm holding a pencil to see which parts of my hand move when I'm drawing a circle. The way I see it, I'm using part of my wrist, my shoulder seldom moves, and my fingers rub across the paper as a side effect. This may differ, however, depending on the size of the circle you're drawing. Doing a circle in one stroke is difficult, but to me I find two results: first, a circle drawn so swiftly that the ends don't even meet, making it look tomato-shaped; second, a circle strewn with so much effort and concentration that the lines look forced and jerky even if it's a perfect circle. I reckon the best way is to do several strokes, either in separate curves so that you form a complete circle in the end, or several tomatoes until you get the rough outline of a complete circle. I'm no expert when it comes to which muscles function in the drawing process, and the methods explained are just my own. You can chose to improvise: that's the beauty of art. You can freestyle. But most importantly, and I reckon we all agree on this, that practice is the best move here. My personal suggestion is to doodle on scraps of paper. Start drawing one circle. If it doesn't meet your ideal, just draw another one instead of trying to correct the flaws of the first one. This trial and error method has always worked for me, and I see no reason why it should work for you.

I really hope I was helpful with this topic. If there's anything I can elaborate on, all you have to do is ask! ^.^

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

The fact that you compared me to a baby dragon is...oh my lord, I don't know what to say. If I could see you, I'd hug you right here and now. The fact that I don't have an older sister figure in my life probably intensifies the feeling. Thank you so, so much!!

As for the jargon, I'm keen to learn as many of them as possible if I'm going to be a novelist. Fer example, ah can pull off a li'l country accent if y'all can actually tell that's whut ah'm tryin' ter do here. Observing people like you and Jamie Oliver, for instance, give me a clear idea of two different British accents. But Australian's probably my best bit, and I'm chuffed to bits that you like it! =D

(Yes, I'm working on a novel. Not exactly CNN-standard stuff.)

Yep, I'm definitely interested in California. My dad's been to Napa Valley and San Francisco almost a decade ago, and I'm feeling just the tiniest bit of jealousy. Personally, I'm partial to New England, probably because of those brilliant autumn colors. Sadly, I won't be able to afford a trip there anytime soon, it's such an expensive place...however, I'm going to start saving up for a trip to the US as soon as I graduate, and I have a *pretty* good idea where I'll be headed.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Of course, I don't like them either. I actually figured that it was automatic. Neither do I like making four comments and leading you to believe that there is an actual interesting conversation going on, but instead it's just me. It's always confusing when the number goes down, as well.

Riding in a hot air balloon would be pretty soft. Not to mention scenic. There is nothing to see where I live besides flat grass, so I really had never thought of it. You really have the best taste.

The technology that has always amazed me is the camera. If you had asked me before they were invented, I would have told you that only an eye can see the world. And then I would proceed to notify the Reverend of your heresy.

You don't have to respond to everything right away (Though I'm surprised by your understanding of programming. My parents certainly have no concept of it, as was the same for me when I decided to starts.), I know how stressful and busy your life is, so if it's too late in the day then you can just leave it for later. I wouldn't want to make it any worse. Though I wonder, what do you do in a ceramics studio anyway? Do you make sculptures, or just pottery? Are you usually repeating old styles, or do you design new ones? I'll avoid asking for the company website to avoid sounding like an internet stalker.

Somehow, I think your advice may have helped: It was about 2:45, and I had made little progress. The shoulder circles looked better than my previous ones, but they were far from acceptable or usable in any way. That was when I read your first message. I refreshed and your next one appeared, so I was viewing it live. I'm three hours ahead.

Firstly, you reaffirmed that the shoulder was involved, which really isn't evident from the videos. They never tell you how to do it exactly; They just say, "draw a circle." You also told me that the shoulder isn't the only thing involved as that particular video would lead you to believe, that it could actually be a combination and that muscle memory likely is how to learn. Also, you reminded me that circles are fluid; You can't overthink (Yes, Blogger, that is a word) them. If you try to control it too much, as CainScroll said, it comes out swerved and distorted.

After I read that, I continued try to stay on the lines. It had become quite late, so I closed my eyes. When I opened them, unsurprisingly, the loop had gone straight off the course. So I cleared it and started again. Soon after, I got tired again and closed my eyes. I tried to make sure I didn't bring the line too far, as I more often go too far off the circle than too short, to maintain stability. When I opened them, I saw that there were a few "crazy" loops, but overall, it stayed pretty well. I cleared the circle and started over. Again, with less hesitance, I tried again. When I opened my eyes, I found that the circle I had made without looking at it was not far from passable. By that time, it was very late so I had to stop then, but I feel like I'm not far from getting the necessary muscle memory. I need practice, and I will be able to draw circles. Or maybe your words are just imbued with talent.

@CaineScroll

I think I know that feeling; Something about nearly every sentence she writes, along with her willingness to help, brings a feeling of this (It even comes with a suitable reaction). Though, to me, it isn't like a specific family member (I have an older sister, and I almost never say a word to her or interact with her in any way), but as an individual. She is WhiteDiamonds. Alas, we live over two thousand miles away and do not look like ponies. We will have to wait until they invent virtual reality...

Anon said... Reply to comment

My first computer was my father's old one, a Windows 98, which I think we still have. It even has the Lego Racers shortcut on the desktop. My next one was also my father's old one, a Windows 2000. I don't really remember what I did on it besides play games from cereal boxes. (Yes, computer games and demos came in cereal boxes rather than plastic light-up toys. More evidence of the 90s being the best.)

I'm not sure about what my accent is. I like to think that I have retained a Toronto accent (Which is what Celestia, Cheerilee and their voice, Nicole Oliver, speak in, possibly Tabitha St. Germain as well), and I do have a slightly more British influence than the Americans around me, but it isn't enough. It is my vote that we all take a stroll around London and develop a rather marvelously cultured comportment. What say you, old chaps?

Ah, yes. The tomato shape and the overly careful jerky circle. I know them all too well. I was trying to make tomatoes look like, er, near-perfect shoulder circles. The good ones. Needless to say, that didn't work out very well. Nevertheless, maybe I can get on to skeletons and real sketching soon. It's nice that we have people that will help guide us. I would have never gone to an art forum even if I was planning on trying the tablet. Besides, ponies give us more to talk about.

Writing? I have thought about it, but never actually tried doing it. I wouldn't start unless I knew I had a good concept, and had everything planned out already. I know that authors never do this, but I think it would be fun to try collaborating a story. Sort of like my sister's role-plays, except each author is not playing as a particular character.

I like the idea of California because of all there is to see there. It's kind of a wasteland here, where I live. I want opportunities to get good, high-paying jobs and things to do with that money once I have it. There is practically no creative jobs in this whole corner of the United States. It's the same with Washington's northwest corner. New York is good, but congested.

Forderz said... Reply to comment

I love the comments section of this blog.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Favo

My first computer was an AT&T made IBM clone with a monochrome green CRT monitor and a dot-matrix printer (with that conveniently perforated, tear-away edged printer paper). You had to insert the MS-DOS floppy disks (5.25") when you booted it up, and type a run command. It played King's Quest like a boss, though.

All of which just proves that there's no way for me to join in on conversations in this fandom without being that creepy old guy.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Just thought you should know this in case you haven't, mate... Purplekecleon has taken her first step into the fandom by producing her first pony picture.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Oooh! I know you were not speaking to me, but I would like to request a sample of "Manglish" all the same, if I may. ^.^ I have never heard of this delightful blending of languages and am wondering if I shall find it as charming as my all-time favorite, Engrish (Japanese English). An exchange-student friend of mine used to speak that (happily I knew enough Japanese that I could follow her quite easily) and I really think it was the best thing I ever heard in my life... I can actually do a pretty fair impression myself, if you'd believe it.

And oh, my dear... online virtual hugs for you, then! =^-^= For you to liken me to an older sister that you have never had is really incredibly sweet, and it is really *I* who should be thanking you! I am so happy if I have really been able to be a positive influence in your life as you seem to feel, thank you.

Ooh, Napa Valley! <3 I would so love to experience the sights and tour the wineries there someday, as I have never been. San Francisco, on the other hand, I have visited, though it was a long time ago... it's a fabulous place though, such a vibrant dynamic city! I would just love to travel all over the world really... someday I will.

Oh, and in regards to PurpleKecleon? I did see that she began drawing pony-art, yes... a few of her latest things showed up in a Drawfriend several days ago. They were all lovely of course! Ah well, now I suppose she can go on being better than me at ponies, too... I suppose it was an inevitability. ^^;;

@Anon

First off, thank you my dear. Some might describe them as expensive tastes (even though this is not actually always the case), but I say if one is going to dream then dream huge, you know? Creative visualization, make it happen!

And I know I don't need to respond to everything right away, but if I do it partially I almost invariably forget something, and I don't like to leave things for too long because I'd hate for people to think I was neglecting them (and not to mention the fact that the number of comments can rise surprisingly fast, and then I have even MORE to get back to later). It's all good. And, I actually don't know all that much about programming, aside from what I've heard from others and other than I don't especially care for it... like I said, far too constraining for my liking. And my job? Well, we do a whole lot of things really... I don't actually make and sell personal sculptures though if that's what you were thinking, though we do offer classes on various topics and do a small amount of bisque manufacturing (certainly we made plenty of Christmas ornaments this season, which was part of the reason I've been kept so busy). Also, we are open to the public as a place where people can come in and paint raw bisques which we will then fire for them, and we even do parties, off-site events (like fundraisers and such) and various school functions. So yes, quite a lot. I do get to partake in quite a lot of ceramics painting which is very nice.

I'm glad to hear that my rambling "advice" actually helped you somewhat; that is a wonderful thing to hear at least! As I have said before, just don't stress too much about things and keep practicing and you should continue to get stronger.

And well, like CaineScroll you really are incredibly sweet, and probably give me far too much credit though I certainly do appreciate the warm sentiments. Thank you. ^_^

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Oh yes, and I forgot to mention that a trip to London sounds simply smashing to me, and honestly I've been saying for the last couple of years that 2012 will be my year to go and visit some of my fab British friends at long last. Even though I really don't have a British accent (and despite the fact that you probably have it in your head that I do; I just speak properly is all!), I might actually develop one if I could spend some real time there. Which would certainly not be a bad thing~ =^.^=

@Forderz

I love the fact that you love the comments section of my blog! Do feel free to join in the conversation at any point that you see fit, my dear! ^_~

@Favo

Well, MY first computer also ran Windows 98 so we at least have that in common, even though I know that I was 18 when I was using it and most of you were tiny little kids which kind of kills it for me... oh well. ;_;

@Harwick

My darling Harwick! I at least welcome reading your thoughts whenever you see fit to share them with us, and (if you'll forgive me) it's actually rather nice to have an ally and not be the odd (and eldest) person out amidst this bunch of cute little teenage bronies. Plus, if I'm being honest I do remember those old gargantuan, green-screened clunkers that they used to call personal computers from when I must have been in first grade... I remember the giant, legitimately "floppy disks" and having to play Oregon Trail in the library for part of our history lesson I think. That game was so hard; my family always ended up starving or freezing to death or whatever it was, from what I can remember... I never was any good at it.

In any case, yes, the retro-camaraderie is quite welcome.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Oh my lord, you're going to Britain? I feel really excited for you! =D I'd request for a souvenir but I figured that would be beyond irresponsible. And oh yeah, you don't know where I live. Whoops. I even have a guide on Great Britain, but by the looks of it, you need it more than I do...

If you're planning to travel around the globe in future, I really hope we can meet face to face for once, regardless of where I'll be at the time (Malaysia or Australia). After all, I'd like to meet my "sister"!^.^

If possible, I'd also like to realize my dream of going to New England later in life, preferably Connecticut and Massachusetts. I'm fully aware that only hard work and patience can get me there, so I'll try my best. The lottery works, too. =P

As for the Manglish...I have to warn everyone that it's not delightful, even if it gives Malaysians that personality. Alright, here goes...

"Aiyah, who cares where you wan to go leh? Work hard, get rich, everything sap sap sui onli...don waste all de time on the Net, just read more books and don't 'pai seh' the family name! Now faster go study!"

So, yes. That is what a typical Malaysian parent would say to their Skyrim-obsessed children. Even I'm bewildered by it.

As for the art, I'm done with the linework. Onto the coloring! =)

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Harwick said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I'm happy to make you look younger by comparison, and to know that we share the traumatic experience of dying of virtual dysentery among the stacks of the elementary school library while trying to make the perilous trek westward.

Sadly, I've always been just a few years too old for my own good, it seems (Although once you're out of your 20's that begins to go without saying.) Had I been born 4 or so years later, I'd likely have been able to take advantage of a lot of opportunities that I just missed out on.

When I entered art school in college it was the early nineties, and while I was a huge fan of animation, it just wasn't a field that held much promise at the time... Disney was really the only game in town when it came to domestic animation, and they were just beginning their animation revival. Further, my school wasn't yet sold on those computer contraptions when it came to such classical fields as drawing and painting. I am incredibly jealous of all of these young artists given such great tools right from the start these days.

I was a bit slow to adopt the technology myself, even though I did learn one of the very early versions of Photoshop in college. (It was one of the few computer classes for artists at the time, though the professor was fighting to get a proper computer lab going.) I've used it ever since, but it wasn't until about 6 or so years ago that I ever tried using a tablet. I had been keeping to pencil, paper and scanning things to convert them to digital.

Now I work 100% digitally on a Cintiq monitor that was given to me when my job as an art director for an entertainment company ended with the business going under during the economic downturn a few years ago. It would be very hard to go back now, although I'm quite positive that I'm still better with a pencil and paper than I'll ever be with this thing.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

*virtual hugs* (Consent not required)

We get some Spanglish down here, but I don't know how to give an example without sounding discriminatory. They speak quickly, their emphasis jumping up and down like they were spitting the words out. But that's pretty common in any foreign accent, I think.

My parents have been to Niagara Falls so many times going across Canada and the United States that it isn't interesting to them anymore. If you want to travel then you should put yourself in a lifestyle that it would be possible as soon as possible, because "I'll travel the world one day" is something that a lot of people say, but not many do. Eventually, you will get older and you will have new problems. I'm not saying that you need to get on a plane right away, but make sure that you will be financially and responsibly able. Judging by how you have already been to Japan, though, you are closer than most people.

I'm not familiar with PurpleKecleon, but honestly, I still like yours more. Hers look over expressive, which you only did once (Fluttershy leiks mudkipz). Her colors are vibrant, which is good for the purpose, but too much contrast gets old. Overall, it just seems artificial compared to yours. It's kind of like Best Night Ever; When you really think about it, that episode had a lot of content. A lot of new scenes and backgrounds, a lot of characters with voices, two songs, one of which had a large chorus...But would you really want every episode to be like that? Rather than the simpler, funny, slice-of-life type episodes? It would be like Christmas every day. If it snowed every day, every store was always full of Christmas ornaments, the radio stations were always playing Christmas music, every home had a tree up and running 24/7...It would lose its appeal. That's what I get from PurpleKecleon's creation. It's high quality, glossy and nice to look at, but would you trade all of the awkward family photos, the scenes lacking dialogue or the refined and detailed commissions for much fewer vibrant, commercial-looking art pieces? When everything is made to look perfect, it looks less real. I don't mean to insult her work, and like I said, it serves its purpose. But its purpose is to make one, then go on to the next thing.

Also, her description is quite nonchalant. It is effectively five words long and lacks capitals or periods. I don't know if I could even hold a conversation if that's all she writes. As I have said before, who you are is half the reason I am (we are?) here.

WhiteDiamonds' Blog: Come for the art, stay for the artist.

Classes? You're an instructor? That would explain a lot. It sounds like a nice and varied job. Considering all the starving artists out there, you must have had quite an impressive portfolio to get there.
It's good to know that talent still gets work, at least.

Anon said... Reply to comment

My only news is that I took a break from the mundane repeated attempts at drawing circles (My drawing practice is one big warm-up) and following this guide on drawing Rarity, hoping that it could get me some experience drawing ponies (Rather than the much less expressive circles). I completed step 3 before giving up. It was nice being able to try sketching and actual drawing, and I don't think I did that badly, but it was exceedingly messy. That stock vector they are using is quite awkward. It has a single long, pointy ear on one side, a rounded (??) horn on the other and a mouth so long and skinny that it looks like an anteater. I tried to round the mouth and sharpen the horn in a desperate attempt at stretching the rules and making it look more normal. In the end, it reminded me of Tom Nook or a terrible attempt at drawing a fox. I would say "Back to the drawing board", but for all your sakes...Back to the circle mines. I guess I should try to recreate your sketches, but the eyes intimidate me. At least I got to use the pressure-sensitivity. It really feels natural.

@CaineScroll

As a minor Skyrim player, I guess I'm pai sehing my family's name.

She can bring you back souvenirs in the form of travel pictures. Maybe the trip would even inspire some pony doodles...? Ponies go to England. Quick, get a trademark on that.

Linework? I wish I was you on that one. I would say "May the circles be with you", but that sounds like a curse.

@Favo

That happens with me sometimes. I was born in late 1995, so Oregon Trail is a bit before my time, but a lot of the games I played when I was young were small-name computer and web games with little fame or representation on the internet. Sometimes I can only remember the music, a stage or the basic premise. I recently found the name of (and replayed) an old Lego flash game (By that I mean, a game that Lego bought and put on their website despite having nothing to do with the product) with a sort of board game-like strategy gameplay that I thought was interesting. When you have a lot of pieces on the board, it really turns into a war. This is one benefit to being in game development; If you want something, you can make it. Which was what my only other option would have been. Now, you only need to type "Spybotics" into Google and it will know that you are looking for that game.

(Side note: The intro music was played in the background of some wildlife expert special a number of years ago. When I heard it, I nearly jumped out of my seat.)

Well, it looks like we're about to break this blog's record for the amount of comments in a single entry.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Ack! You could say I'm incredibly envious of people who actually have the ability to travel beyond their own country, as in my near-eighteen years of existence, I have only been on a plane for a grand total of once...it's hard to be me. (By the way, Di? This is what I meant in my email.) I reckon it's the dream keeping me sane. Again, on to Melbourne!

I guess you do present a valid point there...PK's art is pretty much like an overdecorated Christmas tree. Not to say some of them aren't nice, but I still like Di's work by comparison.

Honestly, I'm gobsmacked at your circles' situation. The only thing you should do is practice that's all. Try reducing the size of the circle you're currently trying to achieve, maybe that'll help. As for the tablet, it's easy to get the hang of, in actuality...in my personal experience, I switched the cursor from pen mode to mouse mode just to stop it from teleporting across the screen all the time.

By the way? Catchy motto.
Come for the art, stay for the artist.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

And I do suppose pictures would be nice...I might be headed for Borneo next year, but I wouldn't call it traveling beyond my own country...

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Though Ellipsoid War may be in full circle, the forces that the Round Table had round up have been circulated around every perimeter of the globe; The round that they will surround our skewed opposition is on the horizon.

Seriously though, I'm sure everyone has to go through this at first. I'm just different because I never doodled as a kid. You guys probably don't remember when you learned to do it. Some of them turn out better than others, so I'll just keep working at that while hopefully getting to try other things in the meantime.

