i figured i should link this post to the source i got the images from

Important information for Content Creators on Tumblr (Last Updated June 23, 2017)

okay i know ive posted alot about this just now, but now that ive got it more or less figured out I’m gonna make a better post here and include the tags relevent to my interactions in it to ensure no one else in my fandoms/communities are blindsided like i was. 

I encourage you to make your own, or to just recopy this, tagging the fandoms and communities important to you!

CONTENT CREATORS: TUMBLR IS HIDING YOUR POSTS!

If you make a post with external links, your post will be hidden from searches. If you make a post and link to your redbubble, no one can search for your post. If you make art and link it to your deviantart or artstation, no one can search for you post. If you make any post and just throw on a “hey here is where you find me!” no one can search that post. If you want to recommend a fic or a youtube video, no one can search your post, if you… hell you get the idea. Tumblr has completely shut down content creators on this hellsite and its fucking infuriating.

I have just confirmed that the post type “Link” also does not show up in the tags. Thats right, there is an ENTIRE TYPE OF TUMBLR POST that cannot be searched. G-FUCKING-G TUMBLR.

EDIT: Okay! I have done more testing (and a video to go along with it) and at this point i can say that this is still very real, but that it only affects links to specific websites, presumably ones that tumblr doesn’t have added to some sort of “internal whitelist” of safe sites. 
I would suggest if you intend to continue tagging, to maintain a very very unique tag and use it to keep tabs on your work to ensure they are continuing to show up.
In the meantime, I will do my best to keep a list here of links verified to work, and ones verified to not work. Please feel free to comment on the post or reblog if you have your own experiences!

Also there has been confirmation that this change affects posts regardless of posting date. So it’ll hide posts made before the update went into affect; expected but good to confirm!

Edit (6/1/2017): working with someone to try to determine why an image is being hidden from the tag regardless of if it has text or a link or anything. The image in question should have worked, we tried reposting, we tried changing the file name, it still didn’t show up. Finally we changed it from a .png to a .jpg and it worked! So we thought we stumbled on something but, i posted one of my images in a test tag, as a jpg, as a png and as a transparent png and all showed up. So sometimes posts arent showing up for other reasons that have yet to be discovered (just because tumblr is shit it would seem)

Edit (6/23/2017):  So it looks like certain links might only show up in certain searches.

in this case the etsy link only showed up in recent, not in popular and not in text posts. 

Also if you wanted to try to include a non linked post in the description such as a url with the dots obfuscated by parenthesis then you have to do both the www(.) and the (.)com, one or the other will still find your post blocked.

in short using any links whatsoever COULD be problematic, using no links at all could be, but will probably increase the chances of your post being seen.

In general Tumblr’s search is absolutely degenerating, seemingly with each passing day.

WHAT TO DO?

It shuts down posts with external links, so at first i assumed internal links would be fine. and they are. if you make a page on your tumblr blog called like /links or something you can certainly link to that. But in that way you run into an issue, tumblr mobile is a piece of shit and cant load tumblr pages, and itll just take you back to the mainblog any time you try.

The best solution ive found so far is put all your relevent links in your blog description like so:

and then in every content post, call tumblr out for being a piece of shit and direct them to the links in your blog description.

Edit: In the top right hand side of photo posts you can click on it and include a single link as “source” that should work if you have one link neccessary. though if you need more you are still SOL. Find it like so:

It will appear in dash format at the bottom left of the post:

in desktop them view where it can be found, or if it can be found, varies by theme.

CONTENT CREATOR SUPPORTERS

It is important now more than ever on this hellsite that you try to support your artist and content creators, reblog as much as possible, look to find them on websites off this piece of shit, and generally do your best to spread the word and support them, since tumblr itself is trying to silence them! 

I HAVE AN ACCOMPANYING POST HERE WITH A VIDEO UPDATE AND INFORMATION PLEASE CHECK IT OUT.

thechefwhocolectedheartpieces  asked:

I have a fat character I want to draw but she ends up looking weird no matter how hard I try... :< Do you know any tutorials on how to draw larger people?

I can totally understand your frustration. We’re taught to draw thin bodies a lot more often and thoroughly than we’re taught to draw fat ones, so learning how to draw larger bodies can definitely be a struggle, even for fat artists. But I’ve rustled up some links that should hopefully prove useful to you and other artists dealing with the same problem.

Fat Drawing Tutorial:

  • Here’s a pretty good one that covers different fat body variations and includes larger fat girls: “Tutorial - Curves on Girls
  • Once you get past the part about abs this one’s got some really good information and reference on how to draw how fat looks realistically: “Understanding Anatomy VII
    (that whole tutorial series looks to be helpful on drawing anatomy, so I recommend checking the other parts out too)
  • This one doesn’t cover larger fats, but it does have some good stuff about distributions of fat on the body and variations on fatness: “Varying Your Body Types
  • Here’s a short, not-terribly-thorough one (that’s got some complaints in it on unrealistic depictions of fatness in fat-fetishistic art, just fyi), but which makes good points on incorporating gravity into depictions of fatness so the fat doesn’t look like balloons: “How To Draw Fat Women
  • This one’s a short tutorial (that has minor problematic language) about how to draw waists that’s inclusive of smaller fat bodies. “Female Waist Tutorial
  • A short tutorial about drawing hips, inclusive of smaller fat hips. Not a lot to it, but helpful to glance over. “Female Hip Tutorial
  • Drawing Fat on the Body is a video tutorial that covers some helpful advice on how to draw fat bodies building off of prior knowledge of drawing thin bodies. Doesn’t cover different types of fat bodies/fat distribution and has some other imperfections, but a decent beginner starting point. ” (contains some mild problematic language)
  • How to Draw Fat Bodies” Here’s a short post with some good general tips to keep in mind when attempting to draw fat people.
  • Another short, general guide on drawing fat bodies, with some good example of different fat body types. “Guide to Drawing Fat Bodies
  • A short guide with tips on drawing fat athletes/strong fat characters.
  • A basic tutorial on adding fat onto the general torso area of the body.

