Monday, May 26, 2008

New ladies, weird hairstyles, crazy caterpillars, etc

Ah, new Laini's Ladies complete. It's a small new collection that will debut at the summer gift shows. Just four ladies:

I made samples over the weekend; watched about 4 episodes of Lady Oscar while I cut them out. (Love that Lady Oscar! These episodes were all about the feud between Marie Antoinette and the Countess du Barry (mistress of the king) -- funny, French court intrigue, told in big-eyed anime. Lady Oscar herself scarcely features in these episodes, and there's hardly any swordplay at all.)

[Oh, heh, I got the new "School Visits" section of my website posted. It's HERE.]

Check it out:
In my ongoing quest for Laini's Ladies faces, I came across a site I've found before: Lunagirl Images. I'd never ordered their CDs because I thought copyright would be an issue, but I finally emailed them and asked and they granted me permission to use just faces from their photos. So I ordered a ton of CDs, and even bought some digital download collage pages, but then I didn't end up using any of them because none of the faces had quite the right look (from the downloads; I hadn't received the CDs yet). Laini's Ladies' faces need to have a certain joy or sweetness (usually), and the problem is that models don't tend to shoot for that look. More like: sultry, sexy, bored. NOT so Laini's Ladies-esque. I scrounge through a lot of photos to find a few smilers! I'm hopeful there will be a some on these CDs I can use, though.

And look at this:
It's a little set of vintage hairstyle cards sent to me by my friend Abigail. Isn't it awesome?? Of course, I couldn't resist trying some of the hairstyles on myself:
(That's a picture from my Mexico photo album. Yes, I am having a cookie for breakfast.) I tried some hair on this little boy, too:
Ha ha! So silly.

Since this is becoming a post of randomness, here is a photo I snapped while taking pictures of my new ladies. I made these dolls a few years ago:
I went through a brief obsession with making dolls with polyclay molded faces. These were the paperdoll-body versions. The one on the left says "ripe slice of person." I don't remember what that was about!

Random wrap-up:
Besides Laini's Ladies and Silksinger, which I'm fully back into with great zest, I have recently read Atonement (the movie was a strikingly faithful adaptation; I loved both), and then right after that, a really good, super-creepy ghost story called Heart-Shaped Box that my parents had given Jim for his birthday (along with a Spiderman Tshirt and season 2 of Veronica Mars). Now I'm reading a YA called Teach Me -- I just started it last night and I'm deeply into it. Instantly loved the character's voice and humor, and got so sucked into the story of a highschool girl in the aftermath of a passionate affair with her teacher. Girl voice/male writer, extraordinarily well done. Funny, convincing, fabulous. (Liesa, I'm dying to find out what Nine did at the wedding.)

So, that's the book update. We're also watching Buffy season 3, which I haven't seen in ages and I think it might be the best Buffy season ever. Faith! Werewolves! Angel returned from the hell dimension! The mayor! God, it's so good.

Reading all that stuff above, you would think that I never work, wouldn't you, that I just sit around reading and watching TV. Well: not true! I work! I wrote myself to a massive hand cramp yesterday! (Notes on the revision; so many new ideas!) Besides the books and TV shows, there have also been brief flirtations with a possible new obsession which I plan to stave off: collecting more weird creature parts! You know about the box of claws. Well, once you're in possession of such a thing, you sort of start wanting more claws. It's only natural (ask Batch Hangnail). And how about some fangs while you're at it? I really think I need a full set of hippopotamus teeth, and maybe a replica giant sloth claw. (Did you know giant sloths weighed 20,000 pounds? Er, how is that even possible?) And then, too, you can wile away quite a few minutes looking at freaky pictures of moth caterpillars. Look, it's like a couple of space-alien dachsunds out for a stroll:
And. . . what???
No. . . really?

(It is high time for a new installment of "Earth's Greatest Hits" I think. Moths, man. Moths are crazy!)

Heck, I really need some amazing, rare insect specimens, like these. They're like jewels. No? I don't need them? No, I don't. Slipping the credit card back into the wallet. Shopping averted. Back to work!

P.S. "Emily's lost story" people, yay, this is going to be fun!! Let's read the books and be in touch. Anyone still want to sign up, see last two posts.


tone almhjell said...

Hi Laini! Wow, you've been busy!

I would join you in the Emily project, except I haven't read Montgomery's story and I'm trying hard to get to chapter 12 before going to Sonoma and Fiji. Honeymoon! Wine tasting, beach huts, tropical fish! Can't wait. You won't be in California in two weeks, by any chance?

At least I get to snoop around for a holiday Lady! They must have them somewhere in Sonoma.

