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Lauren the octopus therianthrope


Years after attempting my first octopus therianthrope in Daz, I have made another one. Meet Lauren, a minor character in the mini universe. She last showed up conducting the orchestra at the Christmas party. I don't know very much about her except that she's a cheerful extrovert, very sweet-tempered and outgoing. Pretty sure she's trans too.
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This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1654456.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Animated mood icon sets...


[Remember those?] Anyway, they never capture the subtleties of human face-making the way that indiscriminate use of animated GIFs can. Today, for your viewing delectation, here's a completely decontextualized GIF of Frank giving exactly zero craps about your big song and dance number:



"I think I left my curling iron on..."

THAT MOUTH!!!!! This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1654229.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Yamarrah's enhanced faceup


Because it's been too hot to go outside and do her torso/abdomen mods, I have stayed inside and brightened Yamarrah's faceup. What's shown below is pretty much done; I just need to even out the color on her tongue and regloss it.

I'm pretty sure she's trying to decide her favorite creemee flavor: either vanilla/chocolate swirl or black raspberry. ^_^

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This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1653882.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Tonsil Hockey Deux returns...


Melface mentioned at the last CCDC meetup that she was getting an IOS 80cm body with a custom head on it. This news perked up my ears because IOS is the maker of Infernale, aka Tonsil Hockey Part Two, aka Put A Sock In It [Or Maybe A Ball Gag], a wonderful vampiric headsculpt with squinty eyes, open mouth and not one, but two [yes two!!!] tongues.

With Melface's incoming IOS hybrid in mind, as well as my current open-mouthed, tongue-showing doll, Yamarrah, being modded, I naturally turn my thoughts to Tonsil Hockey Deux. I still want that headsculpt, and I really, really, really want to make a kinky vampire with a ball gag in her mouth. In fact, my desire has rekindled to the point where I put up a Wanted to Buy thread on DOA, hoping that someone will sell me an Infernale head. Well, I can dream, right? :p

I really like dolls with closed eyes, open mouths, protruding tongues and pointy teefs. My ideal BJD headsculpt would therefore be a vampire with closed eyes, magnetic swappable tongues and a big, lopsided, smirky grin.

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1653536.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Yamarrah now has a functional upper torso!


After languishing in pieces for over half a year, Yamarrah now has a functional upper torso!!! Today I took her new torso [specially cast by Mirodoll to match her Iplehouse realskin head] and modded it to accept her original Domuya arms. I filled in the large shoulder sockets with some Aves Apoxie Sculpt so that they would more snugly accommodate her shoulder balls, which were on the small side. I managed a snug fit by layering Aves Apoxie Sculpt on the inside of each socket and then, after letting it stiffen for about 45 minutes, rolling the shoulder ball around in the Apoxie Sculpt to create a new socket, perfectly shaped for her shoulder ball.Read more...Collapse )

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1653310.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Flower in the window


Flower came to work a few weeks ago to take advantage of the wonderful natural light there. Here he is in the window. I tried to frame shots so that they could include him, as well as the flourishing trees and Lake Champlain, but he wanted the camera to focus on him alone.
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In no particular order:
  • Underwear. Using Daz' Map Transfer Utility, I down-converted my standard texture from V5 to V4, then stuck some of Lululee's Lacey [sic] Lingerie on various parts so my digital dolls are always wearing underwear, especially under short skirts. Happily I have learned that multiple UV sets can coexist on a single figure, thus allowing me to maintain the V5 UVs for Jareth's makeup, for example, but use the V4 UVs to give him some underwear. Thank God...I hate it when they go commando. :p 
  • Lighting. I'm slowly figuring out how to light my scenes to give them more realism and sense of dimension. I refuse, however, to do shadows, as they take too damn long. So my people look like they're hovering above the floor, but at least they don't look like paper dolls anymore.
  • Finally some good basics. LilFlame, one of my preferred vendors of kinky stuff, is having a 40% off sale at Renderotica, which I am not linking to because I dislike their landing page. I took advantage of it to purchase the cuffs, collar and corset shown below.
  • Advances in hair texturing. I figured out how to put stripes and patterns in hair! Mwah hah hah hah!
Just to illustrate my stupendous accomplishments, here's Jareth, being a gleeful dork as usual. ^_^Read more...Collapse )
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I need some good leather shaders.


