A Random Letter For A Random Person {APADO #29}

(apado is a blog series we all know what it is and I’m just amazed I’ve almost completed it)

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I’ve had a hunch for awhile that people aren’t as different as they think they are.

I mean, I say about thirty times a day that I’m weird, and yet all my friends do the same. So am I really weird?

I wanted to put myself in someone else’s shoes for a half-second. Pretend I was your average person. Feeling compartmentalized and alone, the only odd one out…don’t we all feel like that sometimes?

And then I imagined receiving a letter. A figurative hand that connects me back to the idea that we’re not so “weird” after all.

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Hi. 🙂

My name’s Tess Richardson. I’m about 99.99999% sure you have no clue who I am and honestly I hope you’re okay with that.

I’m writing you a letter because I have faither in the unknown. I don’t know who you are, or what you do, but I feel like this letter found its way to the right person.

I’m not trying to be creepy. I’m not asking you for anything. You don’t have to help the defenseless kittens or disabled veterans. You don’t even have to reply to this letter.

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I just hope that when you read this letter, it puts a smile on your face. I’m not exactly sure how. Maybe the thought that someone’s indirectly thinking of you.

Whatever floats your anvil, that’s cool with me.

I hope you have a nice day, whoever you are. You deserve to. God Bless and I’m thinking of you.

Sincerely,

Tess

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^ random address I found by dropping the pin in Google Maps in a random spot.

Should I mail it?

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

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That Time I Did THSC Teen Staff {APADO #24}

(Dees ees APADO, meh leetle blog serees wheere I poast efery dey een Ooctoobar.)

(All these photos are courtesy of Victoria, the awesome photographer who made an awesome video recap that I spent thirty minutes pausing and screenshotting. WHY DOES YOUTUBE DO THAT THING WHERE IF YOU DOUBLE CLICK ON A VIDEO IT FULL SCREENS. That was my nemesis.)

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Back in May, I went to a homeschool convention. Also known as the best thing to ever convene in the history of conventions. I was part of the Teen Staff program, a unique mixture of volunteer work, group games and activities, and lectures.

(If I remember someone’s name, I put it in, but assume that any unlabeled person was someone I didn’t know or couldn’t remember their name.)

We were divided into two groups, and those two groups were divided into five teams each.

Team Juliet

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We were an awesome team. We were efficient…and friendly…and horrible at all the group games.

My nametag had been messed up – for some reason it said íTessí. I’m still not sure why. For awhile it was my nickname (“itsa me, íTessí!”) but it confused the exhibitors so much I had to scratch it out and write plain ol’ Tess above it.

Service

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The main part of our program was helping out around the convention. It’s not called Teen Staff for nothing. We did “hospitality”, which was pretty much passing around cups of water to all the exhibitors. Oh, and I went and got a guy a Monster energy drink from a hidden vending machine.

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We did book check, too, which was pretty much babysitting people’s curriculum purchases so that they didn’t have to haul them around the convention center.

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And whenever we were just hanging out, we were expected to be helpful and friendly and good representations of our generation. I think we did a good job.

Lectures

I could say a lot about these lectures, how informative and awesome they were, but let me just say four words:

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I MET KEN HAM.

‘Nuff said.

Group Activities

In between service times and lectures, we got to play group games. This was easily the most fun part of the service (although it was definitely the loudest).

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For one game, we were split into three groups. Two of the groups sat in rows of chairs facing eachother. One was able to see the rest of the room, and one had their backs turned.

The rest of us were blindfolded and led into the room. We weren’t told what we were supposed to do.

The rules: The people who could see what we were supposed to do had to nonverbally communicate the instructions to the group with their back turned. Then that group had to interpret the instructions and call them out to us.

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Never has collecting some balls and putting them in a bag been so hard.

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We did an engineering challenge with spaghetti and marshmallows – tallest tower won. We all ended sticky, chewing on raw spaghet, and laughing our heads off at our miserable excuse for a tower.

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And then we did skits. Our group was charged with making a commercial to sell a book about office organization.

And it got weird.

So?

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I had absolutely no experience with large groups and interacting with people my age when I went into this.

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I came out chomping at the bit, ready to go again, wishing it would last about a year longer. Or that May would come again in anything less than a year.

They let us sign our shirts at the end of it all. I hung mine up on my wall.

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Every time I look at it, I have to go check the calendar.

Only 187 days until next May.