(One of the sadder parts of finding these was sifting through different tutorials and finding ones that were teaching how to draw really inaccurate or over-simplified fat anatomy, or included really fatphobic language or commentary in the tutorial =.=)

Fat Reference Photos:

  • This post links to a handful of helpful galleries of photo reference of fat women posing: “Re: Fat and Chubby Women Photo References
  • Here’s a Site which contains lots of pictures of different women searchable by height, age, weight, etc. that looks really helpful: “My Body Gallery.com
  • A site with a lot of great full-body pictures of people organized by their height and weight (referential to the bs BMI system, but still great art reference)Cockeyed: Height / Weight

Other Reference:

Otherwise, if you want to search for fat reference on tumblr, I’d suggest looking through tags and blogs that often contain selfies/photos of fat people, since when you’re trying to learn how fat actually looks, nothing is more accurate reference for it than the real thing.

HOWEVER, you must be respectful in your use of these tags or blogs for reference!!!! As in DO NOT draw people straight out of any photos you find and post your work unless you get permission from the subjects you’ve drawn and/or their photographers. If you do draw random people you see in the tag, then treat your drawings as practice/study and confine whatever you make to your sketchbook for your own eyes.

But I do wholly advocate looking at all sorts of images of fat people and really paying attention to all the different ways their fat manifests itself and looks, and then practicing drawing figures inspired by what you’ve observed.

(please note that some of these tags and blogs listed below may contain nudity/nsfw content:)

Tags containing fat selfies/photography: #fatshion, #fatspo, #fatspiration

Blogs containing fat selfies/photography: The Adipositivity ProjectFat Selfiesteem, Fat Grrrrl Selfies, Chubby Fatshion, Fuck Yeah Chubby Fashion, Chubby Bunnies, Chubby Guy Swag, Big Guy Flyy, Gorgeous Plus Lolita

Blogs containing art of fat or at least “not thin” people: Fat People Art, Fat Art

(If you see your blog linked to above and would rather it not be pointed to as a place to find reference of fat bodies, just let me know and I’ll take it off right away.)

Anyways, hope this helps! And if you know of, find, or make any more tutorials, references sources, etc., please do message me with the links to be added onto this post!!!  I’ll update this as I find/receive more stuff to add.

(Updated: 5/31/15 with 8 new additions to the fat drawing tutorial and fat reference photo sections)

Writing theory in relation to the Check Please fandom

in regard of posts I’ve seen circulating lately, I just want to give some depths to the discussion around characters most used in fanfics. Bear in mind that this is not a way to take a stance in the debate, but merely a tool for people who think about the issue. 

The question at hand it: Is the CP fandom racist because it prioritises white characters over characters of color?

First, I want to redirect you to a post on Writing Theory and the different tiers of existing characters.  If you’re lazy, it’s okay, overall it says that characters come in tiers of importance to the story, and tier 1 gets all the characteristics, tier 2 gets 2, tier 3 gets 1, etc.

If we analyse Check Please characters, you have

The Main Character, which is Bitty. The story revolves around him, his coming of age, his doubts and fears and love, etc. His characteristics are: sweet, likes to bake, vlogs, used to be a figure skater, plays hockey, fears checking, etc.


The secondary character is Jack. Some plot points revolve after him, since he’s the antagonist in year 1, and the love interest in years 2 and 3. Jack is focused on hockey to the point of anxiety, and soft when he has control of said anxiety. Notice that he already has less depth than Bitty. Not because he’s a less rounded character, but because the story is not built around him. His life affects Bitty, that’s why we know about it.


The rest are, at the very least, third tier characters, they get 1 characteristic each, and will never divert from that description. Holster is a loud bro, Ransom is a smart bro, Lardo is an art bro, and when you get further away, the rest have less and less leeway in their personalities. Dex is grumpy, Nursey tries to be chill, Chowder is excitable. Then we almost know nothing of Tango and Whiskey, because they just need to fill spots, like Johnshon the metaphysical goalie needed to fill a spot before Chowder could get there. Notice I didn’t mention Shitty because I’m on the fence between putting him in second or third tier. His story arc doesn’t affect Bitty, I should place him on third tier, but he’s more nuanced than the others.

(loads more under the cut)

Keep reading

6/2/17 recs

Thank you for understanding :) hopefully I will get back to regular posting smoothly.

1. monochrome by simplydrasticvoldy || Rated M, 25.9k (WiP)

“Eros and Ice Daddy?”

“Why, what’s wrong with that?”

“Nothing, nothing. It just doesn’t sound like they’re going to kick criminal asses. More like, swing down a stripper pole and spice up the bedroom. Comprende?”

“Well… what’s wrong with that?”

_

During the day, Katsuki Yuuri is a shy, bumbling, albeit genius grad student who has nothing figured out in his life.
By the night, he is a masked vigilante struggling to find a cool name for his alter-ego.

Meanwhile, Otabek Altin is a young and new cop who wants to dismantle the entire mafia network of the city right on his first case, and believes he’ll succeed.

Until.

Until Yuuri discovers he isn’t the only masked man in town fighting crime, and Otabek lands up with a prisoner that just can’t stop calling him “bitch”.

_

Basically, an AU where Yuuri and Victor fall in love at university while their blissfully unaware alter-egos try to uncover each other’s secret identity. All this while Otabek’s crush swells a bit bigger every time he’s asked to interrogate Yuri Plisetsky. And somehow, their lives intertwine.

  • Comment: An interesting and amusing superhero au with secret identities and all, the plot looks really promising, and the relationship between Victor and Yuuri as well. Yuri and Otabek’s relationship is notable in this and I really quite like how things are going so far. Characterization has me nonplussed sometimes, but overall a pretty decent read.

2.  Void by copperwings || Rated T, 14.5k

AU in which tattoo-like images appear on people’s skin to help them choose their path in life. Very rarely, a person turns out to be Void: one without pictures. Voids are regarded with suspicion and fear, because it is thought they have no soul and no future.

