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Exposer and closer of the extrinsically infistulated.
#21706 · 1
· on Talk to Transponer

“Ill Lit by Moonlight. Into the Weeds!”

“Riding the Storm Out Until the End of the Sky, A Place in the Sun.”

“When What’s Strange is too Familiar, Do Your Best!”

“No Magic; Big Oof. Overtime Ain’t No Sunshine.”

“Not the Whole Truth; The Fate of the World is Definitely Not at Stake.”

“When The Wall Came Down, It’s What’s on the Inside That Counts; An economically sound amount of napalm to burn All the Treasures of the Earth…”

“Geometric Casa de Papelot.”

“A New Sun Rises. Have you ever seen a grown mare naked?”

“Take a Trot on the Wild Side; The Friends We Made Along The Way…”
#21678 ·
· on Whose who?
>>Rocket Lawn Chair, >>Pascoite. >>Bachiavellian. >>Caliaponia

Who’s Whoming Whom?

The prompt did naturally suggest Changelings. I considered the cliched “x is secretly a changeling” motif, and thought it might be amusing to ring the changes on the phrase, so to speak. It would also provide authors with a lot of potential hooks.

I chose some characters and sketched it quickly in the downtime on working on advanced magic. Thorax is upside down partly because his body would be too distracting were it drawn behind the signs the others are holding. :)

Thanks for the great comments!
#21677 · 3
· on Any Sufficiently Advanced Magic
>>Pascoite, >>Rocket Lawn Chair, >>Not_A_Hat, >>Pascoite, >>Bachiavellian, >>Caliaponia, >>Not_A_Hat

Sufficiently Advanced Kitbashing

Thanks for the shiny! There was a lot of good art in this round, so earning a medal wasn’t easy.

This is a photo, albeit one that has been massaged in Photoshop. Everything in the image is a real object.The moon, planet and rim of the sun are made from Sculpey. The background is black paper, with sparkly spangles on it for the stars.

I considered making the Solar Mechanism from Sculpey as well, but decided to use instead an assemblage of found objects. I used to love kit-bashing, the practice of combining parts of several model kits to create new forms, and this woke up a part of my brain that I haven’t used in a long time.

>>Not_A_Hat was right about the cable ties - well spotted! They are of black plastic, and after bending them into shape, I used a gold Sharpie to color the highlights. Other parts used included (spoilered if you want to try to guess after looking at the closeup images):

A Burger King ashtray, wire nuts, plastic shelf supports, wire sculpting mesh, half of a bronzed plastic caster, cassette tape reels, various round or spiky bits from old hard drives, gears from old toys, etc.

Here’s a box of similar parts that I didn’t use.

This is all mostly stuck together with haste and double sided automotive tape. I cut a hole in the center of the rare antique ashtray to let the red light from the sun shine through, and this creates the inner glow visible through the mesh. the shadow on the sun is an error I didn’t spot as I rushed to make a clean image I could post.

A glass hemisphere with rim, that was once a light bulb cover in an oven, served as the base for the sun and helped light to shine through the whole thing. I backlit the sun later with a cheap LED light.

Having created all this, I then had to photograph it, and I had a miserable time with the unorthodox lighting and keeping everything in focus. With the deadline closing in, I wound up combining the best images in Photoshop and color correcting them there.

Thanks again, and see you all next round!
#21667 ·
· on I'm Not Asleep · >>CoffeeMinion
You won't know when
I go to sleep
Cause I'm not tired

This is a subtle piece that needs attention to pick out the details. At first, I had trouble. It might actually help to widen the aperture of sight a bit, or shrink the subject. Part of my mental processing got diverted by trying to figure out exactly what parts of the subject are in the picture, and it may help to play with what's shown and perhaps to improve the contrast with the bed clothes.
I am classing this as an upper tier effort. Good job, Artist.
#21666 ·
· on , or even half of it
Ah, if you'd only filled the image area with an AI generated pony, we'd have wound up with the visual analogue of Transponer.

As it stands, this is an amusing and effectively low effort piece. I'll be giving the higher ranks on my slate to works that took more original effort, but thanks for creating it, Artificer.
#21664 ·
· on Smoke and Mirrors · >>Rocket Lawn Chair
I have no serious critical remarks to add (Shy could maybe use some more contrast in her shading), so let me join the praise; this is a lovely piece, skilled in conception and execution, that will take top ranks. Thank you for creating it, Artist.
#21590 · 1
· on Talk to Transponer · >>Meridian_Prime
This seems to be a case of someone letting a machine write their entry for them. This is bad, either way.