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

Roller Coasters {APADO #6}

(This is APADO, a series where I attempt to write a post once a day for the entire month of October. And I’m already burning out. And this is fun, I’m reminding myself.)
(This is Saturday night, it’s been a really long week, and I need to get batteries for my camera so I can write some posts that actually mean something – but hey, gotta do whatcha gotta do.)
(And the photo in the graphic’s not mine. And I don’t really care….? It’s from Six Flags’ website. Kudos to them. Ditto to the gifs.)

APADO 6

You never know just how brave you are until you sit in a roller coaster car and pull down the restraint.

Not only are you about to experience ridiculous speeds and incredible Gs, but you also just chose to do so. Willingly.

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For me, this realization brings my heart rate up at least 25 bpm every single time I ride a roller coaster, even though I go to Six Flags a bit more than your average person.

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It’s easy to talk big when you’re safe on the ground, watching the coaster do its thing. But it gets progressively harder as you weave through the cue line, as you get up close to the ride, as you feel the energy it’s throwing off surging beneath your feet.

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And the very hardest part is sitting down in the car, pulling the restraints down, and accepting the fact that you’re going to do something that doesn’t make logical sense.

But that’s the fun part about roller coasters.

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Because you made a stupid decision. You’re doing something that doesn’t make sense.

And you’re able to.

When you’re going up the hill, you know you’ve been really, really rash, but when you’re going down, you know why people love roller coasters.

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Because humans like to go fast.

We like to feel the power of something we’ve invented.

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somewhere in there is yours truly after riding the coaster pictured above – my mom dragged me on it >w<

And we like to feel proud of ourselves when we come screaming into the station. Because against all odds, and everything coming at you – you just rode a hundred-foot-tall metal beast. On purpose. And you had fun.

Imagine the places that kind of mindset will take you.

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me and younger older brother – nothing like a day at the park ^v^

And this is why I love roller coasters.

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

(P.S: yes, I have ridden all the roller coasters pictured in this post. yes, it took much determination/panicking. my home park is six flags over texas.)

 

 

The Personal Library Awards™ {APADO #2}

(yep we’re going from dead-serious to mostly-living-not-so-serious in 2.5 seconds)
(also I know that this is posted at the very end of day 2…I had camera complications and then the pictures still look horrible and I feel like I wasted a bunch of time and effort for nothing but EH)
(was this post even worth it?)
(yes. yes it was. *deep breaths*)

APADO 2

I’ve wanted to talk about my library for a while now. It’s three shelves of variety that I’ve collected and bought over the years – some fiction, some non-fiction, and some stuff that’s only remotely book-like that I don’t know where else to put.

I could just take some pictures, gush about how they look remotely aesthetic when they’re all sitting together, and call it a night. But I like to think I’m a little more creative than that. Because what are you supposed to do with that information besides immediately forgetting it?

So I decided to come up with some awards. And “some” turned into 25. And the awards turned into a challenge, should you choose to accept it. Turn down the lights, grab some popcorn, and let’s give it up for The Personal Library Awards™!

(okay it’s not actually trademarked, I just learned the alt code for a ™ and wanted to use it for effect.)

Newest: The Secret Keepers by Trenton Lee Stewart

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warning: photo quality in this post is -2

Straight out of 2016. This book was…okay. I don’t exactly regret it, but it wasn’t the best thing I have ever read. Which was kind of disappointing, because I bought it brand new and I sort of feel like I wasted my money? Oh well.

Oldest: Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes

This award is for my physically oldest book – this first-edition copy of my favorite hist-fict that I got in an antique shop. It’s from 1943. As in, this book is 75 years old. They don’t bind them like they used to.

Childhood Favorite: Album of Horses by Marguerite Henry

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Even when I was a little horse potato and knew nothing about them, I loved this book to death. It’s basically some nice paintings and some fun little anecdotal stories about the different breeeds of horses. And it was actually successful in extending my woefully poor attention span.

Most Loathsome: Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Ugh. Okay, classics are usually the best. They’re usually rolemodels that inspire me to write stories as great as they are. I’m not going to go so far as to say that Great Expectations isn’t a great story, but I can’t stand it. It’s way too wordy, the characters are all jerkfaces with absolutely nothing to stand behind, and it has an unsettling tone I can’t put a finger on. It’s the last Charles Dickens novel I’ll finish (because yes, I finished it).

Most Obscure: At Agincourt by G. A. Henty

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I’m going to guess you’ve never heard of this book. That’s okay! I’m still not sure if I like the resolution of it, but it definitely kept me reading, even though the type in this edition is ribosomically tiny. Also I accidentally slammed the backseat of an SUV down on top of it and I actually cried about it.

