Buffy Casablanca Poster poppy wreath  RS

I'm making an absolute hash of the Snowflake Challenge....and nobody is surprised by this.

So, I'm stalled on Day 3....whilst the Snowflake Challenge is at Day 9. Pretend to be shocked by my sad inability to do a simple daily meme. And bless the mods for this: Remember that there is no official deadline, so feel free to join in at any time, or go back and do challenges you've missed.

But first things first: THANK YOU THANK YOU to the amazingly generous benefactor who responded to my Day 2 wish and extended both my paid account and my extra icon space! This time I do know who my patron is, and I am overwhelmed by their kindness. I honestly didn't expect anyone to respond to my request, never mind so soon!

Second things second: THANK YOU THANK YOU to whomever nominated my fiction posters for herself_nyc's Closure is a Silly Word and baphrosia's Come Out, Come Out Wherever You Are in Round 11 of the rwsawards!  (I also know who nominated Closure and I can guess who nominated Come out Come Out, but I'm not certain.) There's plenty of spaces left on the nomination sheet, so make some deserving authors and artists happy!  The nomination period is open until February 3rd.

Speaking of the poster for "Closure", let's get back to the Snowflake Challenge whilst I pretend to play "catch up":

In your own space, post a rec for at least three fanworks that you have created. It can be your favorite fanworks that you've created, or fanworks you feel no one ever saw, or fanworks you say would define you as a creator. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

 2015 was the year I think I began to come into my own as an artist.  My technical skills have a ways to go but considering I'm still working in ipiccy and not Photoshop, overall I can say "not bad".

For this post I'm going to concentrate on my banners and posters and not on icons, which require their own post. I've got a few items to show off, I hope you don't mind? I tend to think in terms of groupings, projects and "genres" rather than individual pieces.  In no particular order:

1) Awards Banners for Round 6 of btvsats20in20 (January 2015): my first major art project of the year proper. More posters than awards banners, these were far more technically complex than any I'd attempted previously as I pushed myself to learn new techiques. And I think they are more "artistic" than any I'd done previously, if in a somewhat self-conscious way.  I wanted to create awards banners that were works of art in their own right. I think this project helped determine the stylistic direction my artwork has taken this year. It also pushed me to depict characters and pairings I rarely do; in fact, the banner for sweet_lyri may be the first time I'd created a romantic Bangel image.

Right click all images to view full-size.
All artwork by me unless otherwise noted. Icons on award banners property of their respective creators. Not snaggable.
FINAL_v1_AngelthemesbannerfortempertemperJan2015byredsatindoll_zps48a9ea45     banner made by me January 2015     Harmonybannerv3.1_starrynightthemesACwinners_byredsatindollJan2015    banner by me Feb 2015 version 3 FINAL   banner by me 2015 1 - 5

2) I'm very pleased with all the artwork I made this past year for seasonal_spuffy Rounds 18 and 19. The Spuffy Hands Banner is one the my favorite artworks I've ever made, I think I actually exceeded my expectations with that one and made something truly artistic. My banner for Round 19 isn't quite as "artistic" and is probably a little more traditional but it gave me an opportunity to hone my skills in terms of layers, textures and creating a convincing manip. And then the fiction posters for Round 19: the aforementioned "Closure" and shapinglight's "Casablanca" . "Closure" is one of the few fiction posters I've made that has no alternate version, I made it at the very last hour of Round 19, but I was able to produce so quickly because I started with a draft of one of the alternates for Casablanca. Being able to "reuse, renew, recycle" is one of the benefits of digital artwork.
Round 18 spring 2015 entry banner 3 lyrics by Bastille      unsigned final entry for round 19 banner comp seasonal spuffy autumn 2015n     closureposterforherselfnycround19seasonalspuffy1200x960_signedRSD.png   6 - 10

3) Fiction posters for buffy_genfic: Each of these stories is very different to the others and I tried to capture what was special about each one, as well as convey what they all have in common - loving attention to the women of the Buffyverse, and each of these authors skillfully turns "heartwarming" into "heartbreaking" and back again. The also aforementioned poster for baphrosia's  "Come Out Come Out" , actually isn't my favorite; I can see a lot of things I would have done differently, although I'm still pleased that the print and texture on the scrunchy look convincing. I'm happier with my other efforts: posters and icon for "Who's That Girl" by velvetwhip , "Show you the World" for aliceinkinkland - my favorite detail is the fact that the jeep actually looks like it's on that road and not a separate image that was pasted on top; and another poster for baphrosia, "Choose 1 for Ready, 2 for Not Ready" :
buffyskateficposter1.2_byRSDforspuffyluvr900x720.png     whosthathgirlposterforvelvetwhip_v3.9a500sq_RSD2015.png   showyoutheworldposterforaliceinkinklandaugust2015_rsd_1.2_600x402.png   Alt 9 for spuffyluvr round 2 buffy genfic exchange sept 2015 11 - 14

