Saturday, August 18, 2012

A Little Something New



Yes, at long last. This isn't the artwork that I imagined I'd be sharing next but I happened to finish this one first (and am holding off on posting another third for a while for REASONS), and I couldn't resist uploading something since it's been so many ages now! It's almost shameful really. So here, have a poor sweet, sad-looking little Applejack, feeling down because really, she doesn't get nearly the amount of love and attention she deserves from this fandom... I really need to make a more concerted effort to remedy this in the future.

It's not too much; just a glorified doodle really but still, it's so nice to be uploading work again! If the comments above don't make it clear, this should with any luck be a sign of much more active times ahead... I'm optimistic about it at least.

That's all for now then. Cheers, darlings!


WD

31 comments:

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

Well, I've already expressed my delight for this picture on dA, but this is definitely I've of the most adorable pictures you have ever made, no contest. Bonus points for it being our favourite cowpony. ^^

It would seem that a lot of us are beginning to grow more active than we have for the past few months, and of course that's a good thing. Nevertheless it's great to see something new from you again~! =D

Anon said... Reply to comment

Ah, and it's so very nice to have you back, WhiteDiamonds. Firstly, the lighting on this drawing is quite advanced for one of your doodles (especially on her rich, golden, flowing hair), making it one of your most deeply tangible personal drawings. And her eyes-- I realise I've said this of your last artwork, but it is no less true this time-- they are just beautifully, expertly reflective and lifelike. Her cutie mark may be a bit too large, but it doesn't matter because I'm just mesmerized by the care and detail of her face. I can't help but think the style of her ears looks a bit different from your past doodles, though. Are you perhaps experimenting in new and exciting future projects?

In any case, I'm still blown away by the poor pony's eyes. Your "refined doodles" may be my favorites of the WhiteDiamonds collection. This is the second time you've tortured your fans with a sad Applejack doodle, is it not? I say you ought to bring Rarity over; that always seems to cheer her up.

I should probably return later with more glowing feedback, but I've spent all day (every waking moment of my free time) watching the Everfree Northwest livestream, so I shall surrender the blog to my compatriots. Always a pleasure, Diamonds.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

I got nothing to say on this. Except SHE NEEDS A HUG. AGAHGAHAHGHAGHAH

(I've been seeing a bit too much orange lately, hmmm, oranges...)

Harwick said... Reply to comment

She truly is adorable, and I love your trademark style. Here it's pushed to a very rich effect, with deep warm colors and thick, soft, flowing linework. The overall piece is exceptionally lovely, like the pony herself, and does a great job of conveying the more vulnerable side of a strong and proud little pony.

You do such a great job of packing emotion into a work like this without going overboard... it's the subtlety of the expression that really sells this piece and makes your heart go out to poor AJ.

Beautiful work!

Harwick said... Reply to comment


Poor Applejack is so very much a supporting character, invaluable to the group and to countless episodes, but so rarely commanding the most attention in any one of them. Even "The Last Round-up" wasn't told from her point of view, despite revolving around her and spurred on by her fears of disappointing everyone. How different would that episode have been had we gone with her to the rodeo, and saw her desperation as she repeatedly finished just out of reach of her goals?

I remember watching one of the women's track races in the Olympics where one of the runners fell in the final lap of the multi-lap medal race and she stayed down sobbing because that was her one chance and in a blink she was out of it. Despite all of the training, making the Olympic team, advancing through all of the qualifying rounds to make the final race, and positioning herself for the final sprint in the final lap, it all fell apart when someone stepped on her foot and sent her tumbling. Who knows if she'd have it in her to go through everything needed to get to that point again in 4 long years?

I tend to think that, had "The Last Round-up" been written after watching the Olympics, we would have seen AJ's struggles to keep her word and the crushing disappointment as she failed, and I think we would have bonded with her character that much more rather than just thinking "Silly AJ..." at the end when she thought she shouldn't come back home.

Some have speculated that the only thing there is to explore in AJ stories is her pride, and that to do so again just negates any character development from before. I don't think her pride is her defining feature though... I think it's her sense of family. I think that's the untapped potential for future AJ-centric stories. Yes, she works great as the supporting character in something like "The Cutie Pox", but why not tell a story like that from her point of view? Why not follow her struggles to take care of Granny's health, or deal with Applebloom's lack of parents (or her own for that matter?). She seems to have nothing in her life but Applebucking to look forward to... and yes, she seems content with that, but perhaps there's a story in exploring the things she's had to pass on doing in order to fulfill her desires for her family and farm life?

I suppose the trouble is that here we get into some more mature themes. Not "inappropriate" mature, but the kinds of things that Hasbro may feel the average 6 year old doesn't particularly care about. That may be the real handicap to AJ shining as a lead... not that there's no conflict left to explore with her, but that it's harder to make it all into a silly little adventure.

And so perhaps she's stuck as a supporting character until the writers work out some wackier angle to apply to her. I do feel like she'd be better suited to a high-adventure show, as I've said many times that she works exceptionally well as the one who supports Twilight when they're in the thick of things and working as a team. She really is a well-designed supporting character... it's just that the slice-of-life format favors the wacky and dramatic over the supportive.

