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Lin West
14 October 2010 @ 02:16 pm
For those of you who are interested in what I do fashion/lifestyle wise, including (but not limited to): Vintage, Antiques, Dolly Kei, Mori Girl, Lolita, Cult Party, gothic, gypsy, steampunk, aristocratic, and kodona.

Minerva Materia

I'm posting clothing reviews, online finds, vintage events, and whatever else comes to mind really.
Lin West
13 September 2010 @ 11:03 pm
Visual Novel Gameplay
A brief introduction to visual novels, a few internet observations, direction to take when scriptwriting, and reference/recommendations.

Fans of Japanese Entertainment (particularly us H and Y fans) already are quite aware of this form of entertainment: the Interactive Visual Novel and the Dating Simulator. For awhile it was brought to the United States (Hirameki International to get name specific), but failed to get any large amount of fans following it, mostly because the audience is very specific: anime fans, which are only a small percent. It doesn’t help that the games are so easy to steal via torrent.

The traditional Japanese visual novel are a detailed CG (computer graphic) character sprite over a CG painted background, with a text box below it displaying dialogue and character actions. Sometimes the dialogue is even voiced by a voice actor. Certain special events are fully illustrated with CGs. It's kind of like a puppet show. Your reward for completing endings are the illustrated scenes, and often romantic fulfillment with your choice character. To get these endings you have to make certain choices thoughout the game

To the Japanese audiences, there are many different forms of Visual Novels catered to different interests. For girls, for boys, for romance, for humor, for mentally engaging plotlines, and to erotic games.
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Lin West
18 July 2010 @ 10:56 pm
Anime Archetypes: Hair and Clothing Color Symbolism
Article analyzing creator's intent for common character types in terms of character design.


Jung’s theory of the collective unconscious at its most core says that there’s a certain set of patterns and archetypes that all humans inherently know. Much like how the hero's journey is a story told over and over in every region of the world, and how certain subject matter is universal to myths of all countries. Myths are just one of the many things humans collectively know, as for the purposes of this article I'll list specific feelings and meaning alloted to different colors in relation to fictional people. Colors cues an viscerally reaction to yourself or the reader before the reader learns anything else about your character.

This article will hope to speculate why certain colors for hair and clothing are picked by their creators, and what this means about the character. This will allow you to analyze what you are inherently dreaming up, or as a cheat sheet for character design. Anime in particular in featured in this article, but it can be applied to any other fictional character; most of the analysis is universal for eastern and western thought.

However, it is important to keep in mind personal symbolism as well. The nature of the colors are not definitive. I am merely breaking down original meanings, once you are aware of the original meaning it is much easier to rationalize where your inspirations come from and why you do what you do.

But why does clothing and hair matter? Appearances can be deceiving, right? The hair color rule does not apply to natural hair colors of real people, but to imagined individuals and dyed hair, it’s very important. Clothing may correspond as well, but it isn't as important as hair color is real life situations. There is a reason you’re intuitively making creative choices for a certain character you have in your head because different colors have different meanings behind them that we know intuitively.


Hair is a symbol for a human vitality: balding is universally considered unattractive. Women with long hair are considered sexy and, in pahan beliefs, the source of their power. Hence the Christian nuns & islam tries to hide their hair, aka sexuality. The male equivalent are friars were given the appearance of a balding man. They had to shave off the tops of their heads, it a vain attempt to try to mask the appearance of their inherent fertility so that the worshipper could focus on non-wordly things (ironically, most of them sought whores outside of the monastery, and caused a lot of social problems back in the day). In Japan, certain groups of warriors did this as well.

The color you choose for the hair is the flavoring you add to their nature. Black, brown, blonde, natural redhead, and grey meaning can vary depending on locale and cultural background. However, for the purposes of their article, I am focusing on the colors themselves and synthesizing what they are universal associated with.


Clothing, when you have a choice in the matter, is how you want the world to view you, basically what you think your role in society should me. It doesn’t necessarily accurately depict your real position or characteristics, but rather how you want others to perceive you. In a character designer’s case, it’s how you the designer want others to think about your character.
Of course, one should never live by a certain system when doing anything creative. However, you should understand why it is you intuitively feel like your lead character has to have blonde hair, and a black and pink dress on. It helps you better understand what you subconsciously want to say about your character.
It’s best to start a work with inspiration then afterwards analyze what you have dreamed up, and repeat cycle.

Here's an additional article I find useful.

The Colors

Red, Scarlet
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Lin West
11 November 2009 @ 07:55 am
I first started out my tarot project making my own interpretation of the rider waite deck, however The cut paper I was using became too time consuming and I was running out of material after the 7th card.

Animamundi is what started my interest in alchemy and the occult. I never got around to fully describing or analyzing occult used within the story, so this is my attempt to make sense of that. As well as make the connection between the historical figure and the fictional one, since some of them aren't that obvious to those unfamiliar with this area of study.

This oracle deck is based off of the Visual Novel Game, Animamundi: The Dark Alchemist, however, most of the symbolism is based around alchemy, sephiroth, chakra, and the seven deadly sins. I explain the meaning of the cards at the bottom of the post for those unfamiliar with this rather obscure game title. However, all the characters listed have a historical character corresponding to them, so if you're familiar with the major players of metaphysics/occult/new age you'll still be able to pull meaning.