4) Character Posters of Willow and Buffy for baphrosia's Ipseity I challenged myself to adhere to roughly the same size and compositional format for both. The poster of Buffy is a bit flashier and more dramatic, and the symbolism far more obvious (the fracturing of Buffy's image, the sense of entrapment), which is what I was going for, but personally I prefer the more subtle, melancholy one for Willow. I love how the textures in that one remind me of a vintage handkerchief or tablecloth and give the image a quiet "domesticity", while the sigils to the left add an exotic contrast and yet also balance the ghostly image of Buffy.

Poster 2 for Ipseity by Spuffy Luvr Willow variant   Poster made for Buffy chapters of Spuffy gen fic Ipseity by Spuffy luvr 2015 15 - 16

5) Other awards banners: This past year I've made banners for btvsats20in20, slayerstillness, whedon_elite and character20n20; as well as unofficial "commissioned" nomination banners for wicked_awards. And I discovered this year that as much as I enjoy making icons, I love making posters and banners. The larger space gives me more scope to play.  (The fact that I've had to start wearing bifocals for the first time this past year undoubtedly has something to do with it. Larger image = easier to see.) And whereas an icon is like a haiku, where every single word must be absolutely perfect, larger images allow for more "mistakes" (that in the end may not be mistakes at all.) Making banners on a regular basis has been a fabulous way to practice, practice, practice, and someone ends up with a lovely image to show off on their own journals.
17 - 23
FINAL2_kwrittenbannermostcreativebyredsatindoll_SS39 3rdplacetierua1412banner533x338_byrsd_WErd113_final.png we116secondplacebannerstarrynight_byrsd2015final.png ss42_secondplacebyrsdapril2015_375sqFINAL.png we120_bestcropbannerwithicon1.2FINAL.png we123_bestcropbanner_doubledutchess400x300_1.4.png trumpetflowerbanner350x272modschoiceteragramm1.4.png

24 - 30
FinalBMCv2_gabby227.png qwe127_BMCbanner_sandy_s.png we130_3rdplacebanner_everythingshiny_2015rsd.png nomineebuttonbuffywickedawards275x128_rsd2015_1.1final.png therelishcollectionbannerforkerkevik2014_style2.1_byRSD2015_550x268.png acsetbanner2a500x292RSD.png we133_BMCbanner_xclaire_delunex.png

6) Last but most certainly not least: velvetwhip's Answering Prayers was one of the projects that defined the year in fandom for me. The poster itself earned Runner Up in the wicked_awards; I'm grateful for that and at the same time I'm still very dissatisfied with how the image turned out.  It was definitely a learning experience (and it led to a commission for aadler's "All Ye Who Enter".)
answeringprayersbannerbyrsd2015_flamesversion1.4signed_zpsdt5fm2g4.PNG 31      

version 2 as requested by the author August 2015 ETA: Poster for aadler's "All Ye Who Enter".
Of greater importance was the process of being a guest pencil (beta) for the story, the journey that Gabrielle took me on with Joyce, and the journey Gabrielle and I took together is something I'll be forever grateful for. And the story fills a real need: fanfiction that examines Joyce Summers and allows her center stage, that makes up for the way she was shortchanged in canon, is something that I've hungered for ever since I watched the series and it's all too rare, too difficult to find. Which seems odd given the number of mothers and/or maturing women in this fandom. And as usual with Gabrielle's work, I love that the story twists and deconstructs romance novel tropes and kept me guessing every step of the way. I'm incredibly proud to have had even a tiny part in bringing this story to fruition.

Reading Gabrielle's response to the Day 9 challenge: I fully intend to write another Joyce-centric story made my day.  Possibly my year. That's how much I want her to write more Joyce-fic.