I feel like she deserves a corny apple analogy, so here's a shaky one. The average person tends to think of the apple core as garbage... the part left over after all of the good bits of apple have been eaten. But here's the thing... the core is so very important in an apple. The whole apple exists not to be eaten but to get seeds to the ground in order to grow more trees, and the core supports those seeds (as well as the flesh which people believe is the best bit.) I like to think that AJ has a certain love for the overlooked apple core, myself, and wouldn't resent being given that supporting role, regardless of how easily the core is tossed aside.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

I was going to make this comment over on DA, where you delve into AJ's apparent lack of popularity a bit more, but I figured this is certainly the better forum for in-depth discussion. I also had to edit down my wild AJ ramblings in order to fit the character limit here.

The focus should definitely remain on your lovely artwork, but I figured you probably wouldn't mind a little discussion of the adorable subject either.

Coconutswallow said... Reply to comment

Suddenly, WhiteDiamonds! One of the best surprises.

This is a fantastic little piece. Really, calling this a "doodle" should make doodles everywhere feel bad that they don't live up this one's standards.

As Anon has mentioned, the lighting is expertly done here, going perfectly with Applejack's hues. The reflections off her mane are part of what make this piece. The background just adds to these contrasts. I love the choice of tint and the brush nature of the splotches.

Of course, all these elements lead to AJ's face, and I've said it many times before, your expressions are amazing. This one is no exception, conveying more than just one simple emotion, it seems to me that AJ is both sad, thoughtful, and disappointed. Her mouth, her eyes, and even the angle of her head all do a wonderful job of portraying this.

I could gush on and on about how superbly done your eyes are. They are the driving force behind the expression. The way you draw the reflections in them and their glossy texture is... I don't know, it's hard to put into words. These eyes, and the ones in the rest of your work, are probably the best eyes in the fandom.

If I might allow myself some symbolism interpretation here, I love how AJ's hat is lying off to the side. Her hat is her pride. She always has it on, she lowers it when she's determined, it's a piece of her. Having it sitting in the shadows really reinforces how vulnerable AJ is in this picture. Brilliant work.

Don't worry, Applejack, those "Best Pony" polls were rigged. We all know there's absolutely no way that the fandom couldn't love you death.

(Nice touch with your signature being a similar color to AJ's eyes).

@Harwick

Do please stop making me have more feels...

I do believe you've hit the nail on the head here, though. Applejack seems to have always been a support character and I never really thought about how the reason that might be the case is because the limits Hasbro has put on themselves as to what's suitable/interesting material to broach is restricting what they can do with AJ's character. "The Last Round-up" from her perspective would have been a deliciously deeper look into her character and might have been a missed opportunity.

I stand firmly on the same page as you when it comes to what her defining characteristic is. I've always seen it as being her family as well. That is her life, plain and simple. The Apple farm has always been her concern and by proxy (and probably in no small part due to her family being the founders) the rest of Ponyville.

I do hope that Hasbro takes a leap and delves into the topics that would enable AJ to shine at some point in the future. I really don't think it would be too much for their target audience to handle and I think we all agree that they are more than capable of presenting it in a way that kids would be able to pickup on. Besides, don't we want the children to learn about deeper family values?

If they do decide to take a different angle with her I hope they don't ditch this aspect of her character. I guess we'll just have to see.

Were the show to involve more conflict and were Twilight to be ditched as the lead, then AJ would instantly become the glue, the leader, and central protagonist. (Having just finished watching episodes of The Walking Dead, I can't help but notice that AJ would be the Rick of Ponyville were there to be a zombie apocalypse).

Now I feel entirely compelled to explore all of this in a story. Seriously, stop giving me ideas! I have too many already and not enough time!

Anon said... Reply to comment

Now that I've had a chance to take another look with a fully conscious mind, I have a few more thoughts to add. I think that part of the reason why it can so enjoyable to draw Applejack with expressed emotions might be because of how strong she is. Something must have gone very wrong to make her visibly upset, but she will still try to hold her feelings back to overcome whatever problems she may face, even if it's only for the sake of others who look up to her as a role model. Any toubled emotions she expresses are subdued, and that of course is very fitting for a master of subtle character expression. The colors of the background are warm as the pony herself, as Harwick has mentioned, but I think that holds special meaning when you consider that her feelings are anything but warm. Her exterior and the world around her is sunny and bright. Her legs stand mostly upright and proud. The only exception is in her eyes, the true indicator of what she feels internally. It seems that the only one who she isn't honest with is herself.

Even among the most professional artists in this fandom, I have never seen eyes so introspective as yours. They stand out from the rest of the picture like in a selectively desaturated photograph. It might even suggest isolation from the world around her. In any case, this is yet more proof of your undeniable excellence. Her hair is perfectly shaped and naturally flowing. I can see why you like to see her with her hat removed so much. Marvelously, touchingly done.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Thank you so much dear! Yes yes, I'm just relieved to be getting something up as I said, but of course I'm also happy that you enjoyed the picture, and that it's seemingly prompted a mass of Applejack fans to voice their support on my deviantART! (Yay) The poor dear deserves it, and I really have to wonder why I haven't drawn even more of her previously... I have no excuses I'm afraid.