The ones I currently use [because they're free] don't have any texture, bump or displacement maps. I also think they're too shiny. I'd really like a set that includes polished and unpolished, new and creased, rawhide, etc., etc.

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1652564.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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This truncated set of 6 eps provided no particular closure, no interesting character development and nothing particularly interesting. The overall flaccidity of the 6 eps just highlighted the show's problematic aspects even more excruciatingly.

In no particular order, the problems were:
  • Steve. The show never did this character justice. He had great potential, especially as someone with the power of discerning whether people were telling the truth, but the show never really knew what to do with him. Without a tortured past full of secrets like the other agents [or at least not enough of the past for a multi-ep exploration], Steve had no grounding, no motivation, no hook. He also never really had anything to do except for to be Claudia's best friend, to die, to be resurrected and to keep the home fires burning while everyone else ran away on adventures. He was a thoroughly dull and objectified damsel in distress type. I feel like the writers identified him by a cluster of traits -- former ATF agent, Buddhist, gay, human lie detector -- and just had him mention those identities occasionally in lieu of developing an actual personality.
  • While we're on the subject again, let's bring up homophobia, one of the show's perennial failings. In 6.4, Savage Seduction, Claudia and Steve investigate a frat where the brothers are using an artifact to split themselves into two parts: studiers and partiers. Claudia and Steve's quest started promisingly with Claudia grumbling about "kids these days" [even though she was the age of the students] and Steve's revelation that he had been part of a nerd fraternity with "book group and holiday a cappella." Then Steve got a hold of the artifact and turned into two Steves, one of which was usual Steve and the other of which was a painfully swishy stereotype. Where did that come from? Steve had never shown any indication of harboring painfully swishy stereotypes. It could have been interesting if those were his long-buried fears about what he might have to be when he found out he was gay, but nah -- the show just played swishy Steve for laughs. Claudia also made a passing remark that she liked swishy Steve "a little bit more" than usual Steve, which was indicative of the show's whole treatment of Steve's sexuality: it was only ever developed jokingly, with reference to stereotypes, even if Steve was bringing them up to say that he differed from them. The show could not take him as a gay guy seriously and invested way too much prurient energy into his sexuality.
  • Speaking of sexuality, the show also capitulated to cultural pressures of heteronormativity. After five seasons of him being annoyed at her exactitude and her being annoyed at his immaturity, Pete and Myka realized that they loved each other. Well, that was pretty obvious. But why did they have to end up as a romantic couple? They may have loved each other and worked well together, but they were not characterologically compatible, so why did the show hook them up? Boring, boring, boring.
  • Furthermore, racism featured prominently in Warehouse 13's final season. It was like they crammed all the racism that they hadn't gotten to into a single truncated set of 6 eps. There were the gratuitous "g***y" references with the fortune tellers in the Ren Faire ep. There was the trash heap of "fiery Latino" stereotypes in the telenovela ep. Then, in the last ep, Leena, who was bumped off for no reason at the end of season 4, was given a flashback scene in which she foresaw her own death in the Warehouse and then, when Mrs. Frederic said that she would try to prevent it, said to her, "But it's okay." No, you stinkin' show -- do not try to retroactively sell me on the useless death of one of the show's two main characters of color. I won't buy it.





  This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1652430.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Yup, I think he's pretty much done.


Usually I'm not a fan of green in faceups, preferring pink, magenta, red, orange, yellow and black, but I must say that Flower is rockin' the green here. Since the last picture earlier this evening, I progressed the freckles further down his torso and also onto the tops of his shoulders. I also started sealing his mouth with high-gloss varnish and added the style of eye makeup that's been my signature since the very first faceup I ever did on Sardonix 1.0. Of the BJDs who bug me, Sardonix, Mellifer, Timonium, Yamarrah and now Flower have the upswept eyeliner and the down-slanting eyebrows.

Anyway, behold Flower the Unsubtle! What a change! I always knew he was fabulous...

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Flower and the unexpected freckles!