For now, you could say I'm like this guy. (Alternatively: Triangles.)

I noticed my sister trying to use the tablet for the second time over all these days. I certainly have made more use of it than she has. She was making an eye, working from reference from some show she likes. I watched intently to see how she would draw a circle, and if she even could...And she pulls out the digital stretch-out circle tool. This land could not contain the contempt. Surprisingly, she did make one circle...It looked like an octagon. Judging by how she said earlier that she was having trouble making the curved lines for head perspectives, and how she has years of experience...This makes me feel better than it should.

I don't want to overstate the whole thing. Circles are not my biggest worry. Hopefully I will have something to show for my work soon enough. You should probably prepare eye protection.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds: "(and not to mention the fact that the number of comments can rise surprisingly fast, and then I have even MORE to get back to later)"

Ain't it the truth? I thought things had slowed down here, so I neglected to check in for a week, and by the time I peeked in again, there were so many new comments I had to wait for a day off to read them all in one day. o.O I hate that I missed the conversations about cutie marks, characterizations of the mane 6, and character ages, but I don't know that I would've had anything of value to add anyway.

However, a brief note on my username might be somewhat useful. I first discovered the internet back in 1993 at college (the first web browser, NCSA Mosaic, had been released a few months before, but I wouldn't use it for another year), and my login name for the computer lab was jjm4. When I got my second commercial dial-up account (AOL 3.0, 1995), I discovered that jjm4 was already taken, so after a bit of experimenting I came up with jodyjm13. Despite the explosive growth of the internet since then, every site I've registered on has allowed me to use that same username, so it's been very handy to keep it. Feel free to call me Jody, though, since that's both shorter and more natural. (And CaineScroll, I've also been trying to figure out where you got your name, but it's been 18 months since I read the Harry Potter series, and that name's just not ringing any bells...)

As y'all may have been able to gather from that previous paragraph, I'm the oldest person commenting on this blog (though Harwick, at least, isn't too far off). Reading all this talk about seeing Toy Story 2 at age 6 or having Windows 98 on one's first computer is doing a great job of making me feel oooooold; the big movie when I was 6 was Grease, and the first computer I spent any amount of time working on (not counting the BASIC cartridge for the family's Bally Astrocade videogame system, with its 1.8kB of memory) was a Commodore 64. So if anyone around here is the creepy old guy, it'd have to be me. ;P

On the subject of old computers, I also spent many a class period playing Oregon Trail on the Apple IIe, although I was in high school by that point. I actually had a decent record of reaching the goal, though most of the time I lost at least one family member to starvation on the way. Another game of that period that I have fond memories of is Zoyon Patrol, wherein you tried to track down one or two alien critters by reading reports sent from all over the city.

And since showing off photos of our cats is the new hip thing to do (or was a couple of weeks ago, which is usually how long it takes for me to join in the latest trend), here's one of Princess Peach, or Peaches for short. Though she has gained probably 5 pounds since then. >.<

And joining in on the latest topic of conversation, I too have recently acquired a tablet, although like Anon my previous artistic experience has been extremely limited and spotty. I finally got it installed tonight and tried the infamous circles on it; while I mostly ended up with ellipses (the geometric shapes, not the punctuation marks), some of my circles ended up being something a random observer might describe as a circle. Now to play around with the tablet's settings and learn how to use ArtRage...

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll


Er, well, it's not actually official that I am going to be traveling there next year, exactly, but I keep telling myself that it will be the case and with any luck, it will happen. While that may sound somewhat ridiculous, that sort of thinking and "creatively visualizing" as I phrased it earlier is what I credit for my Japan trip when I went there. I'd been saying for years that I wanted to go and would go someday, but one day I decided to start saying "I'm going to go to Japan next year" to anyone who would listen. And do you know what? It actually happened; everything fell into place perfectly, including the finances!

So, yes, that's the plan. ^.^; And I will indeed pick you up a souvenir when I get there, dearest, not a trouble.

And.... okay, you might not think so, but I at least found the Manglish to be exceptionally charming. Dear Goddess I love language; that is just so endearing.

I'd love to be able to meet many of you, actually. It's too bad we couldn't all meet for coffee or something, somehow... alas for the cruel realities of life!

@Favo

Oh! Well you are so very welcome my dear... while I honestly can't understand why anyone would actually want to revisit that game again, I'm happy if I was able to be of help!

And, regarding my drawing showing up on deviantArt, I'm... actually not really okay with that. I mean, that person credited me which was nice of them at least, but at the same time I would have preferred if they had asked permission first. I would like to contact them about it but I'm really not sure how I can do so, seeing as how I don't have an account... hrrm..

On a somewhat related note, now I know that there is a Rarijack club on dA. Oh my~~

@Harwick

Aheh, well yes... I really do appreciate that, thank you. Hopefully I am not making you feel too much older in turn, though~ ^.^;

And oh, dysentery, that's what it was... yes, yes, it's all starting to come back to me now. That game really was surprisingly morbid in all its 8-bit glory wasn't it? The thing I remembered most about playing it is that I always seemed to get stuck on the computers with the monochrome green screens that you referred to previously, as opposed to the lucky students who would get the nicer, more colorful Apple II (apparently) versions. Even back then as a six-year-old my aesthetic sense was developed and scrutinizing as ever, I guess.

And oooh, you have a Cyntiq monitor... lucky you. I can understand what you mean about wishing that you'd had some of the current technology at your disposal when you were younger... it was always the same thing with me and some of the artists I knew online (PurpleKecleon among them) who were creating digital art from the time they were mere children, and I hadn't begun until I was in my early 20s (and didn't own a tablet until last year, which I guess would have made me 29). Sometimes it hardly seems fair, but at least I'm grateful for the technology now. It definitely makes everything much easier!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

It's alright dear, you may hug me. In my offline life I'm actually quite fond of hugs most of the time, but that's probably because I can get excited easily and it's one of the most convenient ways to share my enthusiasm with people, I suppose. But yes.

And ah yes, Spanglish... I am pretty familiar with that considering where I live of course. On that note, I have been to Mexico too, on many occasions. While you present a valid point about traveling sooner rather than later, I know for a fact it's something I will do eventually... I've wanted it too badly my whole life not to make it happen one way or another (and see my thoughts about "creatively visualizing" the trip above... it can't hurt, anyway).

And really, you think PurpleKecleon's characters look too expressive? Your saying so has to make me wonder if we're talking about the same artist, though of course everyone does have different tastes. It's not really the expressions/drawing style or whatever else that I'm envious of (for that is one thing that I feel perfectly competent in), but rather her ability to create a sense of almost tangible atmosphere within her pieces and also the way that she is able to use lighting so beautifully. I know I can draw well enough, but I am not always capable of creating the mood or look that I want to create in a piece, and it's only because I'm not quite strong enough yet. But, I'm sure I'll get there eventually; it's okay. Besides, drawing/painting (fanart especially, in this instance) is only a small part of what I'm passionate about and like to do, so it's okay with me if it's not my very strongest suit. I thank you for the support, though.

And actually no; I'm sorry if I gave you the wrong idea my dear but *I* am actually not an instructor at all, I just work at a place where we offer pottery instruction. I'm more responsible for customer service, keeping the public areas of the studio cleaned and stocked (all of my associates know they can't compete with me in this regard) and "processing" the bisque before and after it's fired in the kiln. I also do a lot of ceramic painting as I said, for samples and customer pieces and so on. But I'm afraid I don't teach.

I'm glad to hear that the drawing is going relatively well, even though you're still experiencing some hang-ups. And you know, now that you are trying to draw actual characters I'll offer you a suggestion that I once also gave to Favo when he asked me for help with drawing: try tracing existing images of a character first before going at them freehand. This is something that I used to do when I was really young, and it really helped me to get a better idea of structure and proportion before I attempted my own poses and such with a character. Hopefully, for that reason it might be able to help you, too. Let me know how it goes!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Haha, yes, exactly see! I go away for one day and come back to all of these comments to respond to; it's craziness! And I'm sure I would have enjoyed reading your thoughts, anyway, but it's all good.

Well, I suppose you and Harwick have both been on the internet longer than myself, but that doesn't really surprise me... as I've said before computers have never been as indispensable to me as they seem to be for most people. I was probably too busy creating and working on various projects to have really wanted to bother with them. And yes, though you both have some years on me, all the Toy Story 2 stuff and other things that the kids are bringing up isn't doing much for my age-conscious self-esteem right now either... ah well.

Oh! Your kitty eeeeee~!! <3 What an adorable little feline, and "Princess Peach" is just the cutest name I have ever heard! ^.^ It fits her so well too. And yes, Grace isn't exactly as svelte as she probably should be, but again she spends nearly all her life curled up asleep somewhere, so I'm not exactly surprised. Silly cats.

And oooh, so you went ahead and got a tablet too; how exciting that everybody is learning and experimenting and growing all together at the same time! I had no idea that you were interested in trying your hand at digital art, dear Jody, but now that you have brought it to my attention you'll really have to let me know how it's working out for you!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

I'm 'fraid I have absolutely no knowledge whatsoever when it comes to old time computer games...books were more of my thing. Again, I started my Potter journey when I was seven, so you'd probably have no trouble trying to picture me reading 24/7! =D

As for my name, I was referring to my REAL name when I said it was similar to a certain Potter character. So far, I have only revealed my name to Di herself, and I prefer to keep it that way until someone contacts me in private. As for the name CaineScroll...that's kind of a personal thing, and I have no idea whether I'll explain anytime soon. Sorry, mate.

Oh my lord, you have an adorable kitty! I don't have a pet myself, but honestly I think I'm more of a dog person. Don't get me wrong, I love cats too: it's just that dogs appeal to me more. If I had a choice, I'd like to have an Australian (what gave it away?) Shepherd Dog. A retriever wouldn't be too bad, either.

I'm mighty surprised at the number of people who only recently acquired their tablet, including myself. It's one of the most charming devices invented for the purpose of art and design, if I do say so myself, even if it's hard to understand at first. I like to keep track of how everyone's doing in digital art, so I really hope you don't mind sharing your experiences with a seventeen-year-old kid! ^^

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I know, I know, it's just that...I have OTD (Obsessive Traveling Disorder. Woohoo). Technically, hearing about someone going to another country gets my adrenaline spiking for some reason I can't explain. It works the other way, too: A friend of mine has siblings who live in Edinburgh and Tokyo respectively, and when they come home, OTD attack. When someone else goes to Italy, OTD attack. My family has a really annoying habit of going to China while leaving the younger generation behind, even if they've got the financial support. BOOM. Massive OTD attack. It bugs me to no end.

As for the decade-old games I may have heard of Oregon Trail at one point, but I have no idea if it's the same thing. I'm more familiar with the Japanese stuff, i.e. Final Fantasy, Parasite Eve, Harvest Moon...the like. It's amazing how the first two can survive till now.

On a completely unrelated subject, my art is nearly done. Sadly, I only have one picture that'll be done by Christmas, and I won't be able to do another one until the celebrations are over (curse you, party invitations). I prefer my post to be called "Merry Christmas" instead of "Happy Boxing Day", so I'll make sure that I post it on the day itself. At least, on my time zone.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

If you were still in college in '93, then you can't have much on me in age as I graduated in '94. Still, I'm not going to fight you for the "creepy old guy" title. It's probably one, like "best pony", that gets passed around anyway. (Not on this blog, of course. Here best pony at least is resolutely defined.)

I hope you don't mind if I call you Jody as well, as the full username is harder to use casually. Unlike you, I've left a string of aliases across the internet, as I hate using numbers and such in my names for unknown reasons. I was so disappointed when I went to set up that DA page and found that Harwick was already taken (and that the person who claimed it had never posted or done anything with it in the 5 years since they joined.)

By the way, Princess Peach is adorable. Cats must sleep in the cutest positions as some kind of defense mechanism. Who would attack them when they look like that?

I hope we get to see some of what you come up with using your tablet. That goes for everyone here... that's the fun part of hanging around other artists.


@WhiteDiamonds

Hey, I'm always happy to be useful in any way possible... and you could never compete with the mirror in regards to making me feel older these days, so no worries there.

Yes, the Oregon Trail was a bleak, morbid little game, but then it did probably faithfully capture all of the fun that the pioneers had. Actually, working in the video game industry, this is one instance where I'm jealous of the older generations rather than the younger ones. The standards for "jaw dropping visuals" used to be painfully easy to meet, and if a game worked without crashing it was considered a great success. Then gamers had to go and develop "standards" and want more than a pixelated ox pulling a covered wagon, and now I never get enough sleep.

I won't lie, the Cintiq monitor is sinfully delightful. When it gives out, I already know I'm going to have to bite the bullet and invest the significant cash into replacing it (and there's no way I could have justified the expense for the first one, so I'm lucky I got it for free.) It does have one big drawback, however... it's noticeably less bright than my second monitor (I do fully encourage all artists to hook up two monitors to your computer, by the way. Invaluable for opening reference images in one and drawing in the other.) It's a serious problem, as I have to take whatever I'm working on back and forth between the two displays to make sure that the contrast is really what I want it to be, and that there aren't a bunch of stray marks hiding the in shadows that are suddenly quite visible.

As jealous as I am of the advantages younger artists have these days, I do believe it leads directly into what most excites me about this fandom... They're able to create some absolutely amazing things that we (or at least Jody and I) could have never dreamed of at their age. I really do agree that at the rate things are going, people won't have to wait around for the likes of a Studio B to create their entertainment, fans will be putting out whole shows on their own based around their favorite properties. Probably within a decade or two.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

The closest we could get would be a video conference, but I wouldn't even be able to attend that because I can't really speak aloud at 1:00 in the morning. I have considered taking my picture, but the camera--Or at least, the camera on my father's Android tablet--hates me. It makes my skin look paler, my head look longer, my nose look sharper and longer, my eyes too shady and, worst of all, my hair too short. (How?) In a word, it makes me look like a skinhead. Which is kind of problematic, because I have been told that we will all get haircuts before Christmas. It has been at least three months since I last had a haircut (Because driving requires gas, which requires money), and I've been enjoying every minute of it. I look way too young and average just after a haircut. Maybe it would be worth trying again...

My parents drink a lot of coffee, and I really like (I always hesitate to use the word "love") the smell of it, but so far I have not been able to try it. My mother thinks that it "stunts your growth", which I doubt, but it isn't like I can't wait. Still, I wand to live near a coffee shop some day. They look and smell so nice. Most teenagers go out to parties to drink alcohol and smoke marijuana. Once I'm out of my parents' control, I'm going to go out and drink coffee. Be appalled by my shocking display of rebelliousness. Frozen yogurt is good too.

And yet, those two sentences bring up another question; What would a small group of people of varying ages and artistic talent talk about? I guess I can take ease in the fact that I'm still the youngest. We're all adults here.

I guess there are better people to repost your work than a Pony porn artist...Assuredly, I doubt any of us here have any interest in using our art skills for that. You could make an account and send him (It says on his profile) a private message or report him I suppose (I've never used DA), but it would depend on how much it means to you. He has 7 watchers, which I guess is more than our little vocal group, but with only 3 comments it seems pretty inactive. It's your choice.

If you'd believe it, there is even a group for genderswapped ponies.

As for PurpleKecleon, I guess I was mostly thinking of the Rainbow Dash picture and the excited, arguably canine way she drew Rarity holding her pins in her mouth (Why would she need to, with magical telekinesis and a walking pincushion?). They just look staged, like a model for a picture. Your work looks more like what might actually happen, like "a moment in the life of Rarity reacting to Applejack being painfully honest". PurpleKecleon's work is just kind of too perfect. It's hard to describe. It looks artificial. I don't mean to limit your freedom, and you don't need to listen to me, but your work more often has a small, dignified smile or "meh" face. Unless the character is Pinkie wearing a wizard costume, or Sweetie Belle excitedly smiling for a picture. But those are justified. There are good reasons why those characters have those expressions. The family photo may have been "staged", but they don't all just have big, smiling faces. There is a visual contrast in emotions. It makes the scene seem natural, and sort of improvised, because each character was not consciously planning how they should look in the picture. They just displayed their feelings. Like a good actor, it looks more believable and real. Or maybe I've lost my mind.

I suppose cleaning and customer service in an art studio really makes use of all your talents, but I'm surprised they don't have you doing more actual artistic work. You're very overqualified to be a janitor or a person to answer the phone. That's kind of wasted potential for them.

Anon said... Reply to comment

It would probably be better that I try to trace your work rather than pre-production vectors. Last night I took CaineScroll's advice to an extreme, drawing circles so small that they are barely visible. It looks like this. Like I said, varying success. That's actually the resolution that I was making them in. I wondered if it would make more sense to zoom out and make them small instead of trying to draw large ones cleanly, but once you scroll in, you see how messy they actually are. Oh well, at least I'm not using a circle tool.

@jodyjm13

I had wondered where you went, but I didn't want to mention it. It should be good to have another voice and opinion around, anyway.

You graduated college two years before I was born...Well, we're all equals here. We are Anonymous and we are legion. /internet

Like CaineScroll, I have never had a pet. Surely I'm bringing on strong feelings of pity and envy.

It is quite a coincidence that three of us would get tablets at almost the same time. Especially considering how I had no part in ordering "mine". Watching steady development should be quite enjoyable though, as WD mentioned.

Is watching Toy Story 2 at 6 years old now the American standard of youth? I think I just started a generation. (Though it was actually made in 1999, so I was 3 or 4 at the time.)

The games I tend to play, I'm not sure. I just sort of pick out anything that looks interesting to me. I did play a lot of MMO[genre] games for online multiplayer. I never like the grinding "click and watch" ones, just the fun games that involve skill. I'm kind of a Nintendo purist, only liking a couple games for other platforms. XBox games can just be so vulgar and violent. It isn't that I can't play it, but that I wouldn't want to. An FPS is one thing, but you don't need to make a special "tear the guy's head off" combo. I have an old Gameboy Color, a GameCube and a Wii. My sister has a DS. I don't have much interest in mobile games because I'm never "on the go" and I would prefer to use the better hardware if I have it.

@Harwick

The best pony is a well-known fact. Questioning the will of our noble Leaderp has most unfavorable repercussions.

You seem to be someone that cares about their username as well; How did you get yours? Did you just think of it?

That's exactly what Bronytoons is trying to do. As someone that had to observe the art style and walkcycle very closely for my project (I should put up a first demo here once I have the eyes and tail done...), it isn't perfect, but they did decently well. The writing is...less so. Still, I'm glad someone is trying it.

