Monday, March 11, 2013

Happy Birthday, Harwick-darling!

Good evening, my dears!

Today, after months of inactivity on my part, I make my return to the artistic realm of the pony-fandom once again. And what better occasion to warrant such a return than the birthday of our very own beloved Harwick. Now technically, Harwick's birthday was yesterday but despite the fact I'm only making this post now, I'm happy to say that I was actually able to get his gift to him on time and wish him a fabulous day on schedule. And, along with his gift above that he has already seen (or well, most of it anyway since I had to go back and edit/tweak a few things), I also am posting up a as-yet-unseen little bonus gift for him, because honestly such a thing was just begging to be done (and I think all of you from the regular blog-crowd are able to understand the joke in this case). I sincerely hope you enjoy it dear.

Those of you who correspond with the amazingly talented Harwick on deviantART, or at least visit his page on occasion, may remember seeing one of my ridiculously-simple muro doodles grace his webcam for some time, which bore more than just a passing resemblance to the Rarity painting above. I drew it for him as a teaser when I sent him a batch of cookies one day, just as a very small token of affection. He ended up liking the image so much that he proposed commissioning me for a more finished version, but I was more than happy to do the idea simply as a gift, and there it is. The technique is a little bit different than anything I've done to date I think, but I had fun experimenting with it and I hope you all enjoy it as well.

So yes, once again my dear I wish you all of the best in this year to come, and it's been my sincere pleasure to count you as my good friend for this past year and a half! I am looking forward to many more wonderful and rewarding conversation and correspondences to come. <3

Cheers darlings!


WD

95 comments:

Harwick said... Reply to comment

Do you have any idea how many times I’ve hit refresh on your blog tonight? It’s a pathetic amount, I assure you. But it was all more than worth it!

I love this so much, I can’t even tell you... and you should know that, because I’ve been trying to tell you and failing ever since you previewed it for me yesterday! I still can’t look at it without grinning like an idiot. Seriously, I absolutely adore this piece... it’s just so warm and lovable, with gorgeous, rich colors and beautiful brushwork. Her frilly apron is just perfect, and I love the cheeky little smile she’s giving as she presents her signature-styled confections! The magic effect is wonderful as well... light, bubbly and sparkly without overpowering the image. It’s a great job of conveying it, and one of the best versions of a magical aura I’ve seen yet. I love how you make her cutie mark practically glow as well, to emphasize the connection to the cookies. And how accurate they are! Looking at them makes my mouth water in remembrance of the real thing. Special attention has to be drawn to her mane, however, as it’s just a masterpiece! I love the handling of it... It’s so lushly rendered in deep purples and styled in a unique, adorable way! Domestic Rarity is absolute, unquestionable bliss!

And then the added pickled Twilight! I had forgotten about the promise of a little something extra, and that is so far beyond anything I could have expected! Ha! I utterly adore her, and I fully approve her spending a large portion of whatever stipend she gets to run the library on some high quality pickles. I get the exact same dreamy look on my face when I sample them myself.

If I can’t adequately describe how much I love these images, then there’s absolutely no way I can do justice to how truly wonderful I find the artist herself to be... Charming, witty, beautiful, affectionate and unbelievably talented... it’s no surprise that every bit of interaction we have leaves me measurably happier about my day. Thank you so much for everything, Di... You really are an exquisite and treasured friend!

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

Yes, yes it's here! Happy birthday, Harwick! I hope you had enjoyed both cookies and artisan pickles, if not both at the same time! We really are lucky to have you here, as you always have something insightful to say, and you contribute so much to our discussions. If our Di is the beautiful soul of this community, you are a bit like the heart that keeps the blood flowing! And it goes without saying that you are a terrific friend.

WhiteDiamonds, it's like Christmas in March when you debut something new and as spectacular as this! I'm just speculating here, mind you, but I'd wager those diamond-shaped shortbread cookies there are the best darn shortbread cookies that anyone ever baked, and that if one were to receive a tin of them, one would not be able to stop eating them. One would certainly not feel a lick of guilt about it either, hypothetically speaking!

I love Rarity's beautiful close-cropped and tied-back hair here (very functional for baking!), her apron with one perfect diamond to complete the set, and her mysterious, playful gaze. "You really want these cookies, don't you, darling?" she asks, without moving her lips.

I love the way you colored everything in this artwork, especially Rarity's sparkling magic and the rich colors in her mane and apron. Really, this is a perfect design. Really, I want those cookies!

Twilight S'Pickle there is too cute for words, along with her giant jar of artisanal preserved cucumbers! I wonder what flavor of pickle has inspired such ardor? Friendship is Vlasic!

I'm so happy to see these wonderful artworks, and so glad to celebrate Harwick's birthday. Thank you, Di, and Happy birthday again, Mr. H!

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

I'm currently in the middle of my forensics lecture, and will comment on this in greater depth soon, but

Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee! More art from Di! and happy birthday Harwick!

Kein said... Reply to comment

Do you have any idea how many times I’ve hit refresh on your blog tonight?

Haha, oh you, guys.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Ah, there he is, the birthday boy! Or well, belated-birthday boy... man. Well you get the idea anyway; that dearest darling friend of mine should suffice.

Ahh, my dear... as I have told you numerous times over the last 24 hours, and certainly many other times in the past besides you really are far too kind to me, and I am just so incredibly delighted that you are happy with your gift. As I told you, this image was one of the very few things I can ever remember you specifically mentioning that you wanted, and though I knew I probably couldn't go wrong with a Twilight artwork of any kind I thought it was about time that I finally got back to you on that pledge of mine and made you the artwork you'd specifically wished for. In this instance, the fact that we originally discussed the matter several months ago was probably a good thing, because it allowed me to catch you off-guard with the surprise, something that was at least somewhat intentional on my part, I'm happy to say!

You are as generous as always with your praise, thank you so very much for all of the kind compliments to my technique here! I had a lot of fun playing around with this style (you've expressed to me before how you love the fact that your macaroni-hooves Twilight from last year was different from everything else in my pony gallery, so I thought I would experiment), and as I have never painted unicorn-magic before I was really looking forward to having an excuse to do it here. That's similar to how I've always imagined it at least, and I'm happy you think it makes for a nice visual!

Lastly haha, yes your pickle-aficionado Twilight. I got the idea to do something like that after our initial phone conversation on the subject, and I figured there was no time like the present to do something with it and share it with you. I'm delighted that you like her, and I hope you will think of her every time you sample one of your artisanal briney delights. I know I always think of you whenever I even see of hear the word "sandwich" these days anyhow, I've got to tell you.

Anyhow, in my happiness I am rambling once more, as usual. Happy (Extended!) Birthday dear and thank you very much for being such a delightful friend, and all the best of life to you in the year to come! **happy text hugs**

@PonydoraPrancypants

"Friendship is Vlasic", hahaha! Okay, I really did laugh out loud at that... sometimes dear you are just utterly hilarious, and I love it.

Our Harwick really is a special one, isn't he? I feel so incredibly fortunate to count him amongst my friends (as I do all of you, of course), and as I think we have all observed before this place would certainly be nowhere near as warm and welcoming without him; he truly is a most extraordinary human being who is a joy to know. As I often say to him I think you are far too kind to me with your praise, but nevertheless I of course appreciate the kind words, both in regards to the artwork as well as my cookies, haha. It means a great deal that people enjoy both, and I suppose I'm going to have to make an effort to bake some more again soon, in the short window of time where the weather in my area is favorable to such a thing. Perhaps I can bake a ton and freeze them for later snacking (and shipping!), I suppose it's worth a try!

Anyhow, thank you so very much, once again for the praise my friend; as always it means a lot to me and I'm so glad you enjoyed the pictures!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

Dearest, hello! As always I'm so delighted to see you, and though I'll probably be asleep by the time you comment again (the whole matter of time zones and how they work and all of that always amazes me, even if I understand it perfectly well) I look forward to a message from you as I always do. Happy learning for now!

@Kein

Haha well, in this instance that really is all of my fault... I told Harwick earlier today that I would get his artwork posted after I got home from work (which was scheduled to be around 5:30 pm my time), but as I got caught up at my job as usual and then remembered I wanted to color his pickle-pony for him as a surprise, it ended up being much later, obviously. Poor dear, he'd probably started to think I'd forgotten!

Anyhow, it's nice of you to drop by, as always~!

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

Well, oops. I meant to be home sooner but it turns out I caught the wrong train and had to find my way back... Oh well, nothing of significant value was lost.

Say, that first one looks delicious! Both the cookies and Rarity, eh heh heh... love the 'do, the apron, that look in her eyes... it's all mouth-watering, really. Also, great work pulling off that magic aura, it just screams enchanting to me.

...did someone say s'mores?

As for number two, I couldn't help but giggle quietly to myself (or at least, in my head, given my surroundings at the time). Very cute, I just love that dreamy expression of hers.

@Harwick
Do you have any idea how many times I’ve hit refresh on your blog tonight?

Oh, Harwick. I think it has almost become a ritual where I check the blog three or four times a day, regardless of whether I intend to post anything or not.

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, so far Forensics has been my favourite class so far, just something about the lecturer that just makes it so engaging. Maybe it's because he's Canadian. Or he has a sense of humour. Probably the Canadian part. Non-Australian accents are always welcome in my book.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I'm so glad I can still make you smile and chuckle every now and then! Let's see if I can do it again with a cheerful G&S patter song knock-off:

You are the very model of a woman of the Renaissance,
You're skill-set multifarious, toujours présentés avec élégance,
You create a dozen masterworks with breezy ease and nonchalance,
To be counted your compadre is my ever-present esperance.

Artisans would kill if your abilities could become theirs,
Your confectionery flair surpasses many trained pâtissiers,
In short, if I'm requested to describe you I've but one response:
You are the very model of a woman of the Renaissance!

@Harwick

Hitting refresh over and over again? "I know that feel, bro." I'm also delighted for you, as these really are amazing, and you deserve them. I mean every word when I say what a remarkable, talented person you are, and I truly cannot overstate your importance to this group. By the way, did you know you can actually purchase a Rarity apron on Etsy? What a world!

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

Ahaha, oh wow... I only just realized upon waking up this morning that the cookies were shaped like diamonds. How silly I am to miss these things sometimes xD

But anyhow, what a lovely art! And a lovely surprise to find, as well. I would have commented last night but I was very sleepy ~w~ (I confess that DST caught me more than I'd first realized.) Rarity is, as it needs no pointing out, absolutely gorgeous, and really I think the technique you used this time around is really nice. I really can't place my finger on why I like it so much, or rather what aspects, but it is very appealing. Something about how the colours were applied, I think. As zhoomcar said, as well, the magic aura is very nice. It's a bright and shining and sparkly colour and it almost makes the cookies look even more delicious, in a way :P

I expect I'll have more to say on her later when I'm feeling a little more awake and a little less headachey. Twilight's also hilarious, although I'm afraid I'm not in the know about whatever joke we're supposed to know c: She certainly looks like she's found probably the best pickles in the world, though, with a face like that. I wish I could share with her, but I actually find pickles the most vile food I've ever tasted, so I would not be able to join her, which is a shame with how much she looks like she's enjoying herself.

Anyhow, my tangents aside, it is good to see an update :3 And to have a new topic to follow. I'm not sure whether to wish this thread a happy trip past 200 comments, or to wish you the best of luck in having something new to post before we let it drag on that long :P It would be a race pitting two good outcomes against one another, you know?

I think that's all I've got for now! Be well as always, everyone, and another belated happy birthday to you, Harwick~

Harwick said... Reply to comment

Thanks everyone for the birthday wishes! You should know that I find you all just as valuable to the spirit of community at Di's blog. I like to think of us all as happy regulars hanging out at Di's place.