Flower has languished, paintless, since he finished playing Mackenzie in Me and My Muses, but I have finally been giving him a new faceup recently. Read more...Collapse )
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Nine people and God knows how many dolls attended last Saturday's get-together. For the very first time, other types of dolls outnumbered the BJDs! Monster Highs represented very well, thanks to Shannon. Read more...Collapse ) This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1651591.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

More of my favorite digital content creators


 In no particular order.
  • Grey Cloud Design. She specializes in meticulously sculpted interiors with fabulously done drapery and luscious textures. The Montespan Interior Scene got me hooked on her stuff, and I look forward to getting the Montespan Bedroom and the Classic Curtains Set 1.
  • Richabri. He makes a variety of everyday sets -- laundromat, parking lot, shooting range, hot tub, photo studio --  both detailed and affordable. I especially dig the Roadside Diner. He also specializes in kinky stuff -- again, simple, well-made and affordable.
  • Alfaseed. Known in the past as Awful Soul or Aery Soul, these vendors do fantasy skimpwear par excellence. All of their pieces feature sculpted wrinkles, drapery and other details that give them a dynamic feel, as do the fantastical movement morphs included in most flowy pieces. Furthermore, most Alfaseed pieces play well with pieces from other Alfaseed sets. I don't have any Alfaseed clothes [yet -- waiting for Arkham Angel to go on sale, hah hah hah], but I use a very early release of theirs, New Age Room, a lot as a simple and elegant set.
  • AprilYSH. The hair goddess! Arguably the best and most talented creator of Daz/Poser hair, she provides highly detailed and asymmetrically sculpted meshes with easily customizable textures. Many of her models include a hair model and some accessory, like Calais Hair and Ruff 2, which contains a hair model, a ruff, a custom character morph and a custom character texture. Another favorite, Deeta Hair 2, comes with a hair model, a veil and a fascinator.
  • Adzan. Creator of densely sculpted, well-textured clothes for Hiro 3 and David 3, loaded with movement and style morphs to add realism. All the meshes convert superbly for use on other figures, even G2F [my latest base model]. Pretty much everyone in my runtime has worn the jeans and sneakers from Small Sins at one time or another.
  • PhilC. Known primarily for his ancillary utllities such as Wardrobe Wizard, which I have found indispensable for converting clothes so that I can dress who I want in what I want. 
  • Capsces Digital Ink. The goddess of morphing! Though she defaults to a toony style, the detailed head and body morphs that she creates for many Daz humanoid figures greatly enhance their customizability.
Maybe more later...

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1651318.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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This is SO COOL.


Vanishing Point recently released a standalone therianthropic figure, SquidMan, clearly influenced by Davy Jones from Priates of the Caribbean 5000. I just love it when people take standard ideas and head them off into little-used aesthetic regions.  This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1651025.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Favorite digital content creators


In no particular order.
  • SickleYield and Fuseling. I dig her their collaborative products [Burlap Dolly and Ball Joint Doll for G2F], as well as SY's always well-sculpted everyday essentials. Heck, she's the only person who offers Six Sickle Sandals 2, which includes close-toed webbing sandals of the type I regularly wear. I also like SY's sense of humor; she has a freebie outfit for G1 called Impractical Rogue, for example, providing equal skimpwear time for the dudes as well as the gals. And there will always be a special place in my heart runtime for FSL's Latex and Rubber shaders.
  • Traveler. A true Renaissance man over at Runtime DNA, Traveler does bugs and plants with equal finesse. He also has a fetishy Technophilia series, for all your robotic, cyborg and gasmask-related needs. The Breathless package, which allows one to build one's own gasmask -- ventilators and goggles and helmets and tubes and valves, oh my! -- is a useful and easy-to-use set offering hours of recombinatorial fun. No links because RDNA is temporarily offline. :(
  • WillDupree and MAB. These two team up on a variety of therianthropes. I started off with Catgirl for V4/A4 just because it was on deep discount several years ago, and most recently got Popobawa for G1 for the bat wings!
  • Stonemason. A specialist in ubran and sci-fi environments, Stonemason makes urban decay look beautiful. I only have some of his cheapest items, such as The Tomb and Fairy Tale Collection Tower Interior, but I lust after Abandoned Interiors Warehouse, for example.
More later.
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Stuff I use all the freakin' time in Daz


Just for entertainment, here's a list of some of the digital models and resources that I regularly rely on in my art:
Tune in later when I start figuring out the fun stuff, like what clothes I use most often. This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1650457.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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I've finally approximated something close to Jareth's usual expression, which is about one-third playful, one-third fabulous and one-third off-the-wall. Hey, I even threw some lights in there! You don't know how much of an accomplishment it is to finally have him able to stick out his tongue.
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 ...with Barbie and all her friends because, for the most part, it manages to balance light humor at no one's expense with slapstick and clever in-jokes. Midge as snorting, safety-obsessed introvert who talks like the 1950s also cracks me up -- and she's so cute when she appears in Smidge of Midge in greyscale!

