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05 January 2010 @ 08:49 am
Artwork meme (modified fanfic meme)  
I thought I'd do a bit of a different year in review. This is modified from the fanfict writing meme (specifically stolen from savoytruffle's posting of it).

This year I posted:

35 Tara icons

40 of my favorite btvs images

torchwood wallpapers

spring with xan redux (icons and picspam)

merlin & torchwood graphics

summer of giles redux (icons, walls, banners, etc)

gentlemen of btvs (manips)

torchwood (walls&banners) & ai (manips)

104 icons (s/x, merlin, ai)

movie poster set 1

movie poster set 2

movie poster set 3

spring with xan redux (movie posters)

summer of giles redux (movie posters)

movie posters & ai manips

fall_for_sx redux (movie posters)

request post movie posters set 1

Overall Thoughts
This was my first foray into seriously making artwork for other fandoms, and after dabbling a little bit I'm finally getting enough resources to make competent graphics in both Merlin and American Idol, with a little bit of Torchwood (although after Children I probably will not be doing anything from there not specifically requested by elizabuffy).  I haven't really gotten into the graphics communities for these other fandoms.  Instead, I've been focused on my favorite reason for graphics - making artwork for fiction.  This has proved to be one of the most rewarding directions I've taken in my fanart career.  Whereas I used to make banners and hope that someone would be inspired by them / use them, now I am instead blending together my own inspirations to honor things I enjoy reading.  And I think it's made me appreciate the community that comes from creating works specifically for other people, and occasionally getting to surprise authors with graphics that they have really fallen in love with, which is really part of the reason why I'm in fandom in the first place - the people who are in it with me. 

Looking back, did you create more graphics than you thought you would this year, less, or about what you'd predicted?
I think I did less this year than I have in the past, but that's not actually unexpected (hi thesis and move and yeah).  I definitely did more movie posters than I would have ever expected, because it started out as a funny little experiment and expanded to be one of the most enjoyable sizes for me to work in for ages.

What pairing/genre/fandom did you create graphics for that you would never have predicted in January?
HA.  American Idol Season 8 Kris/Adam graphics, to be sure.

What's your own favorite artwork of the year? Not the most popular, but the one that makes you happiest?
I love these:

1)  the podfic cover I did for savoytruffle's There's Your Trouble, because I finally feel like the glow in this is not over the top, but the way I wanted it to come out.  The colors pop, and I feel like it catches a little bit of the spirit of savoytruffle's fic, that is both funny and a little wistful in turns, particularly when spike makes his final decision.

2) This Kris Allen manip for xbeyondinsanex's Devilstone Prophecy - done on an absolute whim, because I'd had these cowboy photoshoots for YEARS and had never been able to find a use for them.  Her fic is a fantastic bit of wild-west-steampunk with Kris as a cowboy, and I love the way this image worked (both as a gunslinger portrait, but also the modern cut of the jacket lends itself to the AU imagination.  I'm also amazed that I was able to get a shot of Kris that worked, simply because the original graphic had such a weird head/lighting going for it.  Yet it came together.

3) The movie poster for cordelianne 's fic Turn On the Bright Lights because it's such a simple image, and she's the one who put it in her fic, and i love it.  It took me ages to find the colored light pictures and get them to work on the background I wanted, and ... the way it worked out made me happy.

4) The movie poster for drsquidlove 's epic Giles/Xander fanfiction The Giles Thing.  I adored this fic with an unhealthy passion, and wanted to do it justice.  But how do you do justice to something that basically has Xander kind of growing up while he chooses a relationship with Giles and both of them grow together?  While at the same time each chapter has it's own bit of life to overcome (when to use the word boyfriend, how to come out to your father, how to deal with the old boyfriend, how to manage to not break up even though you both find out things about each other that you didn't necessarily want to know).  Anyway, it was such a tapestry that I ended up with a bit of a tapestry and every time I look at it, it pleases me.

