red_satin_doll: (Buffy Helpless A Father's Love TRGM)
And back from my perpetual AWOL-ery....

Tonight is the deadline to vote in Round 17!

Don't forget there are three posts for voting: Themes, Category Sets, and AC Sets;

There are only 14 - 16 votes cast so far in each post (there are always people who miss one, it seems), and for the most part I pretty much agree with how the vote is going; there are no egregious errors, no "wtf, people?"

The one exception is that I am surprised that the Content theme isn't more evenly spread; I thought that was one of the most difficult to decide among. (I confess  I really like [livejournal.com profile] debris4spike's Bangel icon from What's My Line? The "medieval" stained glass background is so richly and intensely colored, in contrast to the relative neutrals of Buffy and Angel's skin, hair and clothes. The dark shadows cutting across Buffy's torso and around the figures give them depth and solidity in contrast to the flat background, but the shadows also link the figures visually to the leading in the stained glass. It's a deceptively simple little icon but there's a lot of "there there" the more I look at it.

And don't even get me started on [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy's beautifully subtle Faith AC set.

Some of of my icons are doing fairly well and I confess that makes me happy; after so many gen icon sets, doing a Buffy set was like a homecoming.  When I was making the icons I had a "concept" for the AC set and put a lot of energy into it, but ironically the Category set, which I spent relatively less time on, is doing better, as it should. I think it came out more interesting and it's one of the better Category sets I've done.
red_satin_doll: (Kendra the Vampire Slayer What's My Line)
Voting for Challenge 66 of [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness is up right NOW - and once again I have been absolutely abysmal at participation lately. (Which is dumb because I have all sorts of flower textures and imagery that I could have drawn on.) But if I didn't enter I can at least vote and encourage y'all to to do the same.

And voting for Round 17 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20 is also up NOW, and this one I did participate in, with delays. And I have to say I'm pretty happy with my set. It's not showy, the icons are more "naturalistic" but I'm happy with how they came out. But I think "naturalistic" is a pretty good description of the entries overall by [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri, [livejournal.com profile] emmatheslayer, [livejournal.com profile] vanishingspirit and [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy .The icons are "subtle" and "unshowy" in the best way, because it really forced me to stop and look at them, to pay attention to the details. And I love that. There's a lot of "there there" but you're not being stabbed in the eye with it.  No desperate "Look at me, look at me!" but rather an assured, "Oh, there you are. Yes, come in."

Don't forget there are three separate voting posts: 10 THEMES, CATEGORY SETS, and ARTISTS CHOICE SET


Question: Is it weird that I am willing to pimp the heck out of voting for icontests here (even ones I don't participate in) but never got onto LJ once to promote voting for La'Porsha Renae in American Idol?  I did that on facebook and it was like, I wanted to keep my fandoms separate? Or - I don't know. It was a learning experience. I never watched the show before and thank god it's over, I wouldn't want to do that again. Sheesh. The partisanship, the anger, the racial and sexual slurs, the nonsensical rationalizations...it all made buffyverse fan wars feel like a cakewalk in comparison.

PS to
[livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip : I see you over there voting!  *lol*
red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
* Thank you to the voters at [livejournal.com profile] actress_ic Challenge 111 for voting my Lillian Gish icon Best Crop, and congratulations to the other winners [livejournal.com profile] erinm_4600, [livejournal.com profile] dragonydreams, [livejournal.com profile] vampgirl_nisha, [livejournal.com profile] ciuciuvaraworld, [livejournal.com profile] sandy79 and [livejournal.com profile] mops1980! This is my first time entering this icontest and it's very encouraging.
Thanks as ever to my darling beta-Muse [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip for her input. My entries this round are dedicated to her because of our shared love of silent films; and she requested the Alice Joyce icon, introducing me to an actress I'd never heard of before.

1-4 are my entries, 5-6 the alts. 1, 2 & 5: Lillian Gish; 5: Dorothy Mackaill; 4, 6: Alice Joyce
lilliangishicon3b_actressic_jan2016_RSD.png    lilliangishicon2a2_actressic_jan2016_RSD.png dorothymackaill_icon1c_actressicjan2016_RSD.png alicejoyceicon2a5_actressic2016RSD.png      lilliangishicon1b_actressic_jan2016_RSD.png alicejoyceicon2c1_actressic2016RSD.png 1  - 6
Winner, Best Crop

Resources: "Frames" on 1 - 3 by [livejournal.com profile] scoobyatemysnax;  floral prints on 4 -6 by [livejournal.com profile] colorfilter.

Speaking of betas, the final slate of nominations for Round 11 of rwsawards have been posted and THANK YOU to the darling person who surprised me with a Best Beta nomination!  I understand these awards are judged (rather than popular vote) and thank goodness; becaus I can find so many of my favorite fics of the last year in any given category, I'd be paralyzed with indecision. I don't envy the judges one bit; the nominations slate is a Who's Who of some of the very best writers and artists in Buffyverse fandom right now. I'd name off all my friends who have been nominated but we'd be here all day so, trust, you're better off checking it out for yourself.

ETA: I forgot to mention that there's a tiebreaker post for [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness for Challenge 61 going on right now. Oops. ( I shall have to go harrass poor [livejournal.com profile] feliciacraft.)

A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ Icons with blank space can be personalized upon request.
~ If you wish to personalize because you have PS and more font or fx options than I do, by all means please ask first.
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.
red_satin_doll: (Max Max Furiosa b/w anguish blend)
Feb 3rd is the deadline to send nominations to [livejournal.com profile] darkgoddessgege for Round 11 of  the [livejournal.com profile] rwsawards, so it's your last chance to nominate your favorite authors and artists in buffyverse and SPN fandom.  Check out the list of current nominees here.

I noticed that at the moment there is only nomination in the "My Marker" (best beta) category, [livejournal.com profile] foxstarreh. It's possible that there are other nominations pending in that category but if you have a muse who has shaped your work to be the best it can be, by all means give them a little love with a nomination. Betas are unsung heros, serving as muses, editors, collaborators, teachers, sounding boards, task masters and selection committees.

I wanted to nominate [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip in this category for all the work she does as a beta for my icons and artwork, but she has already maxed out on the number of nominations she can receive. As well she should. But it's worth pointing out that art betas are just as eligible to be nominated in this category as writing betas. (And yes, I have confirmed that with [livejournal.com profile] darkgoddessgege.) I am well-nigh certain that I'm not the only person using a beta-muse for help with my artwork because all artists (visual artists, writers, etc) need feedback. Art doesn't exist in a vacuum.
red_satin_doll: (Ms Miller OOMOOS btvs S1)
Or, the evolution of my New Year's greetings:
1) Here's to a happy new year!
           2) It has to be better than last year?
3) Let's hope it doesn't suck.