I also really like Ken, who ultimately ends up being portrayed as just another character who happens to be Barbie's boyfriend, rather than the major plot motor and deus ex machina of the series. He's goofy and utterly devoted to Barbie ["Barbie sense...tingling..."] and supremely confident enough in his masculinity to invent a super-sophisticated closet for all his girlfriend's clothes. In other words, rather than having gay panic over activities often coded as queer, Ken does IT, back-end programming for the Super Style Squad [actually saying, "Beep boop bop," with Skipper as they hit buttons ^_^ ]. In other words, I can't tell you how happy I am to see a cartoon where all the characters, male and female, take fashion, style, clothing, etc., etc., etc., seriously, and no one shits on it for being trivially feminine. That's actually kind of revolutionary.

Life in the Dreamhouse would be even better if it ditched its racism and ableism. For example:
  • The cast needs more POC in significant speaking roles besides Nikki.
  • While we're discussing Nikki, she needs to develop a modicum of personality beyond Sassy Black Friend. For God's sake, she even does the head jerks and vocal fry so routinely associated with this stereotype. Everyone else has some interest or trait to differentiate them [Teresa's monkey, Midge's macrame, Summer's high energy, Skipper's use of gadgets, Ryan's really bad songs], but Nikki has nothing.
  • Furthermore, the show needs to stop using Afros as a visual shorthand for disastrous hairdos. When all characters have shiny, sleek, straight hair and curly, kinky, gravity-defying clouds of natural locks are depicted as the ridiculous punchlines to jokes, people with such curly, kinky hair are derided by extension.
  • The ableism needs to go too. Any use of "lame" as an adjective meaning "bad quality, boring, uninteresting, etc." should be scratched from the script pronto. Ditto for any appearance of "crazy" for "wild, unusual, strange, exciting" or "cray cray" for same. Just cut it out.
  • In terms of additions, I think that Life in the Dreamhouse would be greatly improved by the appearance of Becky, a photographer friend of Barbie who uses a wheelchair. I mean, c'mon -- if they can devote the air time to a running gag on the inadequate single elevator in the Dreamhouse, surely they can devote an episode to its upgrade and Barbie and Becky's happiness when Becky can finally get to the second floor to see her super-awesome closet, right?
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1649981.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Isabel finally learns her interlocutor’s name and his problem with the world.
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Isabel learns that it’s a difficult proposition to find brains to eat, especially if you have to beg. Read more...Collapse ) This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1649468.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

...then I'd be about as happy as Jareth is now.
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Now I want hamburgers.


Exnem over at Renderosity makes the most realistic and versatile digital food I've seen. Witness the Amazing Super Burger Pack, which, with a 55% off [!] sale + my Render Rewards, set me back a whopping  $3.53. Cleverly done and beautifully sculpted and textured, this is a wonderful product. And now I want a burger. This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1648992.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Daz documentation STINKS.


Every day I learn how to do something new in Daz Studio, but no thanks to the rudimentary documentation supplied on the Web site. Daz Studio Pro 4.6 contains some very useful and powerful tools and little to no instruction on how to use them. Thus most of the cool features are hiding, unused, in the menus.

Today, for example, I learned that Daz can convert textures between UV sets. In plain English, this means that textures made for one character model can be converted to another character model. This is great 'cause I still use Victoria 4 textures for my main characters, even though my base figure for everybody is G2F [Genesis 2 Female, who is 2 generations newer than V4]. I also have some M4 [Michael 4] and K4 [Kids 4] textures that cooperated automatically with G1 [Genesis 1, 1 generation removed from V4 and friends], but which will not automatically cooperate with G2F. I should be able to convert them over to either G2F UVs or V5 UVs, which G2F can read automatically.

I also need to see if I can convert Jareth's texture from V4 to V5 so I can use draagonstorm's Instant Rainbow of Makeup, which is a hell of a lot easier than making makeup in Elements and manually applying it.