Ponydora should probably be shunned for some of those puns, but then he turned around with song lyrics both here and on Di's dA account, and you just can't argue with a wordsmith like him. Well you could, but you'd probably lose.

Nice to see that the EQD folks liked the new Rarity image so much that they didn't even wait for the next Drawfriend... It was used as the front page header for the nightly round-up, leaving it the top image on the page all through the night. A very pleasant thing to greet fans in the morning, I must say.


@RenaTurnip
The pickle image refers to my discussion of a purchase I made of fairly pricey artesian pickles, my favorites of which (so far) are the Whiskey Sour Dills. The Spicey Bourbon Sweets are actually surprisingly good as well, and I'm not usually a fan of sweet pickles. I rambled on about them somewhere in that 200+ reply thread from the last images Di posted.

My love of a good sandwich (and good sandwich ingredients) is getting out, and Ponydora surprised me on my birthday with a cutting board and sandwich knife just to encourage my creativity. I have yet to put them to proper use, however, but soon... soon...

Coconutswallow said... Reply to comment

Oh. My. Harwick, you fortunate scallywag, this ranks in the top tiers of best birthday gifts ever. Simply gorgeous. Your instincts were good, this was a picture that was more than deserving of a full treatment by Ms. Diamonds.

@WhiteDiamonds

Where do I even start with this piece? I guess I'll begin with one of your biggest strengths: the facial expression is fantastic. Rarity knows she did a splendid job with the cookies, knows she looked good while doing it, and is obviously quite confident that the recipient is going to enjoy them. So much said in the ever expressive eyes and little smirk. Also, I love the raised hoof. It shows how proud she is of her creation and exhibits a hint of eagerness to be hoofing them out.

You and your masterful ability to portray thoughts and emotions in characters...

Moving on, that apron is delightfully domestic yet wonderfully elegant. It fits Rarity to a T. Highlights, of course, going to the thoughtful details such as the solitary diamond on the front and the abundantly large bow at the back.

I think everyone in the world has pointed this out already, but the hairstyle you gave her is amazing. Practical for baking but not sacrificing a lick of class and looking just as good as her more typical style. I like how it still maintains that trademark curl, just more reserved, and the strands that come down the sides and back are so cute it hurts.

As others have also pointed out, your take on unicorn magic is entirely unique here and has taken on a lot of personality since your Rarity & Fancypants drawing. Natural with its transparency but with an ethereal quality given the way it clouds and sparkles. Still so entirely classy, however, as is appropriate for its wielder.

Another Class A drawing, WD.

Also, I am now exceedingly hungry for cookies.

P.S. Twi and her jar of pickles is positively adorable. Seriously. That is awesome.

On an amusing note, I've already seen that little drawing around the 'nets, even before I saw this blog post. It was hilarious because no one had any idea what the context was, so they just made all sorts of random comments. It was fun to be in on the joke for once.

Friendship is Vlasic? There, now we can even further confuse people who don't frequent this place.

@PonydoraPrancypants

Okay, so I can expect you to become a parody playwright in what, just a few more years? Such a way with words! That was so very amusing. Now I feel like my vocabulary needs a serious upgrade, thanks.

@Harwick

You wonderful person, you, I hope your birthday was splendid! Keep having them. That's an order. The world needs more intelligent, thoughtful, and amusing people. The fact that you're an artist on top of all that, an amazing, mind-boggling talented artist, is like a dozen cherries on top of an already perfect, um... milkshake? (I had no idea where that simile was going.) I hope it's alright I compared you to a desert. It was meant with the highest compliments.

But yes, you are indeed a significant part of the lifeforce of this blog. Feel the appreciation.

And now you're making me think that I'm missing out by having never delved into the world of the more connoisseur pickles. Though I only really like the sweet ones, so we might differ there.

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

Sorry for the late comment! It's that time of year again and school's already getting to me (if anyone thinks design students have it easy, think again), and my brain just had to spur me into doing god-forsaken pixel art (it was fun though). Anyway, it's a beautiful picture you've done for Harwick here! I do recall that Muro from some time ago, and it's pretty impressive that it eventually grew into this piece here, haha~

I really like the way you do your unicorn aura, and those diamond-shaped cookies were a nice touch...(I'm wondering if you did make those, by the way) Rarity's apron was designed splendidly, too, with a nice choice of colour and elegant design.

Also, it's really nice of you to draw gifts for people on their birthdays...we had Ponydora's FotA picture, and now this. The pickle doodle at the end was a really nice touch, too; it's the kind of simple, scrawny doodle that has that special WD charm. Stay fabulous, Di!

Also, to Harwick: Ever since I came onto this blog and started pony art on dA, you've been a major source of support and advice, as well as a great friend. May each year be better than the last for you, and a happy belated birthday to you! *hugs*

Anon said... Reply to comment

Ah, the tenth of March has come again, and surely not you or Rarity will go ill-prepared! This is a wonderful set of birthday gifts, befitting of the artist they were made for. Clearly, you've taken this opportunity to show us yet again why you are the talent we are all here to see.

It may be those eyes, confidently wandering towards the pony lucky enough to share in those shortbread diamonds. It may be that her cutie mark-adorned baking apron is just too fitting for the scene of this piece. It may just be that I'm suddenly craving fancy pickles, and I hadn't realized it until you showed us what a treat they are. Whatever the case, I simply adore both these spirited works of art. I love your use of rich, painted colors, making everything feel warm and welcoming. Rarity dons her practical hairstyle just as well as her usual full curl, or arguably even better. Is it somewhat based on your own, by chance? When she so perfectly exemplifies the style of a fabulous host, I can't help but be reminded of you.

It can't hurt for one more of us to say it; satisfied doodle Twilight is utterly, immeasurably adorable. She seems to have traded her princesshood for that big gourmet pickle jar (my new headcanon), and after Harwick described them so favorably, who can blame her? This happy little bonus has everything that places even your simplest drawings on a level all their own.

There is never a better reason to make a grand reentrance than to celebrate a great friend like Harwick. Such artworks are much of why this special occasion is one of the happiest times of the year.

@Harwick

I tend to work far too slowly to make any holiday art, but I can assure you I would have thrown in more charming pony art if I was an unparalleled artist like you or our kind host. I may not know you as personally as the others at this blog, but you have been much of what I enjoy the most about this fandom for the past approximate year. I recognize that I haven't been the most pleasant in the time I've been around at this blog, but at least now I can say that I've greatly appreciated you staying by and bearing with me for so long. As long as you are here to provide us your insightful words and wits, I am sure this year is to be the best this blog has ever seen. Maybe we can all have cutie mark cookies on our hypothetical blog meetup day. Perhaps it will take place in a bed and breakfast castle like this one. (Be sure to click through the slideshow for the interior. There is much to be seen there.) The only way this birthday could be less than perfect is if you had to work on that day, but really, what sort of poor overworked sap has to work on his birthday?

Obsequiosity said... Reply to comment

Sometimes I even weird myself out...

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

It's great to see another blog entry with a pair of charming drawings; I love these birthday gifts that everyone can enjoy. Even though it's already been pointed out by everyone else here, I have to single out Rarity's mane as the highlight of the first drawing; it's both stylish and practical, and fits Rarity to a T. The rest of the drawing lives up to the usual high WhiteDiamonds standards as well; I love Rarity's inviting expression, and the magic effects and apron design are both great as well. This looks like it could be a scene from the show, just with a more painterly palette and textures.

And that Twilight drawing is just adorkable; her rapturous expression is wonderfully cute. It's a perfect example of the strengths of a quicker, looser drawing.

If it's not too late, I would like to wish the recipient of these drawings a belated happy birthday. Thanks for all the art and conversation, Harwick!

@PonydoraPrancypants

OK, I'm officially jealous of your way with words; that's a dang impressive pastiche.

@Obsequiosity

That does seem to be an odd, but entirely appropriate, response to the first drawing, yes...

(And now for the long, slow process of getting somewhat caught up, starting with adding a couple of artists to my watch list on dA.)

Harwick said... Reply to comment

The birthday parade just keeps on rolling! Here's wishing a most happy birthday to the incredibly talented writer Ponydora Prancypants! A scholar and a gentleman who can turn out song parodies, epic adventures, comedies, origin stories, and scintillating conversation and commentary with ease, his presence here and in the fandom in general have greatly improved them both!

So here's to a good friend and an all-around great guy!

Anon said... Reply to comment

Three cheers to one revered novelist of breathtaking talent, the great Ponydora Prancypants! The blog's atmosphere is defined by the brilliance and clever spirit of your character. It's been a pleasure being among your acquaintances this past year, and it should go without saying that I hope you had a very happy birthday!

@jodyjm13

Welcome back, Jody; something was telling me you would make your grand reappearance soon. The discussion here has been slow lately, but with another member around, surely we can get things running again soon.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

And it's still rolling... needs a bit of a push though. This time the well-wishes go to our most fabulous hostess, WhiteDiamonds! Thanks for all the cute ponies, the Rarijack, and being an absolute gem all-around. -puts on party hat-

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

I think I'm on time now, so I can finally send a birthday greeting without time travel! (It was fun while it lasted, though)

Happy Birthday to you, Di! Sorry I couldn't make anything for you this year (or Harwick or Ponydora, for that matter D:), but the sentiments are definitely there. It's been fun being friends with you, and I certainly look forward to many years to come along with everyone here!

-snatches Zhooms' party hat-

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

Oh, would you look at the time? I hear tell it's one of them thar birthdays again!

First of all, a brief but sincere thank you for those of you who wished me a happy birthday a week and a half ago. I spent a great weekend with some dear friends of mine, and generally felt pretty good about the passage of time.

More importantly, and more timely, today we celebrate are most illustrious and celebrated host, the incomparable, incontestable, incredible WhiteDiamonds on the anniversary of her arrival as a separate and independent being in the universe. Hurrah!

Di, like a hummingbird that comes across one of those bright red and yellow feeders, you drew me in with promises of sweetness and pretty colors, and here I find myself today, not having regretted a second of it.

I remember last year I expressed the sentiment that I hoped it was just the first of many of your birthdays we would have the chance to celebrate, and so now I say that I hope today is but the second of a great many more.

I hope today is very special for you, and that whatever you find yourself doing, and wherever you are, you enjoy it.

Happy birthday!!!!

(Oh, and I wrote Di a litte story for the occasion...)

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

Just a quick comment to add to the birthday greetings for our wonderful hostess; I hope you've had a terrific day today, Di!

And while I'm here, a belated "Happy Birthday" to Ponydora; sorry I forgot to wish you such on your actual birthday, but I'm glad to read that you had a good time.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!

Yes, it's a joyous day indeed! Okay, so I'm swamped with work and unable to celebrate your birthday property (how is this not a national holiday yet?), but I thought I should take a moment to let you know how much I love interacting with you. You really are a very special part of this fandom, and the massive influx of love you're being subjected to is definitely evidence of that!

It's also wonderful to see people returning here to wish you well on your birthday, especially faces (or icons, I suppose) that we've been missing recently! I hope everyone is doing well, and I'll try and come back and respond to folks when I can get on top of all of my current assignments...