You're definitely correct in that all of us being more active is a wonderful thing, and now I'm going to have to get back on the ball to keep pace with you and Harwick. In any case, much appreciated and thank you so much again~! ^.^

@Anon

It is nice to be back, my dear~ ^_~ Many thanks. And ooh, Everfree Northwest livestream, do you say? I myself am... waiting for a report of sorts, concerning the very same subject actually (I fear I can't say anything more about this for now, but I will soon!)! Meeheehee~

I'm so glad you like darling Applejack here! As I said, this is a sort of glorified doodle really, and certainly a step above what I would normally consider to something grouped in that category. But it's closer to that than a full-fledged painting obviously. I haven't really been "experimenting" at all recently I would say, though you might be right in that her ears look somewhat different here. I think this is because this picture was partially painted, unlike a regular doodle and so some of the original linework got covered a bit and likely changed the look.

I'm so glad you like her eyes! I think my pony eyes are one thing that has evolved with time... I think even in doodles they're a bit more detailed now than they used to be. But yes, Applejack has beautiful eyes and I wanted much of the focus of this little piece to be on them... it's truly appreciated! <3

@zhoomcar

D'aww, she most certainly does! I would absolutely hug her if I could... actually, now that I think about that she really does look like she must be incredibly huggable!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Oh, a comment-ninja! You snuck in there again when I was typing I see. Well, I have to thank you even more profusely for the additional post now, because those really are amazing compliments both to me and this picture (and to Applejack, in a sense). I can't say that I consciously considered every one of those points as I was drawing this, but now that you say it, and so beautifully it does all work very well, and fits what I hoped to portray perfectly. Thank you, so sincerely darling! <3

And yes, I probably am a bit like Rarity in that sense, I will admit. I do love Applejack's hat and her in it, but there is an undeniable pleasure to seeing her without it (and without her mane and tail tied back too, which to my knowledge they have never yet shown in the series). She just has such lovely hair, it's a shame she doesn't show it off more often!

@Harwick

Dearest, I really do think you give me far too much credit sometimes, but thank you so much all the same! As simple as this little piece is, it's wonderful that so many people seem to enjoy it. And find Applejack cute as a nice bonus... she really does deserve the love obviously and I'm happy to do my part to bring her some much-needed attention.

Oh no, I'm very happy that you brought this matter up here, and mercy I honestly don't think I could have ever said any of that better. You really are quite brilliant when it comes to analyzing these characters, their relationships with one another and the situations that they find themselves in... I have to say it's a true shame that you don't write fanfictions of your own! As usual I must agree with you on pretty much everything, but I'm very ashamed to say that had you never brought it up, I likely never would have considered the idea of existing pony episodes being told from Applejack's perspective as opposed to how they were handled, including her very own "Last Roundup". That probably would have made all the difference in the world for her, and made her a character more people feel they could identify and sympathize with, thus able to love more easily. Lastly, that apple analogy was perfect, and almost made me tear up because you're right; I'm sure she wouldn't resent such a thing at all and that's exactly what I love about her. She really is a true hero with a heart of gold. <3

@Coconutswallow

Another lovely comment, yay! Thank you so much my friend! You also have left me such beautiful comments on this picture in general and Applejack's eyes specifically, which mean a great deal to me... I'm just so happy that people like this picture despite the fact I didn't feel it was anything much. On that note, as I said to Anon I'll admit I use the term "doodle" lightly and certainly did so here... you'll have to forgive me for that.

I love your thoughts about Applejack's hat... the original sketch didn't include it at all, but as I was nearing the finish here she felt so incomplete without it, even if I didn't intend for her to be wearing it. You're right; it is a part of her and I'm glad that it helped to convey what I hoped with this piece... thank you for the lovely feedback! <3

And I know, Harwick really knows how to invoke thought and emotional response, doesn't he? I meant it, I'm sure he would be a brilliant author.

Beatrice Zeo Bovo said... Reply to comment

So sad... I have a crush on AJ,I have to say it. She's my favourite. I love to draw her. But I don't think this is fandom's fault, but show's! She didn't even has a song. I hope for season 3.
At least here in italy AJ has a lot of fans (yeah some people say "she is best background pony because blah blah blah" but who cares, she is always strong and beautiful.). I have so much to say about it but I'm italian and I suck to speak english.=D Anyway, your works are as always great and so well done, I've known you by the AJ/Rarity stuff and I'm glad I found your blog, I want to learn something more about colors and you are a good example.

Keep it up!

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Personally I think "The Last Round-Up" was a bit of a troll for the AJ fans...most probably because of Derpy. I know it's something the fandom really wanted and personally I have no objection against it, but their timing could've been better. Granted, the chase scene was probably the highlight of the episode, but I think they could've delved further into AJ's inner self.

I agree with you on the fact that AJ is no doubt the most mature of the Mane 6 (in real world terms), and it's pretty difficult to make a "silly little adventure" based on deep sentimental values such as family. Despite having showcased that particular side of AJ a couple of times, I don't think Hasbro has ever made it the main theme of an episode ("Sisterhooves Social" was a pretty close one, but unfortunately it was more Rarity-focused). Here's hoping that dear AJ will have her chance to truly shine sometime soon.