Did you take any graphic risks this year? What did you learn from them?
It's a little harder to discuss this than discussing fiction risks, because I think graphically almost everything is a risk - half the time when I wake up the next morning whatever it was I was happy with last night doesn't look nearly as good as I thought.  I will say that I tried to really use light this year in ways that I hadn't before, particularly in icons.  I don't know if I was entirely successful in deploying light (or if half the time the icons come out in ways that make other people squint), but it got me looking at light and shadows in different ways.  Also, switching from primarily horizontally oriented graphics to vertically oriented has actually been a very natural switch for my brain.  I think in part it's because much of the rest of the world is oriented vertically too (think movie posters, book covers, many art works, scrolls, advertisements in magazines, etc), and so I keep drawing inspiration from those sources as well.  The only thing I worry is that the movie posters are not often as complex as some of the other graphics I've worked on - often i spend time working quite hard to *find* the right image, and it comes together in a matter of minutes once the image is found.  Whereas with wallpapers it's often way more of an assemblage of elements, and I wonder if I have sacrificed a kind of process of challenge I used to engage in.  On the other hand, I've created some spectacular failures based on those principles of assembly too.

From my past year of creating graphics, what was . . .

My best artwork post of this year:

summer of giles redux (icons, walls, banners, etc)

My most popular post of this year:

gentlemen of btvs (manips)

Artwork of mine most under-appreciated by the universe, in my opinion:

The Ianto wallpapers in this post

Most fun art to make:

spring with xan redux (movie posters)

Graphic with the single sexiest moment:

ok, i know it's TOTAL crack, but the manip/movie poster I made for zarathuse ' s Merlin/Arthur fic with Arthur in a princess leia style collar is the sexiest

Most "Holy crap, that's wrong, even for you" graphic:

see above. but note, at least this last year I left full frontal nudity out of my artwork. ha.

Graphic that shifted my own perceptions of the characters:

the movie poster for noelia_g 's Solid Ground.  Never would have read in that fandom at all if not for her.  So I don't know if that counts as my own work shifting my own perspective, but hey, it was the shift.

Hardest graphic to make:

the movie poster for thismaz  's fiction Blood on a Sundial.  It's a crazily epic story and so I wanted something to capture specific tones of the opening moments, but also hint at the larger change Xander goes through.  I struggled with a half dozen ideas before I finally ended up with this one.

Biggest Disappointment:

The feeling that I am actually starting to get tired of doing Buffy-related graphics.  I don't want to be, but without inspiration in some form (mostly through creating art for specific works), I feel like I have plumbed the depths of what's out there.  I may never have made the perfect Giles icon (that was my original goal when starting this stuff), but I have worn out most of the image resources that I do have for pretty much every character that I liked making graphics for. 

Biggest Surprise:

I have two big surprises, I think.  The first was that people liked the manips of the gentleman of Btvs so much.  I was utterly awed by the response for those, especially since I'd done them quite on a whim.  The second was the way in which I have been absolutely adopted by the AI fandom: they have opened up their arms and jumped me with wholehearted enthusiasm, and I love that.  It makes me want to do more, stretch myself further, and create more because of the way in which my work has been received.  It'll be interesting to see how that changes as a new season of idol rolls around again.

Most Unintentionally Telling Graphic:

I have no idea how to tell about this one... i think if you look at my graphics you'll be able to tell how I feel about any number of characters, or about what parts of the human body I find visually appealing, or what colors I think achieve a certain type of tone... or how I feel about space.   Probably elizabuffy might be able to answer this one better than I, since she knows what I think about most things and if I'm connected to an artwork or not.

reremouse: tacky Americanareremouse on January 5th, 2010 02:19 pm (UTC)
How did I miss that Giles Thing poster? It reminds me of a wall covered in the old xeroxed punk band flyers which is so right for that story! Whether you find inspiration for more Buffy graphics or not, I am so glad to have discovered each other and to have you on my friends list. Happy new year, kate!
my monkied brain: riley - glowkatekat1010 on January 6th, 2010 04:29 am (UTC)
Oh my god you totally nailed it! It's actually based off of a collection of old punk 'zines that were collected together!

And not to worry, even though I'm concerned about my graphic love affair with Buffy, there are certain things that are always guaranteed to inspire me. Your writing is one of those things. Also, even though I'm fatigued, I'm sure I'll get a second (third?) wind. After all, I still have entire seasons of Xander to closely examine next year.

You made me grin like a fool with this comment - I am equally grateful to have you on my list as well!! Happy New Year Rere!

and speaking of being inspired... remember when you were hoping for graphics for At Ease & Physical Therapy? I finally found something that I liked...



reremouse: tacky Americanareremouse on January 6th, 2010 11:59 pm (UTC)
Y'know what? It feels about as good to spot the vaguely obscure referent as it does to have my own vaguely obscure referent spotted!

And I - *flail!* - these are perfect for the stories. You make me want to write another in their 'verse. And I so want an icon of Riley and his shirt in the Physical Therapy poster.