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

Ahh, sorry for being the late one on the train here D: A very happy birthday to you, miss! Unfortunately I wasn't able to do anything to celebrate ;~; (Although had I realized the upcoming date before I posted those AJ and Rarity icons, I would have gladly put off their uploading until today, considering how perfect that would have been. Ahh well!~)

Like everyone here, I'm very glad to have become friends with you last year (and everybody else, of course) and it's no secret that we all love to hear from you, whether in brief or at length. I do hope that today treated you as best as it could, and that you have a happy year ahead of you :3

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Squeeeee, hello all my dears! <3 Thank you so so much, one and all for all of the incredibly sweet birthday wishes... I am terribly behind on all of my blog comments I realize, am very tired after a busy day yesterday and morning today and I have to be at work in a few hours but still, I just had to squeeze in coming on to thank all of you for your incredibly kind wishes now that I have the chance. I'm just so absolutely excited about everything, and so profoundly grateful to everyone! <3 <3

I had such a fantastic day yesterday, I can hardly even tell you all... I spoke to Harwick earlier in the day and despite the fact that I'd initially wanted (and tried) to hide my birthday notification on deviantART as I did last year, it didn't seem to work for some reason and as I told him, the amazing outpouring of well-wishes and sweet gifts from people just completely blew my mind. I felt like a giddy child again going through everything, and looking at all the little gift-arts, and reading through all of the notes (I didn't even get to all of my deviantART comments yet!). I truly am so very humbled and grateful as I said, by the sheer volume of the messages to the lengths some people went to for me, and as soon as I am able I fully intend to compile some sort of birthday post to hopefully try and convey my appreciation to everyone.

The very sad thing today, as Harwick brought to my attention earlier is that I haven't been here to post in ages now, which is doubly awful to me considering I honestly meant to about three weeks ago, even going so far as to type up replies to people that apparently I just forgot to post, and which all seem painfully inadequate and out of date now. So I will simply start afresh now, even though I may be brief, and hopefully I'll be able to get back at some point later today or tomorrow when I have a little more free time at my disposal!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

I never did return as I thought I did to thank you for kind words about my gift to Harwick, dear, but allow me to say now, long overdue at this point how much I appreciate your delightful words... you are always a sweetness and even though we correspond rather infrequently, I hope you know how much I adore you. Thank you very much for wishing me a Happy Birthday on that note, it means so much to me! <3 **stifling digital hugs**

@RenaTurnip

Hello my dear girl! Thank you as well for your compliments on Harwick's birthday art, long overdue, and haha yes the cookies were a bit of a joke themselves because aside from just resembling Rarity's cutie mark, I actually do own a diamond-shaped cookie cutter which I find to be perfect for stamping out delicate little shortbread treats. I truly appreciate all of your lovely feedback, and though I hope to become more active around here again, now that the rigors of Spring Break are behind me I'm not sure that I'm hoping to see this thread get up to (or past!) 200 comments again... I'm hoping that I'll have something new and interesting to share with you all before that time!

As for my birthday, thank you so very much for the wishes, and please don't trouble yourself about anything! You don't owe me anything, and as I think (or hope) you already know, I certainly love those pony avatars you created and am more than happy to consider them an early birthday gift, if you like. ^_~

@Coconutswallow

Hello dear! thank you so very much for all of your exceedingly kind praise of Harwick's birthday gift... as I have said so many times before, but as it is something that never ceases to be true compliments to the expressiveness of my characters and subjects is always some of the highest praise that I could possibly receive considering how much value I place on conveying thought, intent and emotion... it's by far the biggest reason that I enjoy creating fanart, as it allows me to explore these characters as if they were real thinking feeling beings, which I love to do. I'm happy that you like the magic, manestyle and apron as well (I did feel that a large floppy bow was exactly what the situation called for, and am so happy you agree), and haha, your remark about the reception to this image across the internet amuses me, because I can only imagine how people were interpreting it out of context. Once again I sincerely appreciate it, and can only apologize that I've seemingly given a good deal of my art-followers an unwanted cookie craving.

Thank you very much for the comments as always~!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Dearest, as I said to you on deviantART I am sorry that you and I seem to correspond so little these days... that is primarily, if not entirely my fault I'm afraid, but I really hope you know that I do love to hear from you, and fully intend to go and catch up with all of your artworks on deviantART that I have missed commenting on over the last month or two. I sincerely appreciate your comments on my gift for Harwick, and as I told Rena I actually do own a cookie cutter like that and yes, the batch that I sent to Harwick before did actually resemble those in the artwork almost exactly! I rather strove for accuracy in that regard. Thank you so very much as well, and once again for the sweet birthday wishes! They do mean a lot to me, and I certainly hope we will be in contact to celebrate many more together!

@Anon

Hahaha, thank you so much for your enthusiastic, and amusing, appraisal of each of Harwick's birthday gifts dear! I am especially pleased that I have provided you with a fabulous new headcanon for Twilight (and I think I shall join you in adopting it), and of course, I'm so happy that you enjoyed both images. Rarity's manestyle in this instance was not especially based on my own, as I usually wear my hair down (and naturally it is quite straight, though I do often make an effort to curl it), but occasionally yes, I've been known to clip it up that way when I'm working.

The blog has been very slow lately, and I'm sure that's almost entirely my fault... I know I have been around very little recently. I've still been catching up with my deviantART backlog in my free time, and as I mentioned at some point earlier, I think, I've just been working a great deal over the past couple of weeks, nearly double the amount of hours as usual due to Spring Break (we offer a lot of different classes and workshops during that period of time you see, basically back to back so I work a lot more). I'm looking forward to being able to take it a little bit easier again for a while, now!

@jodyjm13

Hello Jody my friend! Do you know I was just telling Harwick yesterday how much I've been thinking of you and missing you recently, and it's such a delight to see you posting here. Thank you so very much for the birthday wishes as well! As I said, I had an absolutely lovely day yesterday, and am so grateful to everyone for the generous outpouring of messages and more. I really am immensely lucky I think, and I thank you all for your kindness and generosity most sincerely.

I am sadly quite late in responding to your feedback on these artworks as well, I'm afraid, but all the same, thank you so much for the compliments to both of the pieces. I'm so happy you enjoyed both, and while I always do love the opportunity to try tackling ponies in more of an authentic painterly style, I quite agree with you about the charms of a quick simple work, as well.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Obsequiosity

Oh dear Goddess... odd or not, that is absolutely hysterical, and I so love it! You are another artist who I regrettably owe many comments to my friend, and I assure you that it will be my pleasure to deliver on then as soon as I have the chance. Thank you so very much for sharing this no matter what, and I am quite touched I was able to inspire you so, I have to say!

@Favo

My dearest, I sincerely hope that neither myself nor anyone else here has ever given you any cause to believe that you're not wanted (indeed, I tried my best to assure you that the opposite was true!), but no matter what, allow me simply to say that I'm so grateful you stopped by here, and thank you so much for the birthday wishes! I hope everything is well with you, wherever you are and whatever you have been up to!

@Harwick

Dearest, darling! <3 You and I have spoken of course, and quite a lot in fact, but as I never tire of saying it thank you so much once again for the birthday wishes and for being the amazing, incredible, kind and thoroughly delightful friend that you are! It means more to me than I could ever tell you, and I am immensely grateful for all that you do... on that note, believe me when I tell you that I am looking forward to commenting on a certain precious pony-painting on deviantART the very first chance I have! Hooray, cute adorable ponies~

Thank you so much again, dear... quite simply put, I adore you. <3

@PonydoraPrancypants

And last, but not at all least of course, my dear amazing Ponydora! You charming, fabulous, immensely thoughtful and exceedingly talented individual, are just far too generous and wonderful than you have any right to be I hope you know, and I can't tell you how much I appreciate your wishes as well as that absolutely fabulous gift you made for me, squeee! I will be the first to confess, I actually read the story yesterday, since Harwick teased me the night before by telling me that he knew you were working on something for me (only subtly implying that it may have been an ongoing project to which you were adding some final polish, which was more than enough to make my imagination run wild with fabulous thoughts and hopes), and so I camped out with my laptop close by, waking up obscenely early like a child on Christmas morning and then proceeding to dream about the subject in question when I blissfully dozed off again a little while afterwards. So in other words, to say that I was excited would be an understatement, and I cannot even begin to thank you enough for going to such lengths for me, despite your own incredibly busy schedule and life and the fact that I know you went quite a bit outside of your comfort zone with the subject matter. I've read it more than once now, and believe me that I say I do love it and the fact that you wrote the entire thing with me in mind... I'm just so touched and grateful, I really can't express how much! <3

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

So anyhow yes, that story. My goodness dear, when you make up your mind to write a shipping story you really rise to the challenge, don't you! I have to say that there was some absolutely excellent romance in there (don't even get me started on that strawberry scene, because I'm quite confident it puts anything I've seen or read before to shame, and I watch marathons of my ridiculously over-the-top soap opera for hours every weekend), and I simply adored all of the apple and orange metaphors utilized throughout the entire thing... they really were just perfect and poetic and fitted flawlessly in with the entire theme and narrative. There was wonderful chemistry and moments between the ponies (I am highly biased there, but yes), I thought your descriptions were gorgeously vivid, putting me solidly in the midst of each scene as I read through them, and I adored so many of the references throughout (especially the one to 'Homegrown" which I instantly caught as well as Applejack mentioning Rainbow Dash and Rarity's subsequent retort... I can only imagine that was a very deliberate inside joke inserted in there and it did make me laugh, believe me!). And yes, you even managed to make me blush a bit, more than once, so all in all I would say it was a decidedly excellent bit of writing.

I could elaborate even further, and probably will later when I have more time, but for now suffice to say that I am incredibly grateful for all of your hard work and the fact that you would ever do such a thing for me, and trust me when I say that I will treasure the efforts of your labor always. Thank you, thank you, so very much again! <3 <3

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Oh right and I forgot to add (even though I really need to be heading off to work) that the cover art that dear WizardWannabe made for your story Ponydora is absolutely precious!! I love it so, so much I can scarcely tell you, and I sincerely hope he uploads it to deviantART so that I can favorite it proudly and gush wildly about it. Even if he decides not to though, for whatever reason I assure you I will make a huge effort to thank him properly for it. SO incredibly adorable, mweeeee~~

Coconutswallow said... Reply to comment

Oh my, look at me, late to the party, and not even in the roguishly, fashionable way. Not to mention that I have nothing to show for it. Can I wrap my respect and admiration up with a bow and have that count? Perchance an imaginary card with one of those cute but eye-rollingly bad puns that you pick up at a nearby drug store because you're rushed for time? What if I top it off with a rain check? It includes me buying you your very own private island should I have an unexpected windfall of money and good fortunate in the future.

Ahem, but yes, I hope your birthday was a positively splendid one! And from the sound of it, it was indeed a good one, which is fantastic news. Here's to wishing that you have many, many more!

It's been a wonderful experience frequenting this blog (or lurking on it without the time to post as was the case more often of late) ever since I came across it and you have never ceased to be someone that I've been exceedingly happy to know and I'm ever grateful for your art, your conversation, and for this blog that you've created and the company it's brought together.

I am ecstatic that you're receiving so much love from the fandom. It's good to know they have such good taste. You deserve each and every bit of it.

Don't worry about your absence from this blog. It just makes the moment when you eventually post that much more wondrous. Heart grow fonder and all that.

@PonydoraPrancypants

Oh my, it seems that I entirely rolled right past your birthday! My apologies! Well, I hope yours was just as fantastic. You have injected this blog (as well as the whole fandom) with such intellectualism and writing talent and have been an integral part of excellent the community that WD has collected here. I am ever pleased to have made your acquaintance.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I'm very, very happy that you enjoyed your birthday present, and I admit to being completely flattered and tickled at the thought of you cmaped out waiting for it to go live on FiMFiction. What I'm most delighted by is that you had a fantastic birthday, because that is the important thing!

I note that you are a person who contributes to the greater well-being and happiness of the community just by being wonderful you. You bring joy to so many people, as must be apparent from the thousand birthday wishes you've received over on deviantART!I feel very fortunate to be your friend, and to have been able to do something nice for you.

In this technologically marvelous world, disconnected and hyperconnected at the same time, it's still the case that all we really have are the people who are important to us. And of course, you are very important to me! In any case, there can be no denying that someone so good deserves every gift and accolade she receives, and more.

