Saturday, March 31, 2012

first environment painting :D

Well, the first one that I've done digitally, also the first one I've done since I last took art classes which was probably...when I was about 10 years old.

I used a stock photo, so please don't think that I just randomly pulled this out of my ass. I'm still pretty damn proud of myself for even being able to paint this from a blank canvas. I threw in the dragon at the end because it looked a bit boring otherwise :P 

Photoshop Elements 6, about 3 hours. 

Click for larger view!

Sunday, March 25, 2012


So I have just returned from my trip to Asia (I literally landed in Seattle this morning...went home, took an unintended 5 hour nap, now it's 1:30 am and I can't sleep), but I thought that I'd share something that I've been keeping in the dark on this blog for a while now. I'm gonna be showing/selling at Sakura-con in Seattle in about two weeks' time! I'm doing a mix of original art and fanart. Here's the originals that I'm going to be selling:

For the list of the fanart I'm doing, go here

I will be at table 502, exhibitor's hall hours are 10-6 Fri and Sat, 10-4 Sun. I will also be selling jewelry and doing sketch commissions. Stop by and say hi! 

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Makeup haul/swatches! Shiro Cosmetics+Fyrinnae Cosmetics

(Pardon the lack of a blog header, I want to make a new one!)

So, you know that makeup haul that I promised you a while ago? Well, the reason why it is so late is because after I placed my original order, I decided to make two more orders :D so as a result, I have way more makeup than I originally planned, which is a-ok since I'm trying to restock my collection anyway.

As usual, all of these products have been purchased by me. I am not endorsed or compensated by any of these companies in exchange of this review, and all of these opinions are completely my own.

I made a total of three orders: two from a company called Shiro Cosmetics, and one from a company called Fyrinnae Cosmetics. Both are indie cosmetic companies which are purely online-based. They are also considered two of the most popular brands on the Internet. Let's start off with Shiro first.

Shiro Cosmetics is basically a 'geek chic' themed company. Their eyeshadows are divided into separate collections, the Super Effective Collection (named after Pokemon), Legends (Legend of Zelda), Science (Portal), Notebook (Deathnote), and have recently added a Tributes Collection, which is Hunger Games themed. They also sell blushes, lip tints, finishing powders, and perfume oils. My first order consisted of some eyeshadows and a sample of one of their lip tints (which I totally forgot to photograph, so you're just going to have to live without it. Sorry ): ) The three shadows I ordered were Mew, S.S. Anne (Super Effective), and Party Escort (Science). Caitlyn, the owner, always sends two free samples with every order, along with some Japanese candy, which I ate before photographing all of these :)

They come in these cute little jars, complete with sifters :) 

Shortly after, I placed a second order, this time of four shadows. I originally ordered three, but changed my mind a little bit afterwards. Thankfully, my order had not shipped yet, so Caitlyn was nice enough to let me tag on an extra color. The ones I got this time were Nayru's Love, Farore's Wind (Legends), Reverse Psychology (Science), and Shaymin (Super Effective). Note that Caitlyn is discontinuing some of these colors, so she's putting them on sale for $3.50 for a full size jar (normally $5). You can find them here.

Here are the swatches, applied over Fyrinnae's Pixie Epoxy (which I will elaborate on later). Click to enlarge: 

The shades marked as 'discontinued' are STILL AVAILABLE in the sales section. But once they're gone, they're gone!

I love all of these colors, but Party Escort is one of my favorites. It's this medium-dark shiny gray with red sparks in it. It's perfect for an edgier look. Nayru's Love looks amazing on me as well. 

Here are the swatches of the free samples: 

The quality of this stuff is amazing! It's on par with, if not better than, cosmetics that you would find at Mac, Sephora, or in department stores. But here's the thing: these eyeshadows are super cheap and actually affordable. For a mini jar (which yields about 1g of product, which will last you for quite a while!), it costs $3.50. For a full size jar (about 2g of product), it's $5.00. You can also order samples in little baggies for $1.00 each. This company is also vegan and cruelty-free, and does not use parabens, talc, or any of that bad stuff. The customer service is quite excellent as well. Caitlyn is pretty much one of the nicest people ever. Definitely recommend this company!

Note: the mini jars do not come with the little stickers on top. If you want the stickers, you have to order them separately here. They're just an extra $0.20, but I think it's totally worth it having little pokeballs sitting in my makeup bag. But that's just me. X) Full size jars always come with stickers.


