Tuesday, March 6, 2012

And Now for Something a Little Bit Different--Commission #7!


Good evening, dearest friends and followers! I am happy to say that at last, and perhaps a day or two later than I intended to have it up Commission #7 is here. And I'm certainly pleased and relieved to be able to share it with you all now.

This commission was done for the lovely BaffMan of pony community fame, who also happens to be a fellow Rarijack fan which of course I can hardly complain about. He came to me wanting a piece that brought to life a little scene written by himself and a fellow fan and friend from my understanding, and I did my best to do his vision justice, resulting in the cute little scene above where Rarity is not altogether thrilled by her experience helping Applejack in the orchard (Applejack, by contrast seems to find this turn of events highly entertaining). This particular piece of course is not especially shippy which I'm sure some of you will appreciate, though as per usual with my fanworks I am always happy to leave things open for personal interpretation.

As I'm sure is entirely obvious at first glance, this picture is quite different from most of my commissions to date, and certainly from the full-scale digital paintings that have made up my last two paid works. Baff, however, was perfectly content to ask for something more along the lines of what I frequently refer to as my doodles, and I can say that I was more than happy to be able to fulfill such a request... in a way it was a great deal of fun really and a pleasant change of pace from my more elaborate endeavors. Hopefully you all will enjoy the end result as well, and even if the piece is arguably not as "impressive" as some of the others that I have done.

As usual, I'm happy to tell you all that you can be expecting some more new artwork from me soon... very soon in fact if I'm able to stick to a personal deadline that I have given myself. While I can't promise there will be much in the way of personal fanart as I was originally hoping, seeing as how I once again have several commissions lined up I can only hope that you all will enjoy the offerings all the same, and very much look forward to being able to share them with you.

Until next time then, I trust you all will remain quite fabulous. Cheers, darlings~!


WD

35 comments:

TheBaffMan said... Reply to comment

Incredibly glad to see this on your blog! I figured I'd make my first comment by sharing the thoughts that I shared with you earlier, as I do like sharing my observations and I'm glad to be able to comment on a piece!

It's not what I had imagined when I first described you the piece, and yet I love it. Even moreso than my original thoughts. The little details really stand out. The expressions, the fact that Applejack has already retrieved SO many more apples than the poor mare trying her best to do the same. Applejack seemingly exerts effort carrying the weight-sagged baskets on her back, looking as fine as always as Rarity's frazzled mane and tail clearly show her frustration. And yet she's blushing so slightly as thought she's still enjoying being out there with the orange pony, despite feeling a little embarassed, and Applejack's smug grin only barely hides her appreciation for that.

That might just be me reading into the piece a little, but I do so love analysing the little things. And yes, I am very impressed. I've already shown it to my close friend and his heart practically melted at the sight of it. So cute!

Once again, I love what you've done with it, and I can't wait to work with you further! Your art style has always seemed to draw me in and I can recognise it anywhere. Good luck with the work you already have lined up! I look forward to seeing it.

Kein said... Reply to comment

Uhh... I couldn't help but notice that people here (here - in such art-blogs, like yours or Caine's) tend to write lengthy responses regarding the artwork of an artist. Unfortunately, english is not my native language and usually I don't have to say much on the subject, so, let me be myself and be short on this one: I just adore how you portrayed Applejack's and Rarity's expressions, they are main aspect of a composition on this piece and they literally tell the story, show the scene itself. Well done.

Anon said... Reply to comment

Bah, you two make new entries before I can respond to the last ones. There are only so many hours in the midnight, you know.

I don't mean to take credit for the idea, but to be honest I had also considered the possibility of asking for a commission in "marker doodle" style. They're less captivating and more of just fun. Rarity's expression, of course, is perfect. The whole pictures is colorful, reflecting the less serious theme. While I have to mention that I don't think it's entirely like your doodle style (noting crisp outlines that are especially evident on Rarity's hair), it's interesting how the background is lineless, but the foreground is not. It's good to hear that you enjoyed making it, which I know is not always true. It can't hurt that you already draw things like this for fun anyway.

This is close enough to the style of your doodles to be good learning material, so I have that to look forward to when I can. Also, I don't mean to sound demanding, but I always like to hear that we might see new artwork soon. I anticipate its arrival, just as long as you don't overwork yourself. As much as we enjoy the results of your effort, it isn't worth the negative feeling of seeing you bothered and stressed by what is only a simple pleasure to us. Just remember to look after yourself, and we won't need to feel guilty for it.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@TheBaffMan

Oh my, you're quite the expedient one aren't you! I'd only just posted this piece and finished sending off your email reply, dear Baff, and yet I turned around to find you'd managed a comment already... most impressive I must say!

Thank you, thank you for such lovely feedback in response to your piece my dear; as I don't think I can say enough I'm so very happy you like it! ^.^ I know I mentioned it already but I honestly find it immensely gratifying when others take the time to break down one of my pieces and analyze such minute little details, considering that I actually do devote a lot of thought to such things as I'm working, so the fact that you saw fit to share such thoughts here and again is great as far as I'm concerned. And yes, I have to say that you picked up on most everything I was going for, which of course is a fabulous thing for me to hear. ^.^

I really am thrilled that both you and your friend are happy with your finished product, and I'm sure it goes without saying that me being the shameless sappy shipper and unabashed Rarity/Applejack fan that I am I had a great deal of fun working on it. As far as your other kind sentiments go I must thank you very much for the generous praise, and do indeed hope you'll enjoy some of my upcoming artworks... as I hinted at before and at risk of being a terrible tease I'll say again I have a feeling you might enjoy one of them in particular. ^.~

Thank you so much again my dear; your generous support and interest in my work really does mean a great deal to me!

