Mascot Costume Help plz~

My mascot Techne is a cyber-ninja who loves cats and over-sized weapons. Her color scheme is mostly black, grey, cyan/aqua, lime green and orange. Below is my WIP vector of her with her finalized hair and eye colors and a typical set of work out clothes that are easy to vector (ha-ha)

I really, really, really suck at designing cool clothes/costumes for my characters. I found a few cool inspirations for the design, but really I don’t know how to put them together to make a cool outfit.

Here are some links to the outfit inspirations I’ve found:

Blue Peach’s Digital Poster Girl
Pyawakit’s Apple Cyber
Feca Warrior’s from the MMORPG Wakfu

[Cross-posted from my TM diary because I’m laaaaazy.]

It’s not Indecision, it’s just really slow Inspiration…

It’s not even that. It’s really just the fact that the more I learn the more that I like or dislike things. You can’t understand everything fully at once, you have to try it out first. Well I’ve been “trying out” Integrated Media for a year now and I have decided that it’s just not for me. I still like web design and I’m still fascinated by a snazzy interface, but I’m just not inspired to create these things the way I’m inspired to do other things, like create characters and worlds. I just can’t find myself sitting and thinking “you know, if I could make a drop down menu that did this that and the other whatsit, it could be revolutionary”…no, not so much. But I can still pause for a moment and think “if I introduced a character like this into today’s gaming world it could change the way that we stereotype characters forever” or “if I could just bring Reality.Hacked to life, I think people would really enjoy it”. Those are the types of things that I want to share with people; that is how I am inspired.

Why is being inspired so important? Was the creator of the gMail interface inspired to create it? Hell yes. Creativity doesn’t just happen and even if you aren’t aware of it everything that inspires you contributes to your overall creation. This is something that over the last 15 years (probably even before then, but I can’t really tell you for sure) I have discovered over and over again to be true. So why did I try to push that known-truth aside and try to force myself to create without inspiration anyway? The answer to that, my friends, is a mixture of lack of self-confidence and fear of being unable to make money after graduation. I love to create characters and I love to write stories (I used to love to draw them too) but the more my passion leant toward “career” the more and more afraid I got that I was “not going to be good enough” to compete with my classmates in college. I mean, it is COLLEGE afterall- a really big deal, right? Apparently not so much. Everyone I’ve spoken to says “oh yes, I learned this, this and that other whatsit in college, but the REAL challenges came with my first job/internship”. So all I can do is practice, practice, practice and prepare, prepare, prepare. From what I’ve heard, that’s pretty much what school is about. Go figure.

“Bloggage”

It’s the blog equivilant of “snackage”. I’m not sure exactly what it means, but I like the sound of it.

OK, well I feel somewhat guilty for not having blogged about anything since my last post of whiney introspection. Honestly, I’m doing better by way of health and such. I drink nutritional drinks everyday full of protein, vitamins and something that makes it sort of taste of chocolate. They are expensive, but keep me alive and alert. I also finally got my new glasses! They are 50% weaker- meaning I see 50% clearer than I did with my old glasses, which were too strong. I’m near-sighted and far-sighted, so I will be getting a second pair of glasses just for reading made out of my old frames. My new frames are super-snazzy though. I feel more creative just wearing them. They look like creative-person glasses. Whoo.

So, as for artsy-things, not much progress as far as inspiration. I made a painterly-esque CG portrait of Neo-Nana, a personification of my desktop PC, who I originally designed as a vector doll to practice my skills. I have yet to design her clothing, which will be a mix of Sweet Lolita Fashion and Cyber Punk. Lots of black, lots of lace, and LOTS of cute. It should be fun~ I haven’t designed such an in-depth character in a while. She also has three little sidekicks (her mice, since my computer has 3) but I haven’t made official designs for them as-of-yet.

Also, this year instead of making a usual wishlist or telling people to get me whatever, I threw together a quick Holiday page on my Google sites page that lists my favorite colors and things that I wouldn’t mind owning. I also included on the page a link to my Amazon wishlist, for people who prefer just working from that.