Next company is Fyrinnae Cosmetics. This is undoubtedly the most popular indie cosmetics company on the Internet (and they're based in Tacoma, Wa!). In fact, they're so popular that they have to frequently shut down their website just to catch up on orders. BUT, they're popular for a very good reason. I guarantee you their eyeshadows will be unlike any eyeshadows you've ever seen before. 

Now, when I first heard about Fyrinnae, I was a bit put off by the organization of their website and the tunaround time that they posted on their front page. Currently the TAT is about 30-36 days, but from what I've heard from other customers, orders usually do NOT take that long to ship out. For example, when I ordered, the TAT was 20-24 days, but mine was shipped out after maybe...2? I ordered on a Thursday night, and it shipped out Saturday. 

Of course, this also might depend on how big your order is. Mine was relatively small, consisting of two full-size eyeshadow colors, and a sample of their world famous Pixie Epoxy

The full size jars are completely packed to the rim! They do not come with sifters, so for those who are accident prone, be very careful.

The two eyeshadows I ordered were Mephisto and Fyre and Ice. They also sent me a free sample of Cuddlefish along with my order. 


Cuddlefish is a bluish purple with teal, pink and purple sparkles. Fyre and Ice is a dark, near-black purple with gold, pink, purple, and teal sparkles. It looks like the night sky! Beautiful! 

As you can see, Fyrinnae is notorious for having incredibly complex eyeshadow colors. Allow me to demonstrate by showing you a closeup of Mephisto.

In the jar, Mephisto looks to be a royal purple. But when I apply it on my eyes, I can get anything from purple, to orange, to red, brown, even blue! As you can see, there are multiple colors on my eyelids, but I only applied one single shade! I am completely dumbfounded by how this works. My only feasible conclusion is witchcraft. Or just really badass chemistry. 

Fyrinnae, of course, doesn't just sell shadows. They also sell blushes, bronzers, lip colors, and many more. But probably their most popular product would be their Pixie Epoxy. 

I ordered a small sample, which came in this tiny little jar.

Pixie Epoxy is this clear, goopy eyeshadow base that you put on your lids before applying eyeshadow. It's specifically intended for sparkly, shimmery shades. It's not a primer, per se (you'll need an actual primer to put on underneath to prevent creasing), but it sort of acts as a "glue" to hold all the sparkly goodness of your eyeshadow together. The main benefits of this product is that it prevents fallout, and bolds the color to epic proportions. This is pretty much a cult product of the company. Every review I've read on the Internet raves about this stuff. Personally, I also love it. It does take a while to figure out proper application: you only need to put on a tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiny bit on your eyes, then when you're putting on the eyeshadow, you dab it on with a brush instead of sweeping it on. It is a bit tedious of a process, and I'm probably not going to have time to do this every morning before classes, but if you want to really show off your super sparkly eyeshadow, get this stuff. A full size tube is $7.00, while the little sample I got was $1.50. 

Undoubtedly, this company surpasses every cosmetic company that I've purchased from. I'm completely impressed by the complexity and creativity of each and every shade; it's definitely unlike anything I've seen before. This company is also vegan and cruelty free, and while they do not consider themselves a "mineral" makeup company, they guarantee that their formulas are also devoid of harmful chemicals and fillers. Their pricing is also pretty good. A sample size eyeshadow for any color (about 1/3 tsp) is $2.00, while full sizes are $5.90 (3 full grams of product, which is a LOT). They also have a special Arcane Magic collection, which supposedly change color according to how the light hits it. Those are $6.35 full sized. I personally have not tried any of these, so I cannot attest to this. But nonetheless, I am definitely ordering more from these people!

So there you have it! I definitely encourage you to try these companies out, as well as the indie cosmetics scene in general. Overall, prices are distinctly cheaper, but with the same quality if not better. You are also supporting smaller businesses instead of big corporate giants. But before you buy from a specific company, definitely do some research. While there are awesome companies out there, there are also some less than awesome, seedier companies which you need to look out for. Read reviews from bloggers if you are unsure or unfamiliar with a specific brand. Have fun =] 

Also, tomorrow I am flying out to Japan, hanging around in Tokyo for a bit, and then flying out to Hong Kong and Guangzhou for spring break. Talk to you after I get back! 

Sunday, March 11, 2012


I just ordered these from The Earring Chest. God these things are so gorgeous! I can't wait for them to arrive.

This shop is also having an anniversary sale right now, so there's some discounts on certain items :)

Image (c) The Earring Chest