Biggest Surprise: The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind by William Kamkwamba

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Going into this, I was thinking I was going to yawn the whole way through. I ended up finishing it in one sitting and realized that I had actually been really riveted the whole time! Who knew windmills were so interesting.

Biggest Disappointment: Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs

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Tarzan is my favorite Disney movie. So that means I’ll love the books, right? Correction: I would have loved the books if they weren’t so horribly cliched and just…ugh. I only keep this one around because its format is so gloriously beautiful. But the pretty cover is honestly the only good thing about it. ALL 800 PAGES OF IT. Okay, I’ll stop ranting.

Longest: Home Comforts by Cheryl Mendelson

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Non-fiction homemaking encyclopedia. It’s more interesting than you’d think and weighs in at 884 pages. Lots of information and useful stuff that I’ll probably need later.

Shortest: Felicity Learns A Lesson by Valerie Tripp

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yep, it’s the pleasant company edition ^w^

Fun fact: this book got me into AG dolls. It’s only 67 pages, but it certainly talks about a lot in that time frame – bullying, disloyalty, the Boston Tea Party, and not knowing what to do when your values are called into question. These American Girl books are seriously underrated.

Prettiest: Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

Firstly: this book’s a classic and if you haven’t read it, you should. Secondly: I’m in love with the way this book looks. The colors are so well coordinated and the beautiful design carries over into the pages, too. Yes, I do judge books by their covers. And I hate myself for it. But don’t we all?

Ugliest: The Swiss Family Robinson by Johann David Wyss

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I actually don’t think I finished this one? I think I forgot about it. Even though I’m not sure how I forgot the mustard yellow, bright orange, and strange circus animal motif. THERE AREN’T EVEN ANY CIRCUS ANIMALS IN THIS STORY. Who even designed this cover? It’s ancient, and I got it for free, so I can’t complain…but still.

Largest: The Animator’s Survival Kit by Richard Williams

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I can’t get over how amazing the information in this book is. I also can’t get over how physically big it is. It’s about nine by eleven inches and I think it must weigh five pounds. It feels like fifteen when I’m hauling it around, though.

Smallest: Pocket Horses by DK

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This is another book I lived by as a kid! And it’s really really small – about four by five inches. And apparently you can get it on Amazon for literally a dime? I can’t tell if that’s amazing or sad. Maybe it’s amazingly sad. I liked it.

Most Abused: CHA Composite Horsemanship Manual by the Certified Horsemanship Association

If you want to learn to ride, seek out and devour this book. It’s chock full of actually useful information, not just the stuff that sounds good on paper. I have used it so much that the pages are falling out of the binding.

Most Read: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

I think I’ve read this one (both parts!) at least ten times. It doesn’t get old, though! I’m surprised I like this book so much, seeing as I’m not usually a fan of the genre, but I grew up on this one and still love it. No movie adaptation can beat it. =u=

First To Be Hypothetically Donated: The Complete Encyclopedia of Horses by Josee Hermsen

I’ll give this one credit that it’s trying to be a horse encyclopedia. That’s not an easy feat. But the editing in this book is really weird. Miscaptioned photos, poor grammar….I can’t even.

Last To Be Hypothetically Donated: Freehand Figure Drawing For Illustrators by David H. Ross

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This book is amazing. Enlightening. Game-changing, if you’re an artist. And there is SO MUCH information in it, I think it’ll probably take a lifetime to learn it all. I need it. *protectively shields it*

Funniest: The Watsons Go To Birmingham: 1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis

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I don’t want to admit it, but I read Christopher Paul Curtis’ books when I want to laugh my head off. Yes, they have themes and plots, but honestly the humor in them trumps everything else.

Most Boring: Wings by Tom D. Crouch

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I bought this book at a Goodwill just because the cover was pretty. (Back on this again…) It looks great, but it’s pretty much a four hundred page research paper on flight. Not that I don’t like research papers, I just lost interest. Maybe I’ll pick it back up again. In ten years.

Most Useful: Scouting for Girls by The GSA

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Yep, the original. Survival tactics, star maps, instructions for cooking a three-course dinner. And doesn’t everyone need to know how to cut perfect stars from cloth? (I still can’t seem to get it to work…)

Least Useful: A Healthy Horse: The Natural Way by Catherine Bird

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I inherited this book and it’s 150 pages of herbal remedies? Yeah it’s not really useful to me, seeing as I don’t own a horse. It’s also kind of fruity – I always expect to see yoga poses suggested to enhance the cures, even though it doesn’t touch on that. Can horses even do yoga? Hm.

