Banner art

That was a rough couple of weeks.  No internet.  Well, I had internet on my phone but I had to ration it because it’s expensive. But yeah, back before I had mobile internet, it was always very difficult between house moves because it takes a while for the internet to get set up at the new place.  So I’d watch my four Simpsons DVD box sets repeatedly to try to entertain myself.  More recently, I downloaded the entire series of The Wonder Years.    

Anyway, I’m not ready to see what trash Erin and the like are up to.  So to ease in, I’ll talk about the banner art.  

I was considering getting a banner done for the blog going back to when I was doing this on Reddit like a year ago.  Maybe longer.  Some guy was going to do it but then he flaked so I said, “Fuck it.  Who cares?”  

But before he flaked, he did give a sketch.  It was based off of Madam Fomo’s quote about how she’s “pimping out Nintendo”.  Hilarious, given her career.  So I gave this guy a vague idea of my vision and he came back with a drawing of Madam Fomo with comically huge tits, wearing some kind of leather outfit, and leading a dishevelled Mario around on a chain.  Mario was wearing a frilly dress.  It was funny but went further than I was thinking.

So recently I thought that I’d try again.  The blog has been up for at least six months now.  I don’t think it’s getting taken down (although, Madam Fomo has tried repeatedly).

I had a rough idea of what I wanted for this banner.  Erin playing a video game, poorly, and the other gamer grrls watching.  They could have been sitting on a couch or something.  I don’t know.  Whatever would fit in a banner.

So I went to the HungryArtist Reddit page.  I intentionally was looking for a female artist because there’s a certain…I don’t know…irony to it?  And I’m all about helping women achieve their creative dreams.  

So I found this woman from the Philippines on there.  She had an ad that says she does anime characters and like Pop Vinyl characters.

A lot of people seem to do this sort of thing.  They’ll draw your like..Dungeons & Dragons half-orc mage character in a bikini or whatever.  Really weird.  What are these nerds doing with their money?  

But I saw the ad and I thought, “Well…anime.  That’s kind of funny.  The nerds who go to these gamer grrls’ channels all seem to enjoy anime.  I’ll go with it.”

I asked if she could do a banner.  Now, I knew full well that she couldn’t.  Because I saw the sort of work that she does.  It’s these anime and Pop Vinyl waifu drawings.  Whatever a waifu is.  

But she said that she could do it.  So…whatever.  She seemed like a nice person.  Her website mentions her fondness for Blink182.  “The 90s”!  So I’ll let her give it a shot.  

I asked for a price.  She gave it.  It was in line with what her price guide said but it was still kind of shocking.  But whatever, I have the money.  I’m not going to haggle over this.  I don’t do that.  I’ll pay what you think is a fair price.  Spread the love.  You pay for half up front and then half after it’s done.  So that’s what I did.

Then I sent a really rough sketch of what I was looking for and it was just a layout of the gamer grrls.  The order that I wanted them in.  And that’s ultimately what she did.  It’s not really what I was initially thinking but I just tweaked my idea to fit the kind of work that she does.

I described what I wanted.  I want Erin to look like she’s confused because she’s really bad at video games, Retro Ali should be making the “O” face, Bobdunga should be in a straight jacket, CannotBeTamed should be sneering with her arms folded, DestinyFomo should be wearing something low cut and have over-sized tits, Pelvic Gamer should have a big afro and cyan lipstick, and John Riggs should be a big, fat, bald guy with his tongue sticking out and leering at the women.

So she says, okay, I can do that.  What sort of pose should everybody be in?  Should they be cheering Erin on or what?

It’s at this point that I realised that my mean-spirited vision was not going to come to fruition.  She’s just too kind-hearted.  So I just told her to go with it.  I liked her idea of them cheering Erin on anyway.  Soften it up a bit.  

I would get updates and I would see that she was being really flattering with these depictions.  For instance, in my mind, I envisioned Erin having a really “duh duh idiot” expression.  But she just looks a little stressed in the end result.  

I suggested that Pelvic Gamer should look a bit odd but she made her look attractive.  That picture is based mostly on like a professionally done picture that Pelvic Gamer uses for her thumbnails.  The artist found this picture herself.   I sent her much less flattering pictures for reference.

And I was thinking that Madam Fomo should have comically huge breasts.  But if anything, she made them SMALLER than they are in real life.