On the other hand: Viola Davis is looking F-A-B-U-L-O-U-S on the cover of InStyle Magazine.  It had this cover by Jan Welters at the doctor's office instead of the newstand version; and it looks more like the cover of Vogue circa 1977 than InStyle. I normally wouldn't line the bottom of a birdcage with that rag, but DAMN, that photoshoot. That woman.
******
Moving on.......It's been a while since I did a good old-fashioned promo post isn't it? [livejournal.com profile] fassy is starting an new icontest comm and is seeking a mod or two to help run it. (There is already one volunteer but I imagine back-up can't hurt. And for the record, I saw Star Wars (the original of course) in the theater back in 19-mumblety-something, so I am still not used to seeing the name "JJ Abrams" in the same sentence with Star Wars.(Given the nightmare f**kfest that was the "prequels", I think I can learn to deal.)



Speaking of icontests:

* [livejournal.com profile] whedon_elite: Icons for Challenge 135, "Red Hair" are due Sunday, January 24th by 3 pm EST. Make sure to scroll down the page and check out
the fabulous entries already submitted by [livejournal.com profile] harlequinss_s, [livejournal.com profile] teragramm, [livejournal.com profile] all_malocks, [livejournal.com profile] dixon, [livejournal.com profile] emmatheslayer and [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri. And I do mean "fabulous"; everybody's brought their A-game. At least in this little corner of the world 2016 is off to a roaring start.


* [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness: Challenge 61, "Reach Out and Touch Somebody" open for entries now through Friday Jan 29 midnight at your time zone.


* [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20: Voting is open for Round 15 NOW through Friday January 22nd. Be sure to cast your votes for THEMES, CATEGORY, and ARTIST'S CHOICE.

Make sure to click ALL the buttons before you're done, and if you have any questions, don't be afraid to ask the mods. There are about -19-20 votes cast right now which is super but more would be great! I don't think we've ever hit at least 30 votes in a given round but I always think "ok this is the round..." (Back to the Optimist vs Realist conundrum and in my heart I always want the Optimist to win out.)

And because you've made it this far here are some lovely parting gifts: alts and extras from Round 15 plus new alts/ extras from Round 13. I also have a thinky thought or two along the way:


Teasers:     


Round 13, "The Pack"

    1 - 3


      4 - 7

Crossovers with the movie "Possession" starring SMG.

Round 15: (Buffy-heavy at first. Of course. This is me, this is my brain on the Buffyverse.)
             8 - 14
            15 - 21

    
              22 - 28
After I cleaned the cap up I finally saw that the picture on locker behind Buffy is vintage comic book art, possibly a blow-/print of a Roy Lichtenstein piece, with the SDHS "Razorbacks" pennant covering the eyes of a pretty blonde woman in the picture. Meta commentary on the storyline or just an inside joke?  The fact that we see Cordy blindfolded later and no one can "see" Marcy Ross suggests either reading is possible. It seems to coincidental to be a, well, a coincidence.
         29 - 34


          35 - 40

        41 - 45
The flashbacks in the episode look great as screencaps but they're hard to work with; they're overlit as opposed to the rest of the early seasons material, which tends to be underlit.

      46 - 49
Also, I need to take some tutorials on working with skin tones for people of color, especially dark tones and not turn beautiful deep browns into weird shades of orange-red, or flat black. (We've just acquired PS btw, so I'm still fumbling along in ipiccy.)  #49: for the theme "green" I thought, well, I'll just tint the entire icon to go with the chalkboard behind her. Except that it doesn't look very good. Green skin? Usually associated with sickness or aliens? I should have known better. Plus, "black" skin reacts differently to tinting than "white" skin does.*
   
But it's the second association that bothers me. Our culture has a nearly long history of excluding black characters and actors from science fiction, horror and fantasy in literature, film and tv, except as background filler or literal "space aliens", demons and monsters. People of color as people just did not exist, with count-on-one-hand exceptions.

This may be changing now, I guess - slowly - but this is the reality I grew up with and "it's starting to get better" (by whatever yardstick you want to measure "better") doesn't undo decades of absence. So it just makes me uncomfortable, even if I don't "mean anything by it", I'd rather not go in that direction.**




*    I realize I'm still using phrases like "black" and "white" that were au courant when I was growing up...in the 1970's and '80's.
** Using my personal comfort as the yardstick here is arguably problematic.


*****
A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ Icons with blank space can be personalized upon request, they are not "bases". If you wish to personalize because you have PS and more font or fx options
   than I do, by all means ask.
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.
red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
And to celebrate a very special, generous, kind, supportive, incredibly talented person who is a dear friend, a superb beta-Muse and dedicated to her craft, cover art for [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip's fic, Civilian (Willow, Riley) plus icons.

She just posted the banner itself here along with links to other fabulous birthday presents she received. (Such as [livejournal.com profile] angelskuuipo's fabulous Joyce/Angel fic "Hello From the Other Side" which has an absolutely brilliant "Why didn't I think of that? Why didn't anyone think of that?" premise that already has my imagining rewriting the entire canon to accomodate it. But I digress:)


Poster for Civilian v.1 (2016); shown full-size 650x500 pixels. Click image to go to [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip's story.
Final version cover art for Civilian by Velvetwhip made for her birthday Jan 14 2016 story link http://velvetwhip.livejournal.com/1625058.html DO NOT TAKE


More banners and icons after the cut.
Icons here are snaggable, the posters are not.

Alt versions 2 & 3 (reduced, click for full-size)
v. 2 cover art for Civilian by Velvetwhip made for her birthday Jan 14 2016 story link http://velvetwhip.livejournal.com/1625058.html DO NOT TAKE     v. 3 cover art for Civilian by Velvetwhip made for her birthday Jan 14 2016 story link http://velvetwhip.livejournal.com/1625058.html DO NOT TAKE

Icons 4 10:
Riley Finn icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Riley Finn icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Riley Finn icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Riley Finn icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Riley Finn and Tara Maclay icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Tara Maclay icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016 Willow Rosenberg icon from cover art for Civilian btvs fanfiction by velvetwhip made Jan 13 2016


I've wanted to make a poster for this story ever since I read it in June 2014; a general concept came to mind but I lacked the know-how to make it come together. I made an icon for the story last spring for Gabrielle using the same photo of Blucas. I really love that picture so surprisingly that was the easy part of the poster. The hard part was - everything else. I always knew I wanted "ghostly" images of Buffy and Tara hovering around Riley and WIllow because Civilian is a metaphorical (not literal in Buffy's case) ghost story; Willow and Riley's lives have been affected and are still shaped by the memories of their past lovers. Riley is a bit more melancholy here than in the story itself but the image means to imply the Riley that's hinted at offscreen more than him in the present moment.