As for the story itself, I'm so happy you liked it and I'm especially pleased you picked up on so many of the references and in-jokes (there are too many to list). Of course that Rainbow Dash bit was especially for someone around here who is aghast at the possibilty of a Raridash relationship! Given that you enjoyed it so much, this might have to be a trilogy. Three is my favorite number, after all!

I'm glad you liked WW's art as well, and I've let him know how much you appreciated it until you can get in touch with him yourself. He's another great friend!

Anyway, Happy Birthday again and thank you so much for always being your

Wonderful
Humane
Incomparable
Tasteful
Elegant
Delightful
Ingenious
Authentic
Magnificent
Original
Never-dull
Divine
Sparkling

self - as if you could ever stop!

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Coconutswallow

Thank you so very much for the kind wishes! I don't really believe that such things can be belated, because nice sentiments are equally appreciated all year round, and of course I'll have another birthday all too soon anyway.

You're far too kind with any talk of intellectualism with me, though. I feel like most of my comments on here are rife with errors, if they aren't completely unintelligible!

In any case, it's good to see you here, and thanks again!

WizardWannabe said... Reply to comment

Thought I'd pop on by over here to wish you a proper happy birthday! Even if it is late...

I'm glad you liked my little gift and I hope you had a brilliant birthday!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Coconutswallow

Oh, you really are a dear... thank you so very much for the beautiful sentiments my friend! If I have not been filled up to bursting already thanks to all of the amazing gifts and comments and such I have received over the past few days, then surely such words and gestures would have to about push me over the edge now. I hope you know how much I value your contributions to the blog as well whenever you are inclined to stop by, and I thank you so sincerely for all of the generous praise and support you have always shown me... it's truly appreciated.

@PonydoraPrancypants

Hahaha I did indeed enjoy it, as I already attempted to express to you both here as well as in a frenetically paced email that I doubt was even intelligible, considering how worked up with excitement I was at the time I wrote it. But, as I will never tire of saying so, and as deserves to be said again yes, it was just wonderful! I did indeed sleep with my laptop fully charged and strategically placed beside me so that I could check for it first thing Tuesday morning, I'm not ashamed to admit it, and yes I keep going back to read it even if it's just in little bits and pieces here and there, because I love it and it brings me joy. And again, the knowledge that it was an incredibly thoughtful gift just makes me treasure it that much more. <3

Dear Goddess, I don't know how I'm even going to sleep at night after a teasing remark like that; the very idea of this fantastic continuity being expanded upon even further is something that is just too mouth-wateringly delicious for me to even consider, lest I drive myself crazy prematurely with giddy excitement! But, suffice to say that I would happily pay to see such a thing, and no small amount.

Once again I offer you my profuse thanks for always being one of the loveliest friends anyone could ever ask for, and for sharing your talent and fabulous self with the fandom (and the rest of the world at that). I assure you that any warm and appreciative feelings you could ever harbor towards me are more than reciprocated! <3

@WizardWannabe

Oh, dearest, what a wonderful surprise! Thank you so much for that thoughtfulness, and thank you so, so much for that absolutely darling artwork once again, I really can't stress enough how much I love it! **virtual hugs!**

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Also, this has nothing to with anything but as the Rarijack has been flowing freely on the internet recently (my bliss knows no bounds), I'm posting this because a friend of mine shared it with me today via email (I resized it a bit and uploaded it to my own image sharing site because the original was strangely huge and terribly pixelated). I have no idea what the context may be, but no matter what it is, that's pretty adorable.

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

@WhiteDiamonds

That's from Rarity's oneshot "micro series" comic. As with their work on the first four issues of the main series, Katie Cook and Andy Price seem to have a thing for Rarijack, hehe. It's high time you read these, I think!

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

Yes, funnily enough I saw that just after posting it, when I started browsing EqD for the first time in several days. On that note, congratulations are truly in order to both WizardWannabe and Harwick, for making the header of the Nightly Roundup and Drawfriend respectively. Hooray! <3

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Hopefully, I'm not too late to wish a happy week-of-birthday to our beloved blogmaster. Welcome back, again! I hope you know how you've been dearly missed these past few weeks, and the only thing I'm happier to see is that your birthday was all that we wished for! To suitably describe your charms after so many others have tried would be as redundant as it is impossible, but that won't stop me from trying.

It has been my intention to finally draw a birthday gift picture for that profoundly inspiring artist who brought me to where I am today, but sadly, the occasion crept up on me during one of my busiest weeks of this year (a fact that poor Rena can attest to), and coupled with my woefully slow drawing speed, regretfully I had to accept that I could never finish anything presentable on time... I did get a good start on something though, so perhaps you might possibly find one more gift waiting in your inbox sometime later. On that note actually, I've found three more gift arts that you haven't left a comment on yet, so in case you missed them amid the avalanche of birthday wishes, here they are.

I would try to guess where I would be without you, but I don't like to think of it. I hope this is the start of many more excellent birthdays and momentous years for you, my cherished friend. You're beyond comparison.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Anon

Hooray, my dearest darling Anon! Thank you so very much for the lovely birthday wishes my dear... a little late or not, I so appreciate them, and you really are the sweetest thing! <3 There really is no need for you to ever make me anything, so please don't feel badly... obviously I can understand better than many what it's like to be busy and to simply not have time for things however we may want to do them, but of course, whatever happens I will always look forward to whatever new artworks you may chance to get up.

Oh, eep, I finally made it through all of my birthday comments and such on my deviantART page last night, but there was nothing whatsoever in any of them about that fabulous little Rarijack picture that leadhooves (the artist formerly known as Darth Franny I believe) made for me; I am so happy that you brought it to my attention or I might have missed it! @_@ Eeek it's absolutely adorable; so many precious ponies everywhere I look, it simply boggles the mind for the sheer wonderment and joy of it all! <3 <3

Thank you so much again for the lovely words dear, and for your thoughtfulness, and of course just for being you. **digital hugs** I'm looking forward to another year of delightful correspondences with all of you! <3

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

Oh, I'm still here... just haven't had the inclination to post anything. Yet. By the way, Issue #3 of the MLP Micro-series of comics just came out, starring the best, most fabulous pony ever. I quite loved it, almost makes up for her lack of episodes last season. https://itunes.apple.com/au/book/my-little-pony-micro-series/id634089078?mt=11

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

Meep yay, activity! <3 Thank goodness, I was just telling Harwick the other day that I've been considering shutting down this blog recently, as there doesn't seem to be much reason to keep it around these days. But I suppose if we can all find a reason to use it for conversation as we used to, at least on occasion (as I understand we all lead busy lives, or at least I can speak for many of us) it's worth maintaining and keeping around.

Anyhow yes, how about that latest Rarity comic! Thanks to my dear Ponydora I was able to read it as well, and I have to say it was quite enjoyable. I love the fact that she was highly entertaining throughout and had some very funny moments, yet the story never reduced her character to a joke or portrayed her as being one-dimensional, and her fabulous selflessness that made me fall in love with her to begin with really shone though in the end. It was definitely some great writing that did her proper justice, and for me personally some excellent choice visuals throughout that I found extremely entertaining, so yes, very good stuff. I'm so happy to hear that you enjoyed it as well!

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

"been considering shutting down this blog recently

-jaw drop- I could write an essay about your blog but time doesn't really allow and I'm not exactly the best with words, but I'll just keep it at a "egfiaoshdkcosjwbdhvjdnooooooooooo". In the meanwhile I'm just juggling three assignments (while not actually doing much) and I've just signed on for a cooking course that's on this Sunday because bored and I can't cook (Tapas? What are those?)

On a random aside, you should probably change add "2011" to your blog header after September there. The blog isn't exactly recreating itself every year.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

But...shutting the blog down? I have to say, I'm more than a bit surprised, or even shocked to hear you would ever consider such a thing. Activity does decline in the off-season, and various responsibilities do take a lot of our free time that could be enjoyed here, but I really don't think that's any reason to stop it for good... In fact, a bit of discussion among like-minded people can be the best way to recover from the stresses of daily life.

I guess it would affect me the most as I'm not a part of any exclusive friendship circles that came from this blog, so I would only ever see any of you again if you comment on new artworks I might post. That just isn't nearly often enough. This blog does serve the purpose of bringing people together for a open conversation instead of limiting us to a few private contacts. Like Harwick and Coconutswallow said, we should always be able to come up with something new to talk about and reflect upon. It would be quite a shame to see these good days end because we ran out of questions to ask.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Anon
@WhiteDiamonds
@zhoomcar

Don't worry everyone! Di's not going to shut down the blog, and even if she did, I would create ravishingdiamondstribute.blogspot.com. It wouldn't be as good as the original, but it would be a pretty sweet website anyway, and I could post terrible dA muro versions of Di's art. :)

So ... I got MLP Micro-Series #3, a.k.a. "How Rarity Got Her Groovy Back," on opening day. Wow! Katie Cook is a brilliant writer, and I wish she could write an episode. Andy Price draws ponies with incomparable liveliness and expressiveness. I loved this comic!

They really pinned down everything I love about Rarity, including her work ethic, her imagination, her cleverness, and her enormous heart. As Wheat Grass says, "Rarity, you're the best pony." So true.

Perhaps my favorite thing, notwithstanding the brilliant story, is how well-versed Katie and Andy are with the show. They include so many details, including nods to "Wonderbolt Academy," Rarity's business logo from "Suited for Success," an entire extended bit about Hayseed Turnip Truck, and they work in Flim and Flam, mailmare Derpy (member of local postal workers union #1701), and Filthy Rich. Of course, many other background ponies make appearences!

Of course, there were lots of non-show references to the trippy psychedelic flower-child culture of the 60's and 70's, and it was fun to see Rarity interacting with the ponies at Flax and Wheat's New-Age All-Natural Wellness Center. Panel-designs, artwork, and little things like posters for "Celestia Superstar" and "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Saddle" made me smile.

Of course, I couldn't help but notice that Rarity keeps a photo of Applejack on her bedside table!

Anyway, I consider this comic a must-read and a high point of official MLP products, even compared against the show.

In other, almost entirely unrelated news, EQD posted some semi-spoilery information about the novelization of the Equestria Girls film. The text reads: "In an effort to regain her stolen crown,
Princess Twilight Sparkle steps through a magical mirror, into a
completely new world where some things have changed, but true
friendships remain magical!"

So, make of it what you will! I speculate that the mysterious "Sunset Shimmer," whose packaging says she knows of a portal to another world, will play a role as the jealous, embittered jewelry thief.

The book appears in Little, Brown & Co.'s Fall 2013-Winter 2014 catalog, so Equestria Girls is presumably still a ways away. My hope is that this will allow time to get the real voice actors onboard and potentially tweak this into something better than it ought to be. Daniel Ingram, the composer for FiM, says he's proud of the music he's composed for EQG, so at least it has that going for it!

Anyone else have any new thoughts to share?

Favo said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds
It's all crashing down, isn't it. That certainly doesn't help the mood. This might be a good time to send it, I guess. Please check your inbox, and... thanks for the good times.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar
@Anon

I hope neither of you (or any of the rest of you, either) take me the wrong way... it would indeed be a shame and it's not that I would want to do such a thing necessarily, but if people only post here very sporadically, it seems silly to me to continue keeping the place around. Especially since we all have deviantART accounts these days and theoretically, could stay in contact there, even if it's not nearly the same thing. I guess it's just very discouraging to me to see activity decline the way it has over the past several months... I know a great deal of that is my own fault for being so negligent (and I really am sorry about that, especially now in light of things), and I understand that some of it could be due to the "off season", I just know that looking back on things it has never been this dull around here even during such times. I suppose it just boils down to everyone going through various life changes, and especially all of you younger people, but again, hopefully we can all manage to find some use for it still, even if it's just occasionally.