As for myself, this season I am making CUBECATS! Yes, Cubecats, my own little adorable creation. Cubecats are about 1″x1″ in size, white or blue (depending on whether they are tofu cubes or ice cubes) and have little ears and tails. I am making a large number of them out of white felt and a few larger ones out of off-white fleece. I’m not a great seamstress and I make a lot of time-consuming mistakes, but I still love working on them. And I hope people will like receiving them. For my far-away friends, I’ll be designing papercraft versions that resemble this one except there will be different versions and sizes. (And maybe some extras…hmmmn),

 

Another Character Sketch (secret character!)

Since this character is a secret character in the story, I can’t say much! But I did want to say at least a few words about him, even though I haven’t developed him much. I picked another (almost totally) random country for him: Armenia.

His name is Kendall (random choice) Darbinian. Behind the Name says: Darbinian means “son of the blacksmith”, so is equivalent to the English “Smith”. This is interesting because he’s an agent of INTERPOL (or is he?) so the “Smith” equivalent is somewhat humorous. I don’t know anything about Armenia except it’s location, so he’s not going to have much of a rich cultural background like Pious, but his personality is certainly going to be rich and colorful. He will be fun to write for, I think.

Oh, and he’s an antagonist. This is the only image I’ve posted of him. His hair style is the only thing I have decided on completely as far as physical design. I still need to pick an eye color (probably light brown) and a clothing style, plus a general height. As far as most characters go, he’s pretty sketchy so far, but he’s important so I’ll have to really think about how to make him stand out as an antagonist.

Darbinian
Usage: Armenian
Means “son of the blacksmith”, so is equivalent to the English Smith.

Snedronningen Ideas

Snedronningen or “The Snow Queen” has always been one of my favorite faere tales. It has been many years since I sat down and read H. Christian Anderson’ s unabridged version, but the version that always stays fresh in my mind is the book on tape that I own narrated by Sigourney Weaver (who has an enchanting voice). Something about that story has always given me chills of excitement; even today I feel it. Magic.

Anyway, I was reminded of the story of young Gerda and Kay/Kai last night when reading a copy of Murder in Mesopotemia (a Hercule Poirot mystery by Agatha Christie) when M. Poirot mentions “the story of the boy Kay” and the heorine Gerda. I was so surprised by this totally random-seeming reference that I didn’t read any further as to why he mentioned it. I just put the book down and went into thinking about the story. Trying to remember all of the characters and the basic plot and such. And I started to think of another design exercise to give a try- designing a video game “cover” art box.

I had some great ideas for taking the story and mixing it around with a few other darker faerie tale bits and turning it into an RPG adventure game, starring Gerda of course. It wouldn’t be entirely based from the story because I wanted to involve wolves and spirits somehow. So I just decided that a “Scandinavian faerie tale” theme was good enough. I can’t wait to start doing research and sketches. This is my favorite part! And I want the characters to be very pretty and faerietale-perfect. I keep imagining them rendered in Squeenix-cutscene-perfection. Ah~

Character Sketch: H. Pious Kjeldsen (P1)

Here, I would like to introduce you to my character Pious Kjeldsen, the character previously mentioned in my Taler du Dansk? post (the Dane!). Forget his name, age, weight etc.- those things can be found out about anyone just my looking at a license. I want to tell you things about him that you would have to learn by really getting to know a person. Habits, hobbies, passions, and other such things. Prepare to meet…Pious Kjeldsen [PIE-yus KYEL-son].

He specializes in the sciences of Cryptography and is in fact a Cryptographic Engineer. He works as a simple coder at his current job, but hopes to move on to something more useful in the future. He strongly distrusts the security of his ATM card and wants to participate in the advancement of card security as a result. Security in general fascinates him and more than once he has been turned out of a store for paying “too much attention” to the security devices posted there. “Can’t a man express interest in his own security in this country? You think you are safe, but you are not! One day, you will see- you will.”