@Kein

Eep! Well it looks as though I might have been mistaken when I remarked that Baff was speedy, as you're pretty quick on the draw yourself dearie! Maybe I'm actually just slow... yes, that likely does make more sense.

Anyway though, thank you so much for the feedback on my work once again; I really do appreciate the fact that you take the time as I know Blogger is not your favorite website on which to comment on art. I hope you won't worry about leaving shorter posts than some of my other regulars here as we all tend to get uncommonly wordy (yes, I am including myself in those sentiments, ahem~), and really I'm just happy to hear that you like it... it means a lot to me considering that again, it's a far more "simple" piece than my last couple of paid works have been.

I certainly did have a lot of fun getting to play around with Applejack and Rarity's (especially Rarity's) expressions here, which I guess shows in the finished product. ^.^ Again I have to say thanks for all of the kind words; they are very much appreciated!

(P.S. Oh yes and for whatever it's worth, I have to say I think your English is quite good and certainly better than some native speakers I've encountered online in the past. It's the honest truth!)

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

You and Scrolls, in the same week? Good Celestia! Loving this lighthearted little piece after the breathtaking #6 and #5, it is a nice change of pace after the epicness of aforementioned pieces. I love Rarity's expression here, and suddenly Applejack's expression almost has that trollface look to it (u mad?) And that apple bouncing off Rarity's head... gives me some gluey ideas...

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Oh, ah yes... sorry about that my dear. Every now and then, however, I actually do manage to surprise myself with bursts of productivity, and thankfully after the long gap in updates here it seems we've hit one of those strides once again.

Mweeee I really am so happy to hear that you like the picture... I was afraid that so many of you might be disappointed considering that this was not a fancy involved painting like my last two artworks have been! It truly is a huge relief. And yes, as many of you have seemingly picked up on (though I suppose I stated as much myself in my opening post), I do sometimes have more fun with these types of projects, since as the end result is arguably not as gratifying, they're obviously far less work and stress for me. The fact that the subject matter in this instance is something I'm notably fond of certainly didn't hurt either.

You're right that this picture isn't quite on the same level as what I normally would call one of my doodles... I really couldn't justify submitting something like that to a client and even if it's roughly equivalent to what he was initially asking for. I suppose you could call it more of a "refined doodle", or at the very least a cute happy cartoon drawing... obviously not a painting though judging by the response this seems to be getting already, some people might actually prefer such things. The background being lineless is something that I feel is consistent with my doodles, though again raised to a slightly higher bar considering it was a commission. I'm very glad to hear that overall, you seem to feel the end product is successful in any case.

Don't worry about sharing your feelings my dear... certainly I would not consider you demanding and actually, I enjoy hearing that you look forward to seeing my new work. I very much appreciate the concern for me though, and for what it's worth I can promise you I'll do my best not to stress about things too much. Which admittedly is often easier said than done!

@zhoomcar

Oh, why are you all so good!? These comments are all so sweet and wonderful... as I said to Anon above I honestly was worried you all might be disappointed by such a cute and simple picture, but it's a wonderful relief to to see that I was seemingly mistaken.

Hahaha yes, Applejack does seem like she's having a little too much fun at Rarity's expense but as far as my artworks go at least, I suppose Rarity might have had it coming. Somebody once remarked about my pics of the two of them (and truthfully I realized afterward) that Rarity nearly always seems to be getting the better of Applejack, and indeed even if Baff wouldn't have commissioned me for such a piece I was intending on doing something to remedy the situation sooner or later. In any case dear I'm very glad to hear that you enjoyed it, and again I'll confess I had a great deal of fun with both ponies' expressions in this piece. ^.^

And more gluey ideas, really? Do tell! Well I'm very much looking forward to seeing what happens with that, if indeed you get around to doing something with the idea. ^_~

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

It's definitely nice to see another drawing from you so soon after your previous post; while it's between your "doodles" and your more recent commissions in terms of complexity, it's still a really fun, charming drawing. Rarity's and Applejack's expressions and poses are just perfect for the situation, and the bright colors really heighten the lighthearted mood. As much as I love your earlier commissions, these drawings where you're obviously more relaxed and loose have a life to them that I adore.

@Kein

It's perfectly fine to leave shorter comments, too; we aren't going to require a minimum post length around here. And as Di mentioned, your English is excellent, so you have nothing to be ashamed of in that regard. (Is anyone else amazed and delighted at how international the fandom for this show is?)

And while I'm a bit reluctant to mention it again, since I just posted my comment on this last night, but on the previous post I mentioned that I've found some ponies that I'd like to send on to appreciative homes, and I can also keep an eye out for wave 1 blindbag ponies for anyone who's unable to find them.

(I really ought to be getting up in ~4 hours, so it's time to post this comment and call it a night...)

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds
So here's how it went down... What started as a mere doodle (these are real doodles, not that WhiteDiamonds stuff) on the train home from school turned into something much more full-blown (in comparison to my previous doodles anyway). I managed to finish the glue bottles, apple and ground within 15 minutes, and when I got home I suddenly had the urge to add onto it. 45 minutes later, that tree and sky colouring appeared, and then I realised that AJ and Rarity had saddle basket things, and there were indeed still apples in that tree, and left it at that. Overall, took me an hour for some reason? Time well spent? Time well spent. (wat) Why do I even continue to do these things? You just have too much of that inspiration power. Inspiration is Magic! That, and it beats homework.