But first, one and a half chapter in one and a half week. Well. Can it be done? Not sure. I'm slow. I'm Christmas Eve slow.

God speed on the road to revision, you! Do let those new ideas run wild!

Jone said...

Just got my copy of Emily and will begin tonight. I need to lose myself in a classic. Love the photos.

Miss Kim said...

Haha! What a great post! Yes it's a bit scattered but it makes me feel like I am in the room with you as you joyfully mumble on and on!

Anonymous said...

If that second moth caterpillar pic is what I think it is, it's an asp...and they sting like the dickens when you touch them!

Heather said...

Well every season of Buffy is grand, but my faves are 4, 6 and 7. I actually didn't start watching Buffy until the season finale of season five and was instantly hooked - bawling my eyes out when she died. Then of course with all the witchy stuff and whatnot, I was so there. Thanks to television, you don't wait long for reruns so I caught up after a spell. I only own season seven, but plan to get all of them eventually. Favourite episodes from season four? HUSH and PRIMEVAL. Wayyyy cool. Faves from 6 and 7? ALL OF THEM!

Oh and Veronica Mars rocks too. Same with Charmed, Alias and Dark Angel. Sigh. I need a life.

First available moment I have to get to the bookstore I'm buying all of the Emilys.

Loving your obsessions!

Elise Murphy said...

I've got my Emily from the library!

Have you seen the latest National Geographic? Holy Sea Slugs! Chromodoris annae is exquisite, but there is something truly appealing about Chromodoris Geometrica. Check them out:

Laini Taylor said...

Tone -- Sonoma and Fiji? Sounds divine! I wish I could come see you in California. I also wish I could come see you in Norway -- your blog really makes me want to visit Norway. But I think now I will expect to find it filled with the strange and wonderful contents of your imagination. Is it?

Hi Heather! Ooh, you're making me anxious for season 4 now. Riley! and Hush. Can't wait to see that one again. And the episode with bizarro vampire Willow? What season was that? So exciting. By the way, if you keep watch over "The Complete Buffy" on Amazon, the price dips way low sometimes. It's almost $200 right now, but when we got it a few months ago it was down to $99 for all 7 seasons. A steal.

Hi Elise! I just got my Emily books today too (yay!), and yes -- I DID see that National Geographic. Those nudibranches are amazing. This is one crazy planet!

Katie said...

Laini - I just finished Teach Me and LOVED it! Talk about a book that you Can Not put down!! And I loved all the references to space stuff, even though I am def. not into spacey stuff?! What a cool book.

My 7 year old and I are looking at all the weird bugs - thanks!

Lara said...

Oh my. Wandering your blogs I'm finding myself delighted! Your Not For Robots essays are wonderful and funny and true, your Ladies are fabulous, the bugs and claws...well, they freak me out a little, but I'll get over it. When I have another moment I'll be back to read and read and smile and probably comment more. Thanks for sharing :)

tone almhjell said...

Well, maybe. Haha. Lots of people find Oslo boring and too expensive. But I don't agree - it's all about the spaces and moods you create around you. I'm sure there are many cities with even more spires and whispering trees and splashing rivers, but as long as my view is filled with the Oslo ones, I'm all set. And we do have nice coffee - a must with our long, long winters.

Now the landscape on the west coast - that I haven't made up, I promise. It really is crazy beautiful. I could take you to my family farm, and up into the mountains! There are wild deer, and water falls and snow capped peaks.

And then we could go to the tiny, tiny island of Grip, which is just a little speck on the horizon seen from the mainland. My friend has a small summer house there that used to belong to a fisherman. The little houses all cling to the bare rock defiantly, just waiting for the next storm.

Come! Bring Jim! It would be great :)

Stephanie Perkins said...

Squeal! I love the moth in the little green moth jacket!!

Stephanie Perkins said...

Oh, and it must be mentioned - the library scene in Atonement? Hottest thing ever written??

Elise Murphy said...

I finished A Company of Swans last week. What a lovely, old school romance . . . and an enviable travel plot.

Emily of New Moon is so sad. I haven't read it before and found the clock ticking midnight before I could pull away. Having an eight year old daughter has made it, so far, a particularly painful read. Thank goodness for feline companionship.

Funny too, because Cheryl Klein was just blogging/bemoaning the abundance of manuscripts about boys with dogs. She wanted to see some girls with other animals . . . and there was Emily with her warm kitties (and of course, the breathtaking wind woman).

Vivian Mahoney said...

I love the new Ladies! And we found a cool caterpillar on my car today, and I thought of you and these cool pictures.

Good luck with your revisions!