Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Guest Post from The Spicys: How to Build Your Own Light Box

Have you heard of "The Spicys" doll blog???

They are some very nice peeps with a lot of fun, useful ideas!
Today they share a Guest Post with y'alls!


How to Build Your Own Light Box

A light box might sound like a super fancy photography term but it's actually one of the simplest things EVER! I started making my own light boxes last year after being disgusted with the SUPER dark shadows in my photos. The fix? A light box! 

Light boxes help bounce light so the shadows are not as dark - and they also provide for crisp and simple backgrounds.

As you can see, my light boxes are not really fancy - or really even boxes at all! I have tried making these several different ways, but so far, this is my favorite! To create mine, I just used three pieces of poster board from the dollar store....$3 is a VERY affordable way to up the quality of your photos!

The Four Key elements are these: a good light source (windows or glass doors are best!), a background panel, a side panel/reflector and a floor panel. These are all essential to making your light box work! The floor panel is helpful for if you are taking shots that will show the surface the doll is standing on - it makes them so much nicer and neater!

I usually like to have my window on either the left or the right side (see above picture) of my subject so they have adequate light on one side. Then by using the side reflector panel, I can usually bounce enough light to reflect onto the other side of the doll's face to prevent a shadow.

This next set of photos was taken with the exact same setup as you see in the above photo. Take a look at the right side of Mackenzie's face.... 

The first photo is WITHOUT the side reflector panel, and the second is with it. Can you see what a difference it makes? The shadow is almost completely gone and her whole face is bright!

Remember to not be intimidated by fancy set-up or photography terms - this usually takes me about ONE minute to set up and my photos are instantly improved - the difference is worth the (minimal) effort! 
Have fun experimenting!

Thanks for visiting us today!

And thanks for the Guest Post, Spicys!

Do you have something to share with our DW readers? Do you want to do a Guest Post? Feel free to email us at nora.demington@gmail.com so we can chat about it!

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Maple's KPop Sunday: CNBLUE 'I'm Sorry'

Hola peoples.

Welcome to another Maple's KPop Sunday. :-)

Given the fact that we keep going back and forth from SHINee to Super Junior, you might think that there are only two KPop bands and Psy.

Not so.
One of our other favs is CNBLUE.
Or CNBlue, not sure which they prefer.

They debuted in 2009 and this is directly from Wikipedia because 
I want to prove that I didn't make this up:

"The band consists of Jung Yong-hwa (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Lee Jong-hyun (lead guitar, vocals), Lee Jung Shin (bass guitar, vocals) and Kang Min-hyuk (drums, vocals). CN is an abbreviation of ‘Code Name’ while BLUE is an abbreviation of the members’ individual images. ‘Burning’ represents Lee Jong-hyun, ‘Lovely’ represents Kang Min-hyuk, ‘Untouchable’ represents Lee Jung Shin, and ‘Emotional’ represents Jung Yong-hwa."

Burning. Lovely. Untouchable. Emotional.
Could describe me....
Except they would need to add "Claws."
But then it wouldn't spell Blue...
Oh well...

This is our fav song from CNBLUE: "I'm Sorry."
Lots of English words in there for the Korean-impaired.
And this is a rock band -- not a synchro-dancing boy band.
So there is a different vibe.

The video is a hoot.
It involves more break-ups. Two of them.
And two near-fights.
Overall, a rock band with a lot of pent-up emotions.

One break-up over the phone. Classy.
With subsequent sweeping everything off a desk in anger movement.

One almost-fight in a subway tunnel.
Apparently Euro or American authorities don't like Korean rock band members playing there.

One almost-fight in a bar.
Apparently Euro or American bar thugs don't like Korean rock band members hanging out in bars.
Overly-aggressive chair-smashing bonus.

One break-up on the bus. With rose flinging.
Don't recommend that.
Could have blinded the poor girl.

During all this, we flash back and forth to the rooftop jam session 
where they can all deal with their emotions through music.
Spliced with dramatic walking scenes in the street.

Not as comical as other KPop videos I have shared.
But comical for its over-dramaticnessiness.
On the believability level -- we score in at zero.
In reality, no one would ever break-up or fight we these guys.
They are too adorable. ;-)

The leader of this band, Jung Yong-hwa, has starred in two KDramas we have watched:
'You're Beautiful' -- which is one of those completely addicting, heart-wrenching dramas with healthy doses of cuteness.
We loved it and it tops our list of favs.