Finding the right photo of Aly was the single element that held this project up the longest.  The story takes place ten years after Chosen so I didn't want to use a photo from the series; I wanted something with gravitas as befitted the story and Willow's frame of mind, but I couldn't find one that had the right look for Aly and was of sufficient quality to work with. For someone with two major long-time tv series and several movies under her belt, she's incredibly hard to find photos for that fit the bill. I still haven't come across a fansite for her with a decent photo gallery. (Excluding sites like popSugar, etc.) She either tends to be photographed smiling or the few photos/screencaps I could find with the right mood were mediocre quality. The shot I ended up using is a cap from season 9 of HIMYM.

Resources: Photo of Marc Blucas via The Chosen Two (can also be found at Marc Blucas Source), photographer unknown. BtVS screencaps from Leave Me The White and Bloodqueen. Optical flares (light textures) on poster #3 by daWIIZ (Bessamer Azemi) on DeviantArt.



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :) Posters 1-3 NOT snaggable.
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.


red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
I'm really pleased with how these two participation banners for [livejournal.com profile] hermionesparkle and [livejournal.com profile] xoheartinohioxo in Round 76 of [livejournal.com profile] character20n20 turned out:


character20n20round76participationbannerjanuary2016byRSD_hermionesparkle_400x295.png   character20n20round76participationbannerjanuary2016byRSD_xoheartinohioxo_400x295.png
Banners by me, shown full size. Icons by their respective makers.

Thank you [livejournal.com profile] setentpet for the assignment!  These came together surprisingly quickly today but I wasn't sure of the design until I overlaid the music sheet graphic over the Victorian card from The Graphics Fairy. I generally am dissatisfied with how text looks in my designs but I'm pleased with this  - I think the text here looks like it could be original to the card.

If you haven't checked out the winners, btw, you really must because they are stunning.

These were the only two people to ask for banners, which happened last round as well - check out [livejournal.com profile] sandy79's glowing, luminous banners for Round 75and how beautifully they compliment the light effects in the icons themselves. I'm always suprised more folks at the comm don't ask for banners but my love of pretty banners is well-documented.  (If I could frame the ones I've received and hang them on the wall I would, trust.)

And I gotta wonder - why don't more people ask for banners? I'm genuinely curious and clueless on this count, so what say you Gentle Reader?
red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
And for my very last fandom award and icon challenge of 2015 it's only fitting that the marvelous [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper made the banner:

Banner by tempertemper for slayerstillness on LJ Dec 2015 - my last award of 2015


My Entries & Alts:


        1 - 5
My original intent was to only use caps amoung the examples Starry provided; it didn't quite end up that way. Nor did I recall planning on making them so consistent color-wise.  I did want to use unsual or rarely used caps as much as possible and I think I succeeded, especially with the two images from Where the Wild Things Are. The girlish pigtails bely the fact that she is someone who possesses a great deal of power and knowledge passed on by her mother and the women of her family. Tara's own power and knowledge are terribly underplayed after S4 and this is something I will never be happy about. Because it ends up being a double-whammy of the show's "issues with powerful women".

   6 - 12
If I could resubmit these, I'd switch out #6 for #5; the rest I'm satisfied with.

You know the drill:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.

red_satin_doll: (Buffy Katniss gift from Fassy)
To celebrate her 10th anniversary as an icon artist, [livejournal.com profile] fassy offered to make icons for a certain number of folks, and I was lucky enough to be the last person to make the deadline for requests.  I asked for Buffy and/or Katniss (two of my favorite fictional ladies).  I loved Catching Fire (the movie) and felt that Katniss was Buffy's spiritual heir.*

THANK YOU THANK YOU SO MUCH! I adore these!
All icons below by [livejournal.com profile] fassy / [livejournal.com profile] destruction_box ;  #1 - 4 not snaggable.
    1 - 4
All the icons have now been posted at her graphics comm [livejournal.com profile] destruction_box. Check out all 156 gems. Icons # 1- 4 are the ones she made especially for me and I LOVE them.  I wasn't very specific about what I wanted; apparently I mentioned a maternal vibe (see the "spiritual heir" comment above)? She went with that, but in such a way that 1 & 2 are very open to interpretation. The vibe I get could be read as parallels, as mirrors; as sisters, even in a romantic sense, if one wanted to.  I love the light, the glow and the softness of all 4 of these.  The way Fassy balances softness with sharpness to avoid a hard, aritificial, hyperrrealistic quality is stunning. I love the warm/cool color balance in #2. And with 3 & 4, I'm an absolute sucker for work that can make monochrome palettes glow. And you know my love of sepia tones and effects.


#1 - 4 are not snaggable; but 5 - 7 are; I couldn't resist snagging these alts as well:

  5 - 7


* Close, loving and fiercely loyal relationship with a younger sister who is really smart and cool in her own right? Check. Willing to die for said sister? Check. Skilled fighter? Check? Emotionally traumatized reluctant warrior who "soldiers on" regardless because she is needed? Check. Frequent thoughts of running away from her duty? Check. Uncomfortable relationship with a "sister warrior" who is far more comfortable with her own sexuality, the dark to the protagonist's light? Check. In the middle of a romantic triangle/quadrangle? Check. Turning against the patriarchial institution that tries to control her? Check. Am I forgetting anything?

P.S.: I haven't read the books, but I'm not bothered by spoilers.

P.S.S: For the record I'm actually a Katniss/Finnick shipper. I mean, their tension was off the charts in Catching Fire (the movie) and reminded me of a certain Slayer her bleached blond vampire lover.  Ok, I know Finnick marries Annie - but there's still something of Spike in his devotion to the women in his life, particularly his "mother/mentor", as well as his bad boy persona that's just a cover for a heart of gold.

Whereas Peeta is kind of Riley - the decent guy who is the "college" romance, as opposed to the childhood sweetheart (Angel/Gale.) Ok, it's not perfect match but close enough. It's inspiration, not a carbon copy.
red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
"Third Wheel" (Buffy/Angel, Darla/Angel) is Glassdarkly (aka [livejournal.com profile] shapinglight)'s entry in the 2015 IWRY Marathon, and inspired an art binge.

These banners in turn provided the inspiration for my icon set in [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness Challenge 57.

This is the second story by [livejournal.com profile] shapinglight I've made posters for; the first being posters for Casablanca, for Round 19 of [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy.

Teasers: Buffydarlablend2e_656x588RSD.png icon inspired by Third Wheel by Glassdarkly for 2015 IWRY Marathon Buffy_2x21_B1_007lmtw_blend5_298x401_RSD.png

Click to view full-size (except icon #9)

1 - 2) Buffydarlathirdwheelblend7c_705x669RSD.png   Buffy_2x21_B1_007lmtw_buffydarlablend2.2.1P__framed705x669RSD.png
705 x 669 each


3) Buffydarlablend2e_656x588RSD.png
665 x 588

Confession (and warning for Angel-unfriendly thoughts): A year ago I said I "couldn't" do Bangel art. I've already proven myself wrong on that count, but I think it's significant that the primary power dynamic in this story - or at least the most intereting one to me - is not Buffy/Angel, or Darla/Angel but Buffy and Darla. I'm surprised by how few fics I've read draw on the parallels the series made between Buffy and Darla right from the opening scenes of WTTH (but then, I'm not a Bangel shipper so it may well be that there's more out there than I realize.)


