Schmendrick goes to Rainbow Bridge

This last Friday in the early hours, our darling ratty boy Schmendrick passed away.  He was in my arms at the time, took sick in the evening after I came off the phone at 9pm, and for the following hours he was having trouble breathing, looking flat and lethargic.  I sat with him on the sofa, watching animated comedy and anime, until he then passed away.  He climbed onto my head twice during that time (not sure how, bless him!), but finally it was all too much.  He stopped breathing, and I deliriously called my mum to come over at 1.30 in the morning.  I’ve been ill for two weeks and had decided not to come into work the next day because of a bad stomach; Schmendrick’s passing all but finished me off.

Our faithful boy Schmen’ – a big, strong Berkshire boy

Here he is with little Clover, our ratty girl who was ill a week or two ago.  He was a wonderful uncle who raised many babies

Schmendrick with Rosie (blonde) and Linna (brunette)

These three, along with Nene, were one generation of ratties, and the first after our University rats.  He was the baby of the four, and as soon as the first rats younger than him joined their group, he became “Uncle Schmen”.

Schmendrick was our first boy rat, and as such the first who was neutered.  It was just as well, as he had loose, dead tissue and a hernia inside his abdomen which the vet was able to fix – if he hadn’t had the op, he might have died young.

Schmendrick in the back, with old Linna, young Momo (brown), and BABY Ymir (grey blaze)

Ymir was such a cutie before she became a big bruiser.  Schmendrick was not an in-your-face rat, but loved being held and cuddled.  He knew when to be tough and when to be squishy with the babies.

Linna, Momo, Ymir & Schmen again

So many ratties’ happiness depended on reliable Uncle Schmen.  And me and Andrew’s happiness rested on his loving, paternal nature.  There’s no more arthritis where he is now. 🙂 We love you darling Schmen – be safe at the bridge, and play with the others until we see you again.

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New Artwork – Dragon Age, Ponies & Angel

I had my flu jab at Tesco last week, work’s been chaotic at the start of the academic year, and I’ve been putting together some artwork that’s been in my tray for some time. 🙂

From Dragon Age: Zevran & Fenris

Even outside of our AU where Zevvy and Fenny are brothers, these two guys are impromptu rivals, given the fact that they are the male elven Love Interests in DA: Origins and DAII respectively.  I just thought some of the swords Fenris was running around with were laughably large (I mean, I played Monster Hunter but Fenris is sooo skinny); so I made this.  The sword Fenris is holding is based around a design from the Monster Hunter series. 🙂

From Dragon Age: Origins: Wynne, Zevran and Oghren

Because these three were my constant team in the fight against the Darkspawn, with my female warrior city elf, Athani.  And because Wynne is an underrated character…with a great bust 😉

Pinkie Pie, from My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic – as a human

Human Pinkie was playing a role in our AU roleplaying universe, so I drew her up for reference.  All I had to go on was “bouffant pink hair” and a pink tutu, so I made up the rest.  She’s carrying a camera to take scandalous photographs!  Her name logo came about as a bit of an accident when I was trying to fit her full name vertically, then realised I could overlap the two words to draw attention to it and save space.  We love you Pinkie, no matter your form!

Our OC, Angel, being sporty

Angel has been really upset following the death of Steve Jobs (she loves her Apple gadgets), and I drew this picture to sort of show her in a perkier light (her Blackberry has been broken too so she’s pretty pissed off!).  Angel is our resident tech-head and fitness fanatic, as well as being an independent journalist…so her coolness can never be overdone.  We love you Angelica, feel better soon! 🙂

Lineart of the main six characters of My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic, as humans

From left to right: Fluttershy, Twilight Sparkle, Applejack, Pinkie Pie, Rarity & Rainbow Dash.  My fiance and I loooove teh poniez, so I did up this lineup of our six main girls as humans.  I’m going to be colouring them digitally.  I also plan to do them as “people-ponies” (more anthro style, the way they inexplicably now are in our AU).  So much love for the pony girls, they brighten our day and bring my childhood flooding back!

Diana, wearing her Louise bunny hat

And sort of a Grenamoya one, sort of a humour one…Andrew and I have a thing going that Diana, a psychotic character from Book Four of the Grenamoya Island Saga (“The Serpent’s Loss”) and Louise Belcher from the animated comedy Bob’s Burgers are actually the same person. XD Although Diana is blonde while Louise has black hair.  But otherwise they’re totally the same person!!  This is Diana wearing Louise’s outfit.  Kirsten Schaal is SO our voice for Di in the Grenamoya movies now.  And even though it’s not hugely popular…we are huge fans of Bob’s Burgers. 🙂

Lucky Clover

We had a terrible health scare with our 16 month old Himalayan ratty Clover this week.  Over the weekend she was quiet and disinterested – then on Sunday she was completely limp, flopping around, rolling, with a head tilt, and wouldn’t eat or drink.