Funny how my desire to accurately render Jareth drives my adoption of new technology in the doll and digital worlds... :p This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1648837.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Isabel Forrest meets a homeless zombie PWS.
 

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Degendering romantic behavior in Queen songs


I've been listening to Classic Queen on heavy rotation for the past few days. After grossing out about my favorite songs with stalking in them, I am pleased to note that, at least on this album, Queen avoids that trope. In fact, their lyrics even bend the gendered norms in some cases, describing romantic experiences of one gender in terms usually reserved for another.

Example 1: One Year of Love. The singer says, "It's always a rainy day without you / I'm a prisoner of love inside you / I'm falling apart all around you / And all I can do is surrender to your love." Assuming that this is a man singing to a woman [hooray for heteronormativity -_- ], this is very unusual language for the masculine narrator. The typical masculine experience of love involves pursuit, penetration and conquering. The singer, however, describes imprisonment, dissolution and submission -- traits much more commonly associated with the feminine experience of love.

Example 2: Tie Your Mother Down. At the end of the song, after urging the listener to get her family members out of the way so that she and the singer can screw, the singer says, "Give me all your love tonight / Give me every inch of your love." In the vast majority of rock songs sung by dudes, if there's "love" with any dimensions associated, it just means "penis." [See Not Fade Away by Buddy Holly: "My love's penis is bigger than a Cadillac / I try to show it, but you drive me back." Just stop stalking her already!] Therefore the attribution of a quantified love to the singer's [presumed female], is unusual. The feminine action of loving is described in more masculine terms. I have no grand conclusion, especially not based on these two examples, but they sure make me like Queen even more! This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1648248.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Stop singing about stalking!


I realize that a bunch of songs by my favorite artists are about stalking. For example, Love Is Strong by the Rolling Stones. "A glimpse of you / Is all it took / A stranger's glance / It got me hooked..." Mick Jagger sings, then detailing how he follows the woman for vast distances. For another example, Hungry Like the Wolf by Duran Duran. "Burn through the ground / Break from the crowd / I'm on the hunt; I'm after you..." Duran Duran sings. In the second example, the man is literally chasing the woman, trying to run her down. She's trying to escape, probably in fear for her life, if not her safety, and it's a poppy, upbeat New Wave hit!

Stalking songs disturb me differently than domestic violence songs [e.g., the Rolling Stones' Under My Thumb or There She Goes by the Velvet Underground]. In the domestic violence songs I listen to, the abuse is framed as part of a dysfunctional relationship. Somehow this lets me critique it more effectively. In stalking songs, though, the abuse appears as an acceptable behavior in the context of a two-way, loving relationship. This is false on two counts because a) it's an unacceptable behavior in any context and b) there's no two-way, much less loving, relationship in the stalking songs. It's an entirely imaginary relationship based on misogynist objectification. The singers of stalking songs seem so wrapped up in their own little worlds that they are more impervious to critique.

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1647926.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

One expression changes everything.


Here's Jareth. On the left, usual wear. On the right, draggin' it up. Same person, same pose. All that differs, beyond outfit, hair and makeup, is the expression. But what a difference!
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Isabel Forrest, warrior against bigotry and inaccuracy everywhere, takes on anti-zombie media and passersby.

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The perfect silly cyborg set for Dawn!


I downloaded Hivewire3D's Dawn because she was free and I wanted her odd bouffant/ponytail hair. I didn't play much with the figure and quickly left her for G1 and eventually G2F, now my preferred base. For BlackRain and SixthSense's new RuntimeDNA release, B.L.U. XR-512, however, I would either reinstall Dawn or just invest in EvilInnocence's CrossDresser to convert it to V4 and then autofit to G2F. I think I should just spring for CrossDresser -- free base program, $9.97 license to convert from any supported figure to V4 -- because it might crunch some clothes better than Wardrobe Wizard.

I probably need a tag for "robots" at this point...

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1647129.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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3-D printed 1:6 scale crutches: education


I just signed up to attend a free orientation at Blu-Bin tomorrow, which will give me the necessary information about their policies, parameters and products! After reading a mediocre Meetup.com review, I'm not expecting miracles, but at least I should come away knowing what file types Blu-Bin accepts, the different properties of their printed plastic, how they scale models correctly and the general cost of items.