He is, for the most part, a weakling. His only athletic ability is fencing. Oh yes, fencing. A sport that takes close to no brute strength, but a great amount of dexterety and agility, not to mention brains. He spends more time learning to size-up his opponents and take them down using cunning than actually practicing his sword technique. It makes him a decent fencer against the average amateur, but against a professional opponent he will struggle and often fail. It ticks him off to admit it, but his pride and temper are also the cause of his downfall. “If I can best the average man, then I in turn will be above-average in skill and that is enough for me.”

What a mess he lives in. It’s not simply stereotype that such a busy and studious man be messy, it’s a necessity. If his apartment were not as messy as it is, he would find too many things and then he would drown in a neverending sea of things he’s been meaning to work on. His piles of papers, books and folders line the walls like columns reaching nye up to the ceiling. The apartment itself is sparsely furnished. A small futon, a cushion chair, one small coffee table and a selection of do-it-yourself shelving pieces are all completely covered in papers, so that every evening he is forced to swipe them off of his bed to sleep- assuming he sleeps on the futon. Ocassionally he has been known to collapse on the floor in a blanket to sleep. He also has a lamp and a fishtank. The lamp contains a very low-watt “green” lightbulb and the fishtank contains water, rocks and a plant- but no fish. He learned his lesson once. “Fish…they need food and without it, they die. I don’t have time to mourn for a fish everytime I have to…to…not think about feeding it.”

Taler du Dansk?

Hej. Jeg taler Dansk…Well, not well– not yet at any rate. I just started learning from this book that was originally published in 1974 but was editted and such around 2003 for another publication. Still, the book is pretty old looking and being a library book it is also very much falling apart. Luckily the Engelsk/Dansk dictionary I also checked out is practically brand new, so I have at least one stable reference. I was really hoping for audio resources though. I know what Danish sounds like spoken, but I can’t follow it because the written to the spoken is so strange. Written it looks like Swedish, but spoken it is totally different. The book tries to describe the pronounciation using liguistics terminology that I am only vaguely familiar with, so in that way it is somewhat useful. Still, I know that I cannot pronounce most of the words correctly. It is frustrating, but I chose such a far out language that there isn’t anyone locally that can help me, so I struggle in silence…

Or rather, I struggle in broken and mispronounced Danish.

For those of you who are curious as to why I’m even attempting to self-teach Danish the reason is a strange one. I challenged myself to create a character from another country- one of which I’ve never created a character from before and that I personally am mostly unfamiliar with- who has come to America and subsequently hates it. I wanted to pick a European country, since so many of my other characters hail from Asian ones, and I wanted to pick one that most people are unfamiliar with. My thought process for this was also strange, but logical I think.

European country = Great Britain, Germany, Italy, France, Switzerland, Sweden, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, Denmark, Nederlands etc.

I already have characters from: GB, Germany, Italy, France and Sweden.

I dislike the way Dutch looks when typed (it is an aesthetic thing), leaving: Switzerland, Norway, Greenland, Iceland, Denmark

Greenland is too cold and distant; Switzerland doesn’t interest me this time; Icelandic sounds awesome, but is not supported through Google Translate.

I needed to change the character’s original surname Keyston(e) – which originates from the British Isles – to something else. A quick runthrough at my favorite naming resource Behind The Name brought about the name “Kjeldsen” which looks close enough to the original to not cause a ton of confusion and sounds foreign enough to spark interest.

Kjeldsen is Danish, so Denmark it is.

All of this runaround in an hour or so led me to wanting to learn more about Denmark and of course my curiousity of languages made me want to learn Danish. Conversational Danish, that is. I don’t have time to put myself into learning it full-time; plus I still take Chinese at school, so my focus should go there. But, enough Danish to use small, common phrases in the character’s dialogue from time to time, to show a habit of codeswitching when he loses patience.

So, basically I’m learning Danish for fun and enjoyment and not much else. I do find the language to be very interesting and I enjoy reading my book with its strange and redundant lesson dialogues (a paraphrase: “I am called Jens Hansen. I am a man. This is my wife. She is a woman and a mother to my children. I am her husband. She is called Lise. Strangers refer to us as Hr. Hansen and Fru Hansen”). Amusing, to say the least.

Favel.