Day 04

In your own space, create a fanwork. Make a drabble, a ficlet, a podfic, or an icon, art or meta or a rec list. Arts and crafts. Draft a critical essay about a particular media. Put together a picspam or a fanmix. Write a review of a Broadway show, a movie, a concert, a poetry reading, a museum trip, a you-should-be-listening-to-this-band essay. Compose some limericks, haikus, free-form poetry, 5-word stories. Document a particular bit of real person canon. Take some pictures. Draw a stick-figure comic. Create something. Leave a comment in this post saying you did it. Include a link to your post if you feel comfortable doing so.

I tried to fill kikimay day 2 request for some amusing Buffybot banners. And what I came up with sucked rotten goose eggs, IMO. But Kiki would like to see them anyway and she has a habit of seeing the worth in icons I've rejected. However I also came up with some Michelle Trachenberg icons that I think are pretty snazzy and Kiki has spoken admiringly of MT's beauty so I hope she likes some of these:


Buffybot_Intervention_096_icon1h.png Buffybot_Intervention_096_icon1g.png   buffybotsmileicon1g_jan2016.png 32 - 34

8dawn104_icon1a.png 8dawn170_icon1a.png 8dawn092_icon1f_rsd.png 8dawn092_icon1_rsd.png    8dawn088_icon1c.png 35 - 39
8dawn086_icon2e.png   8dawn086_icon2.png 8dawn080_icon1.png 8dawn086_icon1c.png 8dawn086_icon1.png 40 - 44

See? The MT ones are much, much better than the Buffybot ones. You were well and truly warned.

Day 05

Leave feedback for a fanwork. Or multiple fanworks. It can be as simple as I liked this to a detailed list of all the things you loved about the fanwork. The key is to leave some sort of feedback. If you've already left feedback in the course of a previous challenge, it totally counts. But you're free to leave more feedback.

Some works I've left feedback for in the past few days include Displacement and The Starfish by baphrosia on Elysian Fields, Chapter 17 of Dreams and Mirrors by kikimay, feet been draggin' cross the ground by Celaenos, Go to Sleep by evil_little_dog, Empty Hearts and Heavy Hands by Dactylgirl on EF; and in the art department I've left feedback for comlodge's absolutely stunning self-portraits and crazycordy's The Zeppo icon set for btvsats20in20 Round 15. (And as it happens crazycordy's birthday is today, so Happy Birthday and many more to come!)

And that's more than enough for one post, I should think.
I'm so glad that someone gifted you with more space, yeeesss!

THE ICONSSSSSS! Okay but see? I think that icon 34 is SO PRETTY and you should definetely do more Buffybot icons *iz annoying* because Buffybot is adorable.

Also those MT icons. JESUS TAKE THE WHEEL. She's hot, like really. Best icons: 37, 38, 39 and 43. That photoshoot is sex.
I am a very very lucky gal to have such generous friends!

Buffybot is adorable and I agree, 34 is my favorite of those three!

That photoshoot is sex.

RIght? And then I think about how old she probably was at the time they were taken (was she even the age of consent? actresses are sexualized at such a young age in a way male actors rarely if ever are); and then I wonder when I began to notice younger women in that way and feel slightly pervy *lol*

My faves are 35, 37 and 39. I want one of those three in my user pics. Maybe more than one.
ETA: I put all three in my user pic gallery for now. I couldn't decide *lol*

Edited at 2016-01-12 07:08 am (UTC)
Actually the photoset I picked and the icons, consequently, are very recent. I think Michelle did this one in 2014 or something and you can see her hair being darker.

I honestly couldn't lust on her Buffyverse photos. Too young for my tastes. NOW she's really hot. (she's actually a bit older than me but we are almost there age-wise)
Well a lot of photos at the Chosen Two website date to around circa 2004 or thereabouts and she's very sexualized in some of them. But then again there are photos of SMG when she was a barely in her teens that sexualize her - or at least fetishize her beauty to an uncomfortable degree. And yes, I looked - and then felt guilty. Visual pleasure is visual pleasure. But I don't know how to break the cycle. As a woman, I enjoy dressing up and being attractive, although not as frequently as when I was much younger. I don't deny anyone else's right to dress up. But these photos are specifically marketed to all of us - and women are culturally fetishized when young, then marginalized or erased as we mature. How to break that cycle? Is my making icons of pretty pictures only feeding into the dominant paradigm?

Hah, you see that ameliorates it a bit, you're her contemporary. I'm old and gross. *lol* (ok, in my 40's but to S4 Buffy....Of course my sweetie was completely freaked out when she realized I was 17 years her junior and I was all, "age doesn't matter!" Of course I would say that, I was 20-something, what did I know?)