When Yuuri is discovered to be Void and his home town turns against him, he escapes into the world of figure skating. On the ice he can play the role of anyone and not be restricted by what he actually is, but off the ice it’s a constant battle of trying to hide his true nature from the world.

  • Comment: A really interesting oneshot au (despite the summaries, it’s not of the soulmate nature). It’s a nice concept that’s been executed quite well, and the result is a good read that got my attention for awhile. Would suggest giving this a try.

3. To the Moon by JMonCheri || Rated T, 13.1k

Viktor Nikiforov’s last, literal dying wish is to get a gold medal.

Yuri and Otabek figured it would be an easy goal to accomplish, until they figure out that Nikiforov was an Olympic figure skating champion with already a truck ton of other golden medals.

  • Comment: This one gave me a feeling, wow wow wow. A touch angsty, but it adds flavour to the fic. The conceit is really interesting, the execution really well-done, and this is definitely my absolute oneshot recommendation for the night. I love what the author did with it. While I’m not familiar with the source material, I didn’t feel confused at all. 
  • !!! Try it.

4. Celestial Gravitation by Nyerus (dragonmist310) || Rated E, 22.7k (WIP)

The Rossiyan Empire controls most of the galaxy. Most, but not all–not yet. The solution to the Emperor’s ambitions lies in a rumored ancient weapon hidden on a lost world. The small, peaceful planet of Yamato holds the key to unlocking and utilizing said weapon. To secure their interests, the Emperor and his talented son–Prince Victor–venture to the planet to obtain the key: Prince Yuuri of Yamato. Knowing that any resistance could mean endangering his homeworld, Prince Yuuri and his family agree to the Emperor’s terms. But he has foreseen this day coming and he will not go along with their plans as quietly as the Empire may expect him to.

What he hasn’t foreseen, however, is the unlikely bond he develops with Prince Victor–a man he should be destined to hate, but finds he cannot.

If only galactic politics and ancient secrets didn’t get in the way of love.

(A slow-burn, space-adventure AU in which there is advanced technology as well as magic.)

  • Comment: This is a really engaging and promising-looking first chapter. I saw it awhile back but kept losing the link, ugh. The worldbuilding is a little heavy-handed in the beginning, but the author’s done a fair job setting everything up. Everyone’s characters are a little different from how they are in canon because of the AU, but they still feel true to themselves :D
  • If you’re looking for a new WIP to follow, look at this one. (It has space and magic and political shenanigans, I’m hyped)

5. home is wherever i’m with you series by  FunnyLittleOwl || Rated E, 35.7k (WIP)

An homage to Barcelona.

Yuuri and Victor go sightseeing on the eve of the Grand Prix Finals. It’s almost like the city is trying to tell them something.

Or in which there’s ice cream on Yuuri’s face, Phichit talks about boats and Victor should really consider being a professional runner.

  • Comment: a travelling series that takes place in different cities and looks at post-canon vicyuu. I love it a lot. The author’s done well with every city in not making the enviroment description too in-your-face, and it’s just a really heartwarming series. It also explores Yuuri and Victor’s continuing relationship development, as an established couple and later newlyweds, and while it did take an effort for me to get into at first, once I was in it, I was hooked. 
  • ( ´ ♡ ⁾⁾⁾) it is really nice
Yuri on Ice interview translation - Pash! 2016/12 (p15)

Yet another interview from Pash! Dec. issue. This is also with Mitsurou Kubo, it’s basically an “extra” of the commentary that I posted the other day, with a few other random questions & facts all very interesting as usual. By the way, this is were it was first confirmed that Yuuri and Victor speak English to each other (which is something Japanese people had been wondering for a while).

Same as in the last translation, italic/bold parts are recreating how the original article was, I didn’t decide where to add them myself.

***If you wish to share this translation please do it by reblogging or posting a link to it***
***Re-translating into other languages is ok but please mention that this post is the source***


Mitsurou Kubo Q&A
There’s still more behind the scenes! We are bringing you a few more curiosities and anecdotes in Q&A format.

Q: Why are there so many scenes about SNS?
A: Actual skaters love SNS too, and there are quite a few of them who post really often. The director and I always enjoy looking at their posts every day. We created the ED in the image of Instagram and photos posted on the SNS. We are also thinking of ending some episodes with SNS style pictures, I hope you’ll enjoy.

Q: Is Yuuri on the SNS too?
A: Yuuri is the type who gets an account but then never updates it. He doesn’t really check it. He doesn’t want to be bashed, and thinks that the fans’ passionate cheering is a bit annoying. He’s really terrible at dealing with fans. But lots of people around him are SNS lovers, so you can spot him in their posts (LOL).

Q: What do you especially pay attention to in this work?
A: First of all, we were talking with director Yamamoto about the fact that no matter how you perfectly animate the skating scenes, if viewers don’t feel like cheering for an athlete they will never sympathize with them. That’s why until episode 4 we have spent time meticulously showing the interaction between Yuuri Katsuki and Victor Nikiforov in Yuuri’s hometown.

Q: What language do Yuuri and the others speak with each other?
A: Yuuri and Victor fundamentally speak English with each other. Yuuri studied in Detroit, so actually he can speak English very well. Isn’t that cool? (LOL)

Q: Tell us something about the episode titles, which are always quite striking.
A: I thought them all before writing the storyboards. The flow of the story was already roughly decided, but we had to present the titles at the meeting first of all. If I remember correctly, director Yamamoto and I thought up all 12 titles in Tokyo station, after returning from a trip to collect data (LOL). We decided episode 1 because it sounded nice, and since we had started with that kind of title we felt like we should continue with the same trend for all others too. But I guess it’s no use to act cool in the end (LOL).

Q: About “that” line.
A: The lines centered around “(the theme is) love” in episode 5 are actually something that I came up with for the recording script that was used in the cast audition, before writing the storyboard. I used the same words in the actual episode.