This was our little Cloey on Sunday, flat-out exhausted – this is one of the few times  that she wasn’t sleeping upside-down

On Monday she was looking better, but we took her to the vet anyway, myself all armed with info about pituitary tumours, stroke, and a whole host of other horrible things.  I also knew that the lack of balance could be an ear infection, but it seemed too severe.

As it turned out, our vet concluded that Cloey suffered a vestibular attack – the balance mechanism in her brain was affected, and she needed antibiotics to clear up any residual infection.  Cloey only just recovered from a really gross abscess on her urethra, that I had to manually lance at home (nasty, nasty stuff), but it’s possible that a touch leftover from that infection prompted the vestibular problem.  So now Clo is back on antibiotics.  But she’s already bouncing around, climbing, kissing, playing, eating and drinking.  On Sunday I thought she was dying.  I prayed so hard, and all I can say is thank God, thank Jesus and the Angels and well done Mr Vet and of course Clover for being strong. 🙂

Otherwise my first lot of lovely merchandise from RedBubble arrived and the Grenamoya Chibis tee is GORGEOUS!!  And our other ratty, Midna, is recovering well from her spaying operation last week.  I’ve been ill with a stomach complaint since Friday but I don’t care, all other news is good. 🙂

Step-by-Step: Peep-Style Pinkie Pie!

Welcome to another step-by-step showcase of a picture I made. 🙂 I did this pic in the space of one evening, because the finished piece didn’t need much shading.

Tools used: Blue & red pencils; Manga Studio for line art; Photoshop for colouring

The mission was to draw a picture of human Pinkie Pie, based on the character from the animation “My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic”.  We had used her in an AU roleplay, with the description of a bouffant, pink hairdoo, T-shirt and a tutu – and she was carrying a camera for story reasons. 🙂 So I did up this concept in blue and red.

Human Pinkie Pie sketch, with an image of original Pinkie for reference

From this I did my lineart in a thickish brush pen, since the original cartoon style has simple, blocky colours and defined lines.

Lineart Pinkie, still with reference 

With some swatching from the original Pinkie image to keep my colours accurate, I filled in the base colour for the picture.  I originally intended to give her red and white striped socks (like a candy cane) and neon plastic bracelets, but I ended up using the same blue and yellow as her balloon cutie mark, to tie the image together.  The camera bag, which isn’t tied to her as a character, I kept boring grey.  Once I ruled out the red and white socks, I also changed my idea of black Mary Jane shoes to a softer brown.

Pinkie Pie in colour, now looking more distinctly like her original character!

Then, because of the Flash-style animation and colouring of the show, I coloured all of my drawing’s outlines to soften the look.

 Now she looks more like she could just pop out of the My Little Pony cartoon! 😉

To add a little more depth, I did very basic shading on her full body, but kept the effect very soft.  I wanted to make her appear more 3D, but not make the impression that too much light or dark was landing on her.  She is not set against a scene so complex lighting isn’t necessary.

Pinkie with shading

Then to finish up, I widened the image, added some text as a cross-over logo, added stars and a drop-shadow, and voila! 🙂 Pinkie’s done!

Now Pinkie Pie can integrate into the world of humans, and sing the song “Now that I’m a woman” from The Last Unicorn in a very high pitch.  Thanks for looking! 🙂

Merchandise at Red Bubble

Thanks to my fiancé I have recently discovered the joy that is RedBubble.com.  He was looking for My Little Pony goodies for us, and not only did he come across TONS of Pony stuff there, I was able to find yet another online service for T-shirt printing. 🙂 I’ve printed Grenamoya T-shirts with a few companies in the past and I like seeing the quality offered by each.  As a result I have not only bought Pony things, but I have uploaded two of my newest T-shirt designs to Red Bubble to see if they turn out better than Zazzle’s and Spreadshirt’s.

My “Grenamoya chibis” design is finally in print, and there are three currently on order!

Grenamoya chibis design, featuring 25 characters, in black

I also designed another Red Bubble exclusive tee, featuring Cammesonja as the famous “awesome face”.  Of course because she’s a troll, the slogan is ironically “troll face”.  I found it amusing…plus she looks like Gummo.  Gummo demands his own T-shirt in future.

Cammy, like The Miz, is Aaaaaawwweeesoooome

Waiting on the Tees to arrive, and I shall give my feedback when they do!  Coincidentally I am wearing my latest Spreadshirt T-shirt featuring Athani at work today.