If anything, the least interesting aspect of "Third Wheel" is, for me, Angel himself. He's a - well, a bit of a mope, and frankly just a little self-centered. (HIs first response to Buffy's nightmarish dilemma - and it is horrifying for both Buffy and Darla - is violence, then brooding and tears, as if he were the one most affected, not she. But to be fair, he does rally and prove himself to be the better man at the end.) Sometimes I have a hard time understanding why two such interesting, clever, powerful women as Buffy and Darla were drawn to him.


"Third Wheel" actually reminds me that I'm really not sure I ship Buffy with any of her canon lovers; it also adds weight to the argument that Darla, not Buffy, is Angel's "true love".

Without (hopefully) giving too much away, [livejournal.com profile] shapinglight's description of how the situation initially affects Darla reminds me of how it feels when I feel an epileptic seizure coming on, and I love how that specificity of feeling, and the precision of her language and the details, give the weight and substance of "realism" to a fantastical story.

Lobby cards:

4 - 5 )   Buffy_2x21_B1_007lmtw_blend4_300x388_RSD.png             Buffy_2x21_B1_007lmtw_blend5_298x401_RSD.png
                                                388 x 300                                                                        298 x 401


6 - 8 below are what I consider the "alt" versions (which sounds a little nicer than "rejects" doesn't it?)

6) Buffy_darlanangelbecoming_2f_750x550_RSD.png
550 x 750



7 - 8) thirdwheelforglassdarklybecomingframed3a_600x552RSD.png thirdwheelforglassdarklybecomingearshotframed4_600x552RSD.png
      600 x 552 each


9) icon inspired by Third Wheel by Glassdarkly for 2015 IWRY Marathon
And of course, an icon to go with.



Sources:
The background textile in #1, 2 & 7 a detail of an 18th Century bodice in the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute.
Vintage card "frame" in #7 & 8 courtesy of the Graphics Fairy.
Black filigree layer in #4 by [livejournal.com profile] scoobyatemysnax for [livejournal.com profile] burnedbreads
Check out my Resources post for screencap sources.
Regretfully, I've forgotten the original source of the gold frame in #1, 2 & 5.

********************************************

A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.


red_satin_doll: (Buffy Casablanca Poster v1 poppy wreath)
This special 10th anniversary round of [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy was the first time I'd actively participated with regular posts; [livejournal.com profile] teragramm made special banners for all participants and customized this one for me. THANK YOU!

If you haven't had a chance to catch my three posts for Round 19, find them in the master list under "artwork" along with all the fabulous stories and artwork this round.

seasonalspuffyrsd_participationbanner10thanniversary2015byteragramm.jpg
********************

Thank you for the Best Crop Award at challenge 56 of [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness and thank you [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper for the beautiful banner!

Teasers:

banner by tempertemper nov 2015

  1- 2



***************
Thank you to Challenge 57 voters for Most Creative Award (a category I don't score very often so I consider it quite the desirable prize indeed), and thank you [livejournal.com profile] starry_night for the Mod's Choice Award!  The Dara in Becoming / Buffy in Halloween icons were all inspired by [livejournal.com profile] shapinglight's entry for the 2015 [livejournal.com profile] iwry_marathon , "Third Wheel". The costume Ethan supplies Buffy has somewhat different effects than in canon, linking Buffy and Darla telepathically across the centuries. Banners for this round by yours truly; vintage dancer image, and floral "frame" in icon #6, from The Graphics Fairy.


  ss57awardbanner_MC2a_rsd_v2ballerina_400x300_RSD.png    ss57awardbanner_MC2rsd_v2ballerina_400x300_RSD.png

  3 - 7

  8 - 11

12 - 16
17 - 22

Fun fact: when I looked very closely at the screencap of Angel's sketch of a lady in "Halloween", the text next to her reads, as best as I can decipher, "Sarah Goodfriend."  I've often wondered if the drawing was a actually a portrait of one of his victims.
***********************
My awards for Round 14 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20; thank you for everyone who voted for my work!  Congratuations to [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri and [livejournal.com profile] gabby227 for their wins; their awards banners as well as all the winning entries can be seen here and here respectively. Banners by yours truly. For the background images I used my personal photos of New England skyscapes in a nod to this round's "In the Clouds" theme.

rsdnumbersbanner1.png rsdenemybanner1.png


This is the third time I've won the gold medal for Category set, so it's a nice way to end the year.  The Numbers icon is one of my favorites of this set, so I'm pleased and proud that the voters honored it.
1stplacecategoryiconRSD.png 2ndplacecategoryiconRSD.png


2ndplaceACiconbannerRSD.png

I love the subtly and understatement of [livejournal.com profile] gabby227's Faith icon, the way the softness of the light and coloring compliment the tenderness of the character's expression; bonus points for using an image I've not seen in an icon before.

 



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.

red_satin_doll: (Vamp!Buffy Nightmares RSD)
My set for Round 14 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20.
Beta'd by the fantabulous [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip
Thanks to [livejournal.com profile] bangel_4e for allowing me a small extension due to illness.





Teasers:









10 Themes
Desperate In the Clouds Enemy Handwritten Nose Down
Negative Space Numbers Safe Circle Kiss*
5 Category |HORROR
Cat 1 Cat 2 Cat 3 Cat 4 Cat 5
5 Artist's Choice
AC 1 AC 2 AC 3 AC 4 AC 5




* There was no "kiss" in the episode so I used the next best thing.

The Cordy icons were some of the most challenging and interesting to do, partly because I hadn't planned on making any Cordy icons when I started. Her fear is played entirely for laughs in the episode, hah-hah, vain, self-conscious, socially-aware girl is terrified of being a nerd on the chess team who wears frumpy clothes and has "ugly" hair. Hah hah.

Well, not so funny when you consider what the loss of social status would actually mean (as we will see in Season 3, when she's left isolated by both the Scoobies and the Cordettes); not so funny when you consider the fact that she's been raised in a culture where a woman's self-worth is traditionally rooted in the kind of husband she is able to "catch", and her appearance is her main tool or weapon in pursuit of a husband.

And not so funny when you consider the racial implications of how smooth, silky, manageable hair is prized over curly or "kinky" hair. The "right" kind of hair is the kind that you see in the shampoo adverts; the wong kind is anything else, regardless of your race or ethnicity, although it's identified non-whites. Which is why I myself, as a white female, didn't appreciate my own thick, curly mane until I was well into my 20's, because it was the "wrong kind of hair" and ergo, the implication that something was fundamentally wrong with me. (Also not funny - catching said mane on the button of a professor's peacoat on the bus during a field trip.)

The more I looked at the images of Cordy, the more I also realized how well her fears reflected or paralleled those of the other characters and fit into the episode; and so I wanted to have one of her and the one of Vamp!Buffy touching her own face in the Category set.