Most Powerful: The Giver by Lois Lowry and The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare

I had to split this award. I had to. I couldn’t decide which was more important: The Giver‘s thoughts on the worth of human life, or The Bronze Bow‘s emphasis on the power of hate – and forgiveness. Both are excellent and you should go read them the first chance you get (if you haven’t already).

Most Frustrating: When London Burned by G. A. Henty

This is a reprint of a very old book. I have nothing against it plot-wise – actually it was pretty solid…once I got through the forest of typographical errors. Did they even give it a read-through? IT’S AWFUL AND IT DISTURBS ME.

Honorable Mention: Wolves At Our Door by Jim and Jamie Dutcher

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Wolves At Our Door is a memoir about a couple who lived near a pack of wolves in order to make a documentary about them. The end result is much more interesting than it sounds and than I expected. Definitely one of my favorite true stories.

and…

Favorite: Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson

Annnnnd….time for my favorite book. I always come back to Treasure Island. Something about the aesthetic, or the story, or the characters just keeps dragging me in. I don’t think I’ll ever get tired of it – or dreaming about being on the open seas, with all the danger and glory and….gahhh. I love this book. Fight me.

*applause*

Did I just decide which of my books was my favorite? Wow.

I’m really glad I decided to do it this way instead of just listing them off. These twenty-five aren’t my entire collection, but they’re a good sampling of it. (We didn’t even get to Counting by 7s…!)

I had a lot of fun making this post, and I hope you do too.

That is, if you accept my challenge.

I would love to see your own versions of The Personal Library Awards™!

I don’t really consider myself a “bookish” person, so I’d be interested in what spins you guys would put on this idea. Would you add awards? Take some away? And, of course, which of your books would win the awards? Honestly, I’d love it if some of you more competent book bloggers would take this idea and run with it!

Do you dare to undertake a round of The Personal Library Awards™?

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

 

 

Nine Months In The Making

Animation.

My first real animation wasn’t supposed to take nine months. Actually, I was supposed to have it finished in two. But a lot came up, I had a lot to learn, and I went through a period of fluctuating self-esteem that crippled my workflow.

But I’m finally done, and it’s been quite the wild ride to this point. So here we are – the super-duper-animation-post-I’ve-been-thinking-about-for-awhile-now.

Let’s get into it!

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My Journey To Animation: A Brief History

Like most kids, I’d played around with notepads and stop motions. At one point, I even had this little animation kit thing (it included a zoetrope and was actually really awesome – I wish I had kept it!).

Last year, I made some little animated gifs. They were really REALLY labor-intensive – lots of tracing and stuff. I documented that on Steeplechase in this post.

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However, I couldn’t keep folding papers into eighths in lieu of a lightboard. I had to face the fact that I needed to use the computer if I was going to take this from a passing whim to a serious hobby.

Now before you come at me with that “but-Disney-cartoons-are-all-made-on-paper-you-tech-spoiled-millenial” snobbishness, allow me to defend myself. Disney is a company made up of hundreds of people. Disney animators don’t have to worry about:

  • storyboarding
  • inbetweening
  • lineart
  • coloring
  • shading
  • backgrounds
  • sound mixing
  • editing
  • producing
  • directing
  • lack of inspiration. (Well, maybe not.)

If you’re an independent animator (meaning you’re a one-man-show), then you have to do all of that yourself. Oh yeah, and animate, too. 😛 A computer program makes it much easier and smoother to make your own animations without a inking, painting, or backgrounds department.

I ended up purchasing a drawing tablet on Amazon. Technically, his name is Cedric, and he’s Constance’s secret admirer. (Clara, I guess I should have warned you about that. ;)) After doing some research, I found out how to legally download an ancient version of Flash, Adobe’s ever-popular animation program.

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shhhh, this picture’s kinda old.

So I was all set! Now – to actually animate something.

I had heard about Multi-Animator Projects (we affectionately call them MAPs), so I decided I should start there.

What is a Multi-Animator Project (MAP)?

Basically, someone takes a song, divides it into 10-second parts, and posts it up for “auditions”. There are all kinds of MAPs (fandom, original character, vent, positivity, beginner-friendly, etc.) for all kinds of tastes. Most of them are kind of edgy or centered on Warrior Cats, but there are more than a few acceptable ones. Most of the time, anyway.

I decided to go out on a limb and just admit my noobiness to a MAP host and beg ask for a part. And he was gracious enough to accept!