Q: What memories do you have of the location hunting?
A: I really like the Russian representative pair skater Yuko Kavaguti. I had never gotten an autograph from an athlete before, but when we went to see the GP Final in Barcelona last year, after the exhibition the director and I spotted her signing autographs, and we got one too. We told her “We really like you!!” (LOL), and she replied “ooh, really?” with a lovely voice like a little bird, that made me so happy.

Q: Where did you go location hunting?
A: We went to China, Russia and Spain, also to watch the matches. It was about 5 days for each match.

Q: What did you have trouble with during location hunting?
A: We could never get appointments. In Russia we went to see the tournament in Moscow and we also went to St. Petersburg. In St. Petersburg there is a famous sport club called Yubileyny, to which Plushenko and Yagudin also belong, and we tried going there even though we weren’t expecting much. Director Yamamoto was really nice and asked whether we could take a look inside, but of course… they didn’t allow us to… While we were taking pictures of the exterior we were told that now it was being remodeled and the main athletes were in another place. We tried to go there too, but again we were told that the public is not allowed inside. We still tried searching for some place we could take a look at, and we came upon a dining room. Inside there were a few Russian female athletes. We got a little hyper and were like “skaters training inside actually come here too!!” “they’re only drinking water!!”. We kept on visiting the place, trying to see all areas that were accessible to the public. In Moscow we went to CSKA, which is where Radionova is based, but here too we were not allowed to visit. So basically in the whole GP series we weren’t able to see even one back yard. Overseas you can take pictures in the main arena, so director Yamamoto, the manager and I positioned ourselves in different spots and did our best to take as many pictures as possible. We seriously had to do everything by ourselves. When we tried to go at the back we got excited because once again we could enter the dining room (LOL). Every time it was like that.

Q: What kind of place is Hasetsu?
A: Hasetsu is a fictional town in Kyushu. In Kyushu there are actual skate rinks too, but we reckoned that if we used one of those it would become difficult to distinguish between reality and fiction. We did most of the location hunting in Karatsu, Saga prefecture. There’s a castle too because we figured a foreigner would like that. In Saga there is a film commission, so we also went there to officially ask for cooperation. As soon as we enter the GP series they never go back to Hasetsu, but in the beginning we showed a lot of “rural*” life. We wanted it to become a place that you could look back at and think “those were fun times”.
[*translator’s note: You may think that Hasetsu is a normal town, but in Japan everything that’s not big metropolitan city is basically considered “countryside”]

Q: We would like to know how you created the performances in the series!
A: We first had a meeting with the composer (Keisuke) Tominaga-san, in which the director and I participated too, and afterwards he sent us samples of about 200 songs. Kenji-sensei then gave us comments for all the songs, like “this sounds European”, “this is something an American skater would use”, “this one won’t work”. It sounds very convincing when it’s a choreographer saying it. After that the director and I did a further brush-up and chose the songs among the existing samples that sounded more similar to what we were looking for, we asked to create the actual songs, then we asked Kenji-sensei to create choreographies for them, and finally we had him perform said choreographies and filmed him with lots of cameras. Kenji-sensei listened to our explanation and told us to tell him if we had anything to say about the choreographies. He created all of them within a limited amount of time, even though the story was not fully decided in detail yet. And despite that, in the tournament scenes it happened a lot of times that the choreographies perfectly matched the scenes and made the monologues sound even more fitting, it was really magical. When I got to the point of writing the storyboard I realized once again how important the role of Kenji-sensei has been.


The Profound Bond - Why All The Hand Prints?

So a while back I got overly excited about all the visuals of hands, hand prints, bloody hands, monster hands etc… as a theme running through season 11. I have spoken about this quite a lot and have a tag  #hands and hand printswhich you can browse if you are interested. The main posts about this are here,here and here.

The main points to take away from that meta is that these hand and hand print visuals seem to be most common in relation to either the monster of the week, or the Amara parallel of whatever episode the visual happens to be in. They are also linked to the underlying themes of the heart and love throughout the season.

I struggled to figure out the connection between the way the show was relating the hand prints to Amara, and THE hand print that we all relate to Castiel. After all, throughout the shows entire history, THIS:

Tends to be what we immediately thing about (including a general viewer with at least a good understanding of the shows history) when we think of hand prints.

I have talked previously about how in 11x02 they used a clip in which “the right hand of hate and the left hand of love” were important devices in stopping the forces of darkness. 

Throughout the season, the symbolism of the hand print has been corrupted. It has been associated with monsters so often to encourage the idea that it is a ‘dark mark’ of sorts. (words chosen intentionally). This visual symbolism actually dates back to season 10.

The question is why they would corrupt the hand print? Why use the hand print and bloody hands as a metaphor for Amara? Who already has her own mark on Dean in form of the Mark of Cain (notably on his RIGHT arm not his left). The answer, I think, was given to us in 11x21.

(Gif borrowed from @mrsfitzgerald here.)

The writers are not idiots (contrary to what I have previously said about Bucklemming I have to give them kudos to usually sticking to at least their own story continuity) They must be aware of what we think about Castiel’s hand print. How it has become a symbol of the “Profound Bond” between Dean and Cas.

But now they have purposely been showing us symbols of a corrupted hand print. A handprint (or hands in general) in relation to monsters, more specifically, to the main monster of the season. Amara.

The show has never textually confirmed that Castiel and Dean have a bond or a connection through the hand print. It was only ever implied through the two lines in Ben Edlund’s episode The Third Man (6x03) “Dean and I do share a more profound bond.” And “when a claim is laid on a living soul, it leaves a mark, a brand” This is subtext, and the show has continually used the subtext to lay the foundations for the beautiful relationship between the characters. Dean pines for Castiel, he longs for him. We also learnt that Cas can pick up on this longing, and use it to locate the source. (this we learned textually in season 10). This longing retcon only further enhances Dean and Castiel’s bond and explained how Cas was able to always find Dean even though Dean had the angel warding carved into his ribs.