Author, if you did let a script write a story for you, only bothering to wrap it in a few framing sentences to excuse its “AIness,” then what’s the point of reading it?

If you wrote the story from scratch to be intentionally random and meaningless just like a AI-generated story, then you did it too well, there’s no sense of knowing commentary, and again we must ask, what’s the point?

I’m not passing judgement on generated stories altogether; even Burroughs did it with the tools he had at the time. But there should be an aware mind somewhere in the process, picking out and enhancing the good bits, cropping out the gibberish, making sure it will repay honest interest to read the thing. Otherwise, you’re just letting the paint dribble onto the canvas without even a Pollockian fillip to justify it.

Bottom slater for me.
#21588 · 3
I didn’t expect it, but I’m in. Excelsior!
#21570 · 8
Vote elsewise, and have mercy on the Ottists.


#21568 · 7
· · >>Rocket Lawn Chair
Start grinding your inks and sharpening your brushes…
#21566 · 1
· on Darkness
This piece is right at the edge of visibility on many screens, but when you don't have access to the display in which your work will be viewed, it's often tough to call.

The grainy effect on the highlights gives them a harsh feel. The figure seems ready to slip back into the darkness and disappear forever, which is thematically appropriate. I'd be interested to see it without the pen lines, which perhaps detract with their detail.

I'll call this an upper tier piece. Thanks for creating it, Artist!
#21545 · 2
· on Red Letter Night
>>Anon Y Mous, >>Bachiavellian

[ducking the dramaz]

Red Letter Night

Thanks for the great comments!

For historical interest, this was the concept sketch. I wound up altering the character designs on the fly as I drew the next (and final) version.

Sometimes, an artist will run out of room on a piece of paper because they didn’t plan carefully. Often, you can just tape on another piece of paper and keep drawing. (R. Crumb’s rule of thumb for artists: “Anything that works!”)

This was drawn with charcoal pencil, with regular pencil used for the book titles. I scanned the drawing in sections, pieced them together in Photoshop, removed the join lines, and colored the page and ink.

The book titles make reference to the authors John Collier and Fredric Brown. It’s likely that no one notices the easter eggs I include in things, but I enjoy hiding them anyway.

See you next round!
#21522 ·
· on Creation Takes Too Long
>>Bachiavellian, >>Ratlab, >>Monokeras, >>scifipony

Creation Takes Too Long

My main point of departure with this was considering the Book of Genesis, which most scholars agree is several inconsistent creation stories mashed together. I thought of trying to reconcile the second chapter with the events of the first, and from this the Stooge Trinity developed. It helped that I have painted a certain notorious Ral Partha miniature called the Three-Headed Troll…

Thanks to all who enjoyed and reviewed it!

I don’t think this counts as a stereotypical “Adam and Eve” story. I am clearly talking about the events of the Book of Genesis from the start and am not trying to spring a concealed-identity surprise at the ending, though maybe giving a different etymology for his name.
#21520 ·
· on Spoiler
Okay. Here we have the perennial question: It’s funny, but is it art?

It’s certainly an amusing comment on its source story, so I do give it points for that. But I keep being reminded of Truman Capote’s quip on the work of Kerouac and other Beat writers: “That’s not writing, that’s typing.”

Art demands a certain minimum of effort and care to convey an idea; graffiti becomes art when it’s more than just letters hastily scribbled on a wall. And this is only scrawled letters. If you lack drawing skill altogether, Contributor, you could still try to locate clipart and compose a scene. But this entry / joke could just have easily also been a comment left on the story, with no loss from conversion to text or gain from rendering in graphic form.

The circumstances of this round constrict the placement of your work in my slate. To put you in my voting list at all puts you at the top of it. Hence, I am abstaining. I’ll hope to see a more serious effort from you next time.
#21500 · 2
A bit late, but here’s the proem for this round:

“Grave Misgivings. My City Was Gone!”

“Liminal. Zeroth World Problems.”

“Inconceivable! How Dare You?”

“A Taste of Monotony? No Such Thing as an Unimportant Day.”

“Whatever… the least popular prompt is Ot.”

“I Can’t Believe Ot!”

“Definition of Me: A Picture’s Worth.”

“Do not Go Gentle into That Good Night Of Mice and Men; It Could Be Heaven or It Could Be Hell.”

“Don’t Let Go. Ot Err is Human.”