@zhoomcar

Ugh, that header of mine... date aside, this entire blog needs a serious face lift if you ask me. I had been thinking about that a couple of months ago and meant to try and do something, but you all know me and how I get distracted, and I completely forgot about it I'm sorry to say. Please, all of you, do poke and prod me if I let it go again for longer than another week or two.

Anyhow though, blog silliness and would-be drama aside I really am SO amused and delighted to hear about your cooking classes dear, I can't even tell you! I have always wanted to take classes like that myself, just never have, because even though I can arguably bake the rest of my culinary undertakings probably leave something to be desired. Anyway, I really do think that sounds fabulous (you're far too adorable, you know)... I hope you will keep us all updated on how that goes for you!

@PonydoraPrancypants

Comment ninja! You posted that when I was typing my replies to the other two, but suffice to say that while I have thought about it I really hope that it doesn't come to my needing or wanting to close this place down, definitely. Even though, I must say, I think I would dearly enjoy seeing (what I sincerely doubt would be) "terrible dA muro versions" of my various pony artworks. =)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

But anyhow, yes, that comic... once again I really can't thank you enough for being so thoughtful as to buy me a (digital) copy, so that I could enjoy it as well. You're too sweet. I did think it was very well written and again, that it did Rarity's character great justice, and I have to say that overall I thought it was paced very well, so that it felt like much longer of a story than it actually was. I agree that in general (based on this issue and what I know of the main series, even if I haven't read any full issues myself) the comics seem to be very well-written and are engaging, but of course, the fact that the writers seem to have a great deal more freedom and a slightly more mature target audience in general probably has a lot to do with that. Still though, Katie Cook is a fan of Friendship is Magic herself to my understanding and I do think she could do an excellent job if allowed to write for the show, and who knows, maybe some day she will have the opportunity. At the very least, I have heard that one of her (or perhaps one of the other writer's, I'm not sure) ideas was shot down because it too closely resembled an actual upcoming episode, so that could bode well for us all.

I did like the artwork quite a lot I must say, and Andy Price's pony-style in general is appealing, but as when I first started seeing news of the comics I can't help but think that he overdoes expressions on occasion... perhaps that's just me though and the fact that I feel a little subtlety can go a long way sometimes. His stylistic tendencies do tend to work quite well for Rarity though since she is such an expressive character, and as I said in my first comment there were quite a few visuals in this issue that I dearly loved, especially Rarity in a beekeeper suit (I don't think most of you know, but for whatever bizarre reason I have just adored bees since childhood and for years now have aspired to someday keep my own hives... I shall jar my own honey and make soaps and candles <3), and of course yes, Applejack's (bedroom eyes, really?) portrait beside Rarity's bed in not one, but two panels did not go unnoticed and definitely amused me! Ahaha, the implications, shipteasing or no, are just too funny. <3

At any rate yes, suffice to say that I really did enjoy the comic a great deal and would certainly recommend it to anyone. And as for the "Equestria Girls" spoilers, rumors and speculation, I'm afraid my feelings about the entire matter haven't changed much from when the new IP was first announced, insofar as I am still hoping to be pleasantly surprised by it all but am fully prepared for it to be downright awful and tank horribly. The fact that some of FiM's staff including Daniel Ingram and Will Anderson have now been confirmed to be involved unfortunately isn't doing much to change this and bolster my confidence in light of everything else we've seen of it, I'm sorry to say. Still though, I'm of course willing to give it a chance, and as far as the plot of the series or movie or whatever it will be, or at least the book, I really do think you are quite on to something dear.

@Favo

Well, on occasion it does feel that way I can admit, but certainly, I do hope it doesn't come to that for the blog and at this point I don't think it will... not anytime soon at least. Anyhow though, hello dear. =)

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

I was actually coming by here to ask for opinions on the new Rarity comic. It's good to see the fandom's praise for the issue being reflected here, but I do have one question for those who've read it: Is Spike really portrayed as an unsympathetic jerk, or are the comments I've seen exaggerating things again? It's been so long since Rarity's really had a chance to shine that I'm tempted to buy this issue (especially with Hayseed Turnip Truck apparently playing a significant role), but if they're making Spike unlikeable for the sake of the story, I expect I'll give it a pass...

@WhiteDiamonds:

As quiet as it has been lately, I'm glad you're not "shutting down this blog" anytime soon; while activity may be sporadic between MLP seasons, it's still nice to chat here when topics do present themselves. And please don't blame yourself for the recent inactivity; I think just about everyone has been busy this spring. I know that I've been focusing on taking care of long-neglected RL tasks, making irregular but encouraging progress.

@PonydoraPrancypants:

That brief blurb about the Equestria Girls book actually strengthens my confidence that the movie won't be the cliche-filled, high-school-hijinks, gotta-getta-boyfriend angstfest that seemingly most bronies fear (though if it proves popular enough to merit a TV series, who knows what direction that'll take). I still expect the finished product to be somewhere between "disappointingly bland" and "pretty decent"; unfortunately, the designs are so unappealing to me that it's going to have to be really good for me to want to watch it.

Finally, here's a link I meant to post a couple of months ago, in response to the link to the eventual Oscar-winning animated short, "Paperman". "Adam and Dog", a look at the story of the Garden of Eden from a dog's point of view, was another of the nominees; while I can't complain about "Paperman"'s victory, I also love the artistry and emotion of "Adam and Dog". Anyone willing to spend 15 minutes on a slightly-different animated short ought to give it a shot. (While the short is inspired by the first couple of chapters of Genesis, I think it'll play as well regardless of whether one views the source material as literal truth, allegory, or ancient myth; also, Adam and Eve are visibly nude in the short, though the nudity is no more explicit or salacious than in mainstream Renaissance artworks, so I don't think anyone here would find it objectionable.)

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Hello Jody, my dear friend! As always it's lovely to hear from you (I've been thinking about you a lot recently), and I thank you for stopping by, as well as for the encouragement with the blog. Indeed, much of the past year was not kind to me and if it wasn't busyness with work it was a lot of health problems, but now that I have been feeling much better again (I am on a different, and what seems to be much better thyroid medication) I've been able to handle all the unpleasant things in my life with far more ease again. I certainly hope that things have been well on your end also.

Anyhow, regarding the Rarity issue, Hayseed does indeed play a significant role and yes, I'd have to say that Spike does not at all come off as likeable, but not over the course of the Rarity comic itself, instead in the little comic-short that follows up the main story. For fear of spoiling the entire thing for you (so indeed, stop reading if you want to avoid that) there is something of a series of short time-lapse scenes wherein Hayseed falls for Rarity when he meets her as a laborer in Ponyville, embarrasses her again down the road when he meets her again after starting up his own business, and then years later when he is what appears to be CEO of a very successful company and goes looking for Rarity's affections, Spike bursts his bubble in a horrible way by telling him she's actually engaged, before proceeding to steal the discarded bouquet he brought so that he can run off and give it to Rarity himself. Very sneaky, and sad for Hayseed, but it's all done in Katie Cook's cute simple artstyle and is intended to be for laughs I think, so take it as you will. Again, the main story starring Rarity is very well-written I would say, and does a nice job with all of the characters (and especially its lead pony).

I almost wish that I felt a little more optimistic about "Equestria Girls", but again at this point I'm just waiting to see what happens, and will pass final judgment when I actually have something substantial to go by. As for that film though, thank you so very much for sharing that with us! That was really beautifully done, and a bit sad, but nevertheless I really liked it and think that Harwick might enjoy it for the same reasons I did. I know most people would probably think I seem better-suited to being a cat person, and maybe I am, but there's no denying that there is nothing like the love and companionship of a pet dog; they're very near perfect creatures, and certainly make perfect friends in my own experience.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

New posts! Nifty!

I've been busy beyond all reason the last two weeks, with 3 game projects overlapping and various other parts of my life demanding attention. However, I have been trying to keep an eye on things in fandom even if I haven't had the chance to comment much myself.

So please, Darling Diamonds... don't take our blog away. Where else can I go to discuss whatever random topic demands my rants?

As to those topics in fandom, I too loved the latest comic episodes, especially the Rarity solo issue, for all of the reasons listed already. (spoilers about Spike) And yes, Jody, I did think to myself "Wow... what a jerk!" in regards to Spike, but I laughed while thinking it. I truly love Spike, but it really didn't bother me at all as it was simply the punchline of a 2 page follow-up comic where he shoots down competition for Rarity's affection by saying that she has a boyfriend (practically a fiance), and then happily scoops up the discarded bouquet when Hayseed leaves, dejected.

I did watch the "Adam and Dog" animated short Jody posted, and I quite liked it! It reminded me of the myth about a line being drawn between man and all the other animals, which then split the ground into a growing chasm. At the last moment, before the separation became too great, Dog leaped the span to stand alongside Man. Dogs are truly the best

It's also why I can't approve of people eating dog (and horses) in parts of the world. We established a partnership with those species in order to survive. Eating them is a betrayal... Where's the Loyalty of our inter-species friendship? I can't begrudge a starving person, but if it's ever a simple choice then it's the wrong one.

I'm certainly a bit intrigued to hear that Daniel Ingram wrote some good songs for Equestria Girls. While I would have preferred that the humanized concept be completely separate from the ponies we know and love, I guess I might be somewhat interested if it's just Twilight crossing over and having to re-befriend hairless ape versions of the Mane Six. Then she can wake up and say "What a strange dream...", smash the mirror and then never speak of it again.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

It's incredibly late here and I probably should be asleep right now, but eh~

@Harwick

Darling, even though you and I speak often, of course, I have to reiterate that it always is a treat to converse with you online as well... it's just a pleasant way to spend an evening or afternoon online you know. Anyhow as I said to dear Anon and zhoomcar I certainly don't have any plans to take this blog away if people will continue to get some use out of it... even though it may be somewhat impractical in light of the fact that we all now have deviantART accounts, here's no denying that it has a certain charm all its own and that I feel very comfortable here... I think we all do really.

I'm glad you liked that short film as again I thought of you, and as for the eating of pet-like animals of course I must agree with you. Still though, this always bugs my conscience in where to draw the line, since most any animal could conceivably make a good companion, and in particular I always tend to feel terrible whenever I really think about eating chicken or if I'm preparing a whole chicken for dinner, since (and here's another fact about me to follow the bees which most of you probably aren't aware of) I actually really like chickens and plan on someday following in Martha Stewart's footsteps in keeping my own home flock, since I simply can't bear the thought of what the poor creatures go through in a factory-farm setting and refuse to buy eggs that are not from a cage-free farm at the very least (there is a little bit of Fluttershy somewhere in me, after all). My entire family thinks I'm crazy for the fact, but I will do it someday when I have the time and properly-zoned property for it... also, ideally, by that time someone in my life who has no objections to cleaning out a coop as well.

But anyhow. Ponydora-dear, I meant to bring this picture up here the other day after someone linked me to it on my front page... I'm not sure if you've seen it yet or not but at first glance, I really thought it was an illustration of a scene from the Rarijack fanfiction you wrote for my birthday (and on that note, even though the picture can indeed be argued to border on risqué some people apparently feel it's going into downright suggestive territory... I didn't interpret it that way myself when I first saw it nor do I think that was quite what was intended, but just a heads up to those of you who might prefer to avoid such things). Closer inspection revealed this must not be the case, but still, I did think of the story and you, I have to say, and thought it was a rather nicely-made artwork... ^.^' (Yay Rarijack)

I guess at this point I probably should be heading off to bed... it's a shame things are still a bit slow around here, but chances are I will be posting up a something or two that I have been sitting on for over a month now, very soon... perhaps that will liven things up again. Also, though this has nothing to do with anything, I've been toying with the notion of making a Twitter account recently, as if I really needed any more online distractions to keep me busy. What do you all think, would it be a fun idea or am I just a little bit nutty for even considering it?