Oh, you work in game development? As I'm sure you have read before, I'm a bit of a hobbyist indie developer. I'm not sure if your professionalism would lead you to disagree, but I think the game industry's newer technology is making it easier for nonprofessionals to do this as well. If you want nice classical music, Sibelius does that for you. A lot of background music is done in FL Studio. If you want 3D models, you can download Blender. I recently started using the Unity game engine, and it has a lot of features that simplifies and optimizes the project. I have a friend who prefers game engineering, and he has suggested that I do what he does and work from the ground up with C++ and OpenGL. But I don't think that's worth the work. With a good engine, even a teenager (Granted, I know enough to almost cover two school courses and I'm self-taught) can make a somewhat impressive game. I tend work exclusively in 3D, partially because 2D is so easy to program that it isn't so impressive anymore.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Actually, you know what, after giving it further thought last night I think I actually do recall you asking me about what sort of tablet I used and all that, as you were interested in picking up drawing again. Obviously, I had forgotten all about that when I first replied to you. Of course, I get messages and emails from so many people asking me about my art and how I go about creating it and so on but still, I'm surprised I forgot that (mind like a sieve though; I've warned you all about my forgetfulness before).

In any case, I do still hope you will keep me updated on how it's going for you!

@CaineScroll

Ohhhhhh yes, that makes much more sense about your name now that you've clarified that for Jody. Okay, now I get it. ^.^;

And yes, I can absolutely understand and relate to how you feel dear; I get the same sort of thing when I find out someone I know is going to be doing something that I enjoy or am interested in (like having lunch at the Cheesecake Factory, or when my brother told me he was going to be seeing Phantom of the Opera in Las Vegas). It's not a jealousy thing, it's just that I get so incredibly excited because then I start imagining myself in the same position, or am perhaps just happy for my friends/family/whoever knowing that they are going to be experiencing something that brings me so much joy. Contagious enthusiasm I guess.

And well, I think you have been far more productive than me when it comes to artwork lately, as I have just been torn in so many directions it's been hard to get anything done. But one new picture, at the very least shall be completed and hopefully posted on my blog in the next couple of days (no exceptions; it's a commission and I have a deadline to meet), so at least there will be that.

I may be an American, but I have always loved the idea of Boxing Day for whatever reason. I really think it should be a national holiday here in the US; it would round out our holiday season perfectly.

@Harwick

"Creepy old guy title"... you and Jody both crack me up. Not like age has ever been an overly relevant factor to me anyway (er well, aside from my own age I suppose), and no matter the case I find you both to be perfectly delightful people. I really do love this fandom.

And while you weren't exactly speaking to me, I agree with you in that I am rather picky about my username. "WhiteDiamonds" is a name that, thus far at least, I have only used here on this blog and for my pony business, though if I were to create a dA account again I suppose I would want to name it similarly (though chances are the name is already taken there; it's not exactly the most original pseudonym I've ever used). Not that I have any trouble at all coming up with a username that I like, but I have grown rather fond of this one, I will admit.

I agree completely with you about the old-school video games... honestly, sometimes it makes me nostalgic for the times when 8-bit was still considered impressive, entertaining and something to get excited about. Movies are the same thing; I love old black-and-white movies you see, and think it's a bit sad that for the most part, even if a film is considered "great" and successful these days it only has a relatively short time in the spotlight and in the minds of the public before it's swallowed up by the next big thing. There doesn't seem to be room for "classics" anymore (again, with few exceptions)... movies, games, and most everything else are produced on such a vast scale that it's hard to keep them all straight sometimes. Oh well.

I'm probably making myself sound much older than I actually am right now. Bleh.

But anyway, yes, technology and progress is a double-edged sword, I guess! It certainly does have its perks, as you have said.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Would you believe it, I've actually gotten into the habit of cutting my own hair recently (aside from saving money, it allows me to get it exactly as I want it, since I'm pretty picky as I'm sure you can imagine). Seeing that I've received compliments before and despite the fact that I never went to beauty school, I guess I must be doing something right enough.

And yes, I dearly love coffee... as I think I have mentioned before somewhere on this blog, I used to be a barista you see. These days I'm afraid I'm forced to stick with decaf (more on this at some point in the next few days, whenever I get around to posting a new blog entry), but I refuse to stop drinking it altogether. That and tea; I LOVE tea of all kinds and have a stocked pantry shelf that could rival a grocery stores'. Needless to say I am accompanied by a hot mug or thermos of something on almost a constant basis as I go about my daily business.

Oh, yes, that person. I really don't know what I'm going to do about it, but I suppose I could make an account just to ask him to remove his traced picture (wouldn't that make me seem like an obnoxious person, I'm sure). At the same time, he did credit me so maybe I should just let it alone... I don't know. Meh.

And yes, I can imagine they have dA groups for most anything these days. I wasn't really surprised about the Rarijack group, more like just... intrigued. ^.^;

Well, at least now I know for sure you and I are talking about the same PurpleKecleon, though I have to wonder if you've seen any of her works besides just her recent ponies (all of which were pieces she considers to be doodles by the way, which were all done in under half and hour and after seeing what she admits was one episode of FiM). Her dA account gives some much better examples of what I was talking about in regards to her use of light and color, which is what I really envy about her work, as again her actual style of drawing, the way she does expressions, etc. isn't what I was referring to when I said I felt she was a more advanced artist. But yes.

And perhaps I gave you the wrong idea when I was describing what I do at work... I'm certainly not a "janitor" by any means, though I am responsible for answering the phones when I'm there. Moreso, I meant that I help customers when they are working on their ceramic pieces, in the form of offering help and advice with ceramic painting techniques, educating them on how to use the various glazes, etc. And in turn, I clean up after them when they're done, as in washing palettes, dishes and brushes, and not so much mopping floors, you see. *ahem*

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Anon

This particular user name is after a town near my grandmother's place. As a child, when I saw the exit signs for Harwick I knew we were almost there after a long 6 hour drive to visit for the holidays. I've always liked the name as a result.

In general, I like user names that are different enough that I'm unlikely to run across someone with the same moniker at any given site, and yet not so unusual that it's a struggle for people to recall it when it isn't right in front of them.

I certainly think that the tools are becoming available to allow non-professionals to turn in impressive works in just about any entertainment medium these days... game development is no different. In turn, it pushes the high-end games to have to go farther and farther, which may be great for the gamer but can just be a pain for me personally. When the last generation of consoles came out early in the development cycle of a project I was art director on, it went from being a $4m budgeted project on the X-Box and PS2 to a $20m budgeted project on the 360 and PS3... and that was still a very low budget game. A great deal of that cost went into the development of art assets, which had to be exponentially more complex due to the increased graphic capabilities of the new systems. Trust me, spend years of your life designing, drawing, discussing, approving or revising all of the objects that make up a game world and you begin to long for the days of Pong, Defender or Q*bert.

But then you remember that you're occasionally drawing robots, or crazy vehicles, or insane weapons, and you realize that this beats the hell out of that summer you spent working in the plastics factory in college.

@WhiteDiamonds

I quite like your choice of "White Diamonds", myself... it classes up the internet. Plus, it has the added bonus of reminding me of both you and Rarity whenever Liz Taylor shows up in an ad for her perfume.

I'd like to think that there are still some things that can achieve "classic" status, but it seems so hard to tell these days. Part of the problem is that the Gen Xers like myself didn't let go of a lot. 80's culture wasn't allowed to recede into the past, separating the true classics of the era from all the detritus.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

In the one day since my last comment, there's been 11 new comments running 13 screenfuls on my monitor. Yow. Welp, let's get started... *cracks knuckles*

@WhiteDiamonds

Reading about your "creatively visualizing" your trip to Japan and having it come about is certainly intriguing; I know Scott Adams, creator of Dilbert, talks about using a similar process to accomplish his goals. It's something I've never tried before because, well, I'm very much a hard-headed pragmatic engineer type, and I've never thought I could really believe in it; on the other hand, what've I got to lose?

As for my comments about being ooooooold and looking for my cane, that's just me being facetious again; my age has never really bothered me, I suspect partly because most of my childhood interests have followed me into adulthood (cartoons & comics, math, baseball history).

It's hardly surprising that the fact I asked about tablets a couple of months ago slipped your mind, considering how many people you've been carrying on conversations with online in that time, and how at least two others have also bought tablets in that time. I suspect it'll be a while before I produce anything worth sharing, though; even as a kid, I could tell my talent was limited, though I was halfway decent at faking it (and at adding goofy, off-the-wall details).

And I know what you mean about enjoying the old black-and-white movies; great movies nowadays (again, with a few exceptions) just aren't as fun to watch as Casablanca or Mr. Smith Goes to Washington or 12 Angry Men.

@CaineScroll

Thanks for the clarification about your names. There's no need for you to reveal your RL name or explain the origin of online pseudonym; I just misread what you wrote, and was worried I was missing some Potter reference to a scroll hidden in Alastor Moody's cane or something.

As for sharing my art experiences with a "seventeen-year-old kid", I certainly have no problem doing so, assuming I end up with any experiences worth sharing. I've certainly seen a fair amount of terrific art from artists that young or younger (Briskby's art when I first found her comes to mind), so I have no qualms about asking advice from or sharing results with you.

@Harwick

Yes, I'd be happy if you do call me Jody; it's easier for me, after all, if I'm called by the same name online that I am in meatspace. (There's a couple of websites where I have used a different name while signing up, and when someone addresses me by that name, it sometimes takes me a bit of time to realize that I'm the one they're talking to...)

You bring up an interesting point about how the rising sophisitication of the tools for amateurs to use in creating video games has raised the bar for the professional industry; on the other hand, it does seem like it's the simple games, like Tetris and Angry Birds, that seem to sweep the nation.

@Anon

Drinking coffee as a form of rebellion? Sounds good to me. I confess that, as much as I like the smell of coffee, I could never really get into drinking it. I do drink a cup from time to time, but once I'm finished adding cream and sugar to it, the resulting beverage can hardly be called "coffee"...

And I'm afraid you've gotten my graduation year off slightly; thanks to changing my major and taking 3 semesters to work a co-op job, I actually graduated in '96, so I didn't quite graduate before you were born, though it's close.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, it's no surprise that I complete work at a quick pace lately, even if it is one picture per post. As I may have mentioned in this blog somewhere, I only recently graduated from high school, and nothing will happen until March when I finally get my exam results. For now, I'm a living sloth at home, stuck with nothing else to do other than the laptop. I would have gotten a job, but there weren't any opens left in the bookstore...perhaps I should do a WhiteDiamonds and hunt for a "help wanted" notice at the nearest Starbucks.

As for tea, I suppose the best experience I've had was sipping hot passionfruit tea from from a mug of fine china, sitting on a balcony high above the tea plantations of Cameron Highlands (one of the only places in Malaysia to have a full English name! Thank you, British settlers) accompanied by a cool breeze and a plate of chocolate cake. My lord, that even sounds British by nature. I might still have pictures of that escapede, and I'd be more than happy to post them as a Magellan Report if anyone wants them.

As for *ahem* that person on dA, personally I wouldn't mind, as long as they give credit where it is due, or post a link back to me. I reckon the reason I'm being so generous is because this case sounds much more tame compared to that heckler from several weeks ago. That is one internet user I never want to come across again. EVER.

@jodyjm13

No worries, mate. As far as I'm concerned, Moody's cane is exactly what it appears to be---a form of intimidation, not to mention body support.

On the other hand, you may have missed out on the Hidden Scroll Chamber of Cain, located a few corridors away from the Ravenclaw common room, and is the bane of the Hidden Dictionary Dungeon of Abel.*

It's amazing how technology in our world can evolve so rapidly. When I was for, my idea of a state-of-the-art mobile phone was a Nokia 3210, in all its 8-bit glory. Barely a few hours ago, I read a headline regarding Apple Inc. launching the blitzkrieg on several HTC smartphones. The concept of the PS3 back in the day was considered laughable and yet it is now the norm of gaming. I don't claim that I own one, though---I have never owned a console in my life. My mother reckons it's addicting.

*this is a joke

Anon said... Reply to comment

Hm, not much I can contribute to the conversation right now...

@WhiteDiamonds

I get a full-sized response post all to myself? Maybe I really do write too much...

My sister sometimes has her bangs trimmed at home when they get too long, and I have wanted to try doing it entirely by myself, but generally my mother (Yes, my mother says a lot of things) discourages that because "the haircutters know how to do it right". Oh well, I guess I'm going to go crazy the moment I move out.

Ah, tea. So many things I need to try. I might have to go to England for that, though. I'm not sure how my parents would react to it.

Oh, I know you aren't in any way a janitor. I just thought it was odd that they would have an artist cleaning and answering phones. I suppose it lets them cut back staff. Still, it sounds like a much better job than I was originally expecting. I was thinking that you just made pottery all day, every day.

@Harwick

I know of two types of gamers; The Call of Duty players that only care about graphics, and the RPG and MineCraft players that prioritize on gameplay. Competition is always good for the consumers, though I'm surprised that they wouldn't just get more artists like they would with programmers. Surely they at least pay you more for it.

Art Director sounds like an important title. You must have a very big impact on the way that the game will turn out in the end, potentially making or breaking the whole project. I'm sure I don't have to tell you this, but that is a profession to be proud of.

I must have mentioned this before, but I appreciate WhiteDiamonds' name for the same reasons. Amid all the "matt123"s and the "kill3rawesome"s, a truly classy (or classic?) name like is very uncommon. A person that can live up to the name, however, is much more rare. I am glad that there is at least one.

@jodyjm13

It seems we have plenty of dreamers here. There are just so many things to pursue. I have to finish high school before any of that, though...

Hm, classic movies. As you might suspect, I haven't seen any of them. That's something I should make time for. I'm not so young that graphics mean more to me than a story. Judging by a lot of Disney movies they are making these days, however, I have to think I'm in the minority.

I think the reason behind Angry Birds' success (I have to guess, since I don't play it) is how hooked people can get on it. Pokemon fans buy every game because they must "catch 'em all". FarmVille land that you worked to create will die if you do not tend to it, forcing you to play even when you don't necessarily want to. And if Angry Birds can keep someone's attention anywhere, at any time, it's a matter of never being satisfied.

That's how my father drinks it. His cup is always a frosty white and cream color. It looks as good as it smells. Which is basically like a hot chocolate if you continuously added marshmallows after the last ones melted.
...
I need to try that.

@CaineScroll

I said this on your blog, but at least someone here is being productive. You and Diamonds seem to be the supporting artists here. A group of artists must be so interesting to be a part of. Enjoying every next creation, presenting your own, stimulating more conversation...

You aren't the only one; All of the names down here are in Spanish. The city I live in is aptly, yet not so flatteringly named after its geographical shape.

Wow. Of course I've never had tea (I really must be missing out on a lot...), but that description sounds poetic. And now, we must all do that.

Anon said... Reply to comment

We have at least one (Expensive phones mysteriously go in and out of this house like the breeze when he is doing testing with an affiliate company) Android smartphone and tablet due to a big business application we developed. It's hard for me to appreciate them because, as I mentioned further up, I never leave the house. But it is impressive how they made decent computers so small. Mobile internet access really can turn them into something so much more than a computer.


Just in case, I would like to clarify that I am not the Anon that translated the article about the German parliament. That kind of surprised me when I saw it. I guess I really need a new name. :/

Last night, I traced one of the sketches, but I didn't keep it because it was only a tracing. A very lazy one at that. I really have no excuse. I did get into a good motion for circle drawing, though, so I kept one of my better ones. Due to how I tend to reflexively undo each one after I make it, I don't have my best one, whatever that was. But I think this one looks okay. It might be enough to use as a reference and get on with the drawing already.

100 comments? We made it before the next entry came. I wonder how long this activity will last.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I guys there's not much to be said here, seeing that you've covered ask the finer points. But I am flattered that you call me a supporting artist, thank you!

Did you draw that circle yourself? If so, I applaud you. You've successfully created a professional grade circle, and I'm not jesting here. Maybe you won't be able to make it in time for Christmas, but there's still New Year's Eve. Keep on going! =)

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

And oh yes. Viva commento centesimo!

Anon said... Reply to comment

Meh, I only just left a message, but it seems to be a slow day. WhiteDiamonds must be especially busy right now with Christmas, work and a commission with a deadline. Which is probably what will overwhelm this blog sooner or later, but there is nothing to worry about now. If anything, I feel sorry for her, but I guess it's better than a boring life. Let's see if I have enough to form a post...

@CaineScroll

Thank you for appreciating any progress if I have made it, even if I think the circle is nothing. The concern is how many tries it takes to get something acceptable, but if it's enough to move on from repeated circle attempts, I'll take it. It really felt encouraging to think that I may have gotten any better, or closer to actually drawing anything. It's just so hard to imagine for me. Graphic art is something that I have always respected but decided that it was impossible for me to learn and not worth pursuing. Most art I see is paintings of beaches, which I just find boring. This blog proved to me that there is an interesting thing to make art of. Because, honestly, MLP fanart is the only thing that really seems worth drawing to me right now. Apart from that, the support of this blog is likely what kept me going. I would be much more likely to lose interest and give up on my own. I still have no way to know if I will progress any further than a decent circle, but the people here help convince me to try.

I'm doing it now by using my elbow to move up and down and my shoulder to move side to side. That way, I only need the muscles to remember one simple motion. It looks like cranking a wind-up music/jack in the box. I also kind of twirl the pen in general circles, which lets me minimize the pushing of the elbow and shoulder. I don't think that's how the professionals do it, but it's only a reference circle.

I made a tracing of one of WD's sketches...three nights ago is it, now? I know that tracings aren't all that impressive, but I really have nothing else to show so far. This is it here. What I did best was the hair strands. They were surprisingly natural, and came out clean and thin. The part that I did the worst was the curve on the ears and the right half of the horn. I didn't even try doing the circle or the eyes. I don't even know which part of those eyes are supposed to represent what without color, besides that it just looks right. I worry that if I ever wound up drawing a character, their eyes would all be mysteriously closed. I figure I won't have to worry about eyes for now, though. Right now, I should be worrying about making ears that don't look like rat ears.

Anon said... Reply to comment

Edit: Typos are not welcome among my words of wisdom!

For the past few days, I have been looking for artwork that I especially like and wouldn't mind learning the style of. That led me back to this one, which coincidentally now happens to be EQD's banner. What were the odds of that?

Honestly, a big part of the reason why I like it is because of how oddly masculine it is. The colors aren't too vibrant, the eyelashes are barely visible, Dash is wearing a jacket/coat that I could see myself wearing if I had an excuse. Her expression reminds me of Harrison Ford. Scootaloo is wearing a nicely patterned scarf, and I happen to like scarves. And who is the stuffed toy that she receives? Soarin', of all ponies. It makes me wish we had at least one male character that had his feet on the ground (Figuratively, of course). I'm perfectly fine with all the main characters being female, because they make it work. I'm not offended. A male mane 6 character would probably just ruin it. But Macintosh had to be slow. The Cloudsdale fliers were bullies. Prince Blueblood was Prince Blueblood. Tom was a good listener, if a bit posessive. Well, we at least had Fancypants. Maybe if I ever wind up drawing characters, I can recreate that untouched image of independence and confident resourcefulness that only Dash can put forth here.

(Who am I kidding; I'm saying we need to ponify James Bond.)