And hey, when did MT do a project with Joseph Gordon-Levitt? http://www.chosentwo.com/gallery/displayimage.php?album=8&pos=135

ETA: Oh wait, she was in Gregg Araki's "Mysterious Skin" (2004).Which is about childhood sexual abuse. (oh the irony) http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/mysterious-skin-2005 Which got three and a half stars and a glowing review from Roger Ebert, which is better than any other cast member fared critically. What happened to her film career? Is she more of a writer now?

Edited at 2016-01-12 04:07 pm (UTC)
Okay, guilty of lusting after young!SMG (and SMG in general) who was very sexualized in her young age! TRUE. But I started to be really attracted to her when she was older too, in her late twenties.

I saw Mysterious Skin. Good movie but very painful to watch. I don't really know much about MT cinematic career. I know that she was playing the villain in Gossip Girl, but I never watched that show.

You didn’t actually show the “All Ye Who Enter” banner here, so apparently you didn’t think it was good enough to show off. Well, I liked it a lot, and don’t mind repeating that sentiment here.
Argh, I spent hours (literally, all week) putting this post together and then forgot that one thing? Damn. I shall have to fix that, thank you for spotting it.

(Also, the challenge was at least three things one was proud of and there was no way to include everything. You notice I ended up leaving my icons off entirely because it got too long.)

I'm very glad that you like that banner because that's all I could ask for, that the author who commissioned it likes it. \

Happy New Year, by the by!

Edited at 2016-01-10 04:54 pm (UTC)
Your work throughout 2015 was extraordinary and one of the highlights of my year was watching you grow by leaps and bounds as an artist. With every challenge, you stretched and transformed and were just that much more insightful. Wow.

Oh, and for what it's worth, *I* love the banner you made for Answering Prayers.

Also - I really like your Buffybot #33. The eyes say it all. The Dawn icons, of course, are stunning!

I couldn't have done what i've done this year without your support, advice and constructive criticism every step of the way.

And re: the AP banner, I love parts of it, I love the concept - but the profile of Joyce, good golly. I just want to fix it and have to resist the urge. Best to see it in "historic" context as where my skills were at the time I made it, rather than going all George Lucas on it - and risk losing what works. (I dare say the fact that you love it is what stays my hand, if you were "meh" I'd probably have at it.)

I'm honestly surprised at the compliments to the buffybot icons, thank you! I'm intrigued that you like #33 because that was the one I worked the most on and the one that was my main meta- "concept" when I started making them. The MT ones on the other hand may be among my favorites I've done.
You have blossomed into such an extraordinary artist in the last year. You bring creativity and flair to all of your artworks and I admire that.

Well done!
Really quickly (because no time no time no time no time aargh): I love the Buffybot ones too, but those Dawn icons are just amazing!!!
Thanks! I'm surprised how much everyone likes the Buffybot ones, tbh; but the MT ones I can definitely agree. I think I want to add #35 to my user pics. They're such gorgeous photos to begin with though, you can't go wrong.
I'm so pleased to have been a part of your artistic growth, my handmaiden. Your compositions are inspiring and your blending skills grow with every project. It's such a pleasure to watch you spread your wings.
Well, I just had to put my foot down and firmly disagree with you - the Boffybot icons are great, too. Especially the third one - awww!
Especially the third one - awww!

Ok, I can agree about the third one! But honestly I'm surprised how well the Buffybot icons are being received. Thank you!
Can I just say once again that I love the banner you made for "Show You The World"! It was one of the best gifts an author could ask for.
I'm so so glad you love it! I'm very fond of it anyway but that means nothing if the intended recipient doesn't like it. It was a pleasure to create it, I adore your story! Any time you want to write Summers Sister fic is ok by me. :D

BTW, have you read "feet been draggin' cross the ground" by celaenos on AO3? Buffy and Dawn do a road trip post chosen - but to very different effects than in Show You the World.
I've never seen these before... OMG they are stunning!!! I love 35, 39, 41! Just wonderful!!!
That's because these are very new! If I'd paid closer attention i could have submitted some to actress_ic, silly me.

And great minds truly think alike because I've added 35 and 39 to my user pic gallery. I honestly have no idea how they came out so nicely.
You're very welcome! And no worries, I'm constantly finding stuff late (or not at all) because LJ is not sending my notifications properly - very much on and off no matter what I do to my settings. I swear I think the admins of LJ are constantly resetting the whole system unbeknownst the rest of us.