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

It's clearly way past your bedtime... If anyone is around to tell you to go to bed :< (Instead, I'm 1300 words into my 2200 word psychology assignment. I'm lazy!)

So... about that cooking class. It certainly was an interesting experience, even if it was more collaboration work than DIY. Knives still make me uncomfortable, though. A bunch of the stuff made can be seen here

Gah, Di - my young, sensitive eyes! They burn! (Not really, but the picture indeed shies a bit away from innocuous, but I've seen enough ship-pics to not take too much notice of these things.)

A Twitter account? That would indeed be adding to your pile of "nice people to respond to". I would imagine your twitter feed would consist mostly of pictures of food, the weather, and sometimes your cat. Regardless, I would follow you in a heartbeat. :)


This is most likely directed at Harwick, unless anyone else here is an avid reader of the MLP comics - what do you think of (minor spoilers here) Nightmare Rarity? I happened to catch the leaked Issue #7, and by golly, does she bring the evil.

I'll just finish here with another PMV thing I've started working on (and probably won't finish again, as well as this really silly smartphone commercial. What is with ads on American TV being really entertaining (and sometimes horrid), at least, with most of my experience of TV coming from livestreams of the Hub...

(Also there's a moderate chance said PMV might be blocked in the US. hmmmmmmmm.)

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Well, certainly one can argue that all animals have an equal right to life, and even though I'm not a vegetarian I respect that stance as perhaps morally superior, or at least fraught with less hypocrisy. However, when looking at the history of our species and how we have formed a symbiotic relationship with certain animals over that time (in fact, it has been questioned whether man domesticated dog or if dog was the driving half of the merger), it strikes me as quite clearly a betrayal of our arrangement to turn upon them.

Which is not to say that chickens don't deserve a good life too. I'm sure you'd make a excellent chicken keeper.

As for Twitter, I'm not a user or a fan, but if you want to leap into that one go right ahead. In fact, if you set up an account in time and donated to that Wildlife Refuge that Lauren Faust supports, she'll take and answer any one question from you about MLP in a twitter Q&A session tonight, 8-9 Pacific time. (She did one earlier today as well... the details are on EQD.) I suppose you could finally ask what age Spike is really supposed to be and/or whether his crush on Rarity was ever supposed to be reciprocated.

Although she's apparently hoping someone asks about the details of Twilight's little melt-down when she got her cutie mark... Now I'm curious as to what more she intended.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

That's a great cause. I'm going to donate this evening.

Also, here's teh latest synopsis for EQG:

When a crown is stolen from the Crystal Empire, Twilight Sparkle pursues the thief into an alternate world where she transforms into a teenage girl who must survive her biggest challenge yet… high school. With help from her new friends who remind her of Ponyville’s Applejack, Rarity, Rainbow Dash, Pinkie Pie, and Fluttershy, she embarks upon a quest to find the crown and change the destiny of these two parallel worlds.

...

I have no words at this time.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

I suppose that as far as damage control goes, the fact that it's only Twilight who goes through the looking glass into a world where they eat cows and enslave horses is a good thing. The fact that it begins in the Crystal Empire lends credence to that snippet of Twilight trying to fly being from Equestria Girls and not Season 4. Honestly, I'm pretty much resigned that this is what it is, and will just wait and see what to make of it.

Apparently it is going to be showing in theaters around the country next month too... ahead of it being "unveiled" or whatever at Comicon. Someone on EQD said it was part of a "summer camp series" or something like that, where you can drop your kids off a theater and they show old family films and whatnot during the day to keep them occupied... Apparently Equestria Girls has been put into that line-up.

As for the donation drive, the Wildlife rescue place doesn't look like they'll reach their goal, but they did get a big boost from the bronies. I originally donated when Lauren Faust first sent out the call, back when the fund was just pushing $6000. All of us who donated will have to make a trip out of it sometime and use our free passes, I think.

Nice to see some solid questions were asked as well... Thanks to Jody for getting the answer on Spike's age! I also quite liked Ms. Faust's name for Berry Punch: "Pinot Noir". Not that I'd switch now, but it's a good spy name for her should she ever need an alias. The various stuff about Celestia and Luna was interesting to hear as well, even if nothing ever comes of it or the current creative team goes a completely different way.

Maybe it's the whole "Star Wars" thing, but I'm not overly interested in a series examining Celestia and Luna's past all that much. Maybe a mini-series, or certainly an individual episode or two would be welcome, but not an entire prequel series. However, since Ms. Faust mentioned how she'd love to do one, many folks are chomping at the bit (so to speak.)

RenaTurnip said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

No need to close down the blog! D: Even if we all seem to be so busy lately, in one fashion or another, or that conversation takes long vacations from itself. The blog will always be useful for when you need to post something important or just give us a universal way to share some news. And in my case specifically, it's only my fault that I don't post on the blog much, or reply much on dA these days :( I don't have a grip on things as much as I once did. I put things off for one day and suddenly two weeks have gone by. It's very irresponsible of me and it applies to the blog as well. I apologize for this, for what it might be worth.

Unfortunately I haven't really much to say on any of the current topics here, which makes me feel kind of guilty that I'm just talking about myself for no reason now <_< But if it means anything, even though I may have little to say, I like reading all the conversations here. Being just a reader doesn't help the slowness at all, so it's debateable whether my invisible presence is any better or worse than not being here at all, but I guess I'll leave that judgement up to you guys :c

What I can say, is that I'm still not certain where my hopes lay for season four or the future of official MLP-related works. I was chatting with Anon and I think I told him that the third season more or less dashed my enthusiasm for the future, although that doesn't mean I've given up either. If anything, I think I'm secretly feeling more hopeful than I want to admit, at least, as I am very good at fooling myself. Equestria Girls, though, I am just taking with half a grain of salt. It could very well be pretty cool, but obviously not many people are expecting as such from it D: I'll gladly be first on the "pleasantly surprised" train if it turns out really well, at least, but you know.

(Please don't close the blog!)

CaineScroll said... Reply to comment

I've been keeping track of this thread for some time now but haven't really had the chance to really lay down a coherent reply...best get to it now. With regards to the closing of the blog, I'm glad that particular notion was scrapped, because it would mean one less pitstop for my daily internet activities...plus, it's always nice to see how folks here on the blog can really express their thoughts more clearly than on deviantART (last I checked most everyone here has a dA account, no?). And of course this blog has been a starting point for most of my friendships with you all...it'd have been sad to see it go.

To be totally honest, the third season of the show confused me more than anything else...I'm kind of uncertain where the show's headed. On top of that, I don't visit EqD anymore so it's hard for me to keep track of things lately. All I can hope for is that the show gets a grip of itself and turn the show in a direction where it can reach a point where everyone's satisfied. Fingers crossed!

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

So, based on the latest promotional art, the Equestria Girls have lost their wings, and are now just pony-eared humans. I support that change, at least. Also, Lauren confirms my belief that Celestia and Luna each controlled three of the Elements. Which had which? Celestia obviously had Laughter ... and also Kindness and Loyalty? Luna would have had Magic, Honesty, and Generosity.

Thoughts?

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

I'm actually a bit disappointed in the lack of wings, myself... It suggests a lack of action/adventure for the property, pointing entirely to high-school hijinks.

Honestly, I can't imagine how that whole thing will work either way. They really do look horribly thin on that cover though.

As for the division of elements, that's how I would break them down as well, unless one argued that becoming NMM was enough to make Luna go against her natural traits.. I think Laughter, Kindness and Loyalty fit Celestia well, as I don't see her having much trouble bending the truth.

I had that story idea where Twilight was missing, and in it Rarity would have eventually realized that the Princesses thought she might need to wield the Element of Magic as well as Generosity, as they weren't sure if a pony without a horn could even fire off the big ol' Rainbow of Harmony.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

"Paperman" did deserve its victory, but "Adam and Dog" has so many unique design qualities that it at least deserves an honourable mention. I especially liked the natural atmosphere that comes from the wilderness audio in place of music. That subtle detail made everything feel grounded and real. Thanks for letting us know about it!

Speaking of natural soundscapes, a neat tool recently appeared on Tumblr that lets you combine up to four looped sounds, like a running fountain, birds chirping, owls hooting, rainfall pouring, a campfire crackling, wind chimes chiming and many other atmospheric sounds, then you can adjust each of their volumes to simulate distance and their stereo left-right to make them sound like each is coming from a certain direction. You can try it here. Personally, I like to add the tribal drums sound in the distance to remove the element of loneliness and make the scene feel more like an authentic theme park. I might just use this when I need to draw a tropical environment. Now that I think about it, this could be a useful tool for any sort of scene if only you could add recordings from the internet. I'm even a bit tempted to make my own, just for that purpose.

@Harwick

I haven't been closely following "Equestria Girls", but everything we know about the series suggests that it is intended for a much younger audience, so I don't expect much, whatever it turns out to be. If anything, it will provide the fandom with many a new comic idea, and maybe even a FiW gag for a long, long time.

While I can't argue with Spike's intended age, I've noticed that children's TV programs commonly design their characters to look and act much older than they're meant to be. Did you know that Snow White was supposed to be 14 years old? I'm sure it's done to help kids relate with the characters, but when I was growing up, I wished they would just be honest that the end of an rope hanging over a vat of acid probably isn't the strangest place Batman has woken up in. At least Spike acts his age.

@PonydoraPrancypants

I don't know... Luna is pretty stoic, but she has a good laugh. Of course, that dark magic may have something to do with her heightened sense of humor.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants
I'm not so sure about the loss of wings part. Everyone in the Humane 6 is on equal footing, anatomically, at least, but it really makes me wonder what kind of world exists on the other side of that mirror. Will there be any other animal kinds other than "ponies"? The lack of wings might bring down opportunities for some fantastical environments. What would the human equivalent of Cloudsdale be?

On abnormal thinness, I've been watching a bit of Littlest Pet Shop (season is over now) and the humans there (at least, non-adults) come off looking abnormally skinny with abnormally large heads, and they are very much self aware of their abnormalities. Though I guess watching LPS (which is basically high-school) has made me a little less damning of EQG.


Why can't they just switch elements at will? -shrug-

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

Yes, the lack of wings indicates that high-flying magical adventure is less likely, but at least now poor Rarity isn't the only one arbitrarily turned into an "earth pony-person." :)

Also, at this point I'm really just half-heartedly grasping at tiny, tiny straws. Nothing about this looks good, and I can already tell those wasp-waisted dolls are going to embarrass the fandom. They really are terrible.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

I'm very glad to read that you've been doing better lately, and that you've found a thyroid medication that works for you; it can be very tricky finding the right treatment and dosage for a thyroid imbalance.

As for the comic, between your comment and Harwick's I'm pretty certain that the complaints I read about Spike's portrayal were somewhat exaggerated, so I'll have to keep an eye out for a copy of that issue. Thanks for responding to my question!

Dogs really do make wonderful companions; while I'm a cat person myself, there are times I'm slightly jealous while watching friends and family members interacting with their dogs. They definitely require more attention and upkeep than cats, though, enough that I know I wouldn't be a good dog owner.

My parents started keeping a small flock of chickens when I was in junior high school, so I do have some experience with raising them. They can be a pleasant hobby; just keep in mind that they'll lay fewer eggs during the shorter days of winter, or once they reach 4 years old or so. It's definitely nice to have access to truly fresh eggs, though.

@Harwick

I have to admit that, though I would have guessed 10 years old instead of 8, I always saw Spike as being elementary-school aged; I asked that question solely hoping to change the minds of some people who keep arguing that Spike's meant to be a teenager. Silly me; in the past few days, I've seen people saying that several years have passed over the course of the series so Spike's now a teenager, or that he should still be considered a teen because he was one temporarily during "Secret of My Excess", or that the current crew writes him as a teenager now (??), or even that Lauren has no idea what she's talking about (!!). I suppose I shouldn't be surprised at the ability of people to dismiss or ignore data that contradicts what they already "know", but still...