Now in a season where the main theme is “You can’t outrun your past”, which has been calling back to season 4 on a near episode by episode basis, we are also being given hand print symbolism to remind us of Castiel’s hand print on Dean’s shoulder which was first discovered in season 4.

In the latest episode, Amara sent Lucifer to sleep after he annoyed her. She then pauses, looks up curiously at the sleeping angel and approaches, holding out her hand with a confused expression on her face, and stretches her hand over his heart. The expression becomes almost pained, she has realised something, but we don’t know what…

(as above gifs borrowed from @mrsfitzgeraldhere. I am completely hopeless and cannot gif so hopefully you don’t mind me using these.)

Immediately, the camera cuts to Dean. (Dean in a symbolic cage no less).

(Gif borrowed from @godshipsithere. Again thank you in advance for letting me use your gif. If I ever learn this skill I’ll happily let anyone use mine with credit… but I am hopeless.)

Dean who was currently hunting for Amara. Why was he hunting for Amara? because he wanted to save Cas. Because he was pining for Cas at that very moment.

Amara was able to find Dean, to project an image of herself to him in order to pass him a message. She has never had this ability before. She has never been able to locate Dean if he wasn’t already physically nearby. Dean was in the Bunker. Which we know is heavily warded against all supernatural creatures. He should be completely invisible to Amara.

But she found him. How?

Since we know that angels can pick up on longing and use it to locate the source, and we know that Dean has been in a near constant state of longing for Cas (subtextually and textually in the past 7 episodes) therefore we can assume that Cas still has the ability somewhere to sense Dean. He may be so buried in his own self-loathing at the moment that it doesn’t occur to him that the longing Dean feels for him is anything more than a need for him to be a useful tool in the fight, but we as the audience know better. And now so does Amara. She was able to sense Dean and his emotional connection to Cas through Castiel’s heart. Through the bond that they share. This is the only way to possibly explain this scene. There is no other explanation.

So how does this fit in with the hand print stuff? This is where I speculate. We have just been given our first textual evidence of Dean and Castiel’s bond. The bond that we as a fandom define by Castiel’s hand print. The same hand print that the show has been corrupting through visual symbolism throughout season 11. Why associated the hand print with Amara unless, now that she knows about the profound bond, she would plan to use it to further her own agenda and make Dean hers?

Might Amara try to use that bond against them? Use Castiel to get to Dean? Physically this time rather than through Dean’s mind?

Could Amara manipulate Dean through his bond with Castiel?

This season we have not only been shown visual symbols of hands and hand prints almost constantly, we have also been bombarded with heart symbolism, (sometimes at the same time with the hand punch through the chest being used more than once this season). We have also been given messages about love, true love saving the day, the left hand of love and following your heart (the heart choice) throughout the season. These are not coincidences. These are not one off random things. This is a pattern. And patterns have meaning.

Dean, Castiel and Amara have been presented subtextually as a love triangle, and after 11x21 this is even more obvious, since Dean betrayed Amara to save Castiel (because by Lucifer he means Cas.) After a season of symbolism to corrupt the hand print, it seems like this is something that may actually happen. Amara may use Dean and Castiel’s bond against them.

She has already developed her own dark bond with Dean, one that is out of his control, and there is a good chance that all the monstrous hand print symbolism could be referencing this as well. But I think we are reaching a point in the show where they aren’t going to deny that Dean and Cas are linked, that potentially, Cas has a claim on Dean’s soul. Remember how Amara tried to take his soul in 11x09 (also a bucklemming episode) and we all debated as to whether she couldn’t take it or if she just changed her mind? What if the real reason was because of this? Because she sensed another bond back then, she saw something else had carved a place in Dean’s soul so she did the next best thing and kissed him? And now, she has seen that connection from its source. The source is Castiel. The angel she greatly underestimated. The angel she thought was expendable. It would certainly bring sense to a lot of questions that have been raised over the season.

At the very start of the season, we were told that the right hand of hate and the left hand of love must fight in the story of life. If Dean is life (since Dean is the embodiment of Humanity) then Amara is his right hand. The hand on the side which bore the Mark of Cain. Castiel is his left hand. The hand on the side which bore the hand print (the symbol of the profound bond).

Amara and Castiel are paralleled through the hand and hand print symbolism. We already know textually that Amara has a bond with Dean, therefore, it is only a matter of looking at the symbolism and the parallels to know that Castiel also has a bond which runs soul deep. Will they have to battle for Dean’s soul? Or will Amara just take Dean by threatening Castiel again? She has already done so once.

Overall, I think the hand and hand print symbolism has been used first as a call back to the bond between Dean and Cas (as a reminder of it in the subtext) and second as subtextual foreshadowing to the corruption of that bond. To get us to a point where Amara’s bond with Dean will be played off against Castiel’s bond with Dean. We may just get textual confirmation of the profound bond that they share, that Castiel has a claim on Dean’s soul. This could mean canon Destiel. I stand by my meta that Castiel is the underdog and therefore the key player to watch here. We only have two episodes left and I really hope that this comes true. All the symbolism and subtext of the season has been building to this. If the reveal is that Castiel is bound to Dean it will be a huge deal in terms of the main plot and Amara’s claim on him. It could end up being a battle between light and dark as metaphors for love and hate. And right at the beginning, in 11x02, we were told that love wins.