Also, something I noticed about the actual image itself: There appears to be a small section below the image that's just transparent... space. Nothing huge, and nothing image cropping can't fix, but it's... something.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

Scratch that last part, it actually turns out I didn't download the image properly. -facehoof-

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

Wow, this appears right after my post? Highly suspicious~!

All jokes aside, I was pleasantly surprised (well, more pleased than surprised) to find yet another Rarijack picture up!^^ I really love the background, with grass and trees and---wait a minute, that also sounds extremely familiar.

The colours are admirably done, and that seems to be one of the reasons I came to this blog in the first place (but again, "come for the art, stay for the artist"!)It confounds me how you manage to pull the textures off so well, such as the ponies' manes, as well as the grass. I also love Rarity herself, she looks positively peeved about having Applejack see her in an embarrassing situation. The baskets, too, are an eye-catching feature...I have to wonder, what tool did you use for the details on it?

Applejack, on the other hand, seems a bit off...I have to admit that her expression catches me off guard a little. I suppose zhoomcar does have a point about the trollface thing.

But in all, kudos to another good job and I look forward to seeing your next endeavour! =D

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

Another commission? You're on fire these days, it seems. This work is of a very different scope than your previous two commissions. I wouldn't call anything so far beyond by own ken a "doodle," so let's say this is a more modest artwork. Rarity is adorable. Amusingly, this pose is fairly close to that in CaineScroll's commission for me, except at a very different angle, and in very different surroundings. Then we have Applejack, grass, and a tree, and once again I am reminded of CaineScroll's prior work. Great minds thinking alike, or more likely, Applejack lends herself to be drawn in the company of trees.

Rarity is so cute, that I just want to help her up, give her a hug, and fetch her fainting couch for her. She's just not cut out for farm labor! I like her little cartoon mouth, and the way her curl bunches up on the ground. How did that poor thing get roped into this? (Maybe she was literally "roped" into it!)

Applejack's expression is fun, and I can practically hear her stifled chortling. I don't think I've ever seen a pony face, head, and neck drawn quite this way before. Your use of a lineless background, as Scrolls noted, is well done, with great use of shading to convey distance, texture, and volume. Please bear in mind with all of the foregoing that I have no idea what I'm talking about, am not an artist, and writing entirely off the cuff. Perhaps the better to write is simply that I really, really like what I'm seeing!

What else is there to say? I can't wait for your next piece, as always; I think you're marvelous, as always; and time and my own inadequacy with words do not allow me to praise you as much as you deserve, as always.

TomTheRock said... Reply to comment

I find your 'doodles' very impressive, and enjoy them just as much as your more elaborate works.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

You've managed to sneak another finished piece up on me, and this one is a real charmer! Personally, I love this kind of thing from you, because the linework really shows off your distinctive style. Further, I think it goes best with expressive images like this one that are all about capturing some personality rather than lighting, background or what-have-you. Here, it's all about the action, as poor Rarity struggles with manual labor and AJ gives an excellent pony nicker over her distress. The coloring and shading are more than enough to give warmth and shape to the scene and make the whole thing more inviting. There are a bunch of things to appreciate artisticly, such as the effective background making great use of diminishing contrast and saturation to give a nice sense of space while keeping some pop in the foreground, or the rough edges to the shading on the ponies themselves, making them feel soft and velvety in Rarity's case, or a little more coarse yet fuzz in AJ's. But it's not the kind of thing you want to pick at so much as just enjoy. It's artistic comfort food, is what it is, of the best kind. I'll take as many helpings of it as you can pile onto my plate. Or your plate, actually, since you're the one who has to find the time to do them.

BND said... Reply to comment

I really do like this drawing, and as the others have said, I think that the more "doodle" aspect of it fits the mood of the situation. All in all, I think it's very well done. ^_^

Also, I've been considering recently whether I should commission you as well, but I know that you have so many that you're working on at the moment, so maybe sometime in the future. ^^;

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Oh, and at least I saw this one before it showed up in today's Drawfriend. So I'm getting better at catching them.

Kateasaurus said... Reply to comment

Another lovely piece! Between you and Scrolls I can barely keep up with comments. Never a bad thing!

The apple bouncing off of Rarity's noggin made me chuckle. It's just such a light-hearted drawing compared to the last few commissions. You always give each pony such a fantastic expression! ^_^

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

As much as you might call us silly, there are times when you can be so as well. Whether it is a quick coloring of your latest concept or a large-scale painting worth many hours of decerning detail, fine art is to be appreciated no matter its form. Your doodles have something special. It is a thing that a careful production intended to convey a client's desire can never quite completely show. It is the essence of the artist herself; the vision of the creator whose hand had formed it. Your personal artwork exemplifies your own creativity and the individual behind the image. The individual whom we make conversation with at our every opportunity, and the one person whom we all mutually find so intriguing. They are not just simple entertainment for you and us all, but expressions of your own creative dreams. They provide us with a look inside the mind of a master, and let us see what you are inspired to create using your obvious talent instead of leaving us to wonder what such a capable artist would do when left with no limits. That is something that no occurance of lines, no placement of lighting, no technical impressiveness or amount of complex detail can take away from them. Your doodles have personality. They can feel in a way that could only be expressed with the heart from which they came. The small details, subtle hints at what the characters are feeling that you have left for us for discover and interpret: That is what we, as appreciative supporters of all of your art value. What matters is not how much time it took for you to make it or what techniques you used to depict the idea, but what became of the concept after the work is done. As long as it came from you, it will have your touch which brought us here, and has kept us here ever since.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Er, so yes, I don't think they need to be justified. It's a different art style, which we can always enjoy even if it isn't a big and polished painting. After all, it wasn't long since you started taking commissions for paintings, and we were here before then. How could we ever dislike something that came from you?