This might be a gender thing.  I remember in high school we had to draw one of our schoolmates for art class.  So it was a girl sitting in a chair and everybody was drawing her.  She didn’t have particularly big tits but whatever.  We had to look at them.  It’s for art.

So this guy I sat with starts drawing and the first thing he draws are the boobs. He just makes like compass drawn tits in the middle of the page and then draws the girl around them.

 And I heard an argument between two other classmates. a guy and a girl.  The girl was giving the guy shit for making the girl’s breasts too big.  And he’s saying, “I’m just drawing what I see.”  And the girl is saying, “They’re not that big!”  To which the guy points at her drawing and says, “They’re not that small either.”  And I saw her drawing and she was depicted as completely flat chested.

So I’m thinking that maybe that’s the issue that we have with Madam Fomo on the banner.  Women are uncomfortable drawing women with huge tits.  Even if the subject of the piece has huge tits.  And men might make them oversized because they’re drawing women the way that they want them to look as opposed to the reality.  

There were also some technical problems.  Like she didn’t know the dimensions of the banner.  There’s a hard limit on the width of the banner.  So then she was disappointed that when you reduce the image size to this limit, there’s pixelation.  This is the sort of thing that I was concerned about originally.  She never did a banner before.  But whatever, it looks fine.  At least on PC.  On mobiles, you lose some of the details (Pam’s shirt says “Bikini Kill” if you can’t read it) but that’s to be expected.  She ended up giving me the full-sized version anyway so now I have a high resolution image to turn into a poster to hang up in my bathroom or whatever.

So she’s giving me the updates.  I could have told her to change things but I liked what she was doing.  I wanted to just give her creative freedom and if she wants to make flattering images of these gamer grrls, that’s fine.  The only thing I asked to be revised is Ali’s face should be more “O” like so she re-did it and it turned out really good.

I like the end result.  It’s a mean-spirited idea done by a kind-hearted person.  So Bobdunga is in a straight jacket but she’s still having a good time.  And CannotBeTamed looks a bit bitchy but nothing over the top.  She asked if I want a logo on her shirt so I went with Bikini Kill.  They’re some god awful feminist band from “the 90s” who nobody gives a fuck about.  I thought it was suitable.

And Erin is in her favourite Hambuglar top.  I like how she’s kind of awkwardly holding the controller.  I don’t know if that was intentional or not.

She did a particularly good job with Ali.  The Pokemon hat is cute.  The hat was my idea.  And she did a good job on the “O” face.

Madam Fomo is just a straight depiction of that picture that she uses for her…whatever it is…Youtube picture where she’s wearing a white crop top.  She changed the colour but otherwise, that’s just a nice drawing of Madam Fomo.  There’s nothing insulting about it.  This is why I suggested the giant tits but when she came back with the drawing, I didn’t want to say, “Hey, could you make the tits like twice as big?”  So whatever.  

Pelvic Gamer also got off lightly.  That’s just a flattering drawing based on her Youtube picture.  I specifically requested that cyan lipstick but otherwise…it’s the best that Pelvic Gamer has ever looked.

John Riggs got some poor treatment, though. I told her that I want him with his hat off and with the white in his beard that he has now.  And at the moment, he has this weird long hair, like in the drawing.  So she captured all of this well.  And the tongue sticking out is kind of funny.

Anyway, money well spent.  And the amount of time that I think she spent on this…I wouldn’t do this for what she was asking.  Although, she said that the minimum wage in the Philippines is $1/hour so that puts things in some perspective.  But still…figure it’s $8/hour in the US.  I wouldn’t do this for eight times what I paid her.  

And then you have to assume that you’re dealing with assholes and giant nerds who would want a bunch of revisions and they’re going to argue about money.  I wouldn’t want the hassle.

But anyway, if you want to see what your Dungeons & Dragons character or your favourite Youtuber or your girlfriend or whoever would look like as an anime character or a Pop Vinyl character, you can check out her website.  She doesn’t do NSFW stuff, though so ShiShi will have to go elsewhere for a nude anime Erin Plays.  He probably already has his bedroom covered with such pictures anyway that he drew himself.

2 thoughts on “Banner art

  1. Great to see you're back. I was beginning to wonder if something happened to you or this site. I like the banner art and I think it came out great.

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