I just got a few more ideas for things to make besides forearm crutches:
  • single-footed canes
  • four-footed canes
  • white canes [for visually impaired people]
  • below-the-knee prostheses
  • below-the-elbow prostheses
I would really like to create one of the old-fashioned below-the-elbow prostheses with a functional forked hook, but that would require finding a hook. A below-the-knee prosthesis would probably be easier, since it wouldn't be articulated at the end.

The possibilities are exciting!



This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1646914.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

New faceups for fairies


Decided last night to take the colors from Flower's skirt and use them as a palette for his new faceup. Pink! Magenta! Possibly some reddish purple! With accents in lime green [color of his eyes]! I find the pink/purple/lime combination a wonderful one. I may add some swirly viny lines too...

Also decided last night that Polly's faceup will feature predominantly turquoise, with accents in white and navy blue. There will also be a lot of dots, for example, forming her eyebrows and maybe coming up and out like bubbles from the outer edges of her eyes. 

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1646711.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

 The new Dragon Keeper for V4 outfit hits all my aesthetic buttons. Well, except for pinkness and sparklitude, but I can add those. The feathered cape looks like the larger sibling of AprilYSH's Calais Ruff, seen below looking fabulous on my standard model:
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I decided to make forearm crutches for Brandeis because her cane ain't the appropriate height. Also, as it's very lightweight, it falls over and does not bear weight.

First, I acquired a protractor from Wikipedia. I then acquired a representative photo of a forearm crutch in profile. Then I overlaid the protractor on the picture of the crutch to determine the major angles involved in its construction.

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Andrea linked me to an auction that included a pair of Power Team forearm crutches. I thought I might bid on it, but it turns out that the shipping alone would be $20.00. :p I really want more 1:6 scale mobility aids, but that price is a little steep.

This morning I realized that I have a knowledge of what actual crutches look like, a 3-D modeling program and a local 3-D printing shop, Blu-Bin. I can make my own crutches!

Here's my plan: I'll use the modeling app to create the crutches themselves, with their specific -15 degree bends at the top and their handrests at the appropriate position. The crutches will be longer at both ends than necessary so that I can cut them to fit the various heights of my dolls. The forearm cuffs I will make separately out of wire, ribbon or some flexible material and then glue on later.

This project requires no precise, symmetrical bending of wire or steel rods, as my early iterations of the walker did. I only need to do basic 3-D modeling with some cylinder primitives, then hack and glue. I'm an expert manipulator of primitives, rotary tools and glue guns, so I think that this project will probably be simpler than the walker.

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1645971.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

This weekend I added a death's head to Isabel's bag, which becomes a plot point later in the prologue. I just printed out this design [a vector of a design element, used with permission from Gravestone Artwear] on a color printer, glued it to another sheet of paper to give it more rigidity, then used Mod Podge to attach it to the flap of the bag. Not bad for an eminently lazy execution.

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This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1645601.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

...Soom comes out with Saule, a Faery Legend who's part willow tree. His ear attachments look like twigs, while his lower legs look like roots. His wings have the appearance of weeping willow branches. Too bad those wings are so heavy and unwieldy that I find them impractical to use.

Contemplating the purchase of Saule, I realize that I need to give Flower another faceup, since he's done being Mackenzie. I also need to finish Polly. And Yamarrah's also in pieces.

EDIT: Saule would be a superb base for the dryad concept I had exactly a year ago.
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1645413.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Mad Mazzy Mickle Goes Looking for Love


I think I have enough skillz now to render the three main characters from my fictional cult classic film, if not their highly specialized vehicles. Now if I could just find the poster I drew a few years ago....

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1645073.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Smashing!: Jareth's latest outfit


Earlier today I mentioned Jareth in the same entry as various theatrically costumed rock stars from the mid-1970s. I think David Bowie, Freddie Mercury and probably Adam Ant [though not from the 1970s] would approve of the get-up below.
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This is not an Awkward Stock Photo!


Okay, so she's in her underwear on a skateboard with no protective gear. That's awkward. Other than that, though, this is a wonderful shot with an amazing-looking model who is clearly having fun. What's not to love?