This art-- not a painting, not necessarily a doodle, but art has a hint of yourself that helps to show its depth. Your character acting is clearly represented here, putting focus on the situation and the thoughts that are apparent to us rather than tehnical refinement or realism. It takes focus away from the great mountains and leaves it towards the small and simple apple. That is not something that you should ever be ashamed of.

@PonydoraPrancypants

I didn't have the chance to say so earlier, but I find all of your comments to be admirably eloquent and exceptionally true. While we all have had times in the past that we felt it fit to honor her for the talent and charisma that make her so deserving of praise, you remind me that, at least in a case like this, you can never quite say enough.

@Harwick

It would be just my luck that you'd release another piece of art featuring Derpy before I gave attention to the last one. As always, you are a symbol of the entire art talent of Pony, and possess a particular expertise of craftsmanship that I fear I will never quite understand. You deserve such a centre of praise and active followers to give their respectful regards, but to an extent, it seems that you have one already.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

I know, I actually have been amazing myself with my increase in productivity recently, especially considering everything else that's been going on with me (more hours at work and such, that is). But again, after that considerable lag in activity on my part following the holidays and everything else, I'm only grateful to be getting back on track again!

Thank you so very much for your kind comments, Jody... it always means so much to me to receive such feedback from you. I'm truly glad that you like the poses and expressions because, despite coming relatively easily to me I actually do put an immense amount of thought into them, and always strive to be able to tell a story with my characters sufficiently without words. So yes, I'm very glad you approve and I can confirm I had a great time working on this project, which I guess shows in the results!

Also, I do hope you're not pushing yourself to comment on this blog when tired out of any feelings of obligation, and certainly not on my account. You're beginning to sound a little bit like myself, truth be told!

@zhoomcar

Oh my Goddess dear, I am literally laughing out loud right now at your little artwork; thank you so very much for sharing that with me! I don't know if I've ever had my work officially spoofed before (though, I will say that your Gluarity bedecked in a steampunk-inspired tophat came gleefully close) but I am finding the experience to be far too entertaining, and I really am flattered I was able to inspire you so. ^.^ I'm sorry if it ended up being more time than you originally anticipated, but again I think it's perfect... this one is definitely being saved for future instances when I desire something to cheer me up.

Thank you also for saying that I inspire you... as I know I've mentioned before, hearing such a thing really is the highest compliment I think I could imagine! <3

@CaineScroll

Mwee thank you so much my dear and I'm so glad to hear that you like the picture! ^.^ As is seemingly apparent to all I really did have a lot of fun with this commission, and I suppose it's not a surprise to anyone if I confess the subject matter might have had something to do with that.

In answer to your question, this entire project was actually done with the marker tool, set at bristle for the linework and spread for everything else as is usual for me. Or well, I suppose I have to add that I actually used the pencil to apply the base color to the ponies before then moving on the marker to shade and add highlights to them. Otherwise though yes, it's only a question of applying delicately for little details like pony-freckles or in big blobs for things such as the suggested foliage of the tree and hills in the background.

It's funny that you mentioned Applejack, because I actually did have a bit of difficulty with her, or should I say I went a bit back-and-forth over just how to handle her amusement at Rarity's plight. My original sketches of her had her looking far more smug which I didn't think was right; though she was laughing at Rarity, she shouldn't really look to be doing so in any kind of cold or indifferent way (or at least, that was the intent). And so I tried to soften the expression somewhat by tilting her ears back and adding the slightest hint of a guilty eyebrow underneath her hair. Seeing as how one of Baff's only listed demands for her involved giggling and a cheeky smile, however, it certainly would not have done to dispense with either one of those.

In any case though, thank you so much once again for the great feedback and with any luck I'll have something new for you again soon! ^_~

Miris said... Reply to comment

Cute!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

Greetings, dearest Ponydora, as always it's a pleasure to receive your feedback on my artwork! And yes, I can say I'm a bit surprised myself as to how the commissions have taken off recently... I actually had about reached the end of my queue after the TRON commission (excluding only this piece, of course), but then as of about two days ago I find I am suddenly booked up again. It really is rather amazing to me, but of course I much prefer to be busy.

Anyhow I'm truly glad to hear that you like the artwork; I wasn't sure if this particular piece would be quite your speed but it's gratifying to hear my misgivings were unfounded! I'm happy to know that you find Rarity cute because honestly, I often think as much myself, and again while I feel a bit sorry for her here, considering how often she is getting the better of Applejack in my fanarts I guess it's about time the score was evened a little.

Again, as I said to CaineScroll it's funny that you mentioned Applejack in this picture (I was not entirely sure if her pose and such were successful, but everyone seems to like them so I suppose they were), and the similarities with Rarity's posture to that in your piece are indeed rather amusing. Initially I did have her drawn from a somewhat different angle but as I said to Baff, I ended up changing it because I felt she looked a bit too "flat", and aside from that it was rather throwing off the rest of my composition a bit. For better or for worse this is the end result.