Letter Proposing Engagement from Christopher to Bessie 1945 (Letters Live 2014)
Benedict Cumberbatch
Letter Proposing Engagement from Christopher to Bessie 1945 (Letters Live 2014)

Full Transcript of 1945 letter proposing engagement from Christopher to Bessie (Letters Live 2014):

** This is a manual transcription - please credit and link back if using. It took a while - I kept passing out from the voice and the words. Many thanks! **  

10th April, 1945

My dear one,

Our meeting was a wonderful thing. And now we have to put up with the aftereffects. I do not feel at a very good state for writing at the moment, as the ship’s been rocking a good deal. Each morning, 10 of us have to clean out the ship’s hospital. It gets us out of other jobs like mess orderly, guards, sweeping the decks, so I got on happily with our 3 baths, and lavatory pedestals, and similar number of washbasins. 3 weeks ago when I was a temporary gentleman, a chap in Lyon’s washed and brushed up, washed out my wash basin, and now I’m doing the same. I’m not too keen on doing the scabies bathroom, but …

I wonder now if you would like to wear an engagement ring? If you would like one, and it was not unlucky or something - how would you feel about getting one? I think they are jeweler’s blessings, but if wearing one would make you the least bit happier then I’d prefer it? What do you think? I’m a blunderer, but you must excuse me. I’m starting to feel more normal again, though like you, find our days together dream-like. I hope you do not weep too much, if you did weep. And if you ever do so again, let it only be at the hardness of our separation, never in despair of our future meeting and life together. Of course, my senses have been thrilled and luxuriated in you. I have become more than a little woebegone at our post-war hopes of a home by ourselves. The figures lead me to think it will be ten years before we get the chance to choose.

When the war is over, I know you will buy what you can to ensure we do not have to make any troubles in equipping our own home. If you could manage to start house-hunting: as you know I have £350 and you nearly the same, so we could raise £700 for a first payment. I am sorry that you are alone in your searches.

You know, I can’t help feeling triumphant at our relationship. It seems so wonderful to possess your regard and possess you. I do not think I have any of the slaver mentality, but I confess I’m infinitely joyful at owning you - I feel that I do. I want you absolutely, entirely, wholly. I hope you are feeling all this too, and you know in your bones I will do anything for you. You say I said enough while on leave - I’m disgusted how little I said about ourselves and about my impressions of life abroad and the army. I’m not very happy about my deficiencies as a sweetheart: I think I tease you too much.

I should be on my knees before you, confessing my utter dependence on you, imploring your interest though I may seem to have it - telling you always that without the hope of you, I should starve and thirst. Could’ve been so much more eloquent, yet my stutterings satisfied you. I am sorry we wasted those 5 nights at Bournemouth - seems to be beside the point, but there will be many more. I’m sorry about the error of judgment regarding salmon - I’ll catch a whale for you on my return.

Hope you’re getting on all right with your spring cleaning.Personally, I think far too much is made of this event. A properly-run house, would be a shame to admit it needed a really good clean-up once a year – suburban blight. But enjoy yourself – don’t mind me. I hope you can have some time with your brother Wilfred when he’s on leave, but I think that celebration is at least pre-mature while the Japanese are so strong and the fighting is likely to last for so long. Watch how we celebrate when the Fascists are vanquished, and there is freedom in Germany and everywhere else. I shall be inclined to celebrate when fighting everywhere has ended and that people seem apparently to be taking the first steps in controlling their own destinies.

Last night I was on guard - kind of stroll around the tents. I was on 11:50pm to 1:30am, and then 5:30am to 7:30am. I thought of you sleeping peacefully while I patrol the almond trees and listen to the barks of the distant dogs and the brrrp-brrrp-brrrp-brooooo of the birds here. The feeling was with me that distance doesn’t matter. In one of your letters, you say your heart beats within me. That is good - I will look after your heart. Please always try to be happy because of future prospects rather than sorrowful because of present separation. I know it’s grim, because my hands, my lips - I am very conscious of their idleness.

I love you,

Chris 

Audio source and permission generously granted by cumberbatchweb (x)

Image source: (y)

And Chris and Bessie lived happily ever after - read more here (z)

For more Letters Live audio, go here (a)

Yuri on Ice interview translation - Spoon 2Di 2016/12 (p38-41)

Here’s an interview with Manabu Ootsuka, producer and actually also representative director of animation studio MAPPA. It appeared on the Dec. 2016 issue of Spoon 2Di. It’s very interesting, as it’s a still different point of view compared to seiyuu and other creators. It only covers the first 4 episodes because Spoon is published earlier than other magazines and this issue was sold in stores at the end of October.

By the way, in the interview he mentions Sayo Yamamoto’s short anime “ENDLESS NIGHT”. It’s also about figure skating and it’s really beautiful. I highly suggest checking it out! (It’s not hard to find, just lookup the title on YouTube..) I admit I just watched it today for the first time too because I didn’t know of its existence… 

I will also take this chance to encourage everyone to appreciate the role of Sayo Yamamoto in YOI. Mitsurou Kubo is on the SNS and you see her name often so everyone knows her, but Yamamoto is as involved in YOI as Kubo is (if not more, since the idea to create YOI in the first place was hers). As you can read in this interview too, many of the brilliant ideas in YOI come from her. Apparently she is very busy so there are still no interviews with her, but I hope we’ll see something in the future.

Since the article is quite long I’m putting it under a cut. Enjoy!

***If you wish to share this translation please do it by reblogging or posting a link to it***
***Re-translating into other languages is ok but please mention that this post is the source***

MAPPA producer Manabu Ootsuka interview
“Yuri on Ice” has gathered many skilled creators, among which director Sayo Yamamoto and Mitsurou Kubo-san. This show, that stands out for its quality even when compared to other original anime, has been supported by the production studio MAPPA. We have invited its producer Manabu Ootsuka to ask him about inside stories and the appeal of this anime.

Keep reading

Yuri on Ice interview translation - Spoon 2Di 2016/12 (p30-32)

Here we are with the usual(?) last minute translation before the airing of the new episode. This is an interview with Toshiyuki Toyonaga alone that was published on the Dec. 2016 issue of Spoon 2Di. Even though this time he’s interviewed alone, you will find that many things are similar to what was said in other interviews, but all in all it’s a nice summing up of Toyonaga’s opinion on his acting, YOI, Yuuri etc, and it’s a good read. Also, there are still parts that I see here for the first time, so even if you’ve read all the other interviews I posted here you will not find it boring!