I don't know why Shutterstock labels this as "Funny Overweight Woman Skateboarding." Why is this photo amusing? Because she's in her underwear? Because she's having fun? Because she's fat? And why do the keywords include "fatty," "funny people," "crazy" and "humor?"

Oh those hilarious fat people, thinking they can enjoy themselves! They should know that they're supposed to be miserably ashamed of their disgusting flab and that they should go around completely covered in heavy, shapeless drapery all the time so that no one else has to see their grossness. Seriously...any fatty who thinks that anyone wants to see them in their underwear clearly has a mental illness.
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1644656.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Janna surprised me a few days ago with a hardcover reissue of A.C.H. Smith's novelization of Labyrinth, [re]published at the end of April. This version contains the same novelization text as the original 1986 paperback, but omits the insert of color stills. It does, however, contain previously unpublished goblin drawings by Brian Froud, as well as pages from Jim Henson's journals, in which he jotted notes about his original conception for Labyrinth in 1983.

I care nothing for the novelization, as it's indifferently written, but the supplemental material intrigues me. I'm most interested in Jim Henson's notes, which I haven't cracked yet, except for a brief glance, during which I caught the phrase "Goblin King = death?" That made me think back to the afterword of the 20th anniversary edition of Brian Froud's book of conceptual drawings, Goblins of Labyrinth, in which he envisions Jareth "with the worms of death eating through his armor." I haven't been able to forget that image, so I'm curious to see how Henson wanted to develop it. I also wonder exactly which fairy tale Froud's referring to. This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1644358.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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...with flame fringe on the kirtle sleeves and bellbottoms, not to mention the neckline that plunges somewhere into the region of the crotch. That certain type of person is Freddie Mercury.

On the other hand, if you're looking for someone to wear a striped vinyl jumpsuit with integrated platform shoes and a similar neckline, you're looking for David Bowie.

And if you're looking for someone whose idea of smashing constitutes a purple Rococo pompadour, a feathered ruff, skin-tight pants and thigh-high ballet boots, just hang in there -- I'm rendering him tonight. :p 

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1644274.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Now watching Queen's Legendary concert from 1975, I see Freddie Mercury playing air guitar with his mike stand, just like he was 10 years later, during Live Aid. Even rock stars can't resist the power of the air guitar 'cause it's so damn cool! :D

Fabulous costumes!!!!!!!!
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1643866.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

I'm just here for Freddie Mercury.


While watching the music video for We Will Rock You, I can't help but notice the difference between Freddie Mercury's moves and those of the rest of the band. Though the guitarist does get his groove on during the solo at the end, most of the band just stand there stiffly, moving no more than necessary. Meanwhile Freddie Mercury is performing in inimitable Freddie Mercury fashion.

I was going to compare him to my usual referents -- you know, Ivan Doroschuk, Mick Jagger, Tim Curry -- but I really can't because he's in a league of his own. Ivan Doroschuk moves, but he does more flailing and bouncing. Mick Jagger and Tim Curry make faces, but I don't think of them as so completely self-possessed as Freddie Mercury. He demonstrates absolute control in every expression and motion of his limbs: a combination of fluid precision and sheer joy of motion.  Kind of like Shirley Bassey or Lesley Gore. And his voice is incredible. The more I think about it, the more apt a comparison is between Freddie Mercury and Shirley Bassey -- both fabulous performers with stunningly powerful voices and charismatic stage presences whose love for what they do so clearly shines through in every word they sing. This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1643608.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Peter Dinklage sums up Game of Thrones in 45 seconds with an Eddie Izzard-like silliness. This just makes him even hotter! This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1643444.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Atomic Age lingerie!


Do you know how hard it is to find a digital version of one of those pointy bras from the middle of the last century? I thought I wouldn't have any trouble, as this style appears popular with people who do "pinup," "vintage" or "retro" renders. Using these terms, along with "bra" and "lingerie," brought me nothing but a lot of girdles and garter belts. Hooray for girdles and garter belts [great band name!], but they're not what I was looking for.

Further poking around ["1940s lingerie Daz Studio," "1950s lingerie Daz Studio"] revealed that the magical search term was "bullet bra." Using the magic phrase, I came up with outoftouch's X14 Revenge for V4, which will do nicely for my purposes.