I have done some tracing of more finished works, but it made me feel like I was training my hand to draw that picture. One character, from one perspective. I think it might be useful for specific parts, but I don't think I should spend too much time surfing the lines of artwork completely. Instead, I intend to pull from them as necessary. You know what that means; Diving head-first into whatever I plan on making. Disastrous results expected (Failure is always an option!). I have three ideas in my head right now: Two of them are crossovers, and could be made into ponification series, while the other would hopefully be a comic. All of them are quite ambitious. I probably won't ever make them, and I still contend that I probably won't ever learn how to draw more than a circle after many tries, but challenge is how you learn, I suppose. I can tell you right away, though, that none of them are holiday-related (Well, unless I decided to theme a comic after one, but the one that I had in mind really would only work with either Christmas or Valentine's Day. Unless there is a "Friendship Day" that I don't know about). Assuming I'm trying to learn, deadlines are last thing I need. I warn you; I'm a slow, perfectionist quality worker.

And...that's about it. With the holiday, CainScroll's creation and "hopefully", "at least one" commission from Diamonds, we have a lot to look forward to. I just wish I could contribute. Oh well; Whatever you make, I will gladly give back a terrible tracing of it.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@Anon

If I do somehow miraculously become a good-enough artist to display my drawings publicly, I imagine I'll branch out into non-pony art, but for now the pony ideas that I have are first and foremost in my mind. One thing that worries me, though, is that I'm less interested in becoming a good artist than I am in simply giving form to ideas that I feel need to be expressed. Which is just a fancy way of saying I want to respond to, e.g., AppleDash shipping images with an AppleDash friendshipping drawing, or Trollestia with playful Celestia. I have a nagging feeling that such a results-based focus will constrain my development. Still, no harm in trying.

As for male MLP:FiM characters, I disagree with your characterization of Big Macintosh as 'slow', although what little we've seen of him so far in season 2 wouldn't really go against that characterization. "Applebuck Season", though, showed him as having a better idea of what Applejack was capable of than AJ herself, as well as having a dry sense of humor. Once you get past him, Fancypants, Spike, and Mr. Cake, though, the male characters in the show are not a very inspiring lot (I dearly love Snails, but he is slow).

And since I suspect it'll be a few days before I can return to commenting here, I'd like to wish everyone a merry Christmas, happy Hanukkah, season's greetings, or whatever others holiday wishes may be appropriate. If it's not out of place, I'd like to share a few seasonal drawings as a sort of virtual greeting card:

Derpy & Dinky caroling (Di has already seen this sketch), as well as (3/4 of?) the Hooves family celebrating.

More caroling, this time with Rarity & Sweetie Belle (and I'd dearly love to hear them sing a duet).

Rarity and Fluttershy dressed up for the season

A ponified Nativity scene (I don't think it's either blasphemous or proselytizing, but use your judgment as to whether you might find it objectionable.)

And for those of us strapped for space, a guide to an instant Christmas tree that will fit almost anywhere.

Favo said... Reply to comment
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Anon said... Reply to comment

It seems I lost the link to the image after the edit; I was referring to this picture.

@jodyjm13

I guess I would draw other things if they caught my interest. Your situation sounds like mine when I first started game development, and continues to be the case now. I have been playing computer games for almost as long as I can remember, and I have always felt like something wasn't perfect. If I was the one that made it, I would have done this differently, and it would have been much better. By the time I was 13, I had years worth of ideas that were never being fulfilled. I was actually playing an online "make your own game" game that basically gave you a Lego-esque character and let you build structures using Lego-esque blocks with attachable meshes. I tried to work with my structures and others' public domain scripts, but eventually I saw all that you could do if you know how to script. One day, a sudden determination went over me to learn what I had no concept of. It was not because I have always wanted to be a great programmer. It was not because I needed something to boost my ego. It was because there were things that I wanted to be made, and if I didn't make them, then no one would. Clearly, you have ideas as I did. You have the will and goals that lead you toward developing your ability, rather than someone that only wants to learn it to say that they can. Unlike them, you have a good reason to continue to try.

I guess it is a bit harsh to call him slow. I did have to take a moment to decide whether or not I should say so. It's just hard to say anything about him when he says so little. The moment that he speaks in Applebuck Season really is the best evidence of his intellectual ability. Like you said, Snails does speak his mind more often. For better or for worse.

I don't want to make it sound like it's a problem that there are so few normal male characters. I just think it's an understandably untried concept for a character, so I was surprised when I faced something closer to it.

Commissioned by jodyjm13? I wish I could do it too. Considering all the possible things you could have asked for, you make some pretty good choices. The idea of Octavia in the act of composing was profound.

Being that Rarity is often considered the best singer by fans, and it's implied that singing is Sweetie Belle's talent, a duet with the two would break scales. It should only be a matter of time.

@Favo

Clearly you already have good sense of proportion. Of course it's freehand, but it looks like a trace. Though, did you do any sketching to get it right? It looks like you did all your lines on the first try. Which is more impressive if you did, but it would be harder to do it that way. I know it's just a first try, but it might be easy to add a few more lines to the bottom just to give it some depth. Unless that's just the style that you're going for, more of a weapon selection icon than an object in front of you.

I know, like I said, I do write a lot. Since we don't have much to talk about at this moment, I wanted to throw out anything relevant I had on my mind. If shorter messages are what works for you, then that's great, and sorry if it's too long to be worth it to you. I know that there are people here that enjoy a longer and more detailed conversation, since we have had plenty of it here already.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Eeep at long last I'm back, to a huge handful of comments at that! I feel as though I've been gone for days... oh wait, I suppose that's because I actually have been. My apologies dearies, though I thank you all for understanding~

@Harwick

Thank you very much for the kind compliment! If I may say so that is the very reason that I am fond of this username as well... after all the internet can always use some more class and elegance in my opinion. If only one day my actual name could be synonymous with those traits as well, as Elizabeth Taylor's is... a girl can only hope anyway.

Personally, I love your username as well. I'm not really sure why, but every time I see it I'm reminded of candles (like nice, handmade beeswax candles) and cozy, rustic homes and villages like of the sort they still have in England. Or the Shire in Lord of the Rings... something like that. Anyway, it's a very pleasant mental image.

And yes, the 80s really were fantastic... I may have been a small child, but I still remember the music, movies, and other pop culture phenomenons with great fondness and nostalgia. And you're right; I've noticed people of my age and older seem to have a hard time of wanting to let go of those things, though I think it's understandably so.

@jodyjm13

Yes, it's truly amazing how quickly they can pile up isn't it? They definitely do tend to keep me busy, though I genuinely do love reading what you all have to say so it's never a trouble.

I had no idea that Scott Adams was known for utilizing a similar method of thinking but I guess I'm not really surprised... according to my mother (who I can probably credit for my attitude; she's been an advocate for such modes of thought for most of her life) many successful people use similar means to accomplish their goals, either consciously or otherwise. I don't know how true that is but as you say, it certainly can never hurt, and I know in that one instance at least it definitely seemed to work for me when I tried it. Here's hoping for UK 2012 as well!

Yes, I guess I really shouldn't bemoan my age so much either... it's not that I actually think or feel that I'm so old anyway, and as I said I certainly (thank genetics or my meticulous skin care regime, who knows) still look young as well. It's not really a big deal, I guess just being around so many younger people it's hard not to be aware of the generation gap when it's so obviously staring me in the face! Ahh well.

In any case you really will have to keep me up to speed on how it's going for you with your drawing, as I said before, and if there's any issues that I might be able to be of help with (doubtful, I'm sure you're perfectly capable) I hope you'll ask. And now all I want to do is go and watch some old Basil Rathbone Sherlock Holmes movies. With a cup of well-creamed and sugared decaf coffee...

Favo said... Reply to comment
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Favo said... Reply to comment
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Anon said... Reply to comment

I think I'll wait until she's done before I add to the stack...

@Favo

...the most powerful handgun in the world, and would blow your head clean off...

Oh, heh, okay. That's sort of sudden, often comedic narcissism developed when I was 12 and 13, playing an old game called AdventureQuest with my friend. We would just switch between cooperation and demoralizing Trixie.

I don't really picture her as anything besides her avatar. I guess sometimes she's Rarity. But not a humanization, since I don't really go in for those. I did happen to get a good picture of myself earlier, but I decided against posting it because I knew that I would be the only one, and I really didn't want to ruin whatever mental image people had of me. A physical body doesn't always represent the way that a person thinks well, but our speech is a mostly pure manifestation of it.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Ooooh, Starbucks! <3 That sounds so incredibly delightful right now... I could really go for a nice soy caramel macchiato (upside down). Or a pumpkin spice latte...

How I envy you for your fabulous tea experience, my dear! @_@ I don't know that I've ever experienced something so delightful as that sounds, and I'm afraid I've never been anywhere near a tea plantation (well, maybe I was when I was in Japan but if so, I didn't realize it at the time). If you'd be willing I'd definitely love to see some pictures if you could find them!

And yes, I mentioned it to Favo recently as well but for now, I've decided to just let the matter be in regards to my traced artwork showing up on dA. Only because I really can't think of what else to do about it though. Eventually, I suppose I'll have to break down and get an account, and when I do I can politely request him to take it down or at least link to my gallery, I suppose. It's fine though.

@Anon

Well you do write a lot my dear, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. I do enjoy reading through your comments if that means anything to you.

And yes, some hair stylists do know how to "do it right" but not all of them are created equal, in my experience. Though I doubt your mother would appreciate my saying so.

Haha, I think you hit the nail on the head there with it allowing them to cut back on staff. ;)

And my dear, for what it's worth it looks to me as though you've been making some admirable progress! The circles really are coming along, and while that may not seem like too much it means you're getting more comfortable with the stylus and are improving on the hand-mind's eye coordination that is so imperative to creating artwork. Just keep up with what you're doing and I'm sure you will continue to improve... you've only been drawing for what, two weeks now if even!? You can get to the point of being a successful artist if that really is a goal you'd like to accomplish.

I really have been busier than usual lately. I thought about mentioning it on my latest blog post, and I told Jody in a recent email but I actually had to go to the emergency room last Sunday because I've been experiencing skipped/irregular heartbeats on and off for the last several months, and lately it has/had become much worse. So much so that when I had a spell I had to just sit down because I really couldn't do much else. So, yes I went to the hospital and it turns out I have been experiencing a premature ventricular contraction... a relatively common problem I guess though the doctor placed me on some supplements and told me to stop drinking caffeine as well as manage my stress levels (ha easier said than done). So, yeah... I've been trying to force myself to take things a little bit easier I guess, because it's really not a pleasant feeling when it starts acting up.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Favo

Oh, my! I'll be the first to admit that I know next to nothing about guns, but I do know that your drawing looks pretty good to me, very nice dear! You should definitely keep it up, and maybe try moving onto colored works if you feel you are so inclined!

And haha! Humanized Rarity, you really are just so cute. ^.^ Well thank you dearie, I shall take that as a compliment, though I don't know how true it is (I do have long, dark hair that I style meticulously, at least). I suppose one of these days I'll end up putting a picture of myself up here, if I can remember to do so that is.

Also, I would just like to tell you that those pony-pictures you keep posting are totally cracking me up... especially that 'really now?' picture of Twilight with a newspaper! I literally laughed out loud when I first opened that one, all my family was looking at me like I'd somehow lost it.

@Everyone

Thank you so much for 100 comments! I never thought I'd see that milestone on my humble little pony-art blog, but it's a pleasant surprise, must say. ^.^ You all are too fantastic and I cannot thank you enough for the generous support!

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Heh, don't worry. In that respect, I would rather take your opinion than hers. We just go to a minimalist cheap place called First Choice. It isn't bad, but it's just a haircut. I wouldn't know how to tell them what I would want anyway. I guess it shouldn't mean so much to me if I never go outside.

There isn't much that I can say about the current drawing progress besides that I have started a bit of my first idea, but so far results are...as expected. I think I did it at too small a scale, because I'm already running out of room for detail. Which is bad, because the thing that I'm trying to make is not simple. When I scroll in, it quickly gets pixelated. Even after adjusting the maximum size (to 999999), it doesn't let me make the space any larger than 4080x4080. Judging by the size of your artwork, though, it should be plenty. I currently have my pen size set to 1. I think I'll just continue the rough one that I have and use it as a reference to make a larger, better one.

On the bright side, I'm finding it easy to erase my lines and adjust, and the more I add to it, the easier it is to imagine the whole piece completely formed. It makes me think I should do more general shaping to help keep it all proportional.

Though production will have to be slow; I only have about 30 minutes to 2 hours a night to work with before the tablet cuts out. I have a lot less time to get anything done than anyone else here. It isn't laziness, or perfectionism (Okay, yes, it is perfectionism), I really am giving every moment of time that I can to it. I wish I could just ask my sister if I could use it when she is not because "I need two-dimensional objects to work with for game development". After all, she has only actually tried using it for drawing purposes (instead of as a ridiculous and inefficient mouse) twice in all this time. The problem with that would be taking it and putting it back; She keeps it on her desk. I can't be reaching over her shoulder or waiting for times when the office is empty. What if she wants it, but I have it? Would that be bad? Decisions...

The emergency room? That sounds more serious than "not a pleasant feeling". The sites that I found say the same thing, about caffeine. It doesn't sound like it could be fatal, but I haven't come across anything about a cure. I have my own small problems (tinnitus, minor light sensitivity, keratosis pilaris (though that has mostly gone away in the last three years), floaters, a "side stitch" (inaccurately described as "intense") and your common OCD), but none of them are that serious. And for an artist to stress-related ailment. I hope this isn't as big as it sounds. You had to go to the emergency room? It's hard to believe.

After I post this, my messages will make up 21.5% (25/116) of the comments on this entry. I might find that surprising, if I had a life. Still, your blog really has picked up the pace recently. I came across your ponibooru page; There are a lot of Anonymous saying good things about you. They have already added your recent creations. "Best fanartist", "I love this artist". There is nothing there that you don't deserve.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I know you meant no slight to Big Macintosh, but seeing how little he's said so far in season 2, I wanted to call attention to "Applebuck Season" as an example of when he did reveal some of his character through dialog. He strikes me as being deliberate, down-to-earth, and laconic, but I do fear a little that the writers are going to wind up reducing him to a pony of two words, "Eeyup" and "Nope".

And don't worry about the length of your comments; I, for one, look forward to them, and enjoy your turns of phrase. (Your line about typos got a hearty chuckle out of me.)

@WhiteDiamonds

As much as I joke about my age and being twice as old as most online bronies, I actually do relish the generation gap. It's very interesting to get a taste of what's popular among the younger crowd (I surprised myself by liking some of the dubstep pony music that's been posted), and I also get a little thrill when I see something that I loved as a kid surviving the test of time to at least the next generation.

And yes, an evening with Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce does sound like a wonderful escape; Jeremy Brett was certainly closer to the spirit of the stories, but Rathbone was effortlessly charming and keenly intelligent, and his Holmes movies are always a pleasure to watch.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

I really appreciate your saying so. You will always be welcome with us, and I hope that we can be of some use to you as you delve into the difficulties of graphic art.

Well, I did it. I said that "I'm going to need some two-dimensional objects for the programming I'm doing," and "there are certain things that you can't do with a mouse", asking my sister if I could borrow her tablet when she isn't using it. I don't know if it was the inflection that I used (and did not plan to use) or she was just in a good mood, but her response was more enthusiastic than I ever imagined. Almost immediately afterward, she got into a private conversation (private; Shows on a screen that I can read) with my mother about how I wanted to use it for drawing (I did not say that.), and they discussed the possibility of me buying one for myself (Wait, what?). So, as long as my father is out of the office (About half the day), I have free drawing time! Besides, I saw my mother say that my father once tried it out (My sister responded with "I figured. The pen was out of the loop." I always put it back exactly the way you left it so you wouldn't notice, you unappreciative...), so he would be a hypocrite to put it against me.

Let's see what becomes of this.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Favo

I didn't think it was a tracing, as it didn't look like one to me. But yes, my lack of gun knowledge aside I think it's a very good drawing. Keep it up!

And oh mercy, the "celestial voice"... you make me LAUGH my dear, almost every time you post! The pony drawings, your inner monologues, fedoras or whatever, your posts certainly do keep me entertained... I appreciate it. ^.^

And well, yes, I confess I was a bit scared myself, or at least when it started getting worse more recently. But, apparently it's not anything life-threatening or that I need to be too concerned about, just something I need to be conscious about managing. I promise you I won't be drinking any more caffeine though, if that makes you feel better. Thank you for your concern in any case. ^_^

@Anon

I guess in my experience most men aren't generally too overly concerned about their hair, anyway. With the exception of one particular guy that I work with, who seriously looks like Marc from Ugly Betty (Good Goddess I used to ADORE that show, I was so sad when they ended up cancelling it ;_; I still need to get every season on DVD!!). As a matter of fact he rather acts/sounds like Marc, too... no wonder we get along so well.

And 4080x4080 pixels? Oh dear, I know I have never even played around with doing anything on that sort of scale before, for some reason it sounds daunting to me. For the most part, everything I've posted here is at its original size (including the recent Rainbow Dash/Fluttershy commission picture)... sometimes with more detailed pieces like that I will zoom in to 150% or even 200% to polish up some little touches, but yes.

I'm happy to hear the drawing is going alright in any case, and especially now that you're going to get to share the tablet (and maybe even get one of your own, how terribly exciting!). Congrats dear! It should definitely make things much easier for you. I know I keep saying it, but really just keep at it and you will continue to grow and get better.

And well, yes... I decided to go to the emergency room because recently, the problem began to occur much more frequently and when I did have a spell, it was usually a bit more severe. It happened the Saturday before when I was at work, when my chest started fluttering, my heartbeat got very irregular and I started having some trouble breathing (the latter is something that frequently accompanies these spells, though I suspect it's more anxiety-related). It was bad enough that I had to take a break at work and I never take breaks. Then the following day, when I was getting ready for work it started badly again, so after talking to my eldest sister who is a nurse, I decided I had better have it looked at ASAP. And, that's what they told me they thought it was.

So, yes, hopefully nothing too terribly dangerous/troublesome. It's bothered me a little bit over the past week but nothing like it had been, so hopefully that is a good sign. Like I said, managing one's stress is really much easier said than done.

And oh, I have a page on Ponibooru!? I never knew that! I mean, I knew/assumed my pony-arts were getting reposted in various places all over the internet, but I've never really gone to Ponibooru or looked around there much. And you're right, it looks like many of them are saying such nice things about me, how lovely is that! D'awwww~ =^.^=

Thanks for sharing that, dearest!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

You present a very valid point, my friend... I do find a lot of these kids to be so charmingly refreshing in some of the things they tend to come up with (and the "kids" who post regularly on this blog especially so, as I'm sure goes without saying). I am definitely exposed to a lot of different things that I doubt I would ever encounter in my offline life, and sometimes it's highly amusing. I do relish a lot of that too.

In regards to Basil Rathbone yes, I know he was able to do little else after starring in so many Holmes films as people began viewing him as synonymous with the character I guess, but I'd like to think it wasn't talent squandered in any way. And Nigel Bruce was an... endearingly bumbling Watson, to be sure. Night and day from the way Jude Law portrays him in the newer films (which I do adore, by the way), and while the latter is arguably more true to the character I really do enjoy them both immensely. I suppose I'm going to have to go bust out my Sir Arthur Conan Doyle now...