@WhiteDiamonds

Haha, I was really amazed at the number of AJ fans who commented on that particular doodle alone! Regrettably, I haven't drawn AJ myself since my beach picture (having preferred to work with the rest of the Mane 6 instead)...I'm going to have to get to it later.

I've been having a little creative block after my Luna picture (which, I'm happy to report, has become my most popular work to date, yay~), but I managed to get rid of it by doing a livestream for the local group. Truth be told, it's really quite fun if you have a small audience instead of, say, the whole world. But of course that's just my two cents on the matter. =D

And while I'm aware you weren't speaking to me, I have to admit that your little teaser to Anon piqued my curiosity a little...I'm looking forward to it, regardless of what it is! ^^

@Beatrice Zeo Bovo

(Well, it's about time I wrote a welcome message, heehee~!)

Hi there! Just wanted to welcome you to our little community here, and it's always nice to meet another AJ fan (and an Italian to boot; I've always LOVED that country). Hope you enjoy yourself here! =)

Yeah, I agree that AJ has been neglected both by the producers and the fandom in general, and it's sad to see some people have automatically demoted her to "background pony". I really hope that she gets a note of recognition in Season 3.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

Oh hey! I've been out ... you know, at the place, doing the ... thing, with the stuff.

Anyway, now I'm back and I see you've posted a lovely drawing of our faithful farmer Aaa-pplejack! Love that pony!

This one is cute, and a bit sad and introspective perhaps. As you've noted, Applejack does tend to guest star in her own episodes. Then again, she certainly has her fans! I especially think that the animators and directors care for her a lot, because she always gets great action sequences, awesome poses, and fun things to do even when she is in "the background," so to speak.

Anyway, the reviews are already in on this one and it's a great success, so you hardly need to take my word for it!

You and your art are charming and wonderful as always, Ms. Diamonds!

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

Oh goodness, you all really do have a lot to say over here, don't you! It was no joke when I was told a lot of words go by on this blog, ahaha~ I'm not sure I can keep up no matter how much of a chatterbox I may sometimes be. You'll have to forgive me if I suddenly go from blabbering to being totally outspoken instead c:

Unfortunately in this case, I think I already spoke most of my heart on AJ back on deviantART, but there's a bit more I could probably say. Mostly that I'm feeling particularly encouraged to give this girl some more love artistically after saving this to my folders, particularly because I still love so much how that hair was done~ I'd love to find some way to convey its shape and shininess properly in pixels. I've only done art of Applejack once (well, twice if you count that silly Muro) and she is a lot of fun to portray. I think she also comes with a lot of expressions that are suitable only to her and nopony else, really. Maybe I'll give it another shot sometime soon. It sounds like a nice way to relax, and I bet you would all love to see more of AJ out there too :P I'd be more than happy to contribute to such a cause.

And in saying that, I have to agree with the comments made about being more active lately, too, since I fall into that boat as well! It's usually always a good sign, one way or another, when people are more active. It's nice to see when people are doing things they enjoy.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

Hey, great to have you back! Hope you enjoyed that thing at the place; I heard it was pretty awesome. =)

@RenaTurnip

Hi Rena~! It's a pleasant surprise to find you here instead of deviantART, it makes for such a nice change. And don't be worried about blabbering away here; I doubt you'd be able to beat our ranting champ here, anyway. *cough Anon cough*

And I do support making more Applejack art; the poor girl really needs it! I can't really imagine why she'd be last pony on the fandom's list of favourites (ironically, this picture is aptly named so on dA); she's easily on of the most lovable, with her accent and personality. In fact, It was AJ who got me into the fandom last summer. =)

I can definitely tell that you're being pretty active lately yourself; it's nice to see everyone up and running! ^^

Anon said... Reply to comment

I'm not sure how much I can add to the discussion of Applejack, since we tend to agree so often that the first comment or two usually states anything that could be said of the subject. But we can't just let this be the emptiest comment section in six months... (Wait, have we really known eachother for eight months now? Have I still not posted a drawing yet? Good galloping griffins, I need to change that.) I thoroughly enjoyed watching Everfree, so I might as well elaborate on what I felt were the best parts of the convention (or otherwise the best fit for a comment section).

It would be nice if you did sell some prints there, even if not in person. There were two "Equestria Inquirer" reporters who appeared during the intermissions between events, and they walked us through one of the rooms where artists were selling their merchandise. PixelKitties was completely sold out at BroNYCon, so she had a lot of stock at her table. One of the vendors made a button pin for a reporter using a tool that pushes the pieces together. I'm assuming that it was the extent of his payment for the night.

The convention started with a rather dramatic opening ceremony, including a speech by a very passionate and self-conscious staff member. I can't really do it any justice with my text, so if you're interested in watching it, here is the recording (see 3:27).

For most viewers, the best part of these conventions are the VA panels. There were actually four this time: One was simply the "Voice Actress panel", featuring Nicole Oliver, Andrea Libman, Cathy Wesluck, Tara Strong and Tabitha St. Germain. There was also "The Guys of MLP", a panel focused on the male voice actors who have had parts in the show, featuring Peter New (Rarity's father, Doctor Monitor, Big Macintosh), Lee Tockar (Steven Magnet, Snips), Andrew Francis (Shining Armor, Braeburn) and the show's background music composer, William Anderson (hosted by "The manliest brony", DustyKatt). They had a separate CMC panel, featuring the voices of the CMCs (Michelle Creber, Maddy Peters and Claire Corlett), and "Finding your Voice", which brought various voice actors and actresses (Cathy Wesluck, Andrea Libman, Peter New, Andrew Francis, Tabitha St. Germain and Lee Tockar) together into one big panel.

