Thursday, September 26, 2013


Sabbi has a new portrait base called Annabelle which can be found over here.

It's been a very long time since I worked on a portrait base, and I don't feel like I was ever terribly successful with them. At any rate, it was fun to give it a try, and I love this little Sansa from GoT.

Sansa is kind of a sad little dove. . . if you're familiar with the story at all. By the way, I'm not caught up to speed with the whole series of books, so NO spoilers, please. :)

Friday, September 20, 2013

New Series

Ahh dang, I'm back to being inspired by my favorite movies and TV Series. I see a lot of these in the makes, as I did find some cool little house insignia to try to copy. Here's one of my favorites from Game Of Thrones, Daenerys... and her three little friends. I've already got a few other characters in the works and to make matters worse, this show is just full of awesome wardrobes to try to do, too. Dang, dang, dang. This is not what I wanted to do with my whole weekend. Well, yeah it was.

Bases by Apitchou
...and I had to search for a little dragon inspiration, so I must give credit to this Deviant Art page, which is actually very cool.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Such A Diva

"Diva" bases were among some of the first bases that I tried after my first go with Silents. There were whole forums dedicated to diva dolls. To be honest, I think that I recall that there was a lot of controversy over where the original diva bases came from. It seems like there were more than a few who claimed to be the original artist, and several places that distributed them. In my mind, Diva bases could have been the ones to kick-start dolling into high gear.

The last place that I remember getting Diva bases were from Silly Janine. Here is the sad part - a lot of the old doll sites are down, and when I Googled "Diva Dollz," all I came up with is a shop for women's apparel and a bunch of images that didn't relate.

I think I would still like to shop at Diva Dollz though... maybe I'll look them up some day.

Here are a few retired Divas. Their little faces remind me a lot of the "Bratz" dolls which were also becoming pretty popular at the time.

 I always liked trying to make elves. Second to that came my love of making favorite movie characters, like LeeLoo, from The 5th Element movie.
I was also a big admirer of Lisa Lopes from TLC and was so sad when she died in that terrible car accident, I was inspired to make something special about her.

On some forum or another, the challenge was to make three Divas for a pageant, so here is one in swim wear, evening wear, and casual. Fun huh?

Around that time came the idea of making dolls for your "sister" sites. One of my first sister sites was Sully. I don't know what has become of Sully, but maybe my blogging will help me to get back in touch with some of my old online friends. Who knows?
Finally, I discovered "Animation Shop" which was part of my Paint Shop software, and that is when I really got hooked. Making animations kind of became a way for my pixels to stand apart from others, and that is what I started to focus on. More about that, tomorrow. :)

Did you ever play Dance Dance Revolution?
I loved it. But I was terrible at it. Go figure. :)

How about Beyonce - I loved the character she played in the Austin Powers movie. Can't remember which one that was.

A little good witch?
A little more Lisa "Left Eye"

Until next time! Live long, and prosper!


What do you call it, when you come briefly out of retirement? 

I was inspired by this little base by Pammy, from Pixels Plus  enough to re-install an old version of Paint Shop and give dolling another go. 

Things that I remembered: How to crop, how to shade (sort of), how to cuss when you don't "save" and the program crashes. I even remembered how to make a transparent background and save as a .gif file. Go me! What  I don't remember, is how to do hair decently, so I'm going to have to brush up on that a little bit. Poor girl. Maybe I will fix her hair later.

The Beginning Of The End

In ancient Greece,  there was a tale and believe that swans sing a beautiful song in the moment just before death. Most of their lives, swans are silent, in comparison to other beautiful song birds. And so, "Swan Song" has become a metaphorical phrase mostly used in theater for a final, beautiful performance given just before death or retirement.

This blog, having nothing to do with either swans or songs, is just that... a place for me to celebrate my previous life as a pixel artist and a nice home for my poor old pixels to retire to.

Leave it to Facebook for providing a reunion spot for all of us who used to make dolls, or dollz back in the early 2000's. That part of my life was full of raising kids, keeping a home, and working nights. Night shifts were always a good thing for me. I went to work at night while the family was sleeping, and slept during the day while they were gone to school. Consequently, I found something to do on my nights off, that was relaxing and quiet, as there aren't many "loud" things that can be done at night while the rest of the household was trying to sleep.

I've always been enamored with electronic graphics and design. Indeed, over my lifetime I have seen it grow from something as simple as a blip on a TV screen, like "Pong" into the form of art that it is today. How did something grow from this:

... into the games and graphics that are around today?

I'm sure that I will never understand it. But I've always been a big fan of Space Invaders anyway. :) I used to spend hours on Saturday mornings playing it on the Atari with my dad. Circa 1980... yikes...Maybe that is where my love of pixel art originally came from.

At any rate, I started fiddling around with "dolls" in the wee hours of the night 10+ years ago. I think that I first started noticing them in "signatures" on forums and such. Then, I joined a forum just for doll making and the rest is history. I spent a lot of time collecting bases and trying to learn how. These little figures were done one pixel at a time, in a paint program of some kind. Windows Paint, I think was one of the first programs that I tried, and the first dolls I made were then known as "silents."
Addicted, I started learning from forums and chat groups as fast as I could. I've always been a doodler and I've always loved to color. I had no idea how far this would go.

Later, I ran a website and even paid for a domain name. "Momma's Dollz" was the place where I showcased dolls, shared bases, held contests and made friendships... some that I still have today: Dhaling, Poppie, Neettan, Mish, Patience, Tysk, Zoi, VelvetCherri, Sully, Vilanna, ForgetMeNot... so many others... and I was known as DollyMomma. 

Over time, the dolls evolved, but there will be plenty of time for sharing those later on. I want to try really hard to search and organize my archives and make sure that I still have the information that I need to credit bases and such. Almost every doll also has a story behind it. For such little things, they sure take a lot of time and inspiration to create.

So... welcome to Swan Song's... I'll be showing my retired pixels over time and I'll probably be sharing some newer things too. The Facebook group has inspired more than a few of us to dust off our mouse pads and paint. I'll be playing along, as long as my newer computer will run the ancient version of Paint Shop Pro that I found in my dust-covered CD case and as long as my eyes can still see the pixels. Which shouldn't be long. ;)

Thanks for stopping by!