zaterdag 18 juni 2011

Royal Destiny Cover!

Here it is, the Royal Destiny cover for the main page of the Royal Destiny site!!! Lunacat finished it yesterday evening. I don't even know how to begin to thank her because it is beyond what I could have possibly expected. Thank you Lunacat, thank you so, so much!!!!

As you can see, the cover isn't really a scene from the book but a collage from several characters. Aras and Taira are the most prominent of course, with the five guardians in the sky in front of the moon. I seriously love Taira's expression - it is exactly like I imagined it in the story when she realizes what Aras has done to her. Aras looks like his evil self, of course. I especially love the details on his wings.
I'm glad the guardians in the sky remained so vague and distant. It's how they are in the story as well. If you look closely you can make out small details between them though!
At the bottom you have the breach, of course. On the right you can see Twinkle Star with her adoptive daughter Câlin and on the other side are Takato and Ruki. Twinkle Star needs no explanation of course. I always really loved writing about her special relationship with Câlin and I'm happy it comes across in this drawing so well, you can really feel the attachment between the two ponies.
And Ruki... What can I say? My beloved little girl looks so amazing. Her sad and cold expression match how she feels in part 2 and 3 so well!!! I especially love how wild and unattended her mane looks. It's such a great little detail. Takato is his proud young self of course. I love how Ruki clings to him.

So yes, if you didn't catch it yet, I LOVE the cover! It's up on the main site now of course, and so is the cover of part 5 (tho there's not much to see yet otherwise on the part 5 page). I'm writing chapter 329 right now, which only just got its name changed. I'm getting close to the end of part 4 which I promise will be a lot of fun (can't wait to write it!). And then it's on to part 5... I can't believe it's the final part of RD!

woensdag 15 juni 2011

A bed of roses...

You know, one of the things I love most about my pullips is making them things like clothes and furniture. It's just a lot of fun to make them dresses I would -never- wear myself or to give them a room that I would never live in. It's just a nice way of expressing yourself in ways you wouldn't do otherwise. Making these things yourself instead of just buying them on the internet somewhere means your things will be completely original and a lot cheaper, as doll clothes tend to be extremely expensive.

That being said, I'm absolutely no good at making clothes. I have plenty of brilliant ideas, but to make them work with real fabric requires a kind of skill and patience I simply don't have (and a sewing machine would help). I did make my dolls some clothes, especially back when I first got my first few dolls, but I ended up buying them most of their wardrobe because the things I made simply didn't look all that good.

So I was a bit reluctant to try out Knottykitty's tutorial on making an infinity dress. She claimed it was super easy and as I have loads and loads and loads of fabric lying around still I figured why not?
So here's Raia showing off the result. For something that requires so little effort, I think it looks pretty well! I really know where to pay attention next time so I hope my next effort will look even better. I actually quite enjoyed making the dress. I should do things like this more often but alas, so little time.

On a slightly unrelated note: I know I am a week behind on the Magic Chronicles, but I've been a bit sick and didn't have the energy to make new episodes. Hopefully I'll be able to make a new ep this weekend.

maandag 6 juni 2011

Rainbow Forest update

I finally found time to get back to working on the new gen2 site again! Now the coding for the site still isn't finished yet so I'm still kind of limited in what I can uploade to the site for now, but it's good to get back into things.
I uploaded some ponies over the weekend (especially in the later years, some royal ladies, some princesses) and I was kind of shocked at how bad the quality of the pictures was. I took them with my older camera. I managed to photoshop some into looking better. Thankfully I now have access to an amazing DSLR camera (and hopefully I'll have my own soon!!!) so I can make better pictures. The ponies above are waiting to be photographed and expect these to have higher quality pictures on their profiles. I hope I can get them on the new site today or tomorrow.

As for the new features: we're still working on a lot of things. An advanced search will be implemented where you can search on, for example, colour or symbol. There will also be more general information like an overview of each year at the top of each year page. I can't spoil much more, but it will be great!

So feel free to look around the beta site! Just make sure to keep in mind that a lot of things are still either missing or not working. Of course I'm always open to suggestions and questions so do let me know if anything comes to mind!

Also, I am looking for people willing to help on a few parts of the site I can't write myself (such as tutorials on, for example, replacing eye gems), so if you think you have something that can contribute to the site, do let me know!

donderdag 2 juni 2011

Review: Monster High Gloom Beach Draculaura

Finally, after wanting one for like a year, I got my first Monster High doll! I finally cracked and ordered two online. Of course 2 days later I find out they're actually getting released here as well (only took them a year...) but that's okay because I love this line and there's plenty more that I want!

So here she is, my first MH doll: Gloom Beach Draculaura. She came with everything you see in this picture (and a stand and a card with a cute text from this girl to another MH character, Lagoona), which isn't that much, I know. I'm sure the normal releases come with more items (and a cute pet) but I guess for a cheaper re-release with a beach theme it's okay. I would have liked a little towel or so too, though; would have made it a bit more complete. All her items are of proper quality, which is nice for a play line doll.
When I took her out of her box the first thing I noticed was that her hair is very soft and of great quality, something which both play line and collector dolls don't always have. It's easy to style and to play around with a bit. I really like the pink touch in her hair. Her bangs have glue in them to make them stay in place, though. I'm not sure what to think of this. It does help in keeping your doll displayed nicely, but I can imagine this becoming icky when played with. I'm also not sure how it'll look if I wash it out so I'll keep it in for now.
Her faceup is pretty detailed although I do think these dolls have entirely too much makeup, but that seems to be a problem with more playline dolls these days (Moxie Girlz, for example). I like the expression on her face and how close it matches the cartoon Draculaura. You can tell they put an effort in the face mold (I've been told each of these dolls have a unique one, which is great!). Her vampire teeth are painted on but that suits me just fine, I think molded ones would have looked pretty weird.
Her body is a bit cheaper than her face; the joints are sometimes pretty rough and she's not as flexible as most collector dolls I've seen, but then once again this is a play line doll meant for kids so it's not supposed to be delicate. What I really do love is her hands; they're in a great and life-like position so you can create all kinds of wonderful poses for her with them. I think her torso is waaaaaay too thin but it does fit the style of these dolls. They're not meant to be realistic. Still, for a playline doll I can't help but wonder what kind of message this will give to kids playing with them, especially combined with all the makeup.
Her feet are a bit weird; they're positioned in such a way that you can't really put her down without shoes as they're made to fit these insane high-heeled shoes. Don't get me wrong I like her shoes (I love how the colors of the straps are reversed) but I would've also liked for her to be able to walk barefoot (especially for a beach-themed doll). Also the box said she can't stand on her own but she totally can with some effort, which is a fun little bonus.
Overall, I'm really pleased with this doll and I'm sure I'll get some more of this line. I'm not sure if I'll get regular Draculaura as well, I'll have to see her in person in order to decide that. Meanwhile I also have Gloom Beach Frankie Stein here and I am planning on getting a Ghoulia, Lagoona Blue and someother version of Cleo de Nile but I haven't figured out yet which version of her I like the most. I really do recommend this line if you're looking for some fantasy dolls with a fun franchise (really, go check out the webisodes on the official website)!