@RenaTurnip

I know well the feeling of putting off message for just one day to focus on something else, and suddenly finding oneself two or three weeks behind... :P

As for season three, well, not only was it the first season without input from Lauren Faust, but it was also the first season after former story editor Rob Renzetti left, and they had to work in the Crystal Empire and the pretty purple pegacorn princess storylines in a season half as long as the others. I think the season came out about as well as could be expected under those circumstances. While none of the episodes this season reached the levels of "Suited for Success" or "Hurricane Fluttershy", there were a handful of excellent ones, a bunch of par-for-the-course episodes, and a handful of disappointments. I can't say I'm optimistic for season four, but I'm not as anxious about it as I was about season three before it aired.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

@Anon

You're far from the first person to suggest that "Equestria Girls" is being aimed at a younger audience, which is ironic considering that Hasbro developed that concept to appeal to an older audience than the core "My Little Pony" line. (I wish I could find the article that stated that...) Whether that dissonance between intention and perception is due to poor marketing or to the property itself being ill-conceived, I don't know yet, but I do find it interesting. Will the movie (and spin-off series, if any) cover more mature topics than MLP:FiM, or does Hasbro consider the mere change from equines to human(oid)s a move towards appealing to an older audience?

As to whether EG will be any good, we still know next to nothing about the storyline or how it's going to be handled (though what little has been leaked so far isn't promising). The character designs are, well, poor, but if the story is good enough I'll give it a chance. (At least it's not like Johnny Test, where I hate the designs so much that I can't even watch the commercials.) As long as the characters still act like they do in MLP:FiM, EG has a shot at actually being good. (Cue Merriwether Williams joke.)

Obsequiosity said... Reply to comment

Hey, people are still here!

I have nothing of worth to contribute. (Pretty much ever, but mostly today.)

I just need to track down this comic with Hayseed TurnipTruck in it, and wanted to say that "Pinot Noir" has to be one of the best pony names ever, at least until Applejack's kilt-wearing cousin Drambuie shows up out of nowhere.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Obsequiosity

I'm waiting for Applejack's fancy French cousin Calvados to make an appearance, prompting competition for Rarity's affections. :)

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@Anon@jodyjm13

As Jody said, Hasbro is at least aiming the Equestria Girls IP (intellectual property, for those not familiar with such lingo) at an older audience than they usual MLP brand... but then, I'm fairly certain they're speaking from a product viewpoint more than anything. Older girls stop playing with pony toys much sooner than they stop playing with fashion dolls like Barbie (or the likely direct influence for the E.G. line, Monster High dolls.)

Honestly, the film does have a minor chance of being decent. My little cousin is still young enough to be in the main Pony demographic, but she's gravitating to all of the other stuff as well and so I'm occasionally subjected to a Barbie movie or a Monster High special (I can't say I'd recommend either of those). She's a huge fan of the Winx Club, which has a convoluted enough ongoing adventure plotline that I really had no idea what was going on, but I think obsessive Bronies could probably get drawn into something like that. And Disney puts out a Tinkerbelle special movie every year or so which, while nothing I'd seek out, isn't bad at all from what I've seen of them.

I'm curious as to whether Hasbro will make a play for the currently existing older audience by incorporating Brony favorite background characters or not in the I.P. It took them years to figure out there was a market for background ponies from the actual show more than just random repaints with no connection to the show at all. If they start churning out a ton of humanized pony dolls (Monster High has tons of character dolls, after all), would they just make up new ones or drop a DJ-PON3, Lyra or Octavia among the choices? I'm have to admit, I'd be curious as to whether a humanized Derpy doll would sell...


@jodyjm13

Heh... I know both Di and myself have come to realize the folly of thinking that any argument will register with Sparity shippers over on EQD. I've seen arguments that the show does not in any way portray Spike as being less mature than the others, and hadn't been referred to as a "baby" dragon since "early season 2". I pointed out that the last episode to air had him waking up in his bassinet while sucking his thumb, but was promptly told that didn't count. I learned to bow out of the discussion at that point...



@PonydoraPrancypants

And the wings are back again...

What's especially odd is that those wings on mirror Twi clearly aren't there in the previous ad we saw which included a small image of that graphic. In fact, it's a different drawing of Human Twilight altogether, as well as pony Twilight.

So which is the final artwork, or at least best represents the series?

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

R.I.P., Ray Harryhausen (and a brief but nice video tribute)

@Obsequiosity, @PonydoraPrancypants:

I had to go Googling to get those references; clever, clever, though I think it should be "fancy Fancy cousin", should it not? (No, not that Fancy-Fancy...)

@Harwick:

I wish I could say that blindness to obvious facts displayed by that Sparity fan(s?) surprised me, but it seems the internet encourages that sort of thinking in a lot of people. Someone who was trying to argue that Twilight Sparkle hadn't accomplished anything positive during the run of the series said that she shouldn't get any credit for freeing Cadance in "A Canterlot Wedding"; no, the one who actually ruined Queen Chrysalis's plans in that episode was... Queen Chrysalis, for imprisoning Twilight in the same place she imprisoned Cadance. Why Chrysalis should be faulted for that if Twilight can't do anything right is something he never explained, of course.

And since Harwick brought up the topic of apparently-brony-aimed merchandise, there's several minor and background ponies in the most recent ad pamphlet. Ponies aquiring official full names include Lyrica Lilac (which, I'm sorry, still makes me think of an anti-fibromyalgia medication) and Octavia Melody (not bad, but I prefer Octavia Van Clef). Also, Twist is apparently short for Twist-a-loo, a name that apparently I'm all alone in liking (then again, I'm in that tiny minority of fans that actually likes Twist, so what do I know).

On the down side, Hasbro doesn't think Cup Cake is a safe enough trademark for a pony, so her toy is named "Mrs. Dazzle Cake". (Someone at Hasbro really likes "Dazzle" as a name...) Normally I support Hasbro's names, but in this case I think it's best if we all pretend it doesn't exist.

One more link, to something I just discovered: Google is celebrating graphic designer Saul Bass's birthday this Wednesday with a tribute referencing several of his most famous movie titles.

jodyjm13 said... Reply to comment

One more link, to something I found just after posting my previous comment: SPIKE! Dangit, now I might have to go to a Build-a-Bear after all.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

So... wings or no wings? WINGS! WINGS? GAH!

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

WELCOME TO HELL

Okay, not really. They look slightly better... and worse.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

Heh... Okay, things I can see from the trailer (trailer spoilers ahoy):

-a Crystal Empire set, all-pony beginning (Crystal Guard Ponies!).
-All 4 princesses are in it.
-It sounds like all the usual voice actors.
-Twilight solo mission to human world.
-No wings, no pony ears, , no exceptionally long hair making up fake pony tails, no cutie-marks-on-faces after all. (Dear lord, how do they keep switching that promotional artwork around?)
-Spike really is a dog. (HA!)
-Sunset Shimmer is the bitchy, villainous bad-girl/Homecoming Princess.
-There's a blue-haired guy that's either Twilight's huggable love interest or humanized Shining Armor.
-Humanized CMC look like freshman compared to senior Mane Six.
-Other humanized ponies: DJ-PON3, Snips & Snails (looks like they're working for Sunset Shimmer), and I'm pretty sure Lyra.
-Sunset Shimmer has been borrowing Queen Chrysalis's pyrotechnics...

Heh... Wow. Okay... pretty much what I've been expecting so far.

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

@Harwick:

It's late, and I don't know if I should inflict my rambling thoughts about this trailer onto y'all in the first place, but there is one thing I want to point out. If you watch the "teleportation" sequence really closely, it looks like it's not quite a solo mission after all.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13

Good eyes! I had wondered if that was what happened anyway since he's right there with her when she comes to. I assume that he's going to be able to speak to Twilight, but I wonder if any of the others will understand him... Aside from goofy skin colors, Twilight's stolen crown seems to be the only bit of magic in that world. (It seems to be her coronation crown, which is a different design than the Element of Magic, unless the Element changed when she became an Alicorn.)

In any event, I like believing that he rushes in after her rather than let her go alone. Those Elements of Harmony are really picky... If Spike can't activate the Element of Loyalty, then its clear that no pony other than Dash can.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

White Diamonds should be along with some posts of her own (she was being kept away from the Internet by real life for a while), but I did notice something in the trailer that we had discussed before, with disturbing implications... Hamburgers for Twilight and Fluttershy. Not so bad for Flutterhuman since she's never been a Pony, but will Twilight ever be able to look a bovine in the face again?

I do wonder if the other characters go by their pony names. Twilight obviously does, and we hear her gasp Pinkie's name in surprise, but that's it. "Fluttershy" is perhaps the hardest name in the Mane Six to pass off as a human name or even a nickname. (This is assuming that Twilight's parents especially were creative types who couldn't name their little girl "Susan" or anything.). I would have said "Applejack" was a stretch, but didn't some Hollywood couple name their child Apple?

Heh, anyway, now that I've seen some of it, I just find it more ridiculous than anything. It doesn't anger me in any way... Even Twilight's bland and non-threatening love interest (I'm losing faith that it's just supposed to be her brother instead, unless he disappeared through the mirror himself and lost his memories... It is a bit odd that every other character is there to watch her go into the portal but him.) I think I simply must have mentally prepared myself that this is exactly what it was always going to be, and the only thing left were the minor details.

One other point to be gleamed from the trailer.... Just how massively appealing were the pony versions of AJ and Pinkie in that final shot after watching the human designs for even a short while? There's a reason pony images took over the Internet, and the human versions lose all of that.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

After all this, it was the very first leaked images that end up being the canon ones. Of course, this makes sense given how those actually looked capable of being animated in flash, as opposed to everything that came after. Those were also the designs with which I was most comfortable from an aesthetic standpoint, generic as they are.

You've already mentioned just about everything there is to figure out based on the trailer. My only additional bit of speculation is that Sunset Shimmer may be the Twilight Sparkle of the human world (hence the synonymous name), and the conclusion of the episode will involve the reformed Shimmer taking her place among the huMane 6. I'm not sure how that fits with her being a rejected former apprentice to Celestia, but it does answer a few questions raised by the trailer rather neatly.

Also, Spike as a dog is canon. Ha ha ha!

I hope Stephen Magnet is the drama teacher. :)

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

I heard that not only is Twilight appalled at the idea of eating the burger, she's also shocked to find out that in this world, people use horses for riding and as draft animals to haul heavy burdens - in essence, slavery. Of course, she is confused how equines could have come to be in such subservient positions, and how they lost their intellects.

It's all made clear at the end of the film, when Twilight and the girls all go to the beach to celebrate Twilight's crowning at the fall formal. There, she sees a half-buried statue of Princess Celestia in the sand, and the truth becomes clear. Twilight falls to her knees in anguish at her grim realization.

"You maniacs!" Twilight cries. "You blew it up! Damn you! Damn you all to Tartarus!"

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants
President Luna had Senator Celestia exiled to Mars.

Harwick said... Reply to comment

@PonydoraPrancypants

Heh... I love the Stephen Magnet idea.

I also need to share the names you e-mailed me with the rest of the group... The *rumored* human names for the rest of the Mane Six:

Paulina Pettifer
Roxy Dodgers
Amelia Jems
Rowellina Beattie
Faith Summers

I must say, "Rowellina Beattie" is the most tortured sounding name I could have imagined. Was "Raquel Something" too difficult to trademark? Rozlynn? Rachel? Rebecca? Renee? (Rena?) Roxanne? Rhiannon? Ruby? (Hey, even a gem connection there... although colorwise it doesn't fit.)

As I mentioned before, does giving her a last name starting with "B" suggest that the pony has a full name of "Rarity Belle"? to go along with her sister?