So here I was, with my tablet, my Flash, my MAP part – and absolutely no idea what I had gotten into.

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I started by cutting the audio. I downloaded the song we were using, put it into my fancy audio editing software, and clipped it down to just my part.

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Totally not just Windows Movie Maker. 😉 Also you have to set a picture for it so you can turn it into an mp4 and then turn that mp4 into an mp3…and I have a weird sense of humor.

Once I had the audio for my part, I imported into Flash and set it in its own layer, so that I could start animating.

Audio on its own layer

(Layers are just what they sound like – different layers of stuff that you can stack on top of each other. For example, if the tail of your character is the only thing that’s moving, you can put the character’s still body on one layer and the tail on another and just animate the tail without having to redraw the body over and over again.)

The next step was to make an animatic – a moving storyboard. I sketched out all the poses that I wanted my character to be in and put them at the right times for the music. (We call those poses keyframes.) As in, I wanted my wolf to stand up at the first “oh-oh-oh”, so I drew him in a standing position and put it at that time in the timeline (the number bar at the top).

(Also, I was a doofus and deleted all my sketch layers. 😦 So I have virtually no pictures to show for it.)

Rough sketches came next. I filled in the gaps between my keyframes with ugly, scribbly drawings. It was important that I made a sketch for every single frame, because I’m not the sort of person who can just freehand pretty drawings.

Before I got into anything fancy, though, I made the background. (It took me two and a half hours and a ton of headbanging, hairpulling, and complaining on how hard it is to do a nice gradient in Flash.) The reason I made it so early on is simple – it’s like painting. You do the background first to get an idea of what your setting will look like before you start coloring things in, so that you don’t end up with a background that looks like a cheap mid-90s green screen job.

Background

Background + sketches
Sketches + background! This is a screenshot of the WIP I put on Youtube (I hadn’t decided I liked the heavy lines on the background yet).

After the rough sketches moved the way I wanted them to, I started on lineartthe pretty lines that turn this tornado of chicken scratch into an actual wolf. I traced them over my sketches on a new layer.

Lineart

With the lineart moving along nicely, I filled in the color. At this point, he looks flat and out of place, but we’re about to fix that with…

Color

shading! It took me a little while to decide how to do the shading. I eventually decided on running over the appropriate areas with an opaque black (so that the lineart and color shows through, but it’s darker). This was a time-consuming, labor-intensive process that I got through by listening to music.

Shading

Shading is all well and good, but without ground shadows, it was still looking funny. Of course, my wolf goes into a heavily shadowed place halfway through the sequence, so I didn’t have to do the shadows after that point, but I did need dramatic ground shadows for the first half. I have to confess that I cheated a bit – instead of trying to freehand the shadows (and inevidably messing it up, because shadows are my nemeses), I just copied the lineart, turned it all black, flipped it upside down, angled it, and set the opacity. Which was definitely much more accurate than trying to freehand everything.

Ground Shadows

After a few final touches (and a lot of celebration), I converted my Flash file to an mp4, uploaded it to YouTube, notified my MAP host that I’d finished (finally!) and…

*drumroll*

here it is!

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Click the picture to watch!

I know that a lot of you guys are not allowed on YouTube, so Madison has been kind enough to put it into her media files and give me the link, so you guys can watch! If you live in a cave and don’t know who Madi is, be sure to check her out!

(Wait – does this mean I have a sponsor? NO WAY.)

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Bottom line?

Animation is hard. It’s frustrating, labor-intensive, patience-testing, difficult on perfectionists…

…and SO. MUCH. FUN.

With my first animation now under my belt, I’m going to promptly sign up for another MAP. Why? I live by a little maxim, and it applies to pretty much everything. It goes:

The best way to do it better is to do it more.

So I’m going to go at it again, animate something else, and learn even more than I learned this time around.

Let’s just hope that this one doesn’t take nine months to complete. 😉

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

 

If I Were A Dog {Feat. Enni and Scout}

(Okay, Enni put her part of this a week ago, and I meant to put up my part sooner, but…my life is kind of a tornado of busyness right now, so let’s pretend this is on time.)
(All images are via Google. I don’t have time to link them up today, but know that I didn’t make any of them. :))

Let me preface this by saying that Enni is one of my best friends and whenever we get together, something awesome comes out of it. I’m so lucky to have her email address. Hehe.

A few weeks ago, we were discussing dog personas and she thought it would make a terrific collab, so here we are! (Except I’m fashionably late. As usual.)