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

It positively amazes me that our comments here can go into so much detail (I'm looking at you, Anon). And also, it's impressive that none of us here use short-forms, memes and curses here on this blog---it goes to show our respect for each other. I applaud everyone here for that.

You'd be surprised by what kinds of old stuff I enjoy. I quite enjoy the old classic swing music from the 30's, and also Russian orchestral music (I reckon MI: Ghost Protocol had something to do with that, the Kremlin really is majestic! ^^)

I have read a couple of Holmes' short stories, but not the main titles; there was a severe lack of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in my school library. Hopefully my college library will have them and I'll catch up to them! =P

@WhiteDiamonds

Oh my lord, there're so many topics here that I don't know which to respond to...

First things first. Please oh please take care of yourself. Reading those messages got me into DefCon 4 for a brief moment there, and I'm still a little worried even after the initial shock passed. One of my friends' granduncle passed away on Christmas Day due to some terminal disease (heart attack or cancer, not sure which), and it got me up a notch on the paranoid scale. So just take a breather and give yourself some space. Health is always the top priority.

As for myself, I'm not that all athletic, though that's not to say I have NO athletic experience...I'm a Taekwondo red belt, and I hope to get my black belt sometime in college. My main problem is a sky-high metabolic rate, which means I never get fat. This isn't a good thing, so don't get overexcited. I'm still trying to improve my muscle tone without suffering from bulimia.

I'm already working on something new after my recent doodle (see my comment on your latest post), and I hope it comes out better than the previous pieces. Of course, they have been improving so far, but anything can happen. So far it's been just linework, but I have time on my hands!^^

And pardon me for saying this, but you seem to have lots of siblings~!=P

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Haha, that guy. His "Botox" line was enough to make me watch the whole video. I suppose your friend is typecast as the comic relief? (Don't worry; You can be the main character. But the title of "Ugly Betty" doesn't fit. How about "Refined Diana"?)

As for the resolution, I think I'll probably take what I have now, stretch it out, ink the lines (That's what you call it, right?) and then scroll in for detail. I can always downscale it from the original later.

Well, some more things happened yesterday, but I didn't mention it because I had already said so much here and I didn't want to double post:

The tablet works much better on my desktop computer than that laptop. The driver worked right away and the connection didn't cut out at all in the time that I used it, which was for hours. I started over from scratch, making some surprisingly good-looking structural form that I might proceed to disregard. After plenty of careful sketching of lines, I had a significant part of it done (No coloring, of course). At this point, there is nothing pony-related about it and it is entirely what I am crossing it over with. Which makes me worry a bit that it won't be pony enough in the end (In other words, it needs to pony up. Ha. Ha-ha. I'm funny.), but it does mean that I can do a very important thing: Show it off. Why is this important? Well, if your artistically impaired (or so they think, anyway) teenage son is suddenly using his sister's drawing tablet, would you be suspicious?

When I showed it to my sister, she told me that she can't even draw a straight line (Not that I can that well either >_>). Which means something because, remember, she has been practicing drawing for years. That probably means that she's bad rather than that I'm good, but it makes me wonder how much our parents must know about us.

When I showed it to my mother, she didn't say much other than that I always choose the hardest, most complicated things (Which, compared to simple shapes, it is). But the best response would be my father's. First, I had to ask him the question of if he would like to see what I made twice, and this followed:

"You hand-drew that?"

"Yes."

"Did you do it free-hand?"

"Yes."

"You drew that free-hand?"

So, I would say that it went fairly well. Now I have to worry about him asking for updates on it (Which I will absolutely not give), but it's better than the alternative. Surprisingly, he didn't ask me if I could sell it. Whenever I make something, no matter what I made it on or how much ownership I really have over the material, he asks me if I can sell it. Oh well, maybe he forgot in the moment.

Anon said... Reply to comment

I don't want to make it sound like it's so amazing, because, after all, I haven't really drawn anything since I was making smiley faces when I was 3. This should fundamentally be the worst drawing possible. Right now, the whole thing is composed of straight lines, so I might use one of those linework layers to clean it up. I might do the same sort of thing that CaineScroll did with the necklace and have a contrast of pony and crossover material by making the pony parts curvy and smooth and the additive components hard and straight. It might come out looking like a Halloween costume that way, though. Which is fitting (Ha. Don't kill me.), because by the time the perfectionism and OCD let me finish anything, it will be just in time. (Seriously though, I think I have maybe 1/3rd of the sketching done.) I'm also trying to convert a humanoid reference into the pony shape. It's hard planning ahead of time how it will still look good on four legs when it was made to be used on two. I'm doing things like putting the chest section on the front of the neck, twisting and stretching it out across the length of the body. From what I can tell, though, I think it will look fine.

From what I can see right now, it looks like you will get at least one thing from me in the distant future. I already know what I want to make next, though. I would rather break it up and have a mix of original work and continuations of series. It doesn't look like I will get much done today, because my sister said that she had planned on using it "later". It has been a few hours, and she hasn't touched it. Why do I have to wait for her to want to use it, and then wait for her to stop? I guess I could do that linework in the meantime. I still might have to double post later if I do wind up using it today.

Oh, and I ran into this and thought you had to see it, Diamonds. This is what would happen if Twilight had Rarity build her a library. That should be the closest I ever get to giving you a Christmas present. I especially like #10 for how dramatic it is and #17 because it looks like you're walking on a chessboard. I also like #25's ceiling...and not just because it looks like chocolate. There is also this and this. My Christmas gift was finding this blog.

(Of course, the tablet wasn't bad either.)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

I'm doing my best to follow the doctor's advice, most definitely. She placed me on supplements which I have been taking daily (as much as I love food, and I really do, I confess I often forget to eat when I get really busy. I don't know how someone forgets to do that, but somehow I manage it) and yes, I have been abstaining from caffeine altogether. Otherwise, it's just a matter of telling myself that I'll get everything done eventually and that there is no reason to stress... somehow, miraculously it seems like that might be working.

Thanks a lot for your concern though, my dear and don't worry, I'll be fine.

I will confess I have never been particularly athletic myself. I used to love to swim and still enjoy that when I get a chance, but otherwise, not really. For the most part, I do my best to maintain my weight with occasional cardio exercises, and... that's about it.

And well, I guess you imagined correctly: I am the youngest of five children. ^_~

@Favo

Like I said to CaineScroll, I'm doing my best to manage the condition and follow the doctor's advice. It seems to be helping a lot. Thanks so much again for the concern dear, I really do appreciate it.

And oh, your hair is long is it? Well, I'm glad to hear that managing your style is something that you value as well. ^-^ And yes, in regards to Ugly Betty I'm sure it's readily available for download if I looked around for it, but... I really do like owning a genuine hard copy set of DVDs that I can watch in comfort whenever I choose. I'll get around to getting it someday, it's all good.

@Anon

Yes, I really do love Marc... really most of the characters on that show were so entertaining and likeable though, it's hard to pick one favorite. I honestly don't know which one of them I'm most like if I had to think about it. I hesitate to say Amanda but I don't know who else really fits me either... anyway though yes, it was a great program and I highly recommend it to you if you'd ever be inclined to give it a try.

I'm glad to hear that things are going even better with the tablet now, and that you are seemingly getting more comfortable with drawing altogether. It looks like you're slowly garnering the attention and support of your family in the matter too, which must be a nice feeling! Really I am glad for you dear, and when and if you do get around to making a finished piece I would be more than happy to see it.

As for all of those glorious pictures... good Goddess. Now those are beautiful examples of everything a library can and should be. <3 I've seen Dublin's Trinity Library before but all of the rest are entirely new to me... I love them all though. I may not be a Twilight Sparkle, but I know I definitely do appreciate stunning architecture and those were very much a treat for me to see; thank you for sharing.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

The last time I checked, I was above average height (Not by much, though) and below average weight for my age. I eat little and get no exercise, so I have no muscle or fat to turn into muscle. When I was taking my picture, I had to account for the lighting and how it was making the sunken-in parts of my cheeks too dramatic. My wrists are literally skin and bones, and my arms look like a cartoon skeleton's. It doesn't really matter to me, though. I think I look fine.

Four siblings? No wonder you're so sociable. Your parents must be wealthy to support such a large family. I wouldn't mind having a few more people to choose from. A big part of the reason I'm here is because I just have no one to talk to. I have one guy from programming who introduced me to MLP, but there isn't much to talk about right now...

I seem to have missed that part in Favo's post; As for my current length, after at least three months with no haircuts (Yes, my father was too busy even at Christmas time. No Christmas pictures this year.), it's...medium length. My hair has a strange, Fluttershy-esque way of curling back up once it meets resistance. The sides only go down the the tip of the ears before going up and back. At the back, it only goes as far as it could if I was looking directly up without touching my neck before curling up. Which basically means that it won't cover my ears no matter how long it is. When it's long and dirty, it goes curly and I look Italian. If I comb it down, though, it looks about the right shape and length for one of the Beatles.

...And then, I proceed to write a long rant before deleting it all and summing it up: Apparently, when my sister says "later", what she really means is "forever". She wasn't going to share that tablet for the life of her, even though she hardly used it at all today. Maybe 10 seconds every two hours. It seems she is making me buy my own, which I guess isn't that bad in retrospect, but I don't like that I have to share all of my expensive hardware and she can just deny it. Nor do I like the idea of dropping a sixth of my hard-saved holiday money that has been accumulated over at least one year. I'll need to talk about getting my own tomorrow. This is ridiculous. I will not let my selfish sister eliminate my artistic capability. I hope she enjoys drawing squiggly lines next to circles made with a perfect circle tool, because I know what is doing wrong, but I'm not going to help her. Hmph.

So yes, today did not exactly go as planned, and I am a bit frustrated about it. She acts so distressed that I ask her to let someone else use something that she is not. In any case, my father was still watching TV (Which is good, because you can see my screen from my father's seat. My sister's computer is opposite to mine.) and I was tired of programming (Even my programming requires privacy, because it is a Pony program.), so I felt like I owed it to you to watch the first episode of Ugly Betty. Hilarity ensued.

One episode of a show felt like a movie. The focused camera, and the music playing in the background. I was expecting it to be much lamer, like a sitcom or a soap opera. I could tell by the music and some of the themes (Some of them.) that it was made more for young women, but it didn't matter to me. Even the men in this show are so feminine. It can be kind of nice when you feel like you're the only man in the room. Though some moments make me wonder why you would suggest it to a sixteen-year-old; Did you happen to forget why she was hired in the first place? It doesn't really matter. I suppose once you've seen Goldfinger, you've pretty much seen it all. If I ever have so much as female friends, I hope they are the kind that prefer to watch this than Say Yes to the Dress, for instance.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Favo

Oh, well that's quite long then! Or at least when compared to most men. I can see why you would value caring for it so!

My hair is dark brown too. ^_~ And humanized ponies almost always throw me for a loop... I wonder how they'd come out looking if I ever tried my hand at them.

@Anon

Oh, dear, actually yes I DID forget why she was hired in the first place; I had to look it up to refresh my memory after you said that! I am so terribly sorry if there was anything even remotely inappropriate in it... I'll be honest and admit I remembered virtually nothing about the first episode myself. The show originally aired in... 2006 or 2007 I believe? And I know it's been that long since I've seen the first few episodes, if indeed not most of the first season. I really don't remember it being all that bad (I used to watch it with my family every week), and I confess that sometimes I forget just how young some of you really are. But yes, I do apologize for that dear, terribly sorry. ^.^;;

I'm glad that you enjoyed it though, or at least seemingly so. And yes, most of the men are overtly feminine in the show, or at least fabulously metro, though it *is* set in the elite world of fashion journalism after all (and at least in the part of southern California where I grew up, that sort of thing is almost the norm). But it is/was a well-made series, and even if I also do enjoy watching my soap opera and Say Yes to the Dress, aheh..

Anyway though. Yes, I am the youngest of four siblings, though my parents are certainly not anything that could be considered wealthy (though my mother did own her own business for several years, for the majority of my life she worked two jobs, and as such I was largely raised by the younger two of my siblings as I sort of touched on before). And technically they're my half-brothers and sisters, though we've never really made that distinction at any point in our lives. They are all quite a lot older than me... the youngest of them is still twelve years my senior.

And oh dear, I'm sorry to hear all of that about the tablet and your sister... that really does sound hardly fair but I'm not sure what advice or assistance I can offer you, I'm afraid. I guess, at the very least you can go back to using it in the evening like you had been? I know that's not really an ideal situation though, but perhaps your parents will come through as they had been talking about and will get you your own tablet after all... I'll keep my fingers crossed for you anyway.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Favo

You blokes and your long locks...be thankful for it. My high school (technically ALL high schools around here) had a strict policy on proper grooming, which meant no long hair. Some idiots, however, showed defiance in the face of death (also known as DITFOD in my dictionary) and dyed their hair, refused to cut it, etc. I would like my hair to grow longer now that school is over, though dyeing my hair isn't exactly on my to-do list.

Well, My hair's jet black, and slightly spiky. My hairline's quite high, which is why my hairdresser recommended that I never shear off my fringe. Ever.

I intend to keep my hair growing so that it reaches a messy Harry Potter-esque look. It's better than being a mushroom-head, in any sense! =P

@Anon

Wow, you even look like me judging by your description. I'm about 180 cm tall (How much is that in ft?), and I am a lightweight. Literally. Being of Chinese descent, you can probably guess I have Asian features; look at Ryan Higa and you'll know what I'm talking about.

Ouch. I know how it feels like to deal with a sister (the blood-related kind). As long as we mind our own business, we're perfectly fine. But when we want something at the same time or have conflicting views, BOOM. Insta-chaos.

By the sounds of it, you are already on the path of getting your own tablet. What I'm surprised at, though, is why your sister would get herself a tablet if she knew she wasn't going to use it that often? I would have found it a better solution if you got a tablet and lent it to her when she needed it. Whether or not you'd lend it to here, however, is another story.

And ooooh~! Those are some of the most beautiful libraries I've ever seen (I suppose the term "Most beautiful libraries in the world" was pretty much a dead giveaway). My favorite ones by far are the ones in Yale, Dublin and Berlin. The Dublin one just screams "HOGWARTS" in my head for some reason, and the Yale one has a kind of modern meets classic old vibe to it...I may be complete dunce when it come to architecture, but I sure know how to enjoy it, at the very least. I know it's a little late, but thanks for sharing the pictures, they're delightful! =D

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Haha, don't worry. Sixteen isn't always that young in that respect, and what really matters is maturity. My mother and sister watch Say Yes to the Dress together sometimes, similar to how they were watching the shopping channel and talking about embroideries last night (Which is bad, because when you want to break the news about someone, you don't want them to be on good terms). I can only say that I'm quite surprised that you could possibly build a show around that concept.

Well, the whole thing is less of a worry about if I would get one, and more of a standoffish conclusion about how. Of course I can't beg my parents for things, I have to pay for it with the money that I have. I know that I can and will spend that money however I choose if I have to, but it was kind of becoming an achievement. While my sister would spend every dime at the clothing store the week after she gets it (The only reason why this Christmas was different was because she picked it out before she got any money), I have been saving mine for something really worth it. A tablet is probably really worth 1/6th of it, and I could probably excuse it as a "development tool", I just don't like how this could have been so easily avoided. Oh well, life with a sibling. It isn't like in the family movies.

@CaineScroll

The conversion calculator says that it's 5.9 feet. Wow, you're nearly 6 feet tall. I think I was 5'8'' the last time I checked, but that was a kind of a long time ago. As for features, I'm the stereotypical white. Deep-set eyes, long and pointy nose, sharply cut chin. I don't know what to say besides that it's better than it sounds. Though, as you can imagine, a lot of shadow is cast over my eyes, so it can make me look like a creep in pictures.

The problem, as far as I can tell, is that she likes to use it as much as she wants on her own terms. Whenever she would scribble a line or two, she would then go straight back to watching Project Runway. I got a lot done in the time that I had it because I was so devoted to getting work done with it. For her, it is more casual. She doesn't want to let me have it for a certain period of time and get it back for a certain period of time, and have to make the most of the time that she has. She doesn't want to focus only on drawing at any one time, and she doesn't want to deal with me asking her for it. I think there might be some lack of enthusiasm as well, because being friends with a professional artist and seeing what that friend can make has made her feel like she cannot possibly be one as well (Or so my mother told me). Certainly I would have shared it with her as I wanted her to with me, but she paid for it and it is technically hers. It isn't like anyone expected me to find such use in it. Everything--The drawing, the ponies, the program--everything about this blog is complete secret. But I'll get one back, one way or another.

It seems we all have an appreciation for the fancy style. A couple of them looked quite Russian to me. The castle exterior and long, dining room-like interiors did remind me of Hogwarts as well. Honestly, I'm surprised that someone from a place like Malaysia would have an interest in such things, but maybe you are considerably western for a Malay.

(By the way; Try searching with ctrl+F for "though" on this page. We really must use that word a lot.)

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

Well, I'm glad I got some kind of resolution by tonight. I couldn't talk about getting another one all day because my parents were out again (I seem to have forgotten to mention that they were out doing a renovation job the whole time) all day. They left moments after I got up this morning and my mother kept herself very busy for the remainder of the night two days ago, so only now did I have the chance to explain what was going on.

What she told me was that my sister was very excited to get the tablet and didn't want to lose time with it while I used it. Well, maybe she could have had more time with it if she actually used it for the weeks that she had it. Seriously, she only opened the program three times now. I made more in a few hours than she will in weeks at this rate. But anyway, my mother also told me that my sister was angry with me because of the way I reacted to one small thing; She had asked me to borrow my toothpaste. The problem was, she has no idea how to knock on a door. She just crashes mercilessly on the wooden barrier. I didn't like that, so she directed her immense door-related hatred on my access to the tablet. Also, my mother wanted me to buy one because it would mean that I was essentially broadening my horizons by starting drawing. I still never said that I was going to draw with it. She knows too much.

Another Bamboo Connect is on order, and should be here "Jan 5 - Jan 10", which is Amazon for "in a week". I could have gotten a more expensive one, since I have close to $400 by now, but I really don't need any more drawing space. The active area I had was always enough for me, and I wonder why anyone would complain about it. In a week, production will continue...undisturbed. But for now, vectors and Actor's Studio.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Same here. The last time I had my measurements taken was...um...two years ago, if I recall. If my height hasn't increased one bit since then, I'd have to dig my way to Area 51 and ask those blokes in white coats to take a good look at me.

I do use the tablet to its full potential when I do, but sometimes I'm too busy surfing the interwebs that the tablet lies forgotten a few inches away from my elbow. Think of it as an on-off relationship thing. And from that perspective, I'd say your sister has a low-profile, swing-by relationship with her tablet, which in turn has a stronger affinity with you. Ironically.

How I keep a low profile when I draw ponies...it's a bit of a joke. I zoom in to the extreme so that my family can't even tell what is it that I'm drawing. Of course, they already know bits and pieces of it, so the zooming is probably just an internal self-defence mechanism that doesn't realize it's already obsolete.