Do look at me rambling though. In any case I am again very glad to hear that you like it, and cannot express enough how much I appreciate your feedback! And "inadequacy with words", indeed! I hardly think I've had the pleasure of conversing with someone quite so eloquent before, in all honesty. ^_~

@TomTheRock

Thank you so very much for that dearie, it's immensely kind of you to say! You always do leave me such lovely comments and I can assure you I always appreciate them.

It's actually funny, because modest as this piece is in comparison to some of my other fanworks, it seems to be making some considerable strides in terms of garnered popularity! I don't know if any of my other pictures to date have received such a response on Tumblr before, and it has been brought to my attention by a friend this is also one of my most favorited pieces on Ponibooru. Quite surprising, really!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Harwick dear~!

Meep, I'm so thrilled to hear that you like the picture; I always do look forward to hearing your feedback you know! "Artistic comfort food"... I do believe that's a new one by me but I have to say I appreciate the term immensely; I suppose this is what Anon, dear DJB123 and others have said when describing such pieces by me before, only not in so many words.

You always do have such nice things to say, and of course as I respect your own work very much in turn it really does mean the world to me. It's immensely gratifying for me to hear that you notice and appreciate so many things about even a simple picture of mine (going so far as to touch on my coloring, shading and linework qualities, and now "soft and velvety" Rarity only makes me want a large huggable plush of her to hold), and of course that you like the expressions and such of both ponies because that's essentially what the entire picture is about. In other words, attempting to tell an entire story through one simple still scene alone. Truth be told I really relish such projects because they draw on skills I love to use but don't often get a chance to in other work of mine, and again I can only imagine that this enjoyment shows through in the finished product because I can't imagine such a picture incurring a response like this otherwise.

In any case, yes, my most sincere thanks once again. And as I said in my initial post I hopefully will have some new artwork for you and everyone else soon... very soon in fact if everything goes according to plan!

@BND

Thank you so much my dear, I'm very glad to hear that you like the picture! As I said I've been pretty amazed myself by the response from everyone but I imagine it is nice to "mix things up" every now and then as they say. Variety is the spice of life.

Regarding commissions, I'm afraid I am a little booked up at the moment, but depending on what it is that you wanted exactly I might be able to squeeze something in in the relatively near future. Or alternatively, we can always discuss the idea and leave the actual project on the back burner for when I get another project or two completed and off of my list. If you'd like to talk with me about it I hope you'll feel free to email me whenever... you can reach me at fabulous.gaijin@yahoo.com.

Thank you so much for all of your interest and support my dear; it really is much appreciated! ^_^

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Kateasaurus

Heehee indeed; CaineScroll-dearest certainly has been a busy little bee recently and it looks like I myself have finally hit a good stride again. Yay for more effective time management~!

Thank you very much for your kind words on my fanart, Katie darling, I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed it! Lighthearted is indeed a good way to describe this piece. It's funny to me that you mentioned the apple bouncing off of Rarity's head specifically, because surprising as it might be that was probably what gave me the most trouble when working on this project. I struggled with conveying the action that Baff wanted without making it too "comic strip" with sound effects or cartoony stars or whatnot (and incidentally, I can guiltily admit that I hear the noise of the apple colliding with Rarity's head quite easily every time I look at the image). Anyway, it seems that the end result is effectively amusing and successful for most people and that's all I could have asked for.

Thank you very much again for always leaving me such lovely comments dear; I always do enjoy reading and responding to them. ^_^

@Anon

My dear, once again as I have done so many times in the past I really must thank you for always having such lovely things to say about me. I suppose you do have a point in that my doodles are something which speak more about me as an individual (often, my sense of humor), than they usually do about my artistic skill, and that's probably the very reason that I began drawing pony-art to begin with: to have fun and as a way to take a nice whimsical break from what is often more serious work that I'm doing. There is a whole lot more to me than ponies, of course, but the artwork that I have made of them certainly is a very valid extension of myself, as much as anything else that I create in my life.

I would not go so far as to say I was "ashamed" of this picture (or of my simpler artwork in general), just more worried that some of you might be disappointed to see such a thing as my oft-mentioned next commission... I assumed that since my pictures have had a tendency to grow increasingly grander in scale you all might have been anticipating something "more". But again, I do like this picture and am essentially happy with how it turned out, and once again as I'm sure you all know an excuse to create more Applejack and Rarity fanart is always welcome by me.

Speaking of those ponies, by the way, and as a completely random aside I recently discovered this picture on deviantART, which I am compelled to share simply because I love it so much. I seriously think I'm considering making a deviantART account now just so that I can favorite it; that artist's style is like fine Godiva chocolate for the eyes! <3

@Miris

Thank you so much, I'm truly glad that you like it!

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I didn't mean to suggest that there is not much more to you than just ponies, as is true for anyone here, and of course when I said that they are "nothing to ashamed of", I didn't mean it quite so literally. All that I was trying to do (and probably not very well) was describe the unique qualities that your more personal creations have. They have a certain specific "WhiteDiamonds" allure that is consistent wherever you could make the decision for something. We enjoy the whimsical themes, and it's even better to know that you enjoy it as well. That's the way that art should be, really.

Is it just me, are those ponies glowy? I think they must have gone over the lines with a thicker, lighter outline. I'm kind of surprised you would like something so unlike a traditional drawing so much, as it's fairly digital. Still, it has your favorite ponies together, so that probably gives it some points from you already. I find myself trying to compare it to your work, though it's harsh to compare a piece of artwork to the best.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

New Episode Discussion! I haven't taken advantage of White Diamonds' blog to talk random pony topics for a while, and it's far past time I abuse the opportunity again.