I have to wonder about the term "bullet bra," though. Is that really what people called it back then? I mean, I always thought they looked more like rocket cones. Either way, I find it fascinating how the aerodynamic, long and curvy look gained popularity not only in vehicular style, architecture and furniture, but also in clothing. Perhaps World War II and the ensuing arms race gave people weapons on the brain, affecting their sense of style so that, slowly and subtly, everything started to look like bullets, bombs, missiles, rockets and satellites. From today's perspective, we think look up the aesthetic as a set of cool design elements, but it arguably represents a generation's deep-seated and thoroughly legitimate fear that they were going to do themselves in with their own technology.

This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1643171.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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Everyone's getting older and/or fatter! ^_^


I just scored Zev0's Aging Morphs 2 for G2F on 60% off sale, which allows me to realize a long-held dream: old and/or fat digital people! Some of the morphs provide effects of aging, while others change the distribution of weight on the face. I'm gonna make everyone fat and wrinkly now!

..Well, except for Jareth. He's not fat [not in his usual form anyway]. Aging, yes. Fat, no. But digital me and Jennifer and Allyson and and Felicia and Fay and Win, plus any other mini universe denizens I develop, plus all characters for Intellectum, are gaining fats and signs of aging. Now my digital populations can start to look like my doll populations!

This is gonna be so much fun!
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1642862.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

Zombieville Prologue 1: "The Goth"


A year and seven months in the making, Zombieville finally debuts today! Thrill to the epic tale of Isabel Forrest, your average sarcastic feminist, as she turns into a flesh-eating weirdo and adjusts to life on the edge of death.

Isabel Forrest walks through downtown Burlington, Vermont, while providing audience participation on an egregiously inaccurate magazine article.

Read more...Collapse ) This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1642676.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

I made this mini universe story this weekend just so I could have a chance to make this pun. Well, I also did want to use my new Montespan Interior Scene and Jareth's fabulous Baroque outfit. Anyway, enjoy.

Note: Jareth is reading the third in the 50 Shades Trilogy. All the faces he makes come directly from my own reactions, although, in my case, there was a lot more yelling at the book. :p
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This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1642387.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

I got my first chance of trying to make a humanoid digital model into statuary when I make my digital replica of Story's Angel of Grief. This was before I discovered the utility of shaders, so I created a seamless marble texture tile and laborious applied it to the angel's body, hair, wings and dress, as well as her plinth.

Then Muusa The Myth, a character package and set for V4 by Forbidden Whispers, FWDesign and Daz, appeared on deep discount. It contains a fully human texture, a full stone texture and various textures to represent the character in the process of enstonement. The set, of course, contains a platform to stick her on after transforming her. I used the stone texture and my go-to texture for digital people, RBSD Merchant Base by rebelmommy and shellyw, to create a more stepwise progression on enstonement, thanks to the help of my limited Photoshop Elements skills. I really enjoyed myself, and I'm now trying to apply these skills to another set of stepwise transformation textures -- this time, a tree. What type of tree depends on what type of tree I can find locally to scan bark and leaves from.

Anyway, back to statues. Now I have my own Ingenious Rock Shaders by JGreenlees/Daz, so I can make statues of people [and gravestones] without manual application of my own texture tiles. Whoo hoo!

I also just found this hilarious product in the Daz store: Canary3D's Sculptural Genesis Ultra Fun Kit. It's a kit of Daz shaders, full-body poses, hand poses, objects to hold and objects to stand on -- all to aid in the creation of humanoid statues based on Genesis figures. The great number of material shaders alone make this worth the price, even if I weren't going to use it for statues. The wonderful details -- like the conforming fig leaf to stick in the statue's crotch and the shades so that one can make figures into lamps -- move the package from merely cool to must-have.

Yeah...like I need more humanoids in my runtime...
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1642003.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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ASL music videos


Queer interpretation of Gotye's Somebody That I Used to Know. The facial expressions and acting make it all clear here -- person 1 is a whiny, self-entitled creep, and person 2 is liberated upon ridding their life of them.

Solo interpretation of Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody...with bonus translation in notes. Performer's facial expressions and body language during guitar solos show how much fun he's having!

Both of these translations illustrate how putting a song into a different language change transfigure and enhance it
This entry was originally posted at http://modernwizard.dreamwidth.org/1641748.html. You can comment here, but I'd prefer it if you'd comment on my DW using OpenID.

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