Amelia Jems isn't a name I see for AJ either, although I'm sure they'd just call her "AJ" no matter what. I guess Amelia isn't too bad as it brings to mind the gung-ho female pilot, but AJ doesn't fly and it doesn't sound very southern. And spelling "gems" with a "J" is kinda oddly forced as well. Why not "Jewel" if they're so set on the concept? Hell, why not something like "Abigail Jacqueline Apple".

As mentioned before, I actually do kind of like the sound of "Roxy Dodgers". Definitely sounds like an action hero right out of a Daring Do spinoff. Paulina Pettifer is fine enough, I guess, although there have been plenty of human characters nicknamed "Pinkie" so they really could have kept that. And again, "Faith Summers" sounds like her parents were huge Joss Whedon fans.

No idea if any of those names are remotely close to being reality, but it's an amusing list to speculate upon.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

I also read that the blue-haired boy is not, in fact, Shining Armor, but is the human version of the yellow guardspony briefly glimpsed near the beginning of the trailer. His pony name is, supposedly, Flash Sentry, and his human name is, tragically, Jock Fastflash ...

So sayeth the ponynet.

PonydoraPrancypants said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

By the way, I've always subscribed to the notion that Rarity has no last name, and that, like many Indonesians, many ponies just go by one name, whereas others have two. Apparently, Sparkle is not Twilight's last name, but then again, "Pie" may be Pinkie's last name. What a mystery!

I have to agree on Rowellina. Is that even a name? How the devil is it pronounced? Is she "Ro" for short? Is the last name pronounced so that it rhymes with "Sweetie" or as in Warren?

It seems like Applejack should be Annabelle or Annabeth, or something more Southern. At least he last name isn't "Farmer." :)

Sadly, now I must detest Rainbow Dash, for nothing could ever get me to like the hated Dodgers.

Anon said... Reply to comment

@jodyjm13
@Harwick

Really? That's a surprise, though I guess you could surmise that MLP is a more inclusive series. The lesson I think the popularity of MLP:FiM teaches us is not necessarily that it's often worth following today's children's programming, but that those shows can be far more successful if their producers give the thought and effort required to appeal to a wider audience. I don't think most of us follow Littlest Pet Shop for example, so even if MLP sparks a much-needed entertainment media revolution, it's probably going to be a while before we really see the results of it.

And about Equestria Girls specifically, above all, I agree with Harwick that it's more ridiculous than anything. Personally, as I mentioned in my previous comment, I'm going to enjoy the comics that will doubtless be inspired by all of this. While I'm not sure if I plan to watch the actual movie or not, I may have to reference it for the sake of understanding any forthcoming in-jokes. EQG doesn't seem like it's going to affect the actual show, so I'm willing to be optimistic that some good might come of this in one form or another. And if it doesn't, then at least it brought some activity and intrigue to this blog once again. We really should be thanking Equestria Girls.

My initial reaction upon spotting that boyfriend character was that he looked like the male wonderbolt, Soarin', and his shirt looks like a combination of Shining's shield and a Wonderbolts lighting bolt. All things considered, I think it's safe to say he's the series' Ken doll. I just hope he stays put in Humania. Sunset Shimmer, on the other hand... I can already see the shipfics with Trixie.

By the way, isn't it likely that the mirror simply leads to a parallel universe where everyone is human? I'm pretty sure I saw a certain group of human CMCs, and that's not even mentioning Carrot Top, Bon Bon or Vinyl Scratch...

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

Hello, my friends! It's been a while since I've been by here, or online at all really. Probably too long honestly (to the point that my replies to all of you may feel irrelevant at this point), but alas~

@zhoomcar

Hahahaha! Dearest, you know me too well. If I do decide to create that Twitter account, which seems slightly more doubtful now that I've been busier again recently (probably a good wake-up call for me, since periods of free time don't always last and since I really don't need the extra obligation) I don't doubt at all that it would be feed full of weather, food, and pet photos as well as some of my garden, and likely no small amount of pointless musings about all sorts of things that nobody but me really cares about, like the fact that I'm stoked Target was recently having a massive sale on YanYan. We'll see though... sometimes I still am tempted, and I thank you for your interest at least!

Thank you also for sharing those food pictures... they really look quite scrumptious, and your presentation is/was excellent. Tell me, are those churros there towards the end? I'm so sorry that I couldn't view that PMV of yours (but I did try!), and as for American commercials, I would really encourage you not to think that those that you see on The Hub in any way reflect what is standard or typical over here. On that note, and as for myself I have to say I have always enjoyed the Cosmopolitan Vegas commercials quite a lot. So adorable, and... rather interesting.

@RenaTurnip

Good evening dear! It certainly feels like forever since we've spoken last, I'm so sorry to say... I hope you've been doing well recently! As for the blog, there's no need to be concerned and I'm sorry if I worried you... as I said previously, as long as people are able to find a use for this place (which certainly seems to have been the case over the past couple of weeks) there's really no need for me to close it up, and I hope you will feel free to browse as casually as you like without ever feeling obligated to post. I know what it's like to get busy or to simply lack the energy to stay caught up with everything all the time; we've talked about that before on deviantART, so no worries! <3

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@CaineScroll

Goodness, such a lovely surprise to see you posting dearest! It's been far too long since we corresponded last, hasn't it?

Yes, the blog-closing notion has certainly been scrapped in light of all of this recent wonderful activity, and on the topic of ponies, I have to say that I'm sadly not much more informed than you are at this point, and honestly probably even less (if it wasn't for Harwick keeping me updated on recent fandom news, I doubt I'd even know the status of EQG had progressed at all beyond some bad promotional art being released a month or so ago). I've scarcely been online at all since I last posted here, truth be told. Anyhow though, as for season four I remain optimistic enough, because even if the whole Princess Alicorn Twilight thing does turn out to be a bust after all, we all know that the other characters will be getting some episodes focused on them, and I for one am excited to see what that may bring. It will also be nice to have another full 26 episodes to look forward to once again, but as you said, fingers crossed as for how satisfactory they may all be.

Once again, it's nice to hear from you!

@jodyjm13

You really do write some of the best posts, Jody, I hope you know that. <3 I always love hearing what you have to say. First off, thank you very much for kind sentiments; it has indeed taken me and my doctors forever to figure out what is/was wrong with me, and to treat it accordingly, and even now I'm not sure that there isn't still something else separate going on with my heart. I still suffer a lot of missed beats and occasional frighteningly heavy thumps, but at least everything else has improved substantially, and I have hope even those problems might continue to get better with time and maybe continued thyroid treatment, since that could theoretically still be the cause. I'm optimistic and seem to have gotten over the worst of my resultant anxiety issues, anyway.

Yay chickens! Thank you for the pointers... as I said I am not in any position to even consider the notion any time soon, but perhaps someday, and again, ideally if I also have someone in my life to help me take care of them at that point. Eheheh~

And ah yes, Spike. First off I really must thank you so sincerely for donating and then asking that question on behalf of all of us like-minded fans! You really are just terrific. I'm afraid that I've always known that even if Lauren came out and explicitly stated that Spike was meant to be a child, there would be any number of fans who would be happy to argue the point for any number of reasons (usually to support their chosen ship, however), even though she herself created this incarnation of the character! And yes, as Harwick said I had the point driven home to me recently, even though I was not at all intending to argue "Sparity", and was simply trying to clarify some points for one person on an EqD thread. It taught me enough about the lengths some people will apparently go to try and justify things in any case.. ah well.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@Harwick

I'd like to think I would be an excellent chicken keeper, when and if I ever get around to procuring some of my own little birds. You're sweet. Since I've been hanging around on YouTube tonight anyway (and you were right by the way; Rarity does say Applejack's name best, hands down and no question <3), have a video about one of the chicken breeds that I am particularly fond of, or at least just to watch the first 20 seconds when the two additional fat chickens come waddling up as fast as they can to get to the corn... I honestly laughed out loud the first time I saw that. Someday I want to be just like the British woman who filmed that video, whoever she is. Cochins aren't even the greatest egg-layers admittedly, but they're so cutely fluffy I'm not sure I care.

Also, thank you for letting everyone know that I was at least alive and thinking of everyone in my absence for me, I appreciate it darling! <3

@Everyone

In regards to the entire matter of Equestria Girls, I have now sort of watched the trailer courtesy of someone linking me to it on my deviantART... before that, I was perfectly happy not seeing it and didn't really harbor much genuine curiosity towards it. I have to say that it's about what I expected as well, even after all of those other leaked promotional artworks (the ones with the wings and such; I can only imagine they will be more representative of the toy line as opposed to the film). I'm not up in arms over any of it, or upset or in denial or inclined to leave any scathing remarks on the official Facebook page, but I am not at all enthusiastic about any of it either, and admittedly would not at all be sorry if the film and following toy line turn out to be a massive flop for Hasbro. Even in regards to jut discussing it and speculating on things, I suppose I remain rather indifferent. I guess we'll just have to wait and see where things go from here, and if the thing does turn out to be at least decent or not... I will say though, that while I think something like "Raquel" would have been better, I don't dislike human Rarity's purported name as much as many people seem to. I suppose, having a very rare and unusual name that most people can't spell or pronounce properly either, myself, I at least find myself able to empathize with her, haha~

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

Oh, also, I wanted to tell you dear that for the first time ever, I watched some "Littlest Pet Shop", and naturally thought of you. Even though I only saw one full episode and a few bits and pieces of some others (they were having a marathon, apparently) I can say that the show seemed cute enough... so far, I'd probably say that Zoe is my favorite character, and the fact that the mongoose actually has an Indian accent is pretty hilarious in my opinion.

zhoomcar said... Reply to comment

@WhiteDiamonds

Aaaaahhh, Di's back! You might have been gone from the blog for a good chunk of the month, but yay!

"likely no small amount of pointless musings" is pretty much what Twitter boils down to, really. Or what I like to call, e-garbage. Speaking of Target, over here they seem to be having a pretty big discount on Kinder Bueno chocolate...

And churros? Yes they are indeed! I want to make them sometime but it appears I'm going to need an awful lot of cooking oil for deep frying the things (and I am pretty lazy) so... it'll happen eventually*. No harm done on the PMV though, because it appears the video is also blocked in my own country, as my sister wasn't able to view it either.

Oh, you. Littlest Pet Shop is just full of silly for the most part, when it's not following the typical "high-school premise" (it doesn't go overboard, though). Sunil is a very much adorable mongoose (played by Peter New), and it's really hard for me to choose a favourite out of the pets because to me they all act as a homogeneous mass of ???.


Straying from any things animated for the moment, I got the new Daft Punk album over the weekend. Choice quotes from me:
"Who the hell opened this rift into the 70's?"
"It's like the anti-dance album of the year!" (which is probably a good thing)
"Holy crap!"

*probably not for at least another ??? months.

WhiteDiamonds said... Reply to comment

@zhoomcar

Yes, I am here! Digital hugs, I've missed you, you know!

Well, by the sound of things I would fit right in on Twitter then, so it primarily comes down to issues of time (or lack thereof). I'm sure I will end up doing it sooner or later... I've been kicking the idea around for quite a while now. I completely understand about the churros since I've been threatening to make my famous Moroccan orange cake for a while now and just haven't gotten to it (it's a bit of work, and you need a lot of fresh oranges because I use the peel, juice and also some of the pulp), and as for the PMV, really? That's rather strange; I can't understand how or why that would be the case, that even your own sister is unable to watch it!

Anyhow though. I've been sitting on quite a few things for a while now that I intend to post, so expect an update on the blog sometime over the next few days, my dears! A new artwork or two, very likely, and also a whole bunch of other random things that I feel like sharing. Now I just need to get all caught up again on deviantART too... ehhm...

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Bots on the blog? Well this is new.

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