I liked Twilight's time travel freak-out, despite the fact that the overall plot was almost painfully predictable. I had tempered my expectations for that, however, so I was able to enjoy all of the other little things that kept the episode moving forward. (Plus, I have no real attachment to Doctor Who, so I wasn't about to be disappointed by a lack of reference there.)

With the exception of her admitted handling of the "idiot ball" at the end (which I can forgive due to multiple days worth of sleep deprivation and the fact that even she said something like "I can't believe I just did that" when she got back from the past), in general I thought Twilight was in good form. She's at her best when dealing with a crisis... she's hard-wired to tackle them, it seems. (She was even eager to throw down with Cerberus! Love that Tartarus exists in Equestria.) It's when she can't find a crisis to confront that she begins to really lose it.

It had all sorts of little touches that I liked:, I enjoyed the AJ/Rarity work team, with AJ doing the work and Rarity on brow-wiping duty. I liked Pinkie's balloon panic, the various city names dropped, Gypsy Pinkie, Dash and Spike trolling immobile Twilight, the stealth assault on Canterlot, the fact that Celestia and the Royal Guard don't even blink at finding Twilight in the archives, and, of course, I really liked the look of Future Twilight.

Plus, the episode had the best/cruelest taunting of older fans yet, with Spike rolling out of bed and saying "Twilight should go on epic adventures more often!" while we missed seeing her trip to the underworld.

So yes... it was predictable, but I still had a lot of fun with it.

@Anon
Thanks for the kind words on the 2nd Derpy pic. I hadn't planned on following with another picture of the wall-eyed mare so soon, but EQD did a "Derpy Day" art challenge that coincided with a bit of free time, so I churned that out to fit within the deadline.


@WhiteDiamonds
You know I love to see you "meep". Looking forward to the next bit of artwork!

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@Harwick
I would agree with all of your points here, the episode was a lot less full-blown than the teaser suggested, though to see some epic pony war would have been a surprise. Also, I wouldn't think Twilight would just succumb to using fortune telling so easily after what happened with Zecora, but eh, whatever, and it was no surprise to anyone that Pinkie was a gypsy (Friendship is Witchcraft yay!)

Yes, the episode was predictable, but it was a lot of fun to watch, even if we didn't get anything particularly epic. Though Cerebus' appearance was a nice touch.

Anon said... Reply to comment

(inb4 WhiteDiamonds tells me she isn't the best)

I had predicted the end ever since she ran in covered in dirt, mistakenly thinking that "future Twilight" was as well, but I doubt that there was anyone in the audience that couldn't predict it after she got the cut. It would be a series of minor or superficial events. Not a climatic war (War is now canon), but next Tuesday. Still, it's for kids, and I don't know if I would have been able to tell when I was younger.

I thought that future Twilight looked pretty cool, actually. She reminded me of Solid Snake. (More so the young, brown-haired Snake, but I couldn't find a picture of him with both a dark suit and an eyepatch.) She even snuck around guards. I'm just going to tell myself that it was a reference. If any Pony games take off, I want to see that look incorporated. She's more of a man than any stallion in the whole city/village/planet/province/world/universe/country/land of Equestria. ("Did they bring me colts when I asked for mares?")

Of course, the time travel, as always, leads to a paradox. The only reason why she ever thought there would be a disaster is because her future self gave her the idea. And the only reason why her future self gave her the idea is because she got the same message. There would have had to have been a "first Twilight" who went back in time to warn a "next Twilight" of another disaster, which caused paranoia for all of the subsequent Twilights, who misinterpreted it and reacted to the information the same way as we saw in the episode. If there was no disaster in the future, then the "first Twilight" would have no reason to go into the past. Since she is always going to react to the simple news of "there is going to be a disaster next Tuesday" the exact same way, it really doesn't matter what the disaster was. All of the next Twilights after the first one are going to go about the days the same way as we saw in the episode. Which leads to the question...what was the disaster worth going into the past to warn about in the first place? I thought it would have to do with all of the things she had planned. With such a tight schedule, something could easily had gone wrong. I wonder how she could take so much time out of her schedule to avoid disasters. She was considering reading two books at once to save 30 minutes, and she spent days doing this instead. Celestia didn't seem too bothered by her tardiess, so maybe they weren't so important after all.

Overall, they handled the delicate subject of time travel in a mostly stable (Er) manner, and I also liked all of the equestrian city names. Maybe we'll see some artwork of Las Pegasus after the artists are done with Doctor Hooves tie-ins.

@zhoomcar

Sort of, except that a gypsy is a member of an ethnic group (the word comes from "Egyptian", since they were first thought have come from there instead of northern India), or a nomad. They're just often associated with fortune tellers. (It's got 5 different meanings, but "fortune teller" ain't one.) The YouTube comments relating to gypsy magics is making me think, "wut no".

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Anon

I don't think there is any paradox to the events here... It seems to be based on a stable time loop. In such a model, there is no "first" pass through time. There is only one, unchanging timeline with all events already set. It dives straight into the whole fate vs. free will debate, admittedly, but it doesn't require a paradox.

zhoomcar's (and my own) comments refer to the webseries "Friendship is Witchcraft", which re-edits the original episodes of the show into new plots with new dialog and songs and such. In it, Pinkie Pie is accused of being a Gypsy Witch and decides that maybe that's really not so different from being a pastry chef after all, so combines the two to cook up a portal to the afterlife so as to rescue her dead parents.