I believe the term you're looking for here is "Malaysian". "Malay" refers to the main race of Malaysia, and "Chinese" is one of the secondary races alongside "Indians". Simply put, I'm Chinese-Malaysian. This simple misuse of terms would probably spark a second racial war here (the first was in the 60's) if you're a local, but no worries: I'm perfectly okay with that. It's not like my life depends on it anyway (unless I'm involved in said racial war, which my life WOULD depend on. Meep~!)

And yip *snickers*, I am rather Western for a Malaysian. Sometimes I wonder how life here would be if the British hadn't left. I'm nortorious in my family for being "The Caucasian", and I'm one of the only cheese lovers in the family. I bet I'm the only family member who knows the true meaning behind the pizza Margherita (and even if I get my facts wrong I bet I'm the only family member who makes good use of Wikipedia)! =P

Oooh, you ordered another tablet? Must be real crackin' for you. What model is it, by the way?

Let's see...WHOA. We do use the word "though" quite a lot, don't we?

@Favo

Hmm...for some reason I can see you as Caius Ballad from Final Fantasy XIII-2. Without the bandana and the Native American-esque beads and ornaments.

If I had to share a laptop, I'd put in a password as well, but I'd unlock it for anyone who wants to use it unless I find out they're doing something highly forbidden (you should know what I'm referring to in general). Then I go into tyrannical dictator mode.

There are two things in the world that I am paranoid about: rubber bands, and balloons. The thought of rubber bands hitting human flesh at high velocity makes me wince, plus I took a couple of hits back when I was fourteen by some idiot who later turned out to be a hipster (who knew?). As for balloons, I once had the oh-so-pleasant experience of having a balloon burst into my left eye back in my kindergarten days. That really hurt, and I'm thankful I wasn't blinded then, but the incident probably scarred me for life. It doesn't help that there's always the suspense hanging in the air whenever a balloon's around, because I go nuts thinking it's going to explode anytime soon.

Ouch.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

I always have devoted myself to specific things more than she does. She takes things like fads, while the things I take an interest in become my focus. I first saw ponies on my sister's screen, but she soon dropped it after enjoying a couple of episodes.

"I zoom in to the extreme so that my family can't even tell what is it that I'm drawing."

I do this too. Except the only thing I have to hide at this point is the pony-shaped reference.

I thought the term just referred to a resident of Malaysia. In that case, you are a western Malaysian. And hopefully, you will be an average Australian.

Like I said, I just got another Connect because it is the cheapest and I never had a problem with the active area. When you have the ability to scroll in and out and side to side, and the pad covers your whole screen, I really don't need anything more. Especially not commercial applications to go with it, when all I need is Paint Tool Sai.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Thank you for the well wishes, mate. I think I will be in Melbourne at one point for my studies, but as for residency...still remains to be seen. I'm still keeping faith, though.

I just paid a visit to the Wacom website. So the Bamboo Connect is actually a tablet model? I accidentally mistook it for some kind of software or something. My bad. The Connect, technically, is a rough replica of the Pen & Touch (which, incidentally, I'm using at present) only without the buttons.

For some unexplained reason, the pens work better on SAI compared to the Adobe softwares. Maybe it's because Adobe's default pen settings are a little oversensitive for me, but I've never bothered to check. I do recommend getting Photoshop for some minor touch-ups, though.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

You're right that maturity is arguably more important, but I still do apologize if there was anything too inappropriate. I really didn't even think about it, since again I used to watch the show with my family every week. But yes.

And ooh, so your sister watches Say Yes to the Dress AND Project Runway?? My kind of programming! <3 Talking about embroidery is something I'd likely enjoy too... you'd probably be so bored with me if we actually ever met, haha... ^.^

And toothpaste/door banging, really? I suppose I should feel grateful that I never had to grow up with siblings who were so close to me in age... as it is, I've always gotten along with mine perfectly. But I *am* happy to hear that you're going to be getting a tablet of your own, even though it arguably would have been nicer if she could have just learned to share. At least that will make everything easier for you once it does arrive.

I find it so incredibly funny, hearing about how you and CaineScroll go about hiding your pony-business when on the computer. ^.^ Though I can understand how and why you'd both feel obligated to do that. Even though I'm much older than both of you, and female besides, it's awkward enough I guess for people to find out that I do pony-art, though many people in my offline life are aware of it. Certainly my entire family knows, even though they haven't really seen much of what I've done... my mother does adore my doodle of Rarity with a martini though.

@Favo

Oh! Yes I did say that didn't I? And see, I really did forget again. Well, I'd say that I'd just email you some of my other things that I've found, but I believe some of the others here had expressed interest in seeing them too so I suppose I'll have to post them up instead. I'll have to make an effort to do it tomorrow since I'm planning on going to bed soon, but yes... I'll try not to forget again!

@CaineScroll

I think its safe to say that you and Anon would look pretty tall when compared to me, or at least if I wasn't wearing heels at the time of this hypothetical meeting. And even then, you'd still be taller.

And heheh, I used to work with a guy who had a terrible fear of balloons. And for the simple reason he was afraid they would pop whenever he was near them. It's a very legitimate phobia, from what I understand!

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

What the hay am I doing up at this hour?

@CaineScroll

Here's a list of Sherlock Holmes stories on Project Gutenberg; all four novels, the first three short story collections, and all the short stories in the fourth collection are available, with only The Case-Book of Sherlock Holmes not currently on the site. I particularly recommend The Hound of the Baskervilles and the first short story collection, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.

And I also enjoy swing & big band music from the '30s, as well as jazz from that era (Louis Armstrong may be my favorite pop music performer ever); as for classical music, while my favorite composers span all eras from Baroque (J. S. Bach) to Modern (Philip Glass), my favorite style of classical by far is the Russian late Romantic music as exemplified by Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, and Borodin. I also love silent movies and '20s comic strips, so I suppose it's safe to say my tastes can be rather old-fashioned as well.

@Anon

Thanks for the links on the libraries; there's some really wonderful buildings featured in those articles! I'd love to see some of those someday.

@CaineScroll

Well, you certainly have a valid reason to be wary of balloons. I suppose you found the balloon party scene in "The Return of Harmony, part 1" to be especially unnerving...

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, technically I did put up a link to one of my non-pony sketches (which I'm sure most of you would've seen by now), so...your call, Di.

As I said to Anon above, the zooming in is rather pointless because my family already knows that I'm drawing ponies. Whether or not they know they're ponies, though, is a mystery. So they take their sweet time messing with my head. Most of my friends do know I do pony art, though. It's not that much of a surprise, since I post some of my pictures on my Facebook account a few days after their debut on my blog. Also, my Fluttershy wallpaper just earned 47 favorites on dA, just thought I'd share the news with everyone.

Yes, there's no denying that I'm tall, though sometimes I wonder if that's a good thing. I don't want to look like a tall gangly stick-figure any longer, so I plan on hitting the gym when I'm in college. And cheese fondue. Definitely the cheese fondue. I'm a cheese lover. Did I mention that?

Oh, thank the Lord. I'm not the only balloonophobic (I just made that word up) in this world...that's much better than being a nutburger who's paranoid about decorative inflatable balls.

@jodyjm13

Oh yes, I definitely have to read The Hound of the Baskervilles someday. First, though, I should go for A Study in Scarlet---I like going through things in chronological order. I have come across The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes a few years back, and I also have read a bunch of Agatha Christies, I wonder if you've seen them?

You do seem like a enthusiastic admirer of classical music...I suppose that's why you commissioned that particular picture from Di?=) I do like music, though I don't really remember all the details. Books are more of my thing, which might explain my delight at Anon's library gallery link.

@Anon

How many "though"s did I use back there? *chuckles*

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

*pulls up magnifying glass* Counting "thoughts" and "although"s, you have met the 6-though record that had been previously set by Jody and Diamonds. You're neck and neck.

Once, I purposely overinflated (It is a word!) a balloon until it popped. It kept branching off into new, thinner bubble-like areas to hold more air. When it popped, the sound it made muffled the hearing in my ear that was closest to it for a few seconds.

@WhiteDiamonds

I'm not going to lie, you would probably like her more than me. She is aware of ponies and once had her Windows Live avatar set to Luna. Fashion type shows aren't the only thing she watches, though. She likes all of those American Pickers knockoffs (Pawn Stars, Auction Hunters, Storage Wars, the list goes on), various cartoons (Wile E. Coyote, Animaniacs, Total Drama Island, Stoked and even MLP) that are only short-lived interests, and reality shows like Survivor and The Biggest Loser. And I...don't watch TV. She's the kind of person that is exceedingly polite to strangers and friends, but in her offline life she often takes less regard for the way that she will appear to family members. The main difference between us is that she has brief interest in many things, while I have great interest in few things. I am driven by productivity. If I go too long without making anything, I feel like I'm wasting my life and get depressed. She just watches whatever catches her eye in her spare time. When I met one of my older online friends (Who started going to a regular school and got too busy to keep in contact) in real life, we didn't have much to say or talk about. I think that the extra time that you have to type out a well-thought-out message lets you gather anything worth talking about for an active conversation.

I have purposely hid what I do on the computer since I was...The first time was probably when I was nine. If my father knew that I had anything to do with this show, he would immediately start making assumptions. He would about anyone that has not already married. I have had to identify various types of noises in an instant, because my reputation depended on it. It was a great day when I heard about alt+Tab. A great day indeed. But if you happen to spend time talking to a bunch of teenage boys on the internet, you probably have more to worry about than people knowing that you draw ponies.

I would be interested in seeing your non-pony drawings. I wouldn't put it against you if you decided to draw some humanizations, but I would if they took over the blog.

@jodyjm13

Exactly what you should be doing at this hour!

Most of the things I got this Christmas actually were books. There were four, two of which were travel books (For Ireland and Sweden. I already have two others, for Germany and Switzerland. They are the "Eyewitness" type that gives you pictures and descriptions of things to see there). All four of them were sort of informative picture books, because, for some reason, novels don't keep my attention as well as I'd like them to. I do read the occasional fanfiction, but they are less of a commitment. It's kind of disappointing, because I do think I would like Sherlock Holmes, but Narnia put me to sleep.

We really like these travel type pictures, don't we? It's easy to find more, but I tend to use Google Images... I try not to sound truly egotistic, but you're all welcome for them.

You listen to classical music and read Sherlock Holmes? Did I happen to stumble into the website where all the classy people hide from the disgraceful drunken riffraff? (I have said this before, but I like all types of music.)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Ah yes, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes. That's the book that I also own.

And yes, I believe I mentioned it once or twice before but I also enjoy a lot of the older standards/big band/etc. music from the '30s and '40s, and classical music for certain. And 1920s comic strips! I believe Windsor McCay fits into that category? ^_^

@CaineScroll

I also am immensely fond of good cheeses. I think I could live quite happily in France. Oh, and I looked that phobia up for you, apparently it's called globophobia. As I said, you're hardly the only one!

@Anon

Well, teenage boys as well as everyone else, but generally because they've talked to me first. I just started putting my artwork up for people to see after all, I never imagined this would take off as some sort of mini pony-community! And obviously I'm not going to ignore anyone when they write to me here... that would just be rude after all.

That's not to say that I don't enjoy the conversation though, as I've said before. But I sincerely hope it doesn't give anyone the wrong idea.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Oh, you aren't giving anyone the wrong idea. In fact, if I wind up making something impressive enough, I might show it to my sister just to see her reaction. She's the only one that can't hurt me if she knew. It would also mean that I don't have to scroll in every time she walks in or out of the office...

But anyway, we do appreciate you giving more effort than any other artist that gets a lot of comments. It's nice to have an actively flowing discussion area, and if the opinions of everyone else here are to be believed, then it's better than what you could find at EQD.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I think that's mostly because things move so terribly quickly over at EqD that it makes it tough to have an actual conversation before one's posts get swallowed up by the neverending tidal flow. But I do appreciate the sentiments at least, thank you.



And, I very nearly forget again but somehow, miraculously I at last remembered about the other artwork you've all been asking to see. I'm not going to make a new post or anything for it because this is a pony-blog after all, but I can at least post it up here.

There's not really a lot of shareable material that I found, chiefly because I generally refrain from posting original artwork on the internet (or at least on a site like this)... call me paranoid but I never like to risk it maybe being stolen since much of it isn't copyrighted. =( The vast majority of the original work I do have that I wouldn't mind sharing is student work that I did in school, mainly life drawing which means it's pretty much all nude figure stuff. While there's nothing wrong with that, as Anon has recently reminded me many people here are young enough that I don't know if that's a good idea, so... have some of my other fanart works instead!

First off is this one. I don't totally love this picture myself but it has some pretty shiny parts that look impressive enough, I guess. I think it's the way I drew the character that feels slightly awkward to me, though it's not my design (this was made for someone). But anyway.

This piece is an unfinished work-in-progress (eventually, it is/was going to be a digital painting like my Rainbow Dash/Fluttershy picture) but I still like the idea. How to Train Your Dragon was a super-cute movie, I really enjoyed it.

On that note, another unfinished work-in-progress fanart. It's in a pretty rough state at the moment but you get the idea.

This one is little more than the quickest of colored doodles, but I hoped maybe CaineScroll could at least appreciate it. ^_~

A pokemon you say? Yeah I don't really know either. At least this one is actually finished though, unlike most of these.

Actually, this piece is an original artwork/concept, but seeing how it's also unfinished and in a semi-rough state, I guess there's no harm in sharing.

Oh, and this is just a fun little bonus I found when I was looking for shareable pieces, that I completely forgot I had drawn honestly (it was a while ago). I made myself laugh when I found it (and yes, that is a bag of marshmallows she is holding).

Anyway, it's not much, but hopefully you all will enjoy seeing something a little bit different for a change!

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I think I'm going to have to use direct quotes in order for this to make sense:

"I'm not going to make a new post or anything for it because this is a pony-blog after all"

Thank you. I never felt good about EQD posting videos about SOPA that are entirely unrelated to MLP. I have said from the start that it's never going to get passed anyway. Things like that are put forward all the time.

"Anon has recently reminded me many people here are young enough that I don't know if that's a good idea"

I hope you say that with the prepubescent children in mind, and not me...Not to sound perverted.

"I never like to risk it maybe being stolen since much of it isn't copyrighted."

Maybe you could watermark it? Or really mess it up to the point that it's unusable.

You really draw a lot of video game characters for someone that seems to have hardly ever played a video game in her life. Your Pokemon remind me of PurpleKecleon's, though I can imagine that she advised you on them.

I guess you wouldn't consider these "doodles", but I'm not sure how to compare them to your other work because they seem to be made in a slightly different way than the ones on this blog. I am always impressed by the textures like the one in the third, and I wonder how artists know to do that. I think it might have looked better if you did it all around though, because it's confusing for the head to be textured and the rest smooth. But maybe you were going to add that in the future. I like seeing how your art style works with other pictures, as I knew I would. It sort of turns the whole thing from "How WhiteDiamonds draws ponies" to "How WhiteDiamonds draws".

Your original artwork (Since I didn't recognize it as a Pokemon) looks very professional. Especially the fur on the face. I can absolutely see it on a novel, perticularly Warriors (A surprisingly gory series about cats that my sister used to read). The ground reminds me of the commercialized Neopets because of the simple outlined rock look, which might also be caused by its "roughness", which I fail to see in any way. If you plan to texture that stone like you did with the rest of the picture, then I seriously wonder why you aren't doing this for a living instead.

I think I'll be the first guy to mention that that Pokemon happens to be a Mew. I don't recognize the first one, though. Is that another original creation? Also, I guess you have some peer pressure due to the audience, but which is the most enjoyable to make for you?

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

There's actually only one pokemon in there (the mew), and PurpleKecleon didn't advise me on it or anything, though I suppose she might have subconsciously inspired me (very likely). I don't play those video games or anything, but as I used to watch her on deviantART, and have a younger niece who used to be really into the Pokemon games and cartoon as well I'm familiar enough with a lot of them.

I did used to play video games when I was younger (like, old-school NES Mario and Zelda games and such), but I am familiar with a lot of the older Final Fantasy games as my brother's ex used to play them. I really loved the storylines and characters in some of them, and Final Fantasy VI (originally III in the US, I think) in particular. Hence the moogle. Other than that, my knowledge of games and game characters is pretty sorely limited.

And yes, as I said the third picture, and indeed most of them are unfinished, work-in-progress pieces, that's why the texture isn't finished all over it. The first one is a character designed by and drawn for somebody else, and the one you said reminded you of Warriors was originally being designed for a print series. As you've probably deduced since you seem to have read my Blogger profile, I *am* trying to get to the point that I can do this sort of thing for a living, but it's much easier said than done and I still have bills to pay, so in the meantime I'm stuck working at my "day job" as well. Real-life priorities, alas~ ;(

As far as sharing my other original work, I really am not comfortable with doing that here, since even with watermarks or whatnot the designs themselves could be easily taken by other people. And as the pieces are all about the designs, I'm sure you can understand my feelings! Sorry, dear.

And which kind of art is the most enjoyable for me to make? In regards to which fandom or whatever? Well, it really all depends on my mood or what I'm inspired by at any given time... all of my fanart is something that I do for fun in my spare time, so I generally enjoy it all equally or I wouldn't be making it in the first place.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

.... Though you know, actually upon further introspection I will admit that I really do enjoy drawing ponies, and my favorite ponies especially. Rarity in particular... as I said before, I really have a great love of her character as, to an extent, I feel as though I can relate to her a great deal. She's become something of a muse these days, I guess I'd say!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Seeing you do something other than ponies was pretty refreshing if you ask me...so I thought I'd return the favor. Here it is!

Kupo! I spot a Moogle...you know, their appearance differs throughout the series. The one you drew reminded me of the Kingdom Hearts Moogles, which are my favorites =P

Final Fantasy VI involves Terra Branford and Kefka Palazzo, while Final Fantasy III involves the Onion Knight and the (ugh) Cloud of Darkness. Any of these sound familiar?

I haven't played Pokemon for the past few years, I think their ideas deteriorate throughout the series..and also, Pokemon seems to be a huge source of creepypasta gags (you do NOT want to know what those are). But for the record, my favorite region was the Hoenn region. I do liek Mudkips.

You do make a fair point regarding the copyright...so I'm taking Connor off my dA page. Sorry, Con.

I doodle just about anything, provided the piece in question is within my abilities. I have done a bunch of landscapes, though those pieces were merely on paper.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Eeeeeyaah~! <3 <3 Oh, how incredibly fantastic is that!? I LOVE Snape, and that is such a fabulous artistic interpretation of him! Darling, I do believe that is my favorite thing of yours I have seen to date, if you don't mind my saying so... you really have captured him so perfectly there! ^.^

I really did enjoy seeing that, thank you so much for sharing! I actually did a couple pieces of Harry Potter fanart several years ago as well, but as they were mostly pencil drawings, and are in storage in boxes somewhere I have no way of finding them right now, unfortunately. Most of my fanarts are pretty old honestly. They're done pretty far and few between as I've only been inspired to make them, and have had the time to do so at intermittent points in my life... I do believe the recent influx of pony art by me is the most fanart I've ever done, or at least on such a (relatively) consistent basis! It just goes to show how fond I've become of the series and characters, though I also think, in this instance the fan community has had a great deal to do with it as well. This is the very first time I've ever actively participated in any fandom, and I guess it's mostly thanks so Jody and DJB123 that that was even the case, with me being encouraged to create this blog and all. It's pretty amazing how it all worked out actually.

