art · dolls · nintendo

Doll Pageants

One of my better pageant entries.
Miss National Pageant during January 2005.
Base by 2Pixel.

Way back in the Dark Ages, I had the time and inclination to enter a lot of doll contests. Emphasis on a lot.
I really enjoyed entering pageants, back when they hosted on a person’s personal website and consisted of three dolls to be submitted at the same time. And there was only one judge.

A lot sure has changed since then.

Until this year, I had never really gotten into the current style of pageants. I was already moving away from entering contests and didn’t seem to find any pageants that inspired me. But also I had less time to do art and couldn’t really commit to something that was running over multiple months. The fact that everyone seems to use Moe-style bases was also a bit of a put-off. All the dolls looked the same.

This year is different. I’m competing in two pageants. Which is stupid because I’ll miss some of the rounds. But I guess that is a good thing too because it has increased my productivity.

The Lazy Man’s Pageant. Base by dilli-dalli.

The Lazy Man’s Pageant really appealed to me because it was giving small dolls some love and no Moe were allowed (although, if people had saved mini-Moe bases saved to their computers…). The second round, steampunk, almost put me off entering as that does not inspire me at all (and I think it is my weakest doll of the set). And the third round was a secret so who knew if that would inspire me or not (cross-dressing so that wasn’t too bad).
It was fun to make but I think this shows why pageants don’t suit me. I didn’t work on the dolls at the same time (I couldn’t if I wanted to because of that secret theme) and there are little inconsistencies that are bugging me. I could not for the life of me draw the glasses for the right-facing pose. The degree of shadow is different from doll to doll and the I didn’t limit the palette as much as I could have (60 colours, excluding transparency). I do like these dolls but on the whole, I feel a bit disappointed.

All this playing Pokemon primed me to be inspired by the Ladies of Pokemon Pageant. And this base set just seems to suit perfectly (although the feet on the second doll gave me a bit of grief).

Ladies of Pokemon Pageant. Base by Zipple.

I chose Lapras as my pokemon because he was my favourite when I played Yellow. My Lapras was called Pal and together we were unstoppable. The elites had no chance against us. Such a large pokemon dictacted my shading. It was either tool-shaded or a more simplistic cartoony style. I went with more cartoony since it fits the game better.

I’m really glad that I worked on these entries together. I had a lot of trouble making the palette consistent between the dolls and had to go back and change a few shades as I went. I managed to get the colour count down to 44 (excluding transparency), which I am really pleased with.
I know I don’t have to work with a restricted palette but I like the challenge and feel very satisfied at the end of it.

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