#21497 · 3
I’ve arted once again...
#21458 · 6
I am in!
#21450 · 2
· · >>Anon Y Mous
That's such a great idea. The problem (apart from the obvious) is that single entries break the site's finals calculations and you win nothing. Check the art round results in the last She-Ra round to see what I mean. (It may also be that no one voted, so no medal got awarded.) (Retracted; it's been fixed. Thanks, Roger!)
#21447 · 11
· · >>MLPmatthewl419
Down streets turned ashen in the early light, he wandered, wisps of fog curling and skittering around his ankles. Around him were dimly lit windows, each with a hunched figure bent over a table, scribbling or typing furiously.

His own hands bore blank sheets of paper.

He stared about. It wasn’t so much, he thought. Only four hundred, at the most seven hundred and fifty. Why was it so hard for him, always so hard? Some could write a tale about, say, that piece of filth in the gutter and make it work somehow. They knew how to engage the crowd, and the subject wasn’t important to them.

But he needed something more, and something that hadn’t been already written and rewritten, full of scraped holes like an old palimpsest. He cast his eyes to the remote hills, untouched by sun and as gray as his heart felt. Somewhere in the remote streets, a horse whickered. None of it was of any use. He would have to give it up this time.

His shoulders fell, and he turned, and there it was. A tattered poster, somehow catching more light than its surroundings. A woman in a red dress, dashing through a field. Something might have been pursuing her. What expression was that, on her haunting face?

He recalled that one café, the scent of jonquils on the breeze, the laugh that made his heart pause… There had to be some angle there he could use. He sat on the curb, spread his papers on his knees, and the vision poured out of him, scrawled roughly across the pages. He ignored the cold, the sharp hard stones beneath him, his hunger and thirst, as he lost himself in the flow of precious words.

He breezed through the beginning, the words spilling onto the paper as if already contained in his pen, but now the work began in earnest, and all his skill was needed to shape the emerging paragraphs to contain his intent. He left one difficult phrase behind and moved on. There was too much inside him, fighting to be recorded and preserved, and the beautiful thoughts were often the most fleeting, like dream fragments reluctant to be remembered or caught.

But he was fully captured by it now, and would not be stopped. He felt the crescendo approaching and started weaving his themes back together, finding a beautiful simile that captured the expression of that woman’s face on the poster. As the sun rose over the hills and the fog rose in lazy feline curls and the buildings were outlined in orange fire, he rushed against time, and finally he felt it all closing under his hands. That one metaphor was perfect, and he could feel the punch of the final line.

He drew a sharp breath, shivered, and stood on weak legs. There was just time to post it if he hurried.

As he ran, he read the crumpled pages, then shuddered in dismay.

He’d done it. His tale deserved a medal.

But sadly, he had a picture’s worth.
#21438 ·
· on Dream Reaper
A sleek take on one of the story’s most striking visuals. Another member of the prestigious Moon-is-a-lot-closer-than-the-stars-and-goes-in-front club, though in a magical universe like MLP I suppose the stars could wind up just about anywhere. Gorgeous work on the starry background, and a wink to the “Horsehead Nebula” which I see that you did there. Extra credit for the looped scythe handles that a sapient horse might actually be able to use. This will neatly fill the only remaining spot on my slate.
#21437 · 1
· on Goodnight Moon · >>Anon Y Mous
Exquisite, elegant, curvaceous and non salacious. The moonscythe looks rather uncomfortable to use, but art is not always supposed to be comforting. Kudos for keeping the stars behind the moon. This will go to the top of my slate.
#21436 · 1
· on Comprehensive Responsibility
Thanks for the memery, dude. You are getting last rank for using some sort of advanced graphics program for meming, you meemy. The pros use MS Paint and always will.
#21361 · 3
I am not likely to take part in the writing phase. I’ll consider drawing something.
#21358 · 3
Just throw your vote to “On The Wings of a Dream”. If you’ve been plucked, all you have are dream wings. It’s close enough to be justifiable.
#21357 · 6
Keep North Through the Mud, Cosmos Mariner—Destination Unknown. No Time to Think, Away We Go, One Step at a Time!

My City Was Gone On The Wings of a Dream. The Real Me, Never Every Time.

Daredevil, Settling an Old Score Greater Than Friendship. Unfinished Business?

Jack of Spades, Queen of Hearts, Ot, Lock, Stock, and Barrel.

Shoutouts to Simpleflips: The Virgin Twilight vs The Chad Starlight, Gluing All the Leaves Back on the Trees. Save Some for the Rest of Us!
Paging WIP