Dusty ensured that his interview was as manly as possible, passing around apple cider and fake mustaches. William Anderson used to play in Al Yankovic's band, and he remains his "close personal friend". As with any VA panel, they were asked how they first found out about bronies. William found out after "googling [himself]" and finding this drawing of him as a pony. He wanted to thank the artist, but he couldn't do that without a deviantART account. You can see the comment that he left on it at the top of page 2. (No one has ever done anything so cool for him before? I need to draw that pony some day.) Soon after, he got an email asking if he was "the real William Anderson", and was promptly informed of how many new followers he had. In response to this new following, he uploaded this perfectly drawn stickman with a great description. I have to say, Will was polite, he was neatly dressed and he conducted himself very well. The other guests may be more famous, but Will had the most class.

Anon said... Reply to comment

The best part of the final VA panel was when Cathy started an ad-lib story with the other actors, even pulling the interviewer in at one point. I learned that Cathy is the best at improvision that day. Andrew, on the other hand, said nothing other than "Twiley!" and "Aaaappleoosa!". I wish he would just say that he didn't know enough about his characters to play them, but it was still great to watch. I look forward to the animated version.

"Art of The Song" was a panel of singers and songwriters from the show (including Daniel Ingram and the singing voices of Pinkie Pie and Rarity), hosted by the one-and-only MandoPony. Singers described their confusion of mixed feedback and body language behind a soundproof wall. (Daniel had this to say; "Note to self: Tinted windows.")

Ponystock was enjoyable enough, but AcoustiMandoBrony's segment was the best by far. Partly because I already like MandoPony's music more than the rest, but he was also more attentive with the audience than anyone else on stage. It should be a new rule that the mandolin must always be played this way. (Ironically, they were playing "Picture Perfect Pony" at that moment.) Mando is much friendlier than he looks with those shades on. (That's an understatement, but you will have to take my word for it.) Even if you don't think you would like his music, he did play a nice, quiet mandolin solo that led up to the MLP theme song. Maybe I just like the noise that it makes.

The most talked-about moment of the whole convention, though, was the one that was least expected. A bit of backstory: There was a man who owned one of the limited edition Derpy toys who attended the convention and had the box signed by all of the voice actors present. When Tabitha signed, she apologized for a mistake she made; the voice of Derpy had "derped", misspelling her name as "Tabithe". She added a correction with an "Oops!". Another man in the area (named Jason) noticed that the owner of the Derpy was very attached to it.

During the charity auction, the first man had an item to offer, but it wasn't his Derpy toy. It was a full-body costume based on Sweetie Belle's rocker outfit. Because of the costs to make it ($600, if I heard correctly), the starting price was $300. Apparently, the attendees did not have $300 to spare on a pony jumpsuit modeled by a slightly overweight man wearing a Sweetie Belle wig. (At least, I hope it was a wig.) There were no bids on the item, and it stayed with its slightly overweight, wig-wearing owner. But he still wanted to offer something for charity, so he put his prized Derpy toy up for auction. It eventually sold for $660. When the winner of the auction, Jason, walked up to take the Derpy toy that he had won, he instead handed it back to the original owner. They were later interviewed by the reporters (during which he shared his twitter username, and since then, the amount of his followers has risen sevenfold). Jason's friend spoke for him on stage at the closing ceremony (because he was too shy to do it on his own) to remind the audience that the seller was making a big sacrifice by selling his Derpy, and he used it as a message that they should be selfless. He was mentioned multiple times for the remainder of the convention, once by MandoPony in the middle of his performance. There are just so many class acts in this fandom.

Anon said... Reply to comment

There were many other fun or humorous moments that I'm leaving out. (In the Comminity Musicians Panel, Mic played a Zelda song on a cat piano (9:32). It was a main speaker at the closure of Ponystock. Also: "No, you talk about not knowing music, and yet you can strike these perfect harmonies and use your voice to recreate Rainbow Factory using an M&M popper, a kazoo and a slide whistle?") I could explain the whole thing in exhaustive detail. And I did, but it was twice as long as this series of comments. Overall, I am now even more envious of artists who have more time than I do, actors who have better connections than I do and musicians who understand this modern technology better than I do. (Back in my day, we used to write chiptune music on my favorite instrument, the floppy disk drive. And we liked it that way!) Why can't I hold all these professions?

Oh, and we got to watch AcousticBrony slap MandoPony in the face. That was kind of fun, too.

@RenaTurnip

This is nothing. I once typed a message so long, I had post it in ten separate comments. (It shall forever be known as "that one time when we talked about travel and politics". May it never happen again. Though, perhaps it could be fun...)

I have seen such things...far beyond the petty restaints of the omnipresent character limit...

@CaineScroll

(Fluttershy voice) I'm the world champ, you know.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

Howdy all. Just thought I'd pay another visit to the blog over yonder, and let you know that we had our first (and last) dress rehearsal for Oklahoma before the opening night on Sunday. I can say we're doing pretty well for ourselves, actually. The girls all look so purty, though -starry eyes- I'm also looking somewhat sharp - for a cowboy anyway.