Here's to keeping each other grinning like fools in 2010!
my monkied brain: riley - glowkatekat1010 on January 7th, 2010 12:53 am (UTC)
:D the sad part is that you will always win the obscure referent game with me because usually i'm quite horrible with those, even when they're staring me in the face.

AND YAY! I adore making people flail. And if you ever do, let me know, I can keep on a theme with posters like nobody's business.

speaking of further requests, ask an ye shall recieve!


Here's to keeping each other grinning like fools in 2010!

Absolute best resolution I could make. Especially since your feedback totally made me grin!
reremouse: Rileyreremouse on January 7th, 2010 01:01 am (UTC)
Still grinning. In fact - kinda grinning more now... This icon was totally worth hanging in there for the perfect Riley icon to appear.

The resolution is a deal!
savoy trufflesavoytruffle on January 5th, 2010 02:25 pm (UTC)
This was wonderful to see. Such a delightful reminder of all your beautiful work! I love that TYT cover so much. I wouldn't have been able to say why it was so perfect for the story the way you did, but I definitely felt it.

Plus, this post has reminded me to put my "Why Do You Breathe?" wallpaper back up, which I had taken down early in the fall semester when I started bringing my laptop to teach class so students could do Power Point presentations on them. But now that it's just me with the computer, I can totally have whatever I want on there again! Yay!
my monkied brain: s/x - eecummings lovekatekat1010 on January 7th, 2010 01:46 am (UTC)
Thanks lady! You are too nice to say so - I'm just pleased that I was able to produce as much artwork as I did this year. And I'm still so tickled you think the TYT cover works too.

And I'm SO glad WDYB wall is in rotation on your computer (I completely understand needing the school-safe background for classes). It is on mine as well, and makes me smile to remember the fic itself, which, as all of your work, is truly an awesome journey.
(Deleted comment)
my monkied brain: M_merlin smilekatekat1010 on January 7th, 2010 01:49 am (UTC)
He IS!! A pretty pretty princess! LOL, which period garb darling? because you know we could do fic/art exchange? *tempts* *tempts* *tempts*

And thanks for reading and for the lovely compliments darling! I keep trying with the artwork, and it keeps the brain breathing.

And I'm so glad I could possibly give you new icon choices. I'm kind of amazed that I made any at all this year, so will probably be surprising you with some in the near future too. I mean, there are too many Merlin faces that must be captured!
i will write in words of fire: [<3] you have my heartposhlil on January 6th, 2010 06:51 am (UTC)
God, lady, i love seeing all your stuff layed out like this. You certainly did have a productive year! I hadn't seen the Blodd on a Sundial one until now - it's blown me away. You get more and more talented every time i look. And i'm cackling like a mad thing at the Arthur bikini one. xD

I sure hope you're planning on asking for requests again at some point. I've a metric ton of fic that's begging me for your art to grace it. Doctor/Donna of course, which i know you aren't familiar with, but whenever you feel the call, you just let me know.

Hope you had an awesome new year, dove. ♥
my monkied brain: tara - happy to see youkatekat1010 on January 7th, 2010 01:54 am (UTC)
AWWW THANK YOU DARLING! I can't believe how much I ended up making - it's kind of crazy. And awwww for the BOAS love - like I said I'm so pleased with how that one came out. And Arthur is a pretty pretty princess in a bikini!

I ABSOLUTELY am planning on opening up requests again, just as soon as I finish the requests from the last post (lol, still working on them, yes i am a procrastinator). But I will totally do more Dr/Donna for you, so *don't* be shy about asking ok?

And I DID have a lovely new year, thank you darling! I think 2010 is gonna be a much better year than 2009.

*squishes you to pieces*
i will write in words of fire: [max] omg happy time!poshlil on January 7th, 2010 05:09 am (UTC)
It's mildly crazy, yeah! I can't believe (in a way) how much i ended up writing. :P

Arthur is a pretty pretty princess in anything. I love that show, it's such slash crack.

Hurrah! I probably had some at the last post. But as i said, i'd be thrilled with any Doctor/Donna you want to do for me. *grins like a mad thing* I have a masterlist of fic here if you want to take a stab in the dark; if you're curious as to how i'd prioritise, i'd probably ask for art for 'Shadows' or 'All Your Tomorrow's Start Here' first, because i'm insanely proud of both of those pieces.

I'm so glad! So did i, and i think you're right. Besides, i don't reckon it could be worse. *squishes you back*