If you follow Enni’s blog, you’ve already heard about what I’d be like as a dog. And if you don’t follow Enni’s blog, you’re missing out. Click the red button to be transported to her very awesome, unique, fun world! (Link opens in new tab.)

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If Enni were a dog…

…what breed would she be?

Probably a Samoyed, just like Misty! The only difference is that I’m a bit shier. 😉 But otherwise it’s a perfect match – stubborn, alert, friendly, conservative, gentle, yet can fight back if necessary.

And adorable. Enni is a real smol bean, to use the vernacular. She’s so happy and friendly that the only type of dog she could be is a floofy marshmallow dog like her dog Misty.

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^ floofy marshmallow dog

…what would be her favorite thing to do?

I think cuddling with humans. XP

I would probably own Dog-Enni, so she could sit on my lap and lick my face and that would be pretty nice.

…what would be her favorite food?

Ice. Misty loves ice, so I feed it to her from our dispenser in the freezer. She’s trained herself to get it herself though…Even as a human, I still like sucking it. 😉

Okay as far as dog tricks go, getting ice is pretty awesome.

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And yep, apparently it’s possible. Unless your dog is like, six inches tall.

…what would be her favorite toy?

SQUEAKY TOYS. Have you heard them? They are terribly satisfying.

YESSSSS I love squeaky toys. I can see her having one that looks like a donut. Maybe a hamburger. I’m not sure.

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^ actual footage of me trying to reach my goals, btw

…would she dig holes?

To be honest, yes. I think it’d be nice to have your own little personal tunnel…

And if I owned a marshmallow dog in our 100+ degree summers, I wouldn’t blame her for trying to get cool. Our dogs certainly do.

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^ toasted marshmallow dog

…who would end up owning her?

Uh, no idea. Hopefully somebody nice who can give us the attention that I deserve.

Translation: Me. *jazzhands*

 

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Enni is a really special person and I really hope you end up following her! She posts photography, quizzes, tips, thoughts on life, poems, adorable dog pictures, and updates on her WIP Blizzards. (Which is awesome. Just saying.)

Click below to go to On The Wings Of A Dream!

Courtesy of Enni.

 

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Hello?

My name’s Scout. I’m four months old and very handsome.

I live with my brother and my three cousins in backyard with two slides and at night I sleep in a crate on top of my cousin Chase.

This is what I look like:

scout

My mother was a Chihuahua and my father was a Fox Terrier.

They sometimes call me a Taco Terrier but I think that’s kind of embarrassing.

My other nicknames are Scouty, Scouters, Scoot, Scouty-Wouty, Wittle Scouty, Snickerdoodles, and Scoutydoodles. Most of those are embarrassing too.

I’m only about a foot tall but I bark like I’m a Great Dane.

I really like to run around and dig holes and sit on Tess’s lap, because she rubs my back and feeds me treats.

I have lots of friends, but Misty is my best friend. We talk over Tess and Enni’s chats and then delete all the history so they’ll never find out!

When Tess and Enni decided to do this collab, I wanted to do the opposite with Misty – what would we be like as humans?

But the most annoying thing happened: before I got a chance to ask Misty the questions myself, Tess asked Enni and Enni answered all the questions for Misty.

Aren’t humans cumbersome sometimes?

So all of these questions are Enni answering for Misty.

Unfortunately.

But they’re still really fun and I hope you enjoy!

If Misty were a human…

…what would she look like?

This is hard because Misty has white hair. XD I spent about thirty minutes trying to edit someone’s hair to look white (because all the white-haired people are either elderly or look sad/trying to be cool) BUT I COULDN’T MANAGE IT. So, just turn this girl’s hair white using imagination, won’t you?

I think the real Misty is much prettier. Just saying. Dogs are always better than humans.

…what would she wear?

Wintery styles. We’ll give her a black tee, a silver scarf with gold tassels, a (heavy) white cardigan, skinny jeans, and…black high-heeled boots which might be something I would wear minus the boots. 😉

I think it’s accurate…but what’s a cardigan?

…would she talk in an accent?

Misty’s breed origin is Russian but she was born in Oregon. XD Probably not? NO WAIT. She’d have a Boston accent. Totally.

She actually kind of does have a Boston-dog accent. All dogs from Boston bark like her.

…what movies/music would she like?

Live music. Listen, Misty NEVER howls with recordings – only singing or music that’s uh…live? I dunno. XD As for movies…she’d be all about the comedy.

Live music makes my ears hurt. It’s too loud.

…what would her bedroom look like?