Most of the nightmares can be catagorized as Appearance or Performance, regardless of the gender of the dreamer. So Xander shows up nearly nude in class, Cordy has ugly hair and clothes that mark her as a social outcast, Buffy is turned into a vampire (appearance); Billy is beaten nearly to death for disapppointing his coach, Willow is forced onstage to sing an opera she doesn't know and can't make a sound, Buffy's mind goes blank during a test, and Giles mourns at the sight of Buffy's grave (performance). But these two catagories often overlap, and so Buffy's failure to kill the Master (performance) leads to her becoming a vampire (appearance.)

For the AC set I originally wanted to do all Vamp!Buffy, but that felt like it would have been sort of copy-catting [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri's all-Buffy AC set.


Alts & Extras? But of course!

1 - 5

6 - 11
#11 was inspired by a comment I read at the AV Club Buffy rewatch three years ago: "Would you think I was weird if I said I think Joyce is kinda hot?"  And I thought, dude, I'd think you were were weird if you didn't think she was "hot". WTF? Because she's over the age of 30? GMAFB

12 - 16

17 - 21

22 - 25


26 - 31


32 - 37

  38 - 43


44 - 47 suitable for customization. The background of 46 47 puts me in mind of an AU plot where Buffy and Joyce are in Istanbul and Paris fighting monsters, having grand adventures and doing a little shopping along the way: The Incredible Summers Women World Tour. (Featuring Dawn as Watcher Junior, of course.)

  44 - 49

   50 - 55

56 - 60



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.
red_satin_doll: (The Pack Possession Crossover Poster RSD)
FINALwe129_1stplacebanner_sweet_lyri.png
Congratulations [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri, [livejournal.com profile] entwashian, and [livejournal.com profile] harlequinss_s on your wins in [livejournal.com profile] whedon_elite Challenge 129! Snag your banners here .

Final_1stplacecatsetbanner_SRQ.png FinalBMCv2_gabby227.png
Congratulations [livejournal.com profile] spikesredqueen, [livejournal.com profile] starry_night, [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri, [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy and [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper on your wins at Round 13 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20!  Banners here in the comments thread including my BMC to [livejournal.com profile] gabby227's oh-so-elegant Cordy icon. BMC was a really tough choice this time around because there were so many I would have loved to honor: [livejournal.com profile] starry_night's Wesley Icon, which I've already snagged, her Darla and her AC4 icons; [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri's clever Crossover icon, [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper's Cat 3 Amends icon, [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy's Sepia+Profile icon (that theme was one of my favorites overall). So many beautiful things this round.

And if I didn't single out [livejournal.com profile] spikesredqueen just now, it's because I'm well pleased that her icons were richly rewarded; her Category and AC sets in particular just rocked.

All banners by yours truly, icons by their respective artists. The background of the WE banner is based on a photograph I took in Old Lyme, CT a couple of weeks ago; I wanted the bright colors to contrast against the dark icons.  The background of the 20in20 banners is a photograph by Susan Murphy from her art studio blog that I adjusted, adding addtional grunge textures to it for a warmer overall look. I love framing effects but I also love the back sides of frames and pictures; I like to see how things are made. I wanted to subvert the normal expectation of a pretty frame by showing off the beauty of the flawed backside. The font is meant to appear to have been printed on the paper except for the artists' names; I imagined a space there that someone filled with a big fat marker or paint brush.
red_satin_doll: (The Pack Possession Crossover Poster RSD)



New icon challenge community! All are welcome. [livejournal.com profile] episodes20in20

Thank you [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy for starting this new comm! 31 people have signed up for this round (WOW); check out the entries submitted by [livejournal.com profile] gabby227, [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy and [livejournal.com profile] killing_kurare.

BTW, the deadline for entries is November 15th and the sign-up period is open all the way until then; you can still jump in and join the fun.

And be sure to add your answer to the banner poll and if you're interested, volunteer as a banner maker. I've volunteered and I'd love to see more people making awards banners. I love making them - they're fun but also challenging and I've learned a lot about digitial editing, layers, design, etc by making them. Practice, practice, practice. It gives me an opportunity to study the icons - and I often come to appreciate them more than I did during the voting process - and then there's the pleasure that comes when the recipients like their banners. Honestly, who doesn't like presents?
red_satin_doll: (Joyce/Angel btvs  Fairy Tales RSD)
But first things first: congratulations to [livejournal.com profile] boiiko for winning the banner competition for Round 19 of [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy - and deservedly so!  Her design is absolutely unique and although there were many lovely banners that round, this one deserved to be the winner. Very different to any previous winners and the perfect fit for the 10th anniversary round. Since I love it when artists talk about their process, I have to recommend her "making of" post.

Banner by Angelus2hot Nov 1 2015   Banner by Angelus2hot Nov 1 2015

Awards banners by [livejournal.com profile] angelus2hot

**********
THANK YOU to the judges of the [livejournal.com profile] wicked_awards, [livejournal.com profile] spankedbyspike and [livejournal.com profile] angelus2hot; winning a Wicked Award was something I wished for but didn't really expect to ever actually happen, so it was a total surprise when I got the news! Thank you for the beautiful awards banners and THANK YOU to the folks who nominated my icons, banners and wallpaper. I honestly do not know who nominated my work in three catagories and wish I could thank them properly. (Please feel free to out yourself/selves!)

Speaking of little birds, [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip (Gabrielle)'s Answering Prayers won Best Series (as well it should) and I could not be more pleased! (Her fic Easy also won Best Dark.)That my poster for it earned Runner-up Honors is just the icing on the cake, and is as much her award as mine, IMO, because her story was the inspiration. (That my poster earned Runner Up, and my icon first place, when I consider the competition, is truly special and extraordinary.)

I'm really tickled about that icon; I made it for [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness Challenge 47, "IWRY" a challenge I very nearly didn't enter because I'm not much of a Bangel shipper (or Angel fan), didn't submit my set until literally the last minute; but it's proved to be one of my winningest artworks. The Little Icon That Could.  :D

Congratulations to all the winners but most especially my friends (in the art categories): [livejournal.com profile] comlodge, [livejournal.com profile] chasingdemons, [livejournal.com profile] katekat1010 (her Giles banner is simply superb); [livejournal.com profile] snowpuppies; [livejournal.com profile] spikesredqueen; [livejournal.com profile] halliwell; [livejournal.com profile] debris4spike; [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri; [livejournal.com profile] sueworld2003; (in the video categories) [livejournal.com profile] double_dutchess; [livejournal.com profile] thedothatgirl; (in the fiction categories): [livejournal.com profile] punch_kicker15, s[[livejournal.com profile] the_moonmoth, [livejournal.com profile] spuffy_luvr, [livejournal.com profile] hello_spikey, [livejournal.com profile] aadler, [livejournal.com profile] beer_good_foamy, lion-hearted girl, [livejournal.com profile] snogged, [livejournal.com profile] shapinglight, [livejournal.com profile] dragonydreams,