It has near-legendary status in the world of KDrama, 
so it is a good place to start a KDrama education.
It involved a rock band, a cross-dressing girl, and a pigbunny. ;-)

And he also starred in 'Heartstrings' as the male lead.
This was very cute and romantic at the beginning.
But much more family drama-ish and tense toward the end.
Still we recommend it because you get to stare at Yong-hwa.
And you can learn about traditional Korean music instruments.
Extra bonus. :-P

Trends to Sew inspiration from this video:


More of a 'Trend to Craft'
Chunky, layered, plentiful - Stackable
Much like Taylor Swift tends to wear

Graphic Tees
Lots of nice looks for warm spring/summer days,
which we hope are right around the corner....

Thanks for visiting us today!!

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Reminder: 2013 Grand Photo Contest Voting Happening until April 6th

Sup peoples!


We have uploaded all of the entries for the 2013 Grand Photo Contest!

See the entries here: 

You can vote on each entry by commenting on that blog post.

Or you can email us your votes to nora.demington@gmail.com.

One vote per person per pic.

You can vote for more than one pic.

You can vote for as many pics as you want.

You can vote for yourself.

Your family members can vote for your pics.

Your friends can vote for your pics.

You can advertise your entries on your blogs, Facebook pages, Youtubes, etc.

All votes are due by Saturday, April 6th, 2013.

Then the Final Round begins.

If you are selected to be in the Final Round you will need to submit a fourth picture -- one taken for a clue you haven't used yet.

We'll pick the four people to participate in the Final Round from a combo of the votes tally and Penny's judgment.

Then those four people will have 2 weeks to submit their fourth pic.

So start thinking about what you would do for a fourth pic.

The fourth pic will determine who wins the doll, and who will get the $35 AG gift cards.

Any questions???

Please feel free to ask us in the comment sections below!

Thursday, March 21, 2013

L'arrivée de Archie

Don't ask us why we put the title in French. :-P
We are in a weird mood.
One fueled by lack of sleep and insanity most likely. :-P again.

So Archie -- Our first American Boy Custom doll is here!
We ordered a "Doll Without Hair" style #5 from AG last week with the free shipping code.
He has light brown eyes.
(But we can't really tell the difference between light and dark brown anyways.)

WARNING: Long post, lots of pics.
If you want to see any of them larger, just click on one and you will be brought to a larger slideshow.

Here he is cross-dressing in a pic that we will use for blackmail.
It's quite embarrassing to be a boy dressed as a girl, 
never mind us publishing them on the interwebs.

Archie in his first boy outfit.
Jeans are from Liberty Jane.
Rolled cuffs are from hipsters.
Hoodie is from Etsy seller All Dolld Up.

Head shots. Literally.
For those of you curious about what an AG bald head looks like.

Then Archie got two wigs from Monique -- Johnny style, size 10-11, colors black and medium auburn. Direct from Monique's online shop.
Got here very quickly.

They have an adjustable strap built into them which we found mostly useless.

Stylings attempts with the black wig.

Style One

The black wig did have more shedding than the auburn one.
But they are both high-quality wigs.
The short boy-style is difficult to style when you are anal like us.
But we are trying. :-P

Style Two

Style Three

Styling attempts with the medium auburn wig.

Style One. A bit too high on the head.
Needs to be closer to his eyebrows.

Style Two

Style Three

Emo hairdo eating his head.

Which wig and style do you prefer???


Random comparison with Beatrice, who is wearing a dress from Etsy seller Sew Small N Sweet and a jacket from Etsy seller Fox and Family.

Overall, we are super-excited about Archie. 
We keep staring at him and squeeing.
He is probably a bit nervous by now.

While playing with his wigs we determined there is probably a front and a back to them that we are supposed to be paying attention to. But then we kinda decided to ignore that.

We aren't gluing down the wigs, so we plan on playing around with them perpetually. Maybe he will get more colors in the future. And he can even cross-dress as a girl again if he wants to, given the amount of girl wigs we have strewn about our doll closet.
He says "No way" to that though....
(Evil plots begin...)

Thanks for visiting us today!

p.s. Check out our 'American Boy' polls in the right side menu!
Place your votes today!

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