On that note, I'll leave you all with a bit of music. First up, SoGreatAndPowerful has a new track, which is a rather huge surprise seeing as he supposedly retired from music a while back. And some Octavia.

Kateasaurus said... Reply to comment

I kept meaning to comment on this picture over on DA, but then I saw you posted it here! I've been seemingly absent for quite a while, so all the better to return to some fabulous new artwork. ^_^

AJ has always had a soft spot in my heart. (Must be a sucker for that Southern twang.) You always manage to draw her so beautifully! I must admit that my favorites by you are usually AJ/Rarity-centric, just on the fact that you can tell they are your favorites. I'm sure you never get tired of them!

Goodness, I've had so much happen since I've last posted on here! I'm so happy to have the time, and energy, in between packing and everything else. (Ugh. Do I ever HATE packing! T_T)

Anyway, I do hope all of you have been well! Once I'm done moving, I'll have more free time to be online-ish. I can't form real thoughts at the moment, so I'm going to pass out! Just wanted to pop in and say hello!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Hello, everyone! I haven't been by here in a while I'm afraid... I still haven't made it through all the comments on Applejack on deviantART (can any of you BELIEVE that, seriously?) and once again my heart is acting up and making me feel weak and tired and now I've gone and caught a cold again, blah. Anyway, it's nice to be back on the blog where I can read so many lovely comments to cheer me up!

@Beatrice Zeo Bovo

Well hello, welcome to my little blog, and thank you so very much for all of the lovely words! I'm so happy to hear that you enjoy my artwork (I do draw enough Applejack and Rarity don't I? Or perhaps not, haha) and also that you are such a fan of darling Applejack. I know what you mean about her being so sadly neglected by the writers, or at least not given as many opportunities to shine as I feel she deserves, but like you I'm always holding out for this to be remedied in future episodes/seasons.

I'm glad to hear that she is popular in Italy at least, and for what it's worth I really don't think your English is terrible... certainly much better than my Italian would be, I know. I hope you'll feel free to frequent this place and join in conversations if ever you're so inclined, and if you ever think I can be of any help to you artistically I hope you will ask!

@CaineScroll

Oh, I know right! Again, I have to say I'm rather... shocked really, at the number of comments that piece has garnered already... I always assumed my prior most recent piece (Soviet Rarity) received such a response because it was a "big" and fancier painting, but now I think I have cause to worry about being overwhelmed by comments even when posting new doodles (*_*). But of course I can't and would never try to complain about that interest (I'm grateful, honestly, even if it is stressful in a way), and it's been very nice to see so much support for our favorite little cowpony of course!

As for "Sisterhooves Social" I wouldn't say that it is unfortunate that was more of a Rarity episode... truth be told I at least relished that. But yes, Applejack was great in that episode as she was entirely in her element, and we really need to see more of those types of moments in the series again.

I'm surprised to hear you say you have (or had) been experiencing some artblock recently, as it seems to me you've been more productive than ever lately, but I'm glad the livestreaming is apparently helping that. I have considered trying to set this up myself in the past just for small groups (meaning all of you, mostly) you know, but given my lack of time and the fact that I still haven't bothered looking into how to get started with such a thing I've put that aside again for now. Maybe someday... perhaps.

Oh yes, and regarding that "surprise", at this point I think many of you might have figured out what it is or at least what it has to do with, and actually I hope to finally get it up here later tonight or possibly tomorrow if I don't get too burned out by endless sneezing and decide to take a nap (thank Goddess for days off, is all I can say).

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

Ahaha, hello, hello, my dearest friend, it is SO incredibly wonderful to talk to you again I hope you know! I wish I could tackle-hug you or something, even if this matter of long-distance virtual communication was not a barrier (and if I was not likely contagious besides). I'm so happy to hear that you like this picture, more than you probably know really, and I appreciate the compliments immensely. Obviously at this point we've all discussed Applejack quite thoroughly and you know we all here seem to be in agreeance, but yes I'll reiterate that I'm pretty amazed by the reception this silly little thing has been met with, if not also completely touched to learn that so many other people out there seem to love that pony as much as I do (or close enough, anyway).

And yes yes, that place and those people with that stuff, such intrigue! ^_~ I am going to try and make an effort to go and plow though my comment replies on deviantART as soon as I've finally gotten back to everyone here, and we'll see if I can't manage to make a new post very soon... I think you and I have left all of our friends wondering in suspense long enough!

@RenaTurnip

Ah dearest, hello! You have made it over here at last after all, and unfortunately right at a time when I've been absent again for a spell... I'm terribly sorry about that. But now you can see how I was indeed telling the truth about post length over here, and I hope you'll always feel free to join in and participate in conversations in the future (whether or not you have a lot to say). I'm sure I'm not alone in enjoying your conversation on deviantART.

