"This is paranoid schizophrenia."
Monday, March 20, 2006

This is the first in my new River "State of Mind" series. As we open up the walls of River's reality, so to speak, we see the reason behind her troubled mental state: paranoid schizophrenia, hand-crafted by government scientists who thought River's brain was a rutting playground. The idea is to get a glimpse at what's been buried beneath those layers of psychosis. The peeling off of reality, as it were, opens up the door to a lot of symbolism: eleven inherent metaphoric parallels already there. :) This particular pose on the couch is one of my favorites scenes. River, withdrawn into herself, has to face her demons herself.



Monday, March 20, 2006 9:37 PM


I did a complete overhaul of the piece I posted yesterday (but which deleted after 5 minutes or so). There were a few things wrong with it. I hated having to pretty much redo everything. But FollowMal asked me: is River worth it? To that question there can only ever be one answer: YES! :) And I'm glad I did. But I think the work improved a lot. As a result, I'm now officially without sleep for over 34 hours. So, I lack the energy to put to much time into not sounding too happy with it. So, you'll forgive me my elate mood, okay? :)

The following items were fixed and/or redressed:

1): Removed the Trash "I can kill you with my brain" picture; it looked good, but, indeed, didn't really fit the theme.

2): I used a much more professional "page curl" plug-in to 'open up reality' -- one that would allow me to render a true flip-side pattern (instead of just adding it later with a brush).

3): I moved the whole 'vortex' to the left a bit; this way River on the couch is not getting warped by the page curl effect (she's warped enough as it is, right?).

4): I cleaned up the River-in-Alliance-chair. I removed obtrusive shadows; and I increased the visible area.

5): I redid/repositioned the main text fonts. Too many filters had caused their legibility to suffer.

6): I used a much better pattern for the 'flip-side' of reality; the whole blue tiles thingy gives that wall exactly the sort of clinic feel as I looking for.

7): Artistically, it occurred to me that I could, and should, use the flip-side wall of reality (inspired by the way M.C. Escher uses both 'sides' of a stairs, in "Relativity"). By cleverly positioning the right-hand curl (angle, alignment, and distance-to-chair wise), I now kinda created the illusion as if the entire Alliance-chair is set against that wall. Especially River's left arm (her left, of the River in chair) now seems to rest comfortably on the tile wall. I'm really pleased with this effect. It's weird: just a few coordinate changes; and yet I think dramatically increases the overall artistic value.

P.S. Totally unintended, lol, but the area around the two buttons in the couch (at each side of the split) makes those buttons like a face with eyes, and a nose in between. I stopped short of painting a smiley underneath. :)

Monday, March 20, 2006 9:49 PM


Wow. Asarian, you are a very thoughtful River lover indeed.

I like this version even more than the last. Very shiny. I might be imagining this, but did you move the image of her on the couch a bit to the right? I like it. It gives you a much clearer view of River's head, whereas before I think that the "scene splitting" thing obstructed it just a bit. Really, nice work. Can't wait to see what you have next.

Monday, March 20, 2006 11:06 PM


interesting i like it

Monday, March 20, 2006 11:07 PM


but i liked i can kill you with my brain /tear

Monday, March 20, 2006 11:07 PM


ah quite nice. good color tweaking, too it looks like: bringing out the contrast in her read sweater against the blues.

again, I also like how you're incorporating the special effects into the composition. here, with resting River's arm on the 'page-curl.'

Monday, March 20, 2006 11:36 PM


I think the word 'intense' describes this in a nutshell. The tear, the over-bright colours, the theme and the execution. It's all very intense.
Very well done.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 1:47 AM


Wow. REALLY good, CH is right, it's very intense.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 3:47 AM


Totally shiny! This was definately worth the effort.
Your love of River really comes through in your attention to detail.
You're talented and you really take time to think about what you're doing and that makes for high quality indeed.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 6:02 AM


seems you spend alot of time on these things. its a good job, for sure. i like it. but it seems it shouldn't have taken s long as you make it out to be. but it's still awesome

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 6:19 AM


Interesting idea. It really does show part of River's dilemma. I like the idea, well done.

It might be a little easier to view and load faster if the pic were scaled down just a bit. The whole pic doesn't quite fit into the screen and you have to scroll (and I have a wide screen monitor too). So it sort of takes away from the well crafted intesity of your picture if you can't see it all in one shot. Unless this is a wallpaper?