40 Cards:
7 Alchemy Cards
16 Character Cards
7 Deadly Sins Cards
10 Sephiroth Cards

The Cards

Seven Alchemical Stages
Relates the seven step process of transmuting base metals to gold, to the transformation of Georik as an individual as well as his progress in actual alchemical endeavors, and how this change effects those around him. Each step relates to the traditional elemental and trinity correspondence.

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Plaguing My Brain: Orpheliac
Lin West
08 June 2009 @ 07:28 pm

It felt like the end of everything (how naive of us)
when the bleached police lights backlit your boy-boned frame.

There were only three of them,
but words strung like singing diamonds
across your lips.

And I wasn't sure if such beauty was born of this stress,
your cloudy green-eyed intensity (only a flicker in the dark), or
backseat ecstasy.

I took them from you, with nothing in return but
the hope that I would return them.
Plaguing My Brain: Tom Waits
Lin West
19 May 2009 @ 01:19 pm
I spent the last week working on an end of the year project that basically acted as a portfolio in addition to a time-based work of art. Said project led to a disagreement with a teacher (who is a dada/historical/postmodern photographer) as to why artists should cater to the general public. We should create solely for other artists, since artists are the ones who determine what art truly is. The media simply reports what happens in the world.

Art is art just because he and the art world say so? Therefore, artwork has just become an extension of their ego - a tangible artifact of social/intellectual worth. Let's just completely forget the ultimate goal of art in the first place: the creation of an effect on the onlooker

This left me, a symbolist/art nouveau/decadence/surrealist artist, to feel the need to justify my work. So I started trying to write what art wasn't, but I felt like I was limiting it too much. So here's is some thoughts on what I know it to be:

--A catalyst for wisdom
--A window to somewhere else
--A creation made from patience and quality
--A creation independent of the creator and reality
--Something universally understood to be valuable
--An order from chaos
--An emulation/description of aspects of what it means to be human that is understandable to humans.
--Something that fulfills the emotional and spiritual needs of humans, regardless of time period, profession, or education level.

And a few quotes I strongly agree with:

"Man's individuality or singularity is not a barrier to the universality of the will, but is subordinated to it...Everyone recognises himself or his own will in this act... Even those who could not create such a work find their own essence expressed .... Such a work is therefore truly universal. The more its individual creator dissolves in it, the more approval it earns."
(Georg Wilhelm F. Hegel, Sämtliche Werke, Dritter Band, "Philosophische Propädeutik, Gymnasialreden und Gutachten über den Philosophie-Unterricht" 1927

"The artist is a receptacle for the emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider's web. ... The purpose of art is washing the dust of daily life off our souls. ... We all know that art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize the truth. ..." (Jackson Pollock)
Lin West
02 March 2009 @ 11:26 pm
Icon Batch

[ 38 ] Kamen Rider Dragon Knight

Because boys in leather bodysuits make this girl's Saturday mornings a happy one. Mostly Len icons, with a nice portion of LenxKit and crack.

Lin West
28 February 2009 @ 01:05 am
It seems to me than any written long series that I read has similar content. Am I just selectively living out the same fantasy over and over and over again?

Fox_in_exile's Mikami/Raito Triology
Anything Samurai Champloo By: Laura Bryannan
Nightmare Game By: SisterWicked
In Company of Shadows By: Sonny&Ais
Aceilux By: Wyna Hiros
Illuminating Heaven By: sub-textual
The Administration Series By: Manna
The Human Condition by: jfinn
The Burning Time By: Misora

In additional comparison, manga I find appealing: Kuroshitsuji, Tyrant Who Falls in love, Crimson Spell, Vassalord, Canterella, Loveless, Blood+, Godchild, yami no matsui... In addition I'm obsessed with Animamundi and adored Poppy Z Brite's Exquisite Corpse.

I'm borderlining guro fetish, idolizing the byronic hero, increasingly interested in inversion of the hero story, and attracted to both dominant males yet want men to be subservant to women/some higher power. I am really turning down a satanic-looking literary path.

Also, lately I've been making but not sharing; starting but not finishing; planning but not doing. I'm back up with so much content I'm not sure where to begin. Not to mention I've hit a terrible writer's block so pyrexia and tattoo progress are completely halted. I'm just conjested with so much work to do that I don't have the will power for at the moment. Thank god for drunk duck's auto updater for Queen of Hearts or I would just give up an upload 20 pages at one time, but then not update until six months later.

to zoe: The only thing I can say is that the red wall illustrations are almost done.
Plaguing My Brain: Something by Violent Femmes
Lin West
02 February 2009 @ 12:44 am
I'm only posting this for backup purposes. I did not write this wonderful piece of fanfiction. It was written by a lady named fox_in_exile who recently deleted her livejournal account but didn't post this anywhere else that I'm aware of. So here it is, please let me know if you are fox-in-exile and would like me to delete it off my journal, or if you know where her work is posted outside of LJ.

Once again, I'm only posting this out of my love for these following words. This is the best death note fanfiction that I ever read. I'm only backing this up so others can read and enjoy her work.

WARNING this Contains Adult content: Mikami/Raito, Raito/Mikami, Mikami/Near, and Near+Mello.

Plaguing My Brain: Three Libras