Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Just a figment of imagination

Now if only all of our figments could come true!

So before I went on my studying sabbatical, Daphne (probably better known as greatgooglymoogly at the Haven) made me a great cap series.   Daphne plays over at DX and we've had some great scenes together, and she made me the series in part to thank me for bringing her back into it.  I was touched by her thoughts, as I wanted to thank her for the very same thing.  While I am (or rather was) very active at DX, I hadn't had a good set of scenes that weren't just a one off.   You see my character there has developed quite a lot.  I started out like most characters as a man forced into changing into a woman.  But I've been playing there for over a year, and while I love the 'forced' aspect of it, my character slowly accepted it, and is now a teacher.

So instead of taking classes and being forced into the folds of femininity, I am now teaching classes and forcing others into the folds of femininity.  Don't get me wrong... teaching classes is a lot of fun.  But I focus on making the class fun for the student.  So when Daphne and I talked about having some 'fun' scenes together it was an idea that I through myself into.  And the best part is that it isn't just a fun scene.... we're developing our characters into a relationship.  My character is becoming Daphne's Mistress, and she is becoming my slave.  And man o man what a rush that is!

So I wanted to return Daphne's wonderful series with one that conveyed that feeling.  This had to be not only a return cap, but a thank you cap as well.  My first thought was to pull from our scenes.... have 'Caitlyn' dominating 'Nick' into becoming 'Daphne'.  But I quickly threw that idea out... I wanted to keep out scenes to themselves, and do something new.

So I started looking for images and found this wonderful series.

 But then before I could do more than imagine a very basic story idea, I took my sabbatical.

All the while I've been gone, I've been working on an idea for these images.  I didn't really WANT to think of it... but my mind would just keep wandering over and thinking of what was happening.  I didn't even open them back up until yesterday.  When I looked them over, I realized my mind had really worked out the entire story.  I knew that Daphne liked a little more loving approach to her caps and that she enjoys having her girlfriend in them.  For my own self, I would look at these images and see a man tranformed into a woman, and his girlfriend/wife bringing in her new lover to fuck him.  But I didn't want that cruel edge for Daphne.

So instead I wanted the man to be Nick/Daphne.  I also wanted/needed for the blonde girl to be Daphne/Nick.  A body swap seemed perfect.... but who would Nick's girlfriend bring into their love life?  I mean in my world, a truly loving couple doesn't just bring someone else into their bed.  So I played around with the idea of the girl being a figment of their imagination.  That this was all in their heads.  But when I went to write it, that felt more like cheating.  Not in that Paige and Nick/Daphne were cheating on each other, but that I was cheating them out of having a real experience.  I couldn't really work around the 'how' it happened, so I went to that great bag of tricks and pulled out the unexplained magic.  But I liked the figment idea enough that I left it in as the name of their new body.  Once I had that part out of the way, the story finished itself up nicely.

Then I move onto design.  I still wanted this to be a little more special so I decided that I would alter the image somehow.  You all know I'm a fan of coloring in images so that seemed a pretty good way to go.

Seeing as I was focusing the story on Nick/Daphne, I figured having Nick colored in one and Daphne colored in the other would be a good way to go.  I know I've used this meathod before, but I figured I would go into a little more detail.  To do this I pull the image into photoshop.  I start by copying the layer, and then completely desaturating the top layer making it black and white.  Instead of adding the color back in (which can give it an ethereal hand colored look), I delete out the black and white parts that I want to be color.  That way the bottom (still full color) image shows through.

To make sure it blends in well, the edges have to be erased out with the 'brush' tool instead of the 'pencil' tool.  This gives the edges a nice soft feeling instead of a jarring clean cut.  I zoom in pretty far and carefully start erasing the edges.  Here is a snapshot of the edge of Nick almost completely cut out:

Once I have that edge cut out, I can switch back to the pencil eraser tool, and a bigger brush and cut out the middle parts:

The cut out was good, but the problem is the saturation.  While I didn't do anything to over saturate the image, it was VERY saturated when compared to the black and white.  So I just moved down to the color layer, and desaturated a bit (I believe it was about 45% desaturated).  Sadly I didn't save the final work file, but you can compare this 'orange' Nick to the one in the first panel of the cap and see what a difference that made.

Once I had the 'Nick' image done, I did the same thing on the 'Daphne' image.  But this presented its own problem.   Hair.  Daphne's whispy light blond hair would be a problem.  Not when its all together, but just the edges.  When I am zoomed in, it is very obvious that the very edges of her hair were not colored in.  But if I deleted that part of the image, I got just as much of the background (in this case Nick and Paige's bodies) as I did the hair.  I could have gone through and deleted it pixel by pixel, but when I pulled back out to a reasonable zoom, I realized that it wasn't so bad.  Perfect?  No.  Good enough?  Yes.

Once the image's were cut out, I went into a fairly simple design.  I had to add a little more to the second panel's story to make it fit just like the first one as I wanted the text box to be exactly the same size.  If you are curious I added a little more description to the pleasures Daphne was feeling, and her response to Paige's question.

I'm not entirely happy with the story.  I felt that I packed a lot in, but still left a lot on the floor.  I wanted to go into their emotions more, but there just wasn't enough space without using another panel.  And I didn't want to break up the duality of the two panels, so it just had to stay out.

1 comment:

  1. I Think the story is very sweet and sensual. It's something that many of us I'm sure would love to experience, from the caring and accepting girlfriend, to the magic granting our wish of experiencing things from the other side. There's a comforting sense of safety in the story that really drew me in and I enjoyed that the most.