So as a result, fans of the webseries were delighted to see the real Pinkie in Gypsy garb this episode.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

We're discussing episodes now? How fun! As with everyone else, the teaser essentially revealed the ending when Future Twilight got cut off before she could say what not to do, thus ensuring a self-fulfilling time loop. It was fun to see how she ended up with the various accoutrements (injuries, attire, and "manestyle") that Future Twilight had. It was also interesting to learn that the entrance to Tartarus is located within galloping distance from Ponyville! I thought the visuals were fun, the jokes were more hits than misses, and the predictable ending didn't ruin the journey. I did notice along with some other folks that the voice acting seemed a little off-kilter this episode.

Finally, just like the rest of you, I got a huge kick out of Pinkie's gypsy witchcraft. I wonder if the amazing birthday present she predicted is going to show up in season 3? If so, what could it be? My money is on Twilight becoming an aunt.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

I forgot to mention, but I did immediately think of our wonderful hostess White Diamonds when I saw Rarity mopping the sweat from Applejack's brow.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

Losing an hour's worth of sleep isn't enough to keep me from commenting about the new episode on the best dang pony community in the whole dang internet, dang it!

(I... I can't really pull that off, can I?)

Apparently quite a few people thought from the preview clips that this was going to be an epic adventure episode, so it's probably a good thing I skipped them, as I would have either risked finding this more comic treatment disappointing, or I would have seen through the gag before even watching the episode. As it is, I enjoyed this episode quite a bit; it was roughly par for the course for MLP:FiM, which is equivalent to "very good" and "better than 98% of TV cartoons".

As others have mentioned, the plot was reasonably predictable, but that doesn't bother me. (How many episodes haven't had a predictable plot, really?) It's the journey that's important, and this journey had a lot of excellent Twilight/Spike interaction, as well as some non-trivial contributions from the rest of the mane cast. I enjoyed all the main beats of the story, such as Fluttershy's taming of Cerberus, Twilight's steady accumulation of the "signs", and Spike and Rainbow Dash mercilessly taking advantage of her attempt to remain absolutely still; however, my favorite moments tended to be the more subtle ones, like Twilight checking off Pinkie's mane cut or how blasé the guard and Celestia were about Twilight being in the Canterlot archives. And, of course, if I didn't know better, I'd think the Applejack/Rarity scenes showed the influence of our hostess on the series; by the more fanatic AppleDash fan standards, this episode practically showed a Rarijack marriage.

Onward to the Spike episode next week!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

First opinion on the episode: Flash of white light, followed by a freedom-fighter-looking Twilight from the future, complete with electric surges. Hmmm!

It's also pretty cool that the FiM team went on with the whole Greek thing: Dash's Olympus-esque home, her Greek-style Gala dress, the Hydra, and now Cerberus and Tartarus (though the way Twi says it keeps reminding me of steak tartar). I'm betting on Artemis or Hades next, or maybe Pandora's box. =P

The whole time-travel theme is a recurring theme in the sci-fi/fantasy genre: We had the Terminator, we had Harry Potter (Prisoner of Azkaban), and most recently, Final Fantasy XIII-2. All these cases of time travel caused disturbances in the timeline (though in HP, it was explained about instead of happened), and there's a painfully obvious message within all the waffle: Don't attempt to change time. In Twi's case, though, it was a much more mild case, since part of her subconscious accepts time travel as a possibility, even if she said it's not (Let's say flying a plane blindfolded is impossible. Maybe some nutjob will prove me wrong.), so maybe it wouldn't cause that much of a disturbance. Maybe, maybe, maybe...Agggh.

Also, did anyone notice that Twilight sounds a little different than usual?

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar I suppose Twilight really has learned to trust in Pinkie Sense, and seemed to be willing to put up with the whole fortune teller act if that was how Pinkie wanted to go about it. I admit, I was hoping for a Derpy cameo to explain the flower pot though...

@PonydoraPrancypants
I used to hijack WD's blog for episode discussion all the time, as it's much easier to do so here with a few insightful posters than on EQD with hundreds of repetitious posts.

Twilight becoming an aunt would be quite the treat to spring next season! I'm still holding out hope for an more expansive time travel episode, as well... I figure there has to be a decent chance to see the real Starswirl the Bearded at some point, but it would also be fun to visit the mane six as fillies again, or go forward and see some future Equestria beyond next Tuesday. It's not that uncommon of a plot for magical and sci-fi based kids shows, even comedy ones.


@jodyjm13
You totally pulled that off. And I'm not just saying that as the old, out of touch guy either.

The preview clip did pretty much lay out the gag of the show, so you might be right in being better off for missing it. (Not to mention it was shown twice in its entirety within the episode.) Every now and then, the overall plot manages to pull a surprise on me, but mostly I just hope for the little, unexpected things. Cerberus was certainly one, as was Gypsy Pinkie.

I'm quite looking forward to the Spike episode, even though I don't have any real expectations for it (beyond some new jerk-level antagonists among the dragons.) I do hope for more focus on Twilight and Spike's relationship, as it's a favorite of mine. (I loved her motherly slapping of his grabby hands in the doctor's office during the last Spike episode.) I do feel like the season as a whole could use another heartwarming relationship episode, such as Sisterhooves Social, and I suppose there's a chance for it next week... But really the episode could be just about anything. It'll likely have some more world-building stuff about dragons though, with will be fun to learn.