Do you know, if you were ever so inclined and had the means to get them online, I'd really be interested in seeing your landscape pieces. That's one area where I've always felt that my own skills were pretty sorely lacking, as throughout school I mostly focused on figure drawing and various aspects of design. Then it was a great deal of cartoons and character study when I was younger and wanted to be an animator (back when I was around 14-16 I guess, though I eventually grew out of that). But yes, I do believe I can stand to become a bit more competent, and even if it's not my strongest area of interest.

Oh, and I almost forgot, but in answer to your question it was definitely Final Fantasy VI, and before that IV (which I believe was sold as II in the US). The latter came out on the SNES when I was ten or eleven I believe, and my nieces and I all used to crowd into my brother's room when his ex would play through the game. He would read through all the dialogue for us and even though we were young, we all became hooked on the story. The same later with VI. They really were great games, though I suppose mostly I love them now for the nostalgia factor.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Favo

Oh, whoops, looks like I just missed coming in after your comment dear. I remember Megaman too now that you say that... my brother used to play those games I believe. That was my childhood as well, though that was also when they first came out, which is so funny to think about now. Ah well.

I'm glad you enjoyed the pictures, and don't worry if you can't think of too much to say; it's all good. Honestly, when I think about it I'm not sure how much any of you would enjoy seeing my other artwork that I can't put up anyway... it's mostly figure drawings as I said, fashion designs, interior designs, even a few floorplans... things like that. Probably not very interesting, for most of you at least!

Oh, I'm also sorry to hear you're having trouble sleeping dearie. I'd recommend some nice chamomile tea, but I doubt you'd be inclined to try that even if you did have any.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

That's fine, it was just a suggestion. To be honest, I was wondering about how safe everyone's fanart is, with only a signature that could easily be cropped out or erased, and even replaced. I know that fanart doesn't mean that much to you, but a lot of work goes into these and people can easily take them without giving credit.

NES is a bit before my time (My father had one), but I am familiar with those games. I lived in the N64 era, and didn't get a console until the GameCube came out.

A print series? I guessed right, then. It really does have that style, the captivating feel.

Ponies are expressive, which might be a big part of the reason they are the most enjoyable. It's easier to make a picture of an amusing situation with ponies than a serious and complicated figure.

I think I can guess some of them, but what are some of your other interests? I'm just wondering.

@CaineScroll

Hair is a hard thing to draw, good job. You show that you can draw more than just ponies, and I would say that this is your best work for being the most detailed if not for the fact that I like that winter scene with Fluttershy so much. I think you ran out of space for a letter in your signature, though...

I may not be from /b/ (You can tell because I just broke rule #1 and rule #2), but I, too leik Mudkips.

I'm starting to get more ideas of what I want to make (mostly ponifications of things that I like), so I'm just waiting for the tablet to come. I do hope I can contribute and be a part of this sooner or later. I would like making landscape pictures, since I do like those scenes so much, but it sounds so hard.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I suppose you can count me out of all conversations regarding gaming consoles, seeing as I never owned one (again, my mother thinks they're addictive). The closest I could get was smashing the buttons of Chatterbox's PSP on a weekly basis whacking Sephiroth's butt in Dissidia Duodecim, but again: not mine.

I do thank you for saying this is my best non-pony art to date, but honestly...I'm not that happy with it. I've now drawn a full-bodied Snape on paper which looks MUCH better by comparison, and it's just waiting to be digitized.

As for landscapes, my interest in them spiked after encountering a book regarding them in my school library. It's amazing how they could make magic with a pencil and a piece of paper, and I reckon I borrowed it more than once last year. Mental note to self: If I find that book again in any bookstore, BUY IT.

I don't want to sound like I'm pressuring you or anything, but I would like to see your work here~! =P

PS: Congratulations, mate. You just posted the 150th comment.

@WhiteDiamonds

Oh, stop it *blushes*. But don't stop. Teehee~

Thank you for the compliments, but as I said to Anon above, I'm not all that happy with it...I've already made another version, waiting to be digitized.

Unfortunately, my landscape pictures are gone with the wind. Literally. Under a strange set of circumstances, they got tossed out the window on the third floor. Not to say they were all that good, anyway... I'll try to make one in future, though.

Believe me, ponies are only a fraction of what I've drawn my entire life. I started drawing when I was six, I believe, and from then it was all about growth. Just as a side note, I don't regularly draw humans like how I did in the Snape picture; they tend to be way more simple.

And as for FF VI...The main protagonists were Cecil and Kain, weren't they? Kain played quite a huge role in Dissidia, wouldn't you know.

On a completely unrelated subject, I've completed yet another pony picture. Two more until I break my record of two pictures in one post...Onward!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Well, the same thoughts have honestly occurred to me in regards to fanart before too, but since it's just something I do for fun (meaning, it's not like I make my living off of it) and since it can be argued I don't really own any of it anyway as the characters belong to other people/companies, it doesn't bother me too much. Besides, at this point I think there are enough people in this fandom at least that know I've created my existing pony fanarts (as apparently, my stuff is all over the internet on various sites), so I don't think that those at least would be so easy to "steal" if somebody tried to claim credit for them. But it's just a risk I take.

Heehee... my family got our first NES when I was five years old, I believe. ^.^

As far as subject matter that's easy to have fun with, you might be surprised. I've made ridiculous comics and humorous drawings even out of my nude figure drawings before, when I was bored in class, so I think it has more to do with the individual artist's sense of humor.

Oh, right, and I almost forgot. Do you mean what are my interests outside of drawing fanart, or just outside art in general?

@CaineScroll

Oh, dearest you're so very welcome, I really do like it a lot! I would express my confusion over why you don't care for it but I know how it goes... sometimes my works that I like the least seem to gain the most admiration from others, go figure. I am very much looking forward to seeing your pencil Snape if you're willing and able to share him, though! Same with the landscapes (that must have been terrible when they blew away like that; I know *I* would have been upset).

And yes, same here... I know I was at least four when I started drawing and it might have been even younger. My mother still has a lot of the old pictures. While my area of study and focus has changed as I've gone through my life, drawing has always been involved in at least some capacity.

And oh, yes that's right Cecil and Kain! It was such a long time ago but I really do remember it quite well. I actually liked Rydia the best (the magic girl with green hair); she was awesome~ ^.^

Have you now! I hope it's one we'll get to be seeing at some point in the near future then? ^_^

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

I have heard from many successful people that an artist is never satisfied (By that I mean, Steven Spielberg said it about directors in an interview. It counts.), and that is when they stop growing. As long as you hope to improve, you probably will. I think that it's likely a good thing that you don't feel satisfied.

Digital note to you: If you ever find the name of that book, tell us.

It has only been two days since I ordered it now, I think, and still I tend to go almost the whole day before pulling up the bit of sketch that I did in a few hours, just to stare at it (Declaring "I'll get you yet, my pretty!" is optional). The thought of another creative venture gives me something to look forward to, and I'm feeling better now about it than I ever have despite the very little practice that I have. I don't have to bash down the doors with expert quality, but I at least want to get started. I'm also looking for any excuse to bring it up here. Hopefully it might prove that I'm not the mindless programmer/mathematician with no appreciation for creativity that I think I look like I am.

@WhiteDiamonds

Hopefully, if I ever make something that will wind up on a place like ponibooru, it will be accurately credited and that will cement the legitimacy of my claim over the entire series. And then there are upload dates and EQD sources. Maybe it isn't so bad as I thought.

I was just responding to how you said "I do believe I can stand to become a bit more competent, and even if it's not my strongest area of interest." What could be more of an interest to you than what you want to do as your career?

I don't think there has ever been a consistent skill with me, or anything that I have done for all my life, aside from dreaming and aspirations. People that know me see me doing pretty painful programming work, and think that they know what I will grow up to be. But I'm not so sure.

...Not to make the discussion all about me or anything. *cough*

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Yay, Updated Snape! Here he is~

Going to start my next pony fanart soon, and it's the most complicated one so far...No worries, though; I'm feeling rather confident.

The first FF I was introduced to was FFVIII (Squall Leonhart), I believe, and I didn't even know what FF was back then. Eventually I got hooked to Kingdom Hearts and from there it was all about progression.

So far, I've only drawn for my own entertainment (and for others'), and I'm not sure how drawing will be majorly involved in any career. Ironically so because, well, I'm going to take design as a major...I'm no genius in interior design, so I think graphic/multimedia/industrial design might be more adequate. It's still a blur, though!

@WhiteDiamonds

Thanks, mate. Hope you enjoy the newer, updated version above!

Hehe, don't worry. I, for one, don't think you're the mindless programmer/mathematician with no appreciation for creativity that you think you look like you are (Say that ten times fast!) At least you have the determination, and that's enough for you to get started.

And oh, the name of that book? Drawing Landscapes. Pretty straightforward if you ask me. ^.^

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

Sorry for my absence, guys. I know it has been a year since my last message, but I've been kind of busy...

@CaineScroll

Am I "WhiteDiamonds" now? Hooray, instant gratification.

That's because you've never watched me punch numbers into a keyboard while staring intently into a screen and my sister sits behind me holding a clipboard and drawing figures. But I hope that I will change that image as soon as I can.

With more detail comes more things to appreciate for coming out right, but it also leaves more room for others to go wrong.

The hair continues to look natural, as does the middle part of the robe. But it doesn't go all the way down to the bottom, which is straight and squared. While the fabric along the right arm falls into place realistically, the very end of it lacks the same curves to make it look believable. The fingers on the right hand must be bent away from the camera, because from that perspective it looks like the middle finger is the shortest. I guess the more experienced wizards let their fingers go in any position without needing such a firm grip on the wand like I'm used to seeing, but his left hand seems to be doing the rocker signal. I would have liked it if the fingers on the right hand were closer together. It's kind of distracting.

I was going to comment on the roundness of the face and chin, since I tend to think of him as someone with a longer and thinner figure, but open further inspection, he really does look pretty much like that. I don't know what type of shoes those are, but unless they happen to be slippers, they should probably have some more defining detail. I do like how you showed the top edge on the right foot without using clearly defined outlines, though.

Just to give some constructive input. I would tell you that you're way ahead of me, but that would just be an insult. As I said, there are still more good details that came from making the picture larger and with a broader focus.

We have another thing to look forward to, then. If there is anything here that I leik that does not involve mudkips, free tablets, over-analysis of ponies, meeps and rampant overuse of the word "though"...it is complicated pictures of ponies. Forge onward!

@Favo

Now, don't let us take all the credit for the apparent mental instability. Your own abnormal unpredictability was a contribution to the overall affect of psychological disorder. How's for another 50, eh?

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Curse, you, copy and paste. Curse you. I have a feeling you liked being "Di for a comment", though =P

Yes, the fingers of his right hand ARE bent away from the camera, though I didn't really make the shading obvious enough. As for the *ahem* rocker signal, think how some people hold the handle of a cup with their little finger sticking out. Same concept. As for the robes, maybe the hem is shaped in an outward curve or something? That would explain how the middle part touches the ground while the two edges dangle above it. Since this is a doodle rather than a full out picture, I didn't think the shoes would need that much attention. I stand corrected.

I mentioned this in an email to Di earlier, but I thought I'd say it here anyway: Picture #2 is already underway. Hopefully it'll be 3 pieces done before the next C. Report!

And oh yes, let's aim for a total of 200 comments. That should make Di's day.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@Favo

That was all just joking. Of course I'm not calling us all mentally instable...

@CaineScroll

You don't need to add detail to the shoes if you don't want to, I was just analyzing the whole thing.

It seems like everyone here sends her e-mails except me...

I don't know if that reference was intentional, but it should make her feel lucky.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I think you misunderstood me when I said that... I meant that landscapes in particular are not something that I really need or want to specialize in. They're not entirely relevant to the type of art that I generally do, but I would still like to become more proficient in them just because.

And yes, don't ever listen to people when they tell you what it is they think you should do with your life. Nor should you feel like you need to have everything figured out now either... you're still growing and developing as a person after all and your interests can and likely will continue to change and expand as you get older. I personally know very few people that have stuck with one singular career throughout their entire lives... you should never feel limited in anything you do, or at least that's always been my attitude.

Oh, and in regards to the emails not everyone here stays in contact with me that way, just a few people. And for the most part, those correspondences are the result of commission inquiries, just in case you were wondering.

@CaineScroll

Oh, yay new Snape, he's lovely dear! I still like the first one as well, but it's nice to see a full-body shot. I really love the way you did his hands... those are usually some of the toughest things to do correctly, and yet they are so expressive and can add so much to a character's pose/body language. I guess that's one thing that can be tricky, or a relief depending, when it comes to drawing pony-art.

Ah, Final Fantasy VIII. I'm not really familiar with that one at all (the last one my brother's ex played through was VII, and I wasn't really around for most of it as I was older by then) but I do recognize the characters. That's about it though.

And yes, as I said to Anon above you should never feel as though you have to have everything figured out now, insofar as what you want to do in your life. Even if you are going to be starting college soon. For me at least, I always just thought of it as part of the growing experience, and hopefully your further schooling will only help you to figure out just what it is that you'd like to do for a career.

@Favo

Yes, they really are! I honestly can't even believe it's come to this myself... it's a little bit overwhelming to think about sometimes.

Anon said... Reply to comment

Edit: One typo makes all the difference.

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, I would still be interested in hearing more about you and what you like to the extent of your comfort, but I suppose our rambling often does that for us.

My situation is, my father probably expects that I will run my own business. And that's fine, it might be what I'll do. But I feel like that would be wasted potential because a lot of people can do that. As cliché as it sounds, I kind of feel like there is something to express, and I would never be able to do that by working a routine, conventional job or managing a company. I would never be making the most of myself. I just don't know where to direct that effort. But as I have said before, I want to try everything that I can, and you have given me another thing to try. My mother is easily excited by the thought of me taking more creative and expressive endeavors (composing, acting, art) simply because she would like to see the results, and my sister is almost completely oblivious of my strengths. I'm easy to misjudge in real life, and creative projects (as well as careful planning and well-informed decisions besides, but those jobs probably aren't as enjoyable) really are the only concepts that excite me. Just imagine what it would be like to live in a place like China where they choose what your job will be, based on your school grades.

Sometimes I see someone mention an e-mail conversation they had with you, and so I wonder what I might be missing out on. You know I would gladly commission from you (Ugh, what is the grammatically correct way of saying that? Get commissions? Take? Order?) if I had a source of income. Maybe by the time I'm over 18 and somehow have employment I will have chosen a suitable name for an e-mail address.

Oh, and I forgot to mention earlier; I got a notification that the tablet should be here on the 6th, and later I got another to confirm it. That's a bit later than I was expecting, but what I was expecting would be before the January 5th range. It's still fast. Last night I stayed up late on my computer (Instead of staying up late on a laptop) with all the lights off to do some more work. This morning I couldn't get out of bed until 11:30, but I'd say it was worth it. I'm anticipating the time that I can work whenever I want and make real progress. Though I'm surprised by how it still is made up only of straight lines, and it worries me that it might not be "Pony" enough (A single straight line is hard to find on one of your art pieces). I will have to really make sure that the actual in-flesh character looks natural. Do you ever use the Linework layers? It doesn't seem so, judging by how they look more like paintings than exact digital graphics. My current progress is looking very digital in that respect, though I suppose I could just trace over it.

We are only here on your blog because you are, Diamonds.

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

@Favo

He's the kind of guy that has always wanted to work hard to achieve a lot, like myself, and he would see artistic ventures as risky business. Once, he just asked me out of the blue if I was "a leader or a follower". At a Thanksgiving dinner party with our only family in this country, I was asked what I want to do when I grow up. I was too conflicted to answer, so my sister answered for me that I wanted to be a lawyer, which she must have heard from my mother at the time. Soon after, he convinced me to join him driving to a store where we were buying something for me, and on the way he asked me why I wanted that. I tried to explain that I want to make something of myself, and he concluded that I liked others' comprehension of my title.

I don't mean to make it sound so bad, the worst thing I have to worry about is the surprised reaction and the possibility of college funding. He believes that I will go far, and that's the problem. I wouldn't stay with art if I couldn't go far with it, but it isn't a very stable career. If I'm good at it, I think I could convince him. It will just take some convincing. You're probably luckier in that respect if your parents don't have that kind of vision for how your life will go.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Edit: Curse you, inadequate phone texting system and double-posting.

If every parent on earth had the same mindset, there'd be an overpopulation of doctors and lawyers in the world. Be thankful your mom is backing you up.

One quote from Final Fantasy XIII applies here: You control your own fate. It's okay if you get advice from someone else, but never let anyone make your decisions for you. If you do, you might end up doing something you don't like, and you're lack of enthusiasm in the job can ultimately jeopardize your work performance. A friend of mine has been drawing for nearly all his life; in fact, we started out together and worked on a few joint projects at one point. Now, he's a competent manga artist, and he wants to go for graphic design in college. His parents ordered him, dictator fashion, to study engineering (which he hated) instead. I dunno how he's doing now, though his comments on Facebook hints that the rebellion is still ongoing.

In my opinion, taking design as a field of study has a major pro and con. The pro: The number of designers in our society is lower compared to the "surefire success" careers like the aforementioned doctors and lawyers, so competition for a job is usually lower, which provides a larger chance of employment. The con: the field of art and design doesn't expand as much as other fields, so the demand for designers is lower. If you're unlucky, this con can easily cancel out the pro. In conclusion, studying design is a risky business when it comes to careers, but the rewards can be amply satisfying. Choose wisely.

Aw, blimey. College funds. Unless your parents have done some proper planning, you're in for a horrible time. If it does happen, the best solution is to go for a loan or something. This process was particularly hard for my parents because Malaysia's "state-of-the-art" (cough lousy cough) government forbids loaning funds for foundation studies. And that's only one of the many reasons the education system here fails to the extreme. Thank the Lord I'm going to a PRIVATE university. That said, to those who plan to have ankle biters in future: start saving when they hit the terrible twos. When in doubt, DON'T have kids.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

I have thought about that before; I could never live with a repetitive, low-paid job. So if everyone was like me, no one would be garbage men. Granted, if everyone was like me then we would take garbage duty shifts and work to develop technology to do it for us, but I digress...

I would rather take the risk with every available creative job and fall back on something else than give up right away. I wonder how I will get the chance to try them, but I have heard of "workshops" and opportunities to volunteer that I should make use of.

Unless something goes very different within the next two years, I will have to get some sort of employment and save up for my own college education, since that is the least of our worries right now. At least that means that I don't have to justify whatever I choose to take, because it will be my money. (Also, if we happen to have hit the topic of whether we should have children or not...If I got married then I would let my wife decide, but as of yet I don't plan to marry.)

Apparently Amazon lied to me three times, because the tablet just arrived. The next time my father leaves the office, real work is to be done. I must make something.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

You know, it's really a shame that that interview I did for that pony magazine has (seemingly, anyway) not gotten around to being published yet, as it likely would have answered quite a few of your questions. But I digress. What exactly would you like to know?