On that note yes, your comment there did pretty much cover it, but I'm very happy to hear now that I may have inspired you at all to create new pixel-works, of Applejack or otherwise! It's funny you mention her hair specifically because Harwick and I had only recently had a full conversation on that very subject (painting pony-hair that is, though it started with my complimenting his Applejack from his fabulous poker-ponies picture). Arguably it might even be too shiny here when you consider her character and how she likely manages her mane and such (or doesn't manage it, as it may be)... I guess it's possible Rarity got ahold of her prior to this picture "being taken" and "treated" her to a deep conditioning or something... oh mercy, I entertain myself sometimes with my stupid thoughts and comments.

Anyway though, I'm very happy to hear that you've been feeling motivated and creative lately, and I shall have to make a point to stop by your gallery again sometime soon. Thank you very much for stopping by here!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Apologies, everyone... I generally respond to all of my comments at once, of course, and meant to, but I fell asleep. ^_^;

@Anon

Well, I'll be the first person to admit that I did not follow the entire Everfree convention via YouTube or Livestream... the only panels I watched were the voice actress panel and the CMC panel (and if Sweetie Belle wasn't already my favorite crusader before watching the latter, she certainly would be now; Claire Corlett is absolutely adorable and so entertaining!). I have heard though, and from sources near and dear to us all as well, of course that it was pretty great, and even though I don't know what to add to the majority of your thoughts about everything I did at least enjoy reading through all of that. Thank you for the efforts and the links.

As for prints and whatnot, I don't think I'd even have anything to sell at this time even if I was interested in doing so without attending myself, which I don't think would be the case. Most of my pieces which I would consider to be "print-worthy" were commissioned (with a few exceptions) and so of course I would never consider selling them unless I could first work out something with those whom they now technically belong to. I have at least thought before about trying to do this in the instance I attend a convention, but otherwise I think I would benefit from getting a few more "polished" works in my pony portfolio first.

@zhoomcar

Oh hey, how did it end up going for you on Sunday? That's terribly exciting! I'm sorry I didn't post sooner in order to wish you luck and tell you to "break a leg", but I know you've been rehearsing for ages now so I can only imagine you all had a great time. And yes, I'm sure you must have made a fabulous cowboy... I'd like to hear all about it if you think you'd be willing to elaborate.

And thank you for sharing those links, also! Those were great, and the first one especially made me remember why I loved "Hurricane Fluttershy" so much (it also made me realize, as typing this comment has that I only ever did see that episode once, along with many others from season two especially... I should try to remedy that someday I suppose). It's actually been quite some time since I've listened to any music from the fan community, I suppose because I don't frequent EqD these days, but it was nice.

@Kateasaurus

Hello dearest, it's such a lovely surprise to see you around! I've been thinking about you recently and wondering how you've been doing, and by all indications it's well though I definitely don't envy you for all that packing and moving business (one of my least favorite things in the world, probably). I hope you'll let us all know how things are going once it's behind you and you get a little more settled, and of course I'll be wishing you the best of luck with all of that.

And thank you very much for all of the kind praise! That actually means a lot to me to hear about my Applejack (and Rarity) pictures because yes, I obviously do adore drawing them both. I've actually thought before how it's a good thing that there is already an 'Ask Applejack & Rarity' Tumblr out there, because if there wasn't I might have even been tempted to do such a thing myself, and Goddess knows I really don't have the time for that. Even if it could be more simplified art and as such something I could theoretically get done rather quickly... well, I probably shouldn't even be putting this much thought into this if I'm better off discouraging myself. ^.^;

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll @Anon

I shall try to fit in as best I can~ Although ten comments is a lot at once for a single topic, I dare say. Too much for this humble turnip :c

@WhiteDiamonds

I have made it here at last! But oh no, you have a summer cold? D: I'm one of those fortunate souls who gets sick far less often than once a year, and I would hate to suddenly come down with something in the middle of the summer, least of all if I was meant to be busy at that time. That would just be the worst possible thing. I hope it passes and never turns to look back >:C

On Applejack's hair, it's funny because I've actually considered that with myself a few times as well. As gorgeous as she is with a shiny gold mane, in reality it really makes more sense for her to have a dirty, faded look to that head of hair. Even if you don't take her canon colour into account, there's just very little reason for it to ever really shine or gloss unless, as you said, Rarity got her hooves on the girl for a day.

... Probably wouldn't stop me from taking a few artistic liberties, all the same! It certainly doesn't stop anyone else, that's for sure :P

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds Sunday night actually went quite well; our director certainly agreed (Fantastic! 6.5/10!) But it was only the matinee performance, so our first official night just concluded a few hours ago, which turned out a lot better. It was a whole load of fun, and with two nights to go, it's surprising to find that it's almost over. Made a few new acquaintances, gained a bit of experience, though I think I'll shy away from musical theatre for a little while after this...

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I truly did enjoy writing stories once upon a time, and lord knows I'm always tempted to take my first stab at a fan-fic, but I don't know where I'd find the time. So instead I just spin out all of these ideas in my mind and dig into the characters while I sit and draw them... And, of course, reading other people's works spurs on those insights I hadn't considered before too, as we discussed.

In truth, I'm not sure what my ideal Applejack story/episode would be even if I were suddenly put in the power to dictate it be included. I do think it would have to involve an explanation for her parents though, just to not let that opportunity go by unexamined.