Check out the entire winners' list here.
red_satin_doll: (Buffy OMWF Sing XCU RSD)

we128bannergenericwinners3.png



Click images below for full size or check out all the banners here. All banners by yours truly, 2015; icons by their respective artists.

we128_1stplacebanner_fassyFINAL.png we128_2ndplacetie_bannersweetlyriFINAL.png

The background image is from a photo I took this past weekend, when the clouds came down to meet the earth.

we128_BMCbanner_sandy_sFINAL.png
            sandy_s_we128_20237_900.gif Banner Maker's Choice: Beneath You animated icon by [livejournal.com profile] sandy_s As it turns out, ipiccy does not
                                                preserve the animation when I insert the icon as a layer, so the banner loses the full effect, alas. *pouts*



Most times, BMC is a tough choice for me but not this round.  THIS is a motion picture in miniature, the meat of the entire episode, of Buffy and Spike in S7, summed up in just a few images. It's evocative, emotional, tells a story, and is also beautifully made with rich deep blacks and a range of velvety grey tones.

Above all else it reminds me what fascinated and troubled me about those two characters, why I loved them when it was me myself and experiencing their arc three years ago; before I became aware of fandom and controversies and the did-she's/didn't she's.  In other words, it's about love.  (And bonus points from this Buffy-fan, it doesn't exclude her in order to prioritize him.)

If this is Sandy's warm-up act for [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy, then bring it on, I say.

My entries: All these images are from the Pack; screencaps mostly from Bloodqueen and Screencapped.net. (The Xander icon is almost certainly from Screencapped.)
1 - 3

Alts:
4 - 7

Speaking of [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy, have you voted for your favorite banner for Round 19 yet? And if not, why not?  (Unless you don't ship the pairing, in which case, carry on.)
FYI I'll be away from the computer for the next 4 - 5 days so I won't be around to keep reminding you; ergo, mark it on your calender, kids, and I'll see you around the bend.



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.




red_satin_doll: (Spuffy Hands Listening to Fear RSD)
For which there is no good excuse - especially since I'll be away from the 'puter from Wednesday night onward. And there is much to see, much to do, much to promote! So let's get cracking:

Banner by Tempertemper Oct 2015
Banner by [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper Oct 2015



First off, THANK YOU very much to the voters at [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness for awarding my Buffy/DMP icon Best Crop in Round 54 and thank you [livejournal.com profile] tempertemper for the pretty pretty banner to go with! And congratulations to [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri, [livejournal.com profile] crazycordy and [livejournal.com profile] emmatheslayer for your wins this round!  The theme was "Roy G Biv" and we could submit up to 7 entries, one for each color of the rainbow (hence TT's clever banner design. As per usual I love her font choices here.)

 
My entries 1 - 7.  I was delighted when both 6 and 7 vied with one another in the Best Crop tiebreaker, but genuinely surprised that 7 led by a 2-1 margin. I would have voted for the vamp!Buffy icon myself.  Shows you what I know.


!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
[livejournal.com profile] whedon_elite: Vote for the best of the best out of 32 entries in Challenge 128 "Shades of Grey". Never mind that I haven't voted yet because I'm still making up my mind. (Did I mention there were 32 entries?) I've had a love affair with black and white photography going back decades, so this challenge is particularly pleasing to me - and what a stellar array of entries! (32, count 'em, 32.) Deadline for voting is sometime tomorrow (10/20) so don't delay on this one.


~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


[livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy: The banner poll for Round 18, celebrating the comm's 10th Anniversary, is up! (10 years? Can you dig that?) 16 wonderous entries to choose from. Oh such pretty, pretty things to choose from....! Fortunately you have about a week before the poll is up per [livejournal.com profile] teragramm - and can we have a big round of applause for her work on the comm as the Ambassador of Art? But that said, don't wait around until the last minute and then find yourself out of the loop, ok?  (Did I mention it's the 10th Anniversary?)

This banner poll makes me wish there were a friendly, comfy forum where folks could get together and talk about the banners or about making fanart in general - how they were made, the artists' thought processes, the thought processes of voters and constructive critiques. I'm genuinely curious about all of these things and I love to learn from other people. But I know that's difficult to impossible because - 1) I know from personal experience that giving and receiving constructive criticism is a tricksy thing and too few people are versed in the art; leading to the 2) ugly, ugly implosions 3) potential for hurt feelings all around, and finally  4) a lot of our reactions to visual arts are emotional, not intellectual, and fall along the lines of "...but I know what I like."

Thoughts, Gentle Reader?


**********************************

[livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20: Deadline for Round 13 is extended to Thursday, Oct 22. So if you have a last-minute jones to jump in, here's your chance. This is a very good thing because [livejournal.com profile] bangel_4e is back in the game and I wanna see her Buffy claim - and [livejournal.com profile] spikesredqueen's Willow claim. (For once I don't need an extension because I actually finished before the deadline - I think that's a first for me? Never mind that I pulled a few all-nighters *does exhausted happy dance*)



@@@@@@@@@@@@

If you haven't already voted in the Sunnydale Memorial Fanfiction Awards, you have until October 31st to do so! The list of nominees is long and illustrious and I WOULD NOT wait until the last minute if I were you.

And far be it from me to tell anyone what to vote for but I am more than happy to make suggestions and thus make your life easier (all of the below are safe for general audiences). The below list doesn't reflect everything I voted for by any means; these are simply some of my favorites.

Answering Prayers - [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip (Gabrielle) If you haven't discovered this story yet, you really do owe it to yourself.
Ipseity and Proud Trophies - [livejournal.com profile] spuffy_luvr
The Girls in Question - TigerDragon (AO3)
The Sound You Found For Me - [livejournal.com profile] punch_kicker15
red turns into green turns into yellow - lionheartedgirl (AO3)
In a Corner of My Soul - [livejournal.com profile] dragonyphoenix
Beautiful Butterflies - [livejournal.com profile] kikimay
Flight Patterns - [livejournal.com profile] eurydice72
Giles and the Mountain - [livejournal.com profile] rebcake
Undertow - faithtastic (AO3)
Somewhere Hot and Sharp and Shimmering - [livejournal.com profile] aliceinkinkland
Tricks are for Magicians - [livejournal.com profile] snogged

And now that you've immersed to overflowing in drama & angst here's some pure, unadulterated comedic fun:
Dirty Deeds - Imrryr (AO3)
blindr dot com, or, the importance of coconut-milk lattes to long-term success - antennapedia (AO3) I don't know this author, I don't ship B/G but this AU take is NOT to be missed.

Pretty much anything by the above-named authors, and also [livejournal.com profile] brutti_ma_buoni, [livejournal.com profile] rahirah, [livejournal.com profile] the_moonmoth and [livejournal.com profile] feliciacraft. My apologies to anyone I've overlooked or forgotten here.