And I see... I guess it's easy enough for my to offer my input into your situation, without actually knowing the full story and despite the fact that I really can't relate much myself. Not that my parents own a business which I could potentially inherit anyway, but even if I did I can't imagine my mother would ever try to force the issue too much... my father, on the other hand, has often been a practical person to the point of weariness and believes that financial security should trump everything else when it comes to the subject of a career. He has always supported me in my creative endeavors though, at least, mostly because he knows how happy it makes me, and I'm certainly very grateful for that. But I know he wishes I was able to enjoy a little bit more of a stable income at the same time. You were very correct when you said art is not always an easy career for many people to get into/be successful at, hence the fact that I am stuck at my day job, and am now needing to consider a second while I try my best to get my personal works out there and my business off the ground. It's hardly ever easy, but for me at least I like to think it's worth it.

Oh, and in answer to your question I believe the grammatically correct phrasing is 'you would gladly commission me'. ^_~

And congrats on receiving your very own tablet at last! Hopefully your life and artistic pursuits will now be made exponentially easier and more enjoyable for you. And in response to your question about my methods, the majority of my pieces (certainly all the doodles) are done on three simple layers only: the first (top) for the linework, the second (middle) for the coloring and the third (bottom) for the background. That's it!

@CaineScroll

I'm not sure if the situation in Malaysia is remotely similar to the one in the US, but another good option for Anon would likely be grants and scholarships (as opposed to a loan), especially seeing as how he's told us that he's always received very good grades in school. It's definitely something worth researching, at least.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Well I don't know how terribly interesting my life is, but I appreciate your saying so. Most of the time (or well, probably around half of the time) I am at work at the ceramics studio, and if I am not there then generally I'm at home working on one of my various projects/side jobs. Usually when it's the latter, I'll have my laptop with me and that's generally when I'm replying to people here or taking care of whatever other internet business I have, while listening to music or sometimes watching TV if there's anything on that I like. When and if I get any free time for something else I like watching movies, reading, cooking/baking, going shopping (or at least going window shopping; I can spend hours doing that), hanging out with friends if it can be managed and of course, drawing pony-art. All in all, pretty normal things I guess.

And yes, when I said that I meant that I might have to start looking for a second job soon to supplement my income, or at least if I'm not able to start getting more hours at the studio. Hopefully it won't come to that as that would, of course, leave me less time for my other work, but sometimes we all must bite the bullet. Hopefully, if that is the case it would only be a short-time situation.

In answer to your question yes, I do use a layer for my linework, though I don't use a line or pen tool as you were talking about. I almost exclusively use the marker tool for my pony-doodles, set to "bristle" for the linework and "spread" for all the color. I also set the linework layer to "shade" (though, after talking with CaineScroll about this via email it seems as though his version of SAI doesn't give him that option, so he's been using "multiply" which is similar). I keep everything pretty simple with all the doodles since I do them purely for fun as a way to entertain myself, and as I've said before the majority of them are done in around an hour... definitely less than two anyway. It's all about having fun when it comes to my fanart.

On that note, the biggest piece of advice I think I can offer you when it comes to drawing ponies, or really anything for that matter, is just to have fun and try not to worry too much about overthinking anything. The more you practice and work at it, the more like second nature it will become. Just keep at it!

Anon said... Reply to comment

Edit: That awkward moment when you realize that the word you used did not mean what you thought it meant, and was actually somewhat inappropriate.

@WhiteDiamonds

In retrospect, there isn't something specific that I'm looking to find out, I was just thinking about how you have an interesting life so I was wondering about the kind of things that you like and how your time is spent, but that sounds intrusive (not to mention suspicious), so you don't have to tell us everything if you don't want to. It would have been good both for us and those who are unaware of your blog if that interview had been published somewhere, though maybe someone will give you a community spotlight? After all, you actually involve yourself in the community, which is more than can be said about most of the fan content providers I have seen.

I hope I don't sound like I'm pitying myself or asking for social advice, I know that I have a much easier situation than a lot of people do. Is your second job the freelance business, or are you taking a third job on top of that just to support yourself? If that's the case, then I feel sorry for you. Two jobs and a business sounds like the most that a single person can do.

Oh, you do use a linework layer? I thought those were mostly for the "point A to point B" lines of the Line tool, which it doesn't look like you use. I have always been using the Pen tool on a regular layer for sketching, and switching to the Line tool on a Linework layer to clean it up. But those lines look digital, and not like the soft, paint-like strokes that I see in your lines.

And thank you, this tablet should make it much easier to make progress. Now it doesn't have to be such a secret, I don't have to keep asking to borrow my sister's (which remains on her desk, untouched) during the daytime, and I don't have to deal with a small laptop that can barely support it for a few hours at midnight. And yet, it still feels like a privilege.

Speaking of which, it's funny; I have been doing the big and detailed parts using straight lines with ease, but now that I have to draw simple, round ponies, I suddenly realize that I have no drawing experience. One thing that I have yet to get over is how big the eyes are; I'm trying to consider the fact that they take up most of the face. Also, I think the circle for the head that I made was a bit too perfect, and not oval enough, which of course makes it impossible to compare to your head-to-eye proportions. At least once I get passed this, I won't have much more of such important challenges. I would say that it's still going fairly well. I have the time now to work through it.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Heehee, well, if it's any comfort to you I didn't even notice. I guess it's not always a bad thing that I'm frequently multitasking when replying to my comments here!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Somehow, scholarships completely missed my mind, but now that I think about it, they do present a valid option for your education. I reckon it has to do with the fact that most people my age are being sent to military service for three months, and I'm rather thankful I wasn't picked. Otherwise, the next time you mates hear from me would be months later.

As of now I'm technically still wasting away at home until April when I finally set out for college. Most people who haven't been selected for national service have jobs by now, but I'm still unemployed because I just can't find a job that suits me for the time being. On the plus side, I have more time for doing art at home. Whee~

As for the art...basically I follow Di's rule of thumb regarding three layers, but occasionally I slip in an extra layer or two to avoid some messiness (eg: unwanted blending). I use Multiply for my linework layer as aforementioned, though I use the "simple circle" tip for the actual linework. The rest is by the book: much of what you've seen on my end are merely practice pieces. If only I applied just as much effort for my piano classes~=S

@WhiteDiamonds

If you can get interviewed for a pony magazine, your life is definitely more interesting than mine. My life is nothing but the mundane, not unless you count jumping off a four-storey platform attached to a bungee cord.

As for pony art, I'm having fun, in a sense---I'm now challenging myself to make at least three pictures in a future Drawfriend. Wish me luck!

Favo said... Reply to comment
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Wow, I was sort of only half considering the possibility that you were doing it only to survive. I would ask why such a sudden change in lifestyle could be necessary, but I know that finances among adults are a sensitive topic. You are overworked as it is, and I have trouble imagining you doing anything more. I mean, we aren't doing so well ourselves, as I have selfishly implied (we have been living off our savings for the past year), but somehow I care more when it happens to you.

Ah, I have never tried the Marker tool before. This is why e-mailing you is beneficial. If it interests you at all, try switching to the Pen tool some time to see what I have been working with. Yes, it's pretty basic. I'm glad I know which tool to use now that I'm just starting the organic parts. It really does look more like your doodles. It has more of the cartoon-like feel as well, which my current progress as of yet is sorely lacking. The thematic contrast is going to drop like a hammer. All as according to plan.

And this is one of the things that we like about you; your generous support. Everything that I make will be thanks to you. It really does mean that to me.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

And yes, I understand that having more than one job can be extremely pressuring upon oneself. Hopefully your intent of getting a few more hours at the studio will materialize, so you won't have to scan the newspaper ads every single day or something. But if things don't exactly turn out as planned, know that we're all here rooting for you in spirit. On my own blog, I constantly speak (type) of you in a higher light, as many of the others might've known by now. Don't mistake it as flattery---it's anything but. While you may not be the best pony artist out there, you're probably the kindest. Looking at Anon's comment above, I think that Rarity avatar of yours just doesn't do you justice~!

Nobody likes to be smack-dad in the middle of an economic crisis. I'm sure we all have been through something like that, be it for university, or a permanent residence, or lack of sustainable income. But it's not really the end of the world (Smooth move, Scrolls. Talking about that this year), right? maybe you'll find a better-paying job which you can actually enjoy. The important thing is---think positive! ^.^

I'm not really used to the dramatic lingo, so I'll leave that to Nicholas Sparks. But I do hope for the tides to change for the better on your end, especially now that we're on the tip of another year. I know everyone here has the same thoughts of goodwill for you, Di, and in my opinion, those thoughts beat Nicholas Sparks any day. =D

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Well... I admit when you put it that way, it does sound so. And I certainly hope you were joking about that second part--that sounds far too dangerous!

You know I will always wish you luck, my dear. I always have.

And in regards to your second post, thank you very much for all of the encouraging thoughts and words. I know you all say that I am a source of good support to you, but really, you all give it back in turn and it is very much appreciated. I have faith that things will work out alright in the end, and I've certainly never let a little hard work intimidate me! Someday, and sooner rather than later I believe I will be exactly where I long to be in my life... it is all good. ^.^

@Favo

You are a sweetness as always my dear, and I very much appreciate the kind sentiments. As I said, though, hopefully it won't have to come to that... even now, if I'm lucky it looks as though I might be able to pick up a few more shifts over the next two weeks. Ask and ye shall receive I guess, and funnily enough I haven't even spoken to the boss about it yet; things just sort of fell into place on their own (perhaps my mother would also consider this to be "creative visualization". In fact, I know she would).

@Anon

Well, in all honesty I wouldn't say I'd consider it a matter of "survival" as much as I would, mmm, 'comfortable survival'. I do make enough now to pay my bills but not much else, and without getting into too much detail (as you're correct; I imagine this really is no place for me to be elaborating on my personal financial situation) I could stand to be making a little bit more. I really hope to ascend from this place of relative mediocrity that I find myself in in the near future, I suppose is the best way to say it, and more money seems to be a necessity for accomplishing that goal. We'll see though; I do appreciate the kind sentiments in any case.

As far as the pen tool, I have used one before in Photoshop when creating more "polished" works, though I'm not sure if it differs at all from SAI's version as I've never used that one before. Which probably makes this next bit of advice sound perfectly hypocritical but I shall say it anyway: I honestly recommend that you try and familiar yourself with more of SAI's tools and options if you have not already done so... you might even find some of them to be more to your liking than the marker tool.

And well, I appreciate that dear, thank you. I'd like to think any half-decent person would be willing to offer support and advice to those who ask or wish for it, but regardless I am happy if I have been able to make any positive difference in your life.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

I do enjoy classical music, though I really couldn't call myself a connoisseur; I don't know a sonata from an etude, or an allegro from an adagio. Oddly, that had little influence on my choice of subject for my first commission from Di; I just love Octavia's design (those eyes!), and since I wanted something different from the all-too-common drawings of her playing a cello, a scene of her composing seemed a natural alternative.

@Anon

Oh, I have some interests in common with the "disgraceful drunken riffraff" as well. ;) I've got CDs of Elvis Presley, Creedence Clearwater Revival, and country-rock superstars Alabama; DVDs of "Night Court" and "Weird" Al Yankovic; and books of Garfield comic strips and Dave Berry columns. It's just a lot more fun to talk about Sherlock and Gershwin.

@WhiteDiamonds

Little Nemo in Slumberland actually enjoyed its heyday from 1905 to 1914, though it was revived for a few years in the mid-'20s; but yes, that's one of the primary strips I was thinking of, along with Krazy Kat, Thimble Theater Starring Popeye, Polly and her Pals, and Bringing Up Father, among others. So many strips of that time (most especially Little Nemo and Krazy Kat) have astonishingly beautiful art, and even the lesser strips of that era tend to be more fun and interesting than almost anything in the paper today.

@WhiteDiamonds part deux

Oh, that's a fun selection of art, from rough sketches to finished pieces. I love the pic with Toothless and Astrid, and the Rarity sketch is hilarious. The original gryphon-like critter (owl/lynx cross?) is also delightful; I wish experiments like this were more common.

@CaineScroll

I think both your drawings of Snape are quite good, capturing his personality very well; the hair particularly looks just as I would have imagined from the book. I think I can see why you prefer the second, full-body drawing, as there's a bit more of a defined facial expression, and the body language likewise adds to the drawing.

@Favo

You're just now noticing?

And now that I've worked my way up to the comments posted this year, I find myself needing to respond more generally, and not to specific comments...

All the talk about drawing techniques and tips is very interesting, and I hope I'll have occasion to put it into practice; now that I've got the post-holidays chores behind me, I should have more time to practice drawing. Not that I expect to have anything worth sharing anytime soon, but I've got to take that first step if I expect to travel a thousand miles.

Apparently quite a few of use are looking at some upcoming major life changes, whether it's college or the possibility of a new job. I'm certainly not at the point where I have to worry about starving or going homeless, but it's definitely time for me to get a better job as well. I hope and pray everyone here finds whatever path brings you the most happiness. In particular, Di, since you've just been told to try to reduce the stress in your life, I wish the best for you, and am glad to hear you may be getting some desired extra shifts at your current job.

@Anon

Glad to hear you have your tablet now, bringing with it the chance at more frequent and more productive drawing sessions.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Do you know, I'm ashamed to say that I haven't heard of most of those (in fact, now that I think about it I'm trying to remember how and why I ever got around to reading any Little Nemo, though I certainly did), though I suppose at some point in the future I shall have to make an effort to do so now that you've mentioned them. Especially if you say they sport some lovely art.

And speaking of artwork, I'm so glad you seemingly enjoyed that sampling of mine, thank you so much! =^^= I'm sorry that more of them aren't finished but of course, I've had a difficult time getting around to them recently. In regards to the gryphon-creature you are essentially correct; I actually intended it to be a bobcat-owl gryphon originally though lynx works just as well for most practical purposes. There was actually intended to be a whole series of them crossing a bunch of different feline/bird-of-prey species but the whole project never really took off... I'd still like to revisit the idea someday though, and just for fun if nothing else.

And lastly, yes, I guess this really is shaping up to be a year of change for everyone and not just myself, which is certainly exciting if not a bit daunting at times to think about. I appreciate the well-wishes in any case, and I promise you that I will continue to do my best to moderate my stress as I have been advised (actually, now that we're on this topic I had been experiencing palpitations again this past week, though in this case at least it seems to have been the result of mineral deficiencies and seems to have cleared up). You know I wish you the best as well; you'll have to keep me updated on how things have been going for you!

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

After watching videos of it, Photoshop's Pen tool is like SAI's (Because spelling it in all caps apparently is in these days) Line tool. SAI's Pen tool is just what it sounds like; it looks like a pencil. Right now, I'm using a combination of Marker and Line. It isn't easy trying to draw long, straight lines, so that is what I use the Line tool for. The curved and organic parts have the thicker, more cartoon-like look. I could probably trace over either of them with either tool if I wanted to make an entire object or picture in the same style, and I think that when (As crazy as it feels to say it, I don't think I need to say "if" anymore) I show my first attempt, I might make a couple of different versions so that everyone can decide which looks the best.

@jodyjm13

Funny (or, rather, weird) you should mention Al, as I only just recently revisited his twitter page. It's better than it sounds. He frequently posts up jokes, as well as things like this: "Thanks, HuffPo, for always filling me in on who’s being ATTACKED, SLAMMED, RIPPED, BASHED or BLASTED by whom. #TheMoreYouKnow" I never liked how news stations would do that, and I can relate to so many of these thoughts that he is practically his own "omgidothistoo". Oh, and his music used to be the only thing that I would listen to before I turned 13 and more options were presented to me. Having just released his first album in "nearly five years", I'm glad he is still active in the industry.

I can understand that you might not have the adequate time to really try it out, as I am currently dealing with the same problem, but once you do take your first steps in then we will do our best to help. It would be nice to have a third supporting artist in this group. Maybe we can all compare techniques some time. It is already making for quite an intriguing and helpful topic.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

Well, it finally happened. No blog is safe from Blogger's comment reformation. It would've been okay-looking if Blogger had taken the time to think about its design...maybe they should pay deviantART a visit.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

And this page is using the new Blogger comment system; odd...

@WhiteDiamonds

It shouldn't be too hard to find samples of the comics I listed online, although for Thimble Theater starring Popeye you'll probably also want to include "Segar" as one of the search terms; Elzie Segar sadly died fairly early, and none of his successors were able to capture the loopy charm he brought to the strip. In terms of art, Krazy Kat is, I think, every bit the equal of Little Nemo, although it's borderline abstract as opposed to Little Nemo's art deco style. As you've mentioned a fondness for dialects before, you may also enjoy the unique patois George Herriman employed for his characters.

If you return to the feline/bird-of-prey combinations, please let us know; I've been interested in that concept since seeing a drawing of a hummingbird gryphon about 15 years ago (a drawing that, sadly, no longer seems to be online), and your bobcat-owl gryphon is the best example of that type of hybrid I've seen yet.

@Anon

Weird Al's wit is a perfect fit for Twitter. I love it when he satirizes some aspect of pop culture, as in the tweet you quoted or in songs like "Waffle King" or "Don't Download This Song", but as with all comedians some of his material falls short. Still, I own nearly all of his albums, as his hits greatly outnumber his misses.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Isn't it written all in caps?? *looks at program icon on desktop* Yes, I'm pretty sure it is... at least mine is!

Anyway though, thank you for reporting and letting me know that the two different programs' tools are, indeed, similar as I had always figured (maybe that's why I'd never really bothered with trying it in SAI). As far as which looks better, I don't know that you should have to post multiple examples and let all of us be the judge of what you should do... it should be all about what you yourself prefer since it will be your artwork. If you are indeed going to become an artist, as I think is the case seeing as you are already halfway there (you have the ambition and desire), you need to learn to embrace a more free-spirited attitude and do whatever it is that makes you happy in your work. ^_~ Or at least, that is the advice that I would offer you!

@CaineScroll

Well, this is probably rather mean of me to say but I am not going to lie; Blogger's design has never been one of its most appealing qualities in my opinion. Honestly, sometimes I'm not even sure why I decided to set up shop here with my artwork as opposed to some other site, but I suppose it was largely out of convenience since I'd already made an account for the purpose of posting on EqD. And, as I've said at this point, I really do not feel the desire to create any additional accounts on other sites to showcase my pony-art because I have my hands full keeping up with this blog as it is... ah well.

@jodyjm13

Thank you for the tips; I admit, I'd forgotten to look any of these up after we discussed it previously, but I'll try and make an effort to do so at some point in the relatively near future (you know me and my often scattered mind..). And yes, I suppose I do frequently find myself feeling a certain fondness for many dialects, you're right~ =^.^=

In regards to my would-be gryphon series, I must thank you sincerely for your compliments as well as your interest... I will indeed let you know if I ever return to the project. I have always had a certain fondness for gryphons in general, and most mythical creatures I suppose (I know I've mentioned unicorns on the other post recently)... it's too bad that hummingbird-gryphon you mentioned has seemingly gone missing, because that sounds immensely interesting and I'm sure I would have loved to have seen it!