The color scheme would be…wintery. I mean, she’s a snow dog! I always feel like people who love winter are more chill, though, but Misty? Eh, I’d say that her personality would suit a summer-lover. Strange. Anyways, here’s a picture off Pinterest for her bedroom:

Decorating theme bedrooms - Maries Manor: Winter wonderland and winter sports theme decorating

I really want to go dig in those covers. They look soooo warm.

…would she have hobbies?

Misty would adore journalism. She loves poking her nose into other people’s business – sometimes literally. When two people hugs, she barks, jumps, puts one hand on each shoulder and tries to separate them so that she can squeeze in between. XD Anyways, I think a journalist would be the perfect career for her. She would also garden since she already dug several nice holes in our yard and she’d definitely be into art as well – she might even be into carpentry; you should see what she’d done to our chairs. XD

I think that’s accurate. I like gardening too!

…what celebrities would she like?

I honestly don’t think that Misty would be into celebrities. XD

I’m a celebrity though. And she likes me well enough. Sooooo…me?

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Still Scout here.

Do you know what the greatest injustice in the entire world is?

I don’t have a blog!

Tess hasn’t EVER let me post on hers, either, until today, but she probably won’t let me anymore because I said that dogs were better than humans!

But Misty has a blog! You should go visit it.

Click the picture of Misty to visit it!

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Goodbye for now, but I hope I get my own blog someday, so I can tell you about all my adventures!

Sincerely, Scout.

(not Snickerdoodles. I’m very masculine.)

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I don’t know about you, but I thought this post was a ton of fun. Thanks, Enni for doing it with me!

Do you have a dog? What would you be like as a dog? What would your dog be like as a human?

Should I let Scout have his own blog?

Sayonara for now,

{Tess}

2018 Art Dumps, Issue 1

(I just tagged this post as “fun”. Seriously, Tess?)
(But I wouldn’t say I’m doing so bad. After all, this is my FIFTH post this year so far. Considering that I didn’t post last year until Februray 15th, I’m doin’ great. *looks haughtily at those coordinated people who treat their blogs like actual websites and not end-of-the-pipeline imagination dumping grounds*)

Welcome to Issue One of my 2018 Art Dumps (of which most are yet to be made), in which I show you a bunch of pictures you never asked to see and expect you to know how much blood, sweat, graphite and tears went into them. Stick around until the end and you might see something resembling actual talent.

I shouldn’t be so hard on myself, I guess. I have been making improvements. It hasn’t been quick or easy, but I’m getting there. However, I have had my fair share of creeping myself out with strange facial expressions that are a result of bad proportions. (We’ll get to a nice example of that, too.)

The other thing to note is that when I scanned these in, I could barely see the lines, so I had to adjust the brightness and contrast and all that fun. The result is that the background is almost always grey. Oh well, it’s easier on the eyes anyways.

So, without further adieu,

let’s get into it!

(Disclaimer: These are in no particular order, are sometimes kind of cringey and weird looking, and are by no means professional artwork. I’m self taught so yeah.)
(Disclaimer 2: If I catch you stealing any of my artwork I will not hesitate to call you out on it. I mean not like you’d wanna steal it, but just in case you think it’s good enough. XD)

In general my art is 75% wolves and 25% everything else. I’m intrigued to say that it’s not the same case here. The breakdown is 62.5% wolves, 34% humans, and 7% horses. (I calculated carefully, but somehow it adds up to 103.5%. We’ll say that extra 3.5% is eraser shavings.

The reason I haven’t drawn as many wolves as I usually do is because I’ve been animating wolves for that MAP thing I’m doing. (I mean, after spending an hour doing nothing but drawing wolves, I’m not really in the mood to draw any more wolves.) But I have done quite a few – including a series I call Fifteen Wolf Sketches.

F.W.S. came out of a flashcard project I had to do for my Hebrew class. We were supposed to draw pictures on one side and write vocabulary words on the other. My teacher was really miffed at me because I took wayyyy too long to do these, but I think the result was worth it. Let’s go!

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For the vocabulary word for “river”. I’d never drawn a wolf doing this so this was a ton of fun.

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To descend. Yup, they’re going down quickly – imho, the top one is to die for. LOOK AT HIS LITTLE FEETS.

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To take. My sister got so disturbed by the rabbit, it was funny.

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To put.

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To be pregnant. The passage we’re doing is the first chapters of Exodus, so yep, we gotta learn all the words. *awkward smile*

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WOOK AT TEH BEBES. THEY’RE TINY BOLLS OF FLOOF.
Ahem. To nurse.

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To go up. This ended up being one of my favorites.