@Beatrice Zeo Bovo

Welcome to White Diamonds' blog, Beatrice! I have to agree, Applejack should be given a song of her own. I thought her part of "Winter Wrap-up" was quite endearing, and am sure she could carry a whole tune on her own. Or maybe as a duet with Rarity...

@CaineScroll

Heh... I wouldn't call Derpy's inclusion an effort to troll, so much as the studio honestly having no idea how much that moment would overshadow the rest fo the story for so many Bronies. Sadly, I really do suspect the following controversy was driven almost entirely by members of the Brony community, as I know there had been some heated arguments by various fans as to whether she should be called Derpy or Ditzy. By the time the dust all settled, it's not surprising that people hardly remember what happens after that little bit from the opening.

@PonydoraPrancypants

I'm oh-so-eager to see the results of the Thing at the Place. Oh, and I did read the latest chapter of your epic last night and will hopefully be writing you a response about it soon. Regardless, glad to have you back!

@RenaTurnip

Nice to see you here! And yes, things get a bit wordy... but then, the topics often range far and wide, so it all seems to work out.

@Anon
It's interesting that you note the 8 months mark at the blog, as this is right around the 1 year anniversary of me actually getting into the show itself. It was sometime in August of last year, I think. Maybe July, but it would have been late. I'll have to go look things up on EQD to know for sure.

Nice rundown of the convention, by the way! Just makes me more jealous of those who got to go.

@zhoomcar

Congrats on the show! I'm glad it's going well so far!

@Kateasaurus

Best of luck with the move! That's always a pain. I'm also always surprise just how much of my life can be boxed away never to be opened again and not be missed in the slightest...

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Oh, and feel better soon, my dear. I hate to hear that you're having troubles (especially with your heart), and Rena is right... summer colds are no fun. (Of course, you're not living in a place that has a "winter" exactly, so maybe it doesn't make much difference to you.)

You're far too beloved to be sick, so please inform those viruses to cut it out and get better.

P.S. Looking forward to you sharing that surprise!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@RenaTurnip

Ugh, yes, I am sick most regrettably! And unfortunately at this point it seems t have progressed to a full-blown chest infection (I've always been partial to these, with my childhood history of serious asthma). I don't generally get sick so often these days, but I remember when I worked as a barista years ago I used to get colds, sinus infections and bronchitis all the time... several times a year (I did that for several years). Probably because one is constantly in contact with different people in that line of work, but I really don't know for sure.

And I am relieved to know that Harwick and I are apparently not the only people who have put so much thought into the texture and shininess of Applejack's hair, haha! Saying I do so probably makes me sound obsessed/far too preoccupied with details, but for me at least it's natural to think about texture when coloring things and especially when painting them. Even if Applejack did keep her mane up regularly I expect it wouldn't really resemble Rarity's high-gloss hair, for example... in the case of the latter I always assumed she must use a lot of products, or else regularly indulge in this type of treatment (and actually, that's not a bad recipe for anyone here who might be interested in such a thing... it doesn't call for xantham gum like some others I have seen before).

@zhoomcar

Well hey, I'm very glad to hear that at least and it sounds like it must have been a fun and rewarding experience for you! Maybe not so much so that you want to involve yourself in such projects as much in the future, by the sounds of things, but still it's good to hear that everything went very well. Too bad I have no way of attending any of your shows, because I'm sure I would really enjoy them!

@Harwick

Oh yes, that whole heart thing... I'd (happily) almost forgotten how it had been bothering me all weekend, as it seems to have stopped now and I've been too busy being preoccupied with all of this other sickly garbage... **bleh** But yes, thank you for that; they all keep telling me that it isn't (or shouldn't be) life-threatening, but that doesn't mean it's at all pleasant or comfortable to ride out those bad times when it does flare up, of course.

Regarding that oft-mentioned, terribly-teasing "surprise" I do intend to get that up very soon now... I'd been trying to hold off on posting it until I made it through more comments on my recent Applejack picture but then I realized that I don't have to post it on deviantART just because I post it here... genius (let's just blame my medication for my not thinking clearly on this matter, shall we?). So yes, at long last it will be up soon and I hope you all aren't disappointed with it at this point!

(Oh right, and I also have to ask,an Applejack and Rarity duet, seriously? You're doing this on purpose now I can tell... where is that silly "=p" deviantART tongue face when I need it!)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

.. And I just realized I said I was "partial" to chest infections when I meant to say "predisposed to", among other assorted typos... ^_^;; Oh well though, I trust you all understood my meaning anyway.

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Please don't be partial to such things D: That is not very good for your health!

But a chest infection sounds... horrible ;_; If I'm to assume right, I think I'd rather take the cold any day. Short response is short, as they say, but make sure you take care of yourself and beat all of that, okay?

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@RenaTurnip

Well, as I said that was a mistake on my part, and I meant to say that I am predisposed to chest infections. I have been most of my life, and probably half the time I do come down with a cold it will end up turning into one, so at least I'm used to them. And while they're not at all pleasant, in some ways at least they are nicer than bad colds (in my own opinion)... at least now I am not sneezing uncontrollably, suffering a terribly painful sore throat and my ears do not ache as badly.

Regardless though, thank you very much for the well-wishes dear! I should be fine; I went into work the other day as you know but otherwise have been staying home, and doing very, very little. I imagine in another few days, I should be back to normal.