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.

red_satin_doll: (Buffy Prophecy Girl Sunlight RSD)
My entries for Round 13 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20 - actually ahead of deadline!

Beta: The erudite, eloquent, extraordinary and irreplaceable [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip.
ETA:*Orange and Cat5 (Angel!Pig) reserved for Gabrielle and are NOT snaggable. Sorry.

   















10 Themes
Orange* Unusual Crop Truth Sepia+Profile Retro
Hot Crossover** Contrast Angry Yellow+Blue
5 Category |WHITE DECORATION
Cat 1 Cat 2 Cat 3 Cat 4 Cat 5*
5 Artist's Choice
AC 1** AC 2*** AC 3 AC 4 AC 5


Resources:
Screencaps and movie posters from Bloodqueen, Screencapped and SMG-France.
Textures by [livejournal.com profile] colorfilter, [livejournal.com profile] scoobyatemysnax and [livejournal.com profile] lookslikerain. Angel wing by Kyle Butler




Alts/extras:



   1 - 6


   7 - 13


    14 - 18


  19 - 23


 
I'd love to do this episode another round because there is SO much going on in this episode and so much fantastic imagery that I can't begin to cover it with one round. OTOH, I forgot how CREEPY this episode is, and how emotionally harrowing. REALLY creepy.

I tried as much as possible to emphasize the "victims" here, rather than the perpetrators; but also show how the victims fight back and resist victimization in their own ways. The moment depicting in the Truth icon when she sees through Hyena!Xander's facade ("Now I know") is one of my favorite Moments of Willow Badassery (TM). I remembered that Bob Flutie died terrified, eaten alive; I'd forgotten that before that he chased the pack down in a genuine rage because they killed the school mascot, and dragged them into his office, determined to put a stop to their rein of terror. Buffy manages to fight off Hyena!Xander if just barely escaping being raped or worse; then quips about it to Willow afterwards:

"He tried his hand at felony sexual assault...it's safe to say that in his animal state his idea of wooing doesn't involve a Yanni CD and a bottle of Chianti."

On a side note: it's interesting that in the episode that focuses on hierarchies and bullying in high school, Cordelia and the Cordettes are nowhere to be found. It's interesting to consider where she would have fallen on the food chain if she'd been in the episode. Was Charisma Carpenter unavailable the week they filmed that episode?

                                                                 ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

* Gabrielle has first dibs on the Orange and Cat5 (Angel!Pig) icons; these are NOT snaggable.

But all other are entirely snaggable or make suitable gifts *lol*. Please give proper credit and do not claim as your own; do not post to other websites or archives without asking first. Comments and feedback are always appreciated!

** Crossover, AC1, Alts 20 - 23: Possession starring Sarah-Michelle Gellar as a woman whose brother-in-law body may or may not contain the soul of her comatose husband after both brothers are involved in a car accident. Think a cut-rate version of Jonathan Glazier's flawed masterpiece, Birth (2003).

***Crossover, AC2: Scream2 featuring SMG in a small role as the trope Buffy is meant to subvert: the helpless blond girl in the alley (or in this case, sorority house). Watching "Buffy" crying and begging for her life while being chased by a psychopathic killer is surprisingly unpleasant, btw. (Just saying.)




red_satin_doll: (Faith heart frame RSD)
** Deadline for submissions to [livejournal.com profile] slayerstillness Challenge 54 "Roy G Biv" is today Friday Oct 9th midnight at your timezone. For this
    challenge we may submit up to seven icons rather than the usual five, one for each color in the rainbow. There are 31 entries so far and I love
    the theme so I'm expecting a real humdinger of a contest.

** Breaking news: The deadline for the banner contest for Round 19 of [livejournal.com profile] seasonal_spuffy has been EXTENDED one week to Sunday Oct
    18th (PST).
Which means that anyone who said they wouldn't entering due to lack of time? Here's your chance. It's also a great opportunity to
    PROMOTE the upcoming comm so by all means reblog, retumble, tell your friends, whatever it is the kids do nowadays.

A word to the wise: Don't make the mistake I made the last time and submit more than one banner and end up competing against yourself. One of those first time-y novice mistakes.(In my own defense...I'm awful at making decisions I did not yet have the most amazing wonderful erudite Muse-Goddess [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip in my corner at the time. Now I do, and my life is all the better.)

Speaking of last round, I never did post the banners and icons I made for Round 18's competition:

1

Spuffy Hand Banner  v.1 - 3 (2015). 750x300

All banners on this post by yours truly. Click the images below to view full-size:




spuffyhandsbanner750x300PGoM1.png   fave_spuffyhandbannerfinishwhatwestarted.png    2 - 3


Spuffy Hand Banner (what else could I possibly title it? I think that says it all) is still one of my favorite and, I dare say, best things I've made yet. I was nervous about entering the round because it's difficult for me to express my views on Buffy&Spike. How in the world could I encapsulate my complex feelings for two insanely, deliciously complex characters in a single banner? But this is IT for me in terms of my feelings for the pairing. I was determined to avoid using the flaming handfasting in Chosen because I've seen it used so often in fanart, but I wanted to depict Spuffy hand imagery and I couldn't not use it. There's "iconic" and then there's beyond "iconic". Know what I mean?

For this particular project I got a lot of my inspiration from the music I was listening to at the time. The lyrics in this banner are from "Flaws" performed by Bastille (Writer: Daniel Smith Copyright: Wwkd Ltd.) The backdrop is one or two of my sweetheart's photos of - you guessed it - a New England autumn sunset that's come in handy so many times before and since. In this instance I used it as a backdrop then I layered it over the screencaps a second time, turned in a different direction to "fill the gaps" and create continuity across the image. Then I used Sharpen, Glow and various other filters to make the caps look less photographic and more painterly.


The cap from Listening to Fear was the most difficult to adjust in terms of brightness and contrast because that scene is so damn dark. Layering on the cloudscapes was pretty much a necessity. It ended up being my favorite portion of the banner - the icon I made from it (#8 below) is still one of my all-time favorite icons I've made.


I entered both 1 & 2 to the contest; I have no idea what I was thinking. I also entered my first version of this design which was very bright, over-saturated, had a triangle in the center and was just a hot freakin' mess; I'll be damned if I'm going to repost it here. I have no idea what I was thinking.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Round 18 spring 2015 entry banner 7   Round 18 spring 2015 entry banner 2 lyrics by Bastille and Hozier  4 - 5
That Sad Earthly Scene v.1-2 (2015)  750x422 & 750x400
Figuring out sizing and proportion was something I was still strugling with at the time.


My second-favorite design. I was intrigued by the resemblance between the Normal Again and Beneath You images. Madness, insanity, depression, the damaged caused by experience and memory, by a life of violence, is another of my favorite themes when thinking about the Buffyverse although part of my interest lies in how Mutant Enemy sometimes gets it all wrong.