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To come. Conversely, this is one of my least favorites.

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To draw water. Hey, I don’t think I did so bad, seeing as I couldn’t use any references at all for this. XD

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To drink. Well, a form of drinking, anyways. This one is more of the passive version to drink.

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To, erm, give birth. Yeah, I wasn’t going to draw that exactly, so I just drew this puppeh meeting his daddy. Awwwwwe….

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To see. Her eyebrows are like, not there. Not the best of the bunch.

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To stand.

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To call. I think I’ve drawn this drawing five times over. It doesn’t get old, though.

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To walk. Ahhh, I saved the best of these sketches for last. Here’s my wittle OC Archer, with leg positions that are SPOT ON. Ahhhh.

And now we enter the realm of the Epic Sketchbook. I really need to give him a name – if anyone has any suggestions, I’d appreciate it. He’s enormous and has taught me a lot about drawing large.

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Here’s the first drawing I did in him – sort of like a christening. I wish I’d put more definition in his ears but he’s cute.

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I am quite proud of this. It took soooooo long (like, three hours) from start to finish, but it’s so worth it. I’m so happy to have this in my sketchbook because it actually has color and makes me look like a pro. XD

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A random horse! Haha. I do still love horses. I just don’t draw them as often as I used to. In reality, they’re incredibly hard to draw and pose. But this is proof that I still do it – and I stepped out of my usual outlining style and did soft colored pencil around everything.

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In speaking of horses, here’s a partially colored cab. His gait looks subdued but meh, it’s okay. That cab was very hard to draw, and as a result the sizing is a little skewed, but it’s not noticiable if you’re just glancing (which you probably are ;))

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This driver looks quite dapper, lap blanket and all. What a shame that I never colored him.

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I suppose this also goes under the heading of horse-human drawings. I was interested in drawing humans at this point, but a little under-referenced. But it isn’t exactly easy to use references in a hotel room, which is where I did this. Because of this, we’ll ignore the fact that her horse has no near rein, her head is tiny in comparison to her shoulders, she looks like she’s about to fall asleep, and the stray lines on the bottom. Oh well.

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I had grand dreams for this drawing. I was going to completely shade it and make it look wonderful. But I suppose I sort of lost interest. It’s at this point a scrap that needs finishing.

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These buildings, though, are pretty awesome.

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(ignore the drawing on the back please. this was finished while I was just doodling.)

A little bit of human-wolf affection. Awe. My human bodies are half-decent. They’ll certainly work for now. I have the ability to convey a lot of poses using the top-secret method I use. My faces, though, leave a lot to be desired. I hide them a lot of the time with hair or other things, because when I draw them they end up looking like this a lot of the time:

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This is a bona fide Tess mess up! I dubbed her Lolina (not sure why?) and she looks like a nutcracker. The effect is worse than my scanner makes it. THOSE TEETH, WHAT HAPPENED.

It was after dear Lolina that I decided to not draw lips at all. After a bunch more like her, human faces started to make a bit of sense.

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I’ve found that profiles are the easiest to draw. It’s all in the nose. And hair is quite easy now that I’ve been practicing. I will admit that I draw most men’s hair in a certain way. It’s not the way I particularly like it, it’s just the way I’ve found that it’s easiest to draw.

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When I took the pictures for this post, this drawing was only half-done. I’ve finished it since then. (These are Nano charries :D) I really liked the facial proportions here. After I finish faces, tho, the next battle will be clothes. Because I can’t draw clothes right now to save my life and so everyone wears about the same thing.

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(I added the captions. Any guesses as to who these are?)

I thought this turned out pretty good. We’ve got a few issues with the eyes/skintones but it’s pretty decent. Closeups:

I think they’re pretty good.

Beofre we get to the last, best one, here’s a scrap:

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Hey, his hair is slightly different. Whaddaya know. (This is supposed to be Robin from Ettiquette and my other nano. :D)

Now.

I always save the best for last, as you know, and so I present to you another Nano charrie drawing that came kind of out of nowhere. It’s not even in the big sketchbook. But here we go:

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Is this….a human face that doesn’t look creepy, sleepy or just….off? DOES IT SERIOUSLY LOOK DECENT? wow.

The future for my drawing? I have to master human faces. This doesn’t mean that I won’t be drawing anything else, but that’s what’ll get the practice right now.

Tell me which one was your favorite!

Any comments? Advice? Freaking out over Lolina? I welcome suggestions and questions.

Maybe next time I sump some art, I’ll have some better faces! Haha.

Sayonara,
{Tess}