@CaineScroll

They've gone very heavy with the Greek influence, especially with the Pegasus side of things (and not surprising, since that's the source of the Pegasus mythology), and it's been a lot of fun. Oh, and we shouldn't leave out the Minotaur in the (hedge) maze from last episode either. I too would place bets on Pandora's box out of all Greek legends as coming up in the show sometime. I'd certainly be thrilled if Tartarus ever came up again in a more central role as well.

I have noticed some points this season where many characters voices have sounded... not "off", but perhaps "unexpected". Twilight's isn't always the most distinctive, and she can sound pretty different from time to time to me, so it might just be the actors stretching to bring in new emotion or readings to lines this season. I like Twilight best when she has that slightly dry edge to her voice, myself... that's the one that I most recognize in my head.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Well, it's true; in all honesty I am hardly the best. Though I appreciate all of your kind sentiments very much my dear, thank you.

Don't worry as I didn't think you meant either of those things, and regarding that fanart I'm trying to decide myself what it is exactly that I like so much about it. You're right in that I do tend to be drawn to more traditional art, and of course it's of my two favorite ponies though I don't think that's why it caught my eye so much... looking through the rest of that artist's gallery I found much of her work appealing. It's just the style itself that I love; the way she drew both ponies (I do believe that's one of my favorite artistic interpretations of Rarity ever; she positively exudes elegance and grace), the beautiful curvature of the shapes in perfect proportion to one another, the flawless tapered linework, that incredibly clean and impeccable color... I just adore all of it. It has a life to it somehow, despite being obviously digital artwork that is drawn over a flat white background. As you said the artist does seem to have traced around the outlines of both ponies with the faintest hint of color to soften the contrast against the white, but otherwise the lines are done in one solid shade respective to each base color, and the end result is a very unique look that really pops.

So, ah, yes, suffice to say I really do adore it. ^_^;

@Everyone

Indeed, how about that new episode! I actually was hoping that someone would be willing to bring it up here, seeing as how I've gotten out of the habit of commenting on EqD's stream and discussion posts. I quite enjoyed it myself, and despite the fact that while I'd "spoilered" myself with the synopsis and teaser clip previously, I didn't have any grand expectations that were ultimately shattered by the reality of the plot. I was merely looking forward to some good, old-fashioned Twilight Sparkle character moments, and I feel very satisfied that I received exactly that.

I feel the slightest bit guilty saying it, but I really do think my favorite moments for Twilight in the series are when she's having a breakdown or suffering from a neurosis of some form or another; it's just SO easy to play the other characters off of her at those times and I personally feel that they all benefit as a result. Pure entertainment. I enjoyed all the disaster-prep scenes (I found it hilarious how Rarity was on grooming duty the whole time, and I'm glad we now have proof she can cut hair because I've asserted as much myself for a while), the appearance of Cerberus and the casual, off-handed way that potentially disastrous event was handled, Pinkie's fortune-teller scene, Spike throughout the whole episode and the whole bit in Canterlot at the end with the friendly guard and delightfully anti-climactic Celestia. All of it was incredibly entertaining, and I loved the fact that it felt like a good, old-fashioned season one episode yet again... perhaps much of that was merely due to the Twilight-centric nature of the story though.

In any case though, I definitely think I'd say it's in my top ten list of episode thus far for season two.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Ah yes, those city names... I did almost forget to mention those until I reread through your post! I liked them as well, especially "Las/Los Pegasus" (it was difficult for me to tell which it was; I need to rewatch the episode), which I personally will choose to think of as the pony equivalent of Los Angeles. Probably because I already thought that a good fanon-established name for Vegas was 'Las Haygas', and besides of course there is the fact that LA's name means "the angels", which I think goes nicely enough with pegasus.

And ah yes, I did it again didn't I! That silly, involuntary "meep"...

@PonydoraPrancypants

Twilight becoming an aunt, now I must confess I never would have thought of that, dear friend! That would indeed be something to see, and if nothing else would make for an excellent fanfiction I'm sure. I suppose I didn't think anything of Pinkie's pronouncement other than it was her being silly Pinkie, but then again the writers have been surprising me with quite a bit of continuity recently, so who can say.

@jodyjm13

As I mentioned already, I actually did subject myself to the teaser material, though I generally do this and have not found yet that it's ruined an episode for me. Probably because I genuinely try hard not to speculate about a plot just going by a few seconds of material or else what is so often a very half-baked synopsis. So yes, despite reading comments about how other fans were anticipating glimpses of an apocalyptic pony-war, a massive Doctor Whooves crossover episode or whatnot, I kept my expectations at what I considered to be reasonable and realistic, and was not at all disappointed by the reality we ended up getting.

@Harwick
@PonydoraPrancypants
@jodyjm13

I'm surprised that all of you really noticed and thought to mention the Applejack and Rarity scenes honestly, as I assumed I was the only person who would have gotten a kick out of such a thing (it did make for what I find to be a very cute image however, and almost conveniently wallpaper-sized which I might just end up utilizing). Not only was she on brow-wiping duty, but leaf-plucking too by the looks of things; honestly it's a good thing I'm not a unicorn (or else, possess telekinetic powers) because no doubt I'd be using them to fuss over straightening people's hair and clothes, tucking in their shirt tags and removing stray lint-balls from them at all kinds of inopportune moments... my family and friends would probably hate being around me before long.