I wanted to post another interview from the same magazine too, but as they are quite long it took some time to finish this so I didn’t have time for the other one… I might try to post it tomorrow if I’m not too braindead after episode 11 (*insert laugh*).

Just my opinion, but I love Toyonaga’s realistic (”not-your-typical-anime-voice”) acting he uses for Yuuri, and I really appreciate how much he’s putting into this role. It’s also cute how he actually relates to Yuuri himself. I’m looking forward to reading the interviews from the recently released magazines where they will probably talk about the second half of the series too.

***If you wish to share this translation please do it by reblogging or posting a link to it***
***Re-translating into other languages is ok but please mention that this post is the source***


Toshiyuki Toyonaga (voice of Yuuri Katsuki) interview
Yuuri Katsuki, protagonist of this anime, is vulnerable to pressure, gains weight easily and is possibly the figure skater with the most fragile glass heart in the world. We have invited his voice actor Toshiyuki Toyonaga and have asked him a lot about how he plays Yuuri and what he think is fascinating about him. According to author Mitsurou Kubo-san he is so similar to Yuuri that she called him “real Yuuri”. In what way exactly are Toyonaga-san and Yuuri so similar…? Let’s find out.

—“Yuri on Ice” has finally started airing on TV. Could you tell us your sincere feelings of when you got the role of Yuuri Katsuki?

I’m personally a fan of figure skating, so when my agency told me of this anime about figure skating I was very thrilled. My manager, who loves figure skating more than me, told me “get this role at all costs!” (LOL). You can’t really predict the results of an audition, so that’s not something I could promise, but later on when I was told that Mitsurou Kubo-san watched my audition and thought “Yuuri Katsuki is Toyonaga-san” that made me really happy. Yuuri is an ordinary boy living in the provinces, therefore even if this work is indeed an anime, I challenged myself to act as realistically as I could, and even in the audition I tried to limit the “anime-likeness” as much as possible and tried to pronounce the lines as if it was something I was naturally saying. If this hadn’t matched the style of this anime they probably would have thought that my acting sucks, but luckily that actually turned out to be a good idea. When I was informed that I got the role I was so happy I felt like crying, but my manager was so crazily hyper about it that I didn’t have time to react (LOL). However, when the realization that I got the role sunk in, I also started to feel the pressure because it meant that I would need to act in that realistic style, removing all anime-like elements from my voice as much as possible, for one whole cour. I can only blame myself (LOL)

—Does removing most anime-like elements and act realistically use up a lot of energy?

It’s just my personal opinion, but I feel that when you voice anime images there is a kind of template on which your acting is based, so I decided to just ignore all of that, make the lines mine and act out Yuuri’s role thinking carefully about the background behind each line and the reason why he’s saying it. I’m keeping in mind this kind of realism. It’s not like it’s physically tiring, but sometimes I felt mentally tired. The more I do it the more I get into the character, so to avoid empathizing with him too much and ending up crying (LOL) I’m making sure I don’t lose my balance too much.

—I see! This time Mitsurou Kubo-san created the storyboard for the anime. What did you think the first time you read it?

It was really interesting, as if I was just reading a new manga by Kubo-san, and I couldn’t wait to know what happened next (LOL). The structure of Kubo-san’s manga, the way comical parts and realistic parts are in perfect harmony, made it very easy to read, and I was really curious to see how all that would translate into an anime. I could also feel Kubo-san’s love for figure skating when reading the storyboard, and I felt that we should do our best not to ruin it.

—Did playing the role of protagonist Yuuri Katsuki make you realize something new and interesting about him?

According to the setting he is mentally weak, but he’s still a professional athlete who is competing on an extremely high international level. As “weak” as he may appear, he’s probably mentally stronger than your average person walking down the street. He works really hard, and I think that he also wants to repay all the people of his town Hasetsu for supporting him, so even if he’s timid he is still doing his best. Still, because of his faint-heartedness he ends up withdrawing into himself. That’s something I understand a lot myself, so when I talk about him I really feel like crying (LOL).

—Mitsurou Kubo-san also said at an event that “Toyonaga-san is like a real Yuuri”, and that surely shows how much you get into your role. Did you receive any directions from director Yamamoto or Kubo-san regarding how to play Yuuri?

Thankfully enough Kubo-san seems to be of that opinion, and I guess maybe that’s also the reason why they didn’t really give me directions, they are basically listening to the Yuuri Katsuki that I built up. After listening to my acting usually the director and the sound director Shimizu-san would discuss and ask me to adjust some things if needed.

—I see. Is there anything you think you have in common with Yuuri?

I think that in figure skating, compared to many other sports, the power to express something is considered especially important, so in a way the fact that figure skaters and actors are both “expressing” something makes them similar. Also, I believe many figure skaters have been skating since they were little. I’ve also been acting since I was a child, so I went through sad times, fun times and failures, and I can relate a lot to the feelings Yuuri experiences as he grows up. That’s also why it’s an honor for me to hear that Kubo-san thinks of me as a “real Yuuri”.

—When we interviewed Kubo-san in the last issue she said that theme she chose for Yuuri is “his neat sex appeal is violence”. Do you also pay attention to this when playing him?

“His neat sex appeal is violence”…… It sounds like a maxim (LOL). It’s the first time I hear those exact words, but indeed I was told about the theme being sex appeal. I do think that Yuuri’s sex appeal is not of the dirty kind, and it’s true that “neat” sex appeal can be more fascinating than anything else. I feel that it’s because he’s so artless that he can radiate that kind of sex appeal and make people fall for him.

—What did you find difficult about playing Yuuri?

The fact that the comical parts and serious parts are very fast-paced. I think that’s one of the interesting things about this anime too, but as we record everything in one go, sometimes it’s quite hard to switch between comical and serious and my mind can’t keep up. I basically created different “boxes” inside my head, like the comical box, the serious box, the sarcastic box, and even though they’re of course all Yuuri, it’s like I take out a different Yuuri box depending on the scene I’m playing. Sometimes, when talking with sound director Shimizu, I realize that I picked the wrong box for a scene, and in that case I do some adjustments. It’s difficult, but it’s also fun in a way.

