Thursday, 10 September 2009

Changelings

Writing about Tutis came to feel a little like beating up a one-legged homeless six-year-old, so let's turn our attention elsewhere. More specifically, to Changeling Press.

Changeling publish ebooks of an erotic nature. They even commission original art for the covers. Most of the artists create their cover images using Poser, 3D imaging software that allows you to generate pictures of supposedly life-like people in whatever situation you like. Needless to say, this software has resulted in the internet being flooded with hideous images of unlikely pornography created by people who should never have been let near a mouse. Poser is also famous for the strange, dead eyes and facial expressions of its characters.

So: Poser images, amateur typography, and erotic fiction that didn't find a home in the regular publishing world... what could possibly go wrong?









20 comments:

BookieMonster said...

I like blueberry muffins, but this just totally ruined them for me!

Derek said...

They look like mannequins.

Christy Pinheiro, EA ABA said...

Okay all of them were bad. Except the first one who looked like the lead singer of Skid Row in my younger days. Mmmmm. Soft core and so low class. But great for a stroll down memory lane. Oh how my tastes have changed!

Richard Grove said...

Of course, these are hideous. And it's funny you bring up Poser as I'm reviewing the Poser 8 for renderosity.com and am coming across tons of very bad and sleazy imagery created by this program. However, there are artists (too few) who use the program to create excellent art and animation. It certainly is capable of great work. Has to do with the person using it...and their motives.

And, for the most part, all CGI created characters have to deal with the "uncanny valley" (the industry term) effect which is found mostly in the eyes (dead ones as you point out). It's just a matter of lots and lots and lots of work to get the expressions right. Something this publisher is obviously not interested in.

I need to take a shower, I think.

Bob Fingerman said...

Satan on a motorbike, those are horrible! I want to fight the hyperbole urge, but maybe those are the worse covers of all time?

Ben said...

Just think, in a few short decades we’ve gone from “Jazzman in Nudetown” to… this. Such a collapse in the aesthetic standards of prurience is heartbreaking.

Deb said...

Poser is just like any other, ahem, tool