Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Eclectic Wardrobe of Josephine - Page 1

Today's the day! I have my new paper doll series ready to go.  I think I'll try to post this on Tuesdays, as often as I can.  Before I post the sheet, I want to talk about technique.

First, I started with a sketch. I could have done it on my computer, but instead I took out my good old paper & pencil. The pose is a composite pose I put together from SenshiStock.  I like her poses specifically because they're clothed.  Nude models are incredibly helpful & I highly recommend life drawing classes, but if I'm drawing at my kitchen table surrounded by my kiddos I'd rather use clothed models.

I knew I wanted a medium to dark skin tone. There's a wonderful image I found on Pinterest that served as color reference & a rough model for my paper doll's face.

Once I did all of that, I scanned my image and brought it into Photoshop. I knew this was going to be a Photoshop project right from the beginning.

This is a very rough breakdown of the steps I went through to color the doll. There's a much more thorough breakdown here -- I've been working on this technique for a while! First, I inked the sketch.  I gave it a thicker outside line using a stroke style.  Then, I gave it a flat color.  I started added shadows and highlights, blurring as needed.  It still looked really flat so I overlaid a brighter, warmer brown and that helped tremendously! I kept layering lights & darks, then added the face and clothing.

Once that was finished, I knew I wanted a border and background that would be on every page of the series.  I also needed a title.  I settled on The Eclectic Wardrobe of Josephine.  I needed something descriptive and a cool name.  Now, I love The Tragically Hip -- a fantastic Canadian band -- and they have a song called Goodnight Josephine, which I love.  And then, there's the amazing Josephine Baker, so really the name was perfect for this project.

I'm not sure what I'm going to do with this project long-term. As much as I can stand, I suppose!

Right-click to download and print

Here's the final version of page one. I wanted a little mix & match capability.  More pages will make that more fun, of course.  If anyone plans on printing it out, let me know. I can post it with a white background if there's a need for it.

I'm pretty excited to have a new project. There will still be a Friday paper doll in one of the various mix & match series.

Let me know what you think! Should be a fun little adventure for all of us!


  1. this is so ridiculously gorgeous. she may be your most beautiful doll ever! i am in awe (and slack-jawed with jealousy ~ hahaha).

    exquisite patterns, drool-worthy colors. i love it!

    1. That is some high praise!! Thank you :)

      I found my first Photoshop doll. It's not great. BUT it was almost 10 years ago so clearly practice is worth the effect!

      The doll itself took about 8 hours start to finish but the outfits are MUCH quicker.

    2. she is so worth all those hours! and that blue dress is just amazing!

      i love to look at old projects. sometimes you find things you didn't know yu had done so well and, okay, sometimes you see other things that are kinda cringe-worthy. but seeing progress is always very cool.

  2. She's so beautiful! This is definitely my favorite yet! So excited for more clothes. These are gorgeous! Thank you so much!

    1. Thank you! I'm really excited to just create all kinds of random things for this doll. Sometimes I just want a project where I can loosen up & try everything!

  3. She looks fantastic. I love her wigs.