—The anime is still airing, but are there any scenes you especially like among the ones that were already broadcast?

All the landscapes of Hasetsu feel very beautiful and warm. Also, Victor’s ass was nice too (LOL). I like the scenes in the hot springs because they’re amusing, and also, when Mari-neechan looks at Yurio (Yuri Plisetsky) and for a moment pictures a certain Takao from an idol group I was like “who is he!?” (LOL). And the fact that Yuuri’s room was covered in Victor’s posters. There are so many interesting elements scattered all over the place that it’s really hard to choose one. However, as Yuuri, I was very impressed by the scene at the beginning of episode 2 where he realizes “I’m nervous because I’m so happy”. He’s not nervous because he’s puzzled about the situation, but because he’s genuinely happy that Victor is becoming his coach. When I saw him like that I too couldn’t help feeling happy for him. I also like the scene where Yuuri and Yurio are doing basic training together…… I could keep listing scenes forever (LOL). Every episode is so dense that sometimes you wonder whether this is really a 30 minutes anime.

—But it progresses with a very good pace, which makes it easy to watch.

Exactly! What is really amazing is that the amount of information doesn’t feel like a pain, it’s made in a way that viewers can follow what’s happening easily. I also love the scene where in episode 3 “Onsen on ICE”, the night before the actual match, Yuuri goes to Minako-sensei’s house and asks her to teach him because he wants to change the way he is going to perform Eros. Yuuri usually gets depressed when he is worried about something, so I think in this occasion it’s because of Victor’s influence that he actually decided to actively do something about it. It’s really nice to see how Yuuri gradually develops a more positive attitude thanks to the stimuli he receives from Victor.

—Are there any other characters that you like or that you are curious about beside your role?

I like the 3 sisters of the Nishigoori family, I think Yuuko-san is cute too, and in general all the people in Hasetsu are just so warm and lovely that I like them all. I also like Georgi Popovich, who is played by Wataru Hatano-san and is going to show up in the next episodes (LOL). I can’t speak in detail because he hasn’t appeared in the anime yet, but I will just say that I like the “atmosphere” that he creates. I hope that you will understand what I mean when you see him!

—It’s a character to keep an eye on! What are your impressions of the other main characters Victor and Yuri?

Victor is so active that he decided to fly to Japan right away after watching Yuuri’s skating video, and a normal person would say that it’s impossible to understand what he’s thinking. The things he says also sound a little aloof, he’s the kind of character that makes you think “ordinary people cannot understand a genius”. However, Victor is also a skater who basically decided to give up his life as an athlete to go to Yuuri’s place, so I believe that deep down he is probably thinking a lot. I also think, though, that Victor himself doesn’t consider it something so serious and that it’s his way of enjoying life. It’s people like him that become stars.

—What about Yuri?

Yurio also has the nature of a star, though a bit different than Victor’s. He is called “Russian yankee” and he’s kind of rude, but I also believe that sharp side of him is actually important in the world of expression. People who stick to their beliefs and values naturally attract other people, and his sharp side, beside being partly caused by the fact that he’s still young, has been shown to be important at times. His temper isn’t just selfishness, because for example in episode 3, when he loses to Yuuri, he says “this time I lost, but the next time I’ll win”, so I feel that he understands that acknowledging defeat is a way to become stronger.

—What do you think about the way Victor and Yuri’s voice actors, Junichi Suwabe-san and Kouki Uchiyama-san, play their characters?

I heard that in the beginning Suwabe-san had trouble grasping the character, but after talking with director Yamamoto and Kubo-san he was able to understand him. I think that he’s really amazing, because when I’m in front of the mike voicing Yuuri I forget that the one standing next to me is Suwabe-san and I have the feeling that Victor is right there and I’m talking to him……! Ucchi (Uchiyama-san) is very good at changing his own acting after listening to other people’s. For example, regarding the Yuuri I built up, I think that inside his mind he was probably like “he’s playing Yuuri that way, so I’ll play my Yuri in this other way”, and he’s doing all this without even needing to discuss with me. He’s really good.

—The other day I was present at the talk show of the anime preview screening and I could feel the love that members of the cast and staff have for this anime. What do you think about the atmosphere of the recording studio?

It takes a very long time to record “Yuri on Ice”, but that also shows how much everyone is serious about it, and I have the impression that we are all searching for a way to make it as good as possible. Everyone is really kind and I have fun talking to them, but they’re also very serious people that know how to do their jobs, so I feel it’s a very balanced atmosphere. Also, recently I often do recordings with people who are younger than me, which of course is a good thing because it stimulates me, but since I still consider myself a “developing actor”, if I don’t get many occasions to do recordings with people who have much more experience than me I get a little frustrated because I also want to learn more and to watch other people’s acting to use as a reference (LOL). Therefore I’m very grateful to this anime because it gave me a chance to do recording with many voice actors who are older and more experienced than me, which I think is really important for myself too.

—Thank you very much! Please leave a message for the readers who are looking forward to the next episodes.

So far the story has been centered mainly around Yuuri, Victor and Yurio, but from now on many skaters from other countries are going to appear and we will also see how Yuuri interacts with them. I think that when you start seeing many different kinds of relationships you also get a wider view of the world, so I hope you’ll enjoy the “internationality” of the story. I also personally think that it would be nice to see the cultural differences between the characters, therefore I’m playing Yuuri in a flat way to give the feeling that he’s somewhat of a late bloomer, which I think is very Japanese. It would be interesting if the different ways everyone voices their characters could somewhat connect to cultural differences, so that’s also something I would keep an eye on. By the way, as the Grand Prix Series is starting in the real world too, it’s a nice occasion to enjoy both the real and fictional versions at the same time. When I’m not playing Yuuri I’m also following the real Grand Prix Series like you, so I hope we can spice up the world of figure skating together! I will do what little I can do to help, please keep on cheering!