Add the handoff of the amulet from Chosen, an image of a shattered mirror by Lauren Elisabeth Photography, and stir. I was really pleased with how the images came together here. The place where their hands come together and the glow from the amulet just happened to fall pretty much in the center of the banner; and the fact that Spike's face seems to be tucked into or leaning against his own body from the later episode was pure serendipity. Lyrics on #5 from "Flaws" and "Take Me to Church" by Hozier. (Writer(s): Andrew Hozier Byrne. Copyright: The Evolving Music Company Limited)
#4 was preferred by the voters in  the poll over 5 by a slight margin; I think the voters were right but I really do love both versions for different reasons and go back and forth as to which is "best" - probably six of one, half a dozen of the other. Once again I submitted both versions to the poll. What in the world was I thinking at the time?
                                                                                   ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Round 18 spring 2015 entry banner 1 6
The Work I Have to Do (2015),  750x300
I wanted to compare Buffy's sacrifice in The Gift with Spike's in Chosen because they are after all parallel events. This is perfectly obvious and yet somehow doesn't get discussed all that much. Or when it does, it's in terms of a competition: this person's sacrifice was just "suicide" and therefore not really all that heroic compared to that person's sacrifice, blah blah bitty blah. Whatever.


The design turned out to be rather simple - the image of Buffy leaping into the exploding portal is well, a gift to the fan artist because it's such an incredible visual. Layer it with the image of Spike's soul "effulgent" in Chosen, add a Shine filter, balance warm and cool color layers and tah-dah! It just glows. Instead of song lyrics I used dialogue from The Gift and Chosen. Once again, the way that the lines in different fonts and colors intersect with one another ("This the work I have to do" / "I have to do this") was a very happy accident.


                                                                                     ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



round 18 spring 2015 entry banner 7 lyrics by Joseph King and Isaac Slade 7
How to Save a Life (2015), 532x512
This banner received zero entries in the poll - and it shouldn't have. This was the first banner I made for the round, and I was worried I wouldn't be able to make anything in time (hah); so I adapted the composition of the awards banner I made for [livejournal.com profile] oh_cheezit for Round 6 of [livejournal.com profile] btvsats20in20, using a different image of Spike. So it wasn't a strict cheat in the sense that yes, I had to go back to my original source images and make the whole thing from scratch; but I was ripping ("riffing"?) off my own work - and I did it better the first time.

Lyrics: "How to Save A Life" performed by The Fray (Writer(s): Joseph King, Isaac Slade Copyright: Aaron Edwards Publishing, Emi April Music Inc.)
                                                              ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Icons from the banners: I wish #9 had come out a bit better (there are superior icons of that image out there) but I was thrilled with how well #8 worked as an icon.
      8 - 11


                                                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
           12 - 16

12 - 16 is based off a banner idea I rejected; more The Gift/Chosen parallels. Good idea but the execute of the banner was a mess (to be polite), so I settled for an icon instead. I'd still like to return to the idea for a banner at some point. Dylan Thomas' poem seemed like a natural here. Light texture in #15 by [livejournal.com profile] colorfilter.

Check out my Resource post for some of my image sources.


A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.
red_satin_doll: (Spuffy Hands Listening to Fear RSD)
Congratulations to the winners of [livejournal.com profile] whedon_elite Challenge 127 "Close Crop" [livejournal.com profile] marishna, [livejournal.com profile] everythingshiny, [livejournal.com profile] sweet_lyri and [livejournal.com profile] sandy_s!  WE has gone from strength to strength in terms of themes and this was no exception; artists responded to the challenge with a remarkable batch of entries.  I love close-cropped icons so this was a little bit of heaven getting to work with them for the banners. Many thanks to my remarkable Muse-Goddess [livejournal.com profile] velvetwhip for her feedback:

we127_3rdplacebanner_marishna2.png
Banners by yours truly, icons by their respective creators, 2015.  See the winners here and all the entries here.
More banners and my icons after the cut:



we127_1stplacebanner_marishna2.png we127_2ndplacebanner_everythingshiny2.png we127_bestcolorbanner_everythingshiny2.png we127_modschoicebanner_crazycordy.png qwe127_BMCbanner_sandy_s.png
Click on the images above to see the banner full-size.

I awarded Banner Maker's Choice to [livejournal.com profile] sandy_s. I had a really tough time choosing among the entries for BMC but went with the FFL icon because of it's emotional intensity and focus, and the physicality of Buffy's tear and her skin.

For this banner I went back to the original photo of my landlord's yellow rose, cropped and altered it in ipiccy; added a reproduction antique wallpaper in the background because I liked the contrast between the genuine rose and the ones in the background (although even the real one looks astonishingly fake thanks to the softening and sepia filters.) I chose the color scheme in part because I thought it would compliment but not compete with the skin tones in the icons.

My entries - all icons snaggable, please credit:

Whedon Elite 127 Sept 2015 entry1 Whedon elite 127 sept 2015 entry2 whedon elite 127 sept 2015 entry3 1 - 3

Alts:

parkerbuffyharshlightofdayiconrsd2015_1.1a.png parkerbuffyharshlightofdayiconrsd2015_1.7.png parkerbuffyharshlightofdayiconrsd2015_1.3.png parkerbuffyharshlightofdayiconrsd2015_1.4.png theyokofactortarashandicon3.2_RSD.png tarahandicon1.2.png 4 - 9

Because everyone else focused on faces I decided to close-crop hands instead. Hand symbolism in the Buffyverse is one of my favorite subjects, but instead of the handfastings in Hush and Chosen I chose less famous or at least less frequently iconned images: Buffy and Parker in Harsh Light of Day, Willow and Tara's Grave in Help and Tara/Willow in The Yoko Factor.

Of alts my favorite is #9 and I wanted to use that one but decided it wasn't a close enough crop. It's a great, understated moment, aside from the creepily voyeuristic "Spike's POV when he realizes the girls are lovers and figures out a way to get under their skin and upset them to help Adam" of it. Or maybe that's part of the point, because it parallels a similar moment in This Year's Girl where Faith watches Buffy play with Riley's hands and comes to a similar conclusion. Those two moments also make the arguement that W/T is every bit as "legitimate" a relationship as B/R. (Which was important to establish in the hetereosexual landscape of American television at the time.)

#9 is my favorite alt but I decided it wasn't a close enough crop for the theme. I like the contrast between Tara's strong looking hand and delicate embroidery on her blouse, and the softness of Willow's hair and sweater.  I also think that of the Buffy/Parker icons I might prefer alt #4 to my first entry, but hindsight is 20/20 and all that jazz.



A Vague Disclaimer is No One's Friend:
~ DO NOT RE-POST TO OTHER SITES (INCL. FANPOP) OR LJ COMMUNITIES WITHOUT MY PERMISSION!
~ Take what  icons you like for personal use but please credit if used :)
~ No hotlinking!
~ Comments however are appreciated :)
~ All artwork by yours truly except where otherwise indicated.

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