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 7:57 AM


Ah, Asarian, look at what you've done!
It's an amazing piece! I'm so glad you did it again, and so glad you shared it with us!

I can't wait to see what you do next. :)

I give it a 10, cuz it's that gorramn good!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 12:05 PM


My darling you are amazing, this is amazing.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 2:21 PM


Nice job Asarian

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 2:21 PM


As always - very nice art work.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006 5:42 PM


switch the texure of the to her mind should be the fuzzy one cause well the mind is a rutn confusing place and twist you around for all means of time


You must log in to post comments.



"He takes so much looking after."
The title really says it all. This is River, deeply happy for her brother and the way things turned out. This is "I'm all right." at its finest hour.

N.B. A improved redo of an earlier work. I removed the text balloon, and significantly cleaned up the 'embrace' scene and various other small changes and fixes.

P.S. Right-click and 'save' to get the original-size image.

Going Dark
"Going Dark" tells the story of Kaylee getting shot. Like an eclipsed sun, there's Dobson's bullet, frozem in mid air, as 'seen' by Kaylee, who walks into the cargo bay at the wrong time. I accentuated Kaylee's stomach wound, but it's the only graphic element in the entire image. In fact, most everything else is purposely opposite to bad stuff; it's all dream-like, sweet, with pretty flowers, butterflies, and even one of River's pink elephants shows up for the occasion (from the unshot episode 'Dead or Alive'). No nightmares for Kaylee, no bad conscience visiting upon her, no worries even: you just gotta have faith in people, yourself included. (Extended Commentary below)

A Hot Summer Night
in the same vein as piratenews has been posting.

Twilight Fancies
Kaylee, half passed out, drifting in and out to a faerie-like dream land. It's a bit different. And it's a bit shippy (but in an unsullied way: just some harmless swooning on the part of our fav' mechanic). Not an overly complex image. But I played a lot with the lighting, and I'm now fair content with the the dream-state like properties it's breathing. After all these years, it really does get harder creating new and undone themes. All-in-all, I set out what I wanted to do.

The Firefly / Mass Effect Comic!
A while back, playing Mass Effect, I suddenly got this hilarious idea for a Mass Effect comic, based on Firefly! :) So, I proudly present to you The Firefly / Mass Effect Comic! It's basically Mass Effect pictures with Firefly text! Of course, to get the full experience, you gots to be familiar with Mass Effect. See below for all episodes.

"Dear and fluffy Lord," The Interview
After the BSR went down, last year, I also lost my very first fanvid. I'm still liking it, though; so, here it's back (Extended Commentary below).

RESTORATION PROJECT, Item Nr. 5 -- "Time to wake up!"
This was originally a very simple image. Still is. :) But right after first posting it, I suddenly realized I could do something else with it: I could overlay a silhouette of "River looking at Mal", from the end of the BDM, at the near exact edge of where her hairline meets her face. See for the idea. Also, the purple title above the middle text (Evanescence) had thrown the image off-balance a bit. So, to restore equilibrium, I added a faint purple text underneath, saying "I love my Captain." All non-shippy, of course (more like the hero worship we talked about earlier today). Original Text below.

RESTORATION PROJECT, Item Nr. 4 -- "Noah's Ark is a problem."
In the ongoing spirit of "If you can't do something artistic, redo something artistic," I redid this River piece. Made around the same time of "I can win this!", the blending was not perfect yet. I especially had to redo the blending on the front of her dress, which was way too transparent near the edge. I didn't have the original layered version any more, so I had grab a new still and figure out what scaling factor I had initually used. But it's really much better now, IMHO. (Original Text below)

RESTORATION PROJECT, Item Nr. 3 -- "I can win this!"
One of my earliest works; from my "Now I'm learning about blending." phase. :) It was our very own PhoenixRose who, soon thereafter, taught me various shiny blending/blurring techniques, I significantly cleaned up the marble, as well as the background that had all manner of background noise in the black: great for Out of Gas, but for art, not so much. :) (Original Text below)

RESTORATION PROJECT, Item Nr. 2 -- "I didn't think you'd come for me."
Most like my second best work. :) Apart from rounding up the usual suspects, such as transparency errors, this picture differs from the one I originally posted at, in that I edited out Simon's hand on the elevator door, and smoothed out the area where the window post and the River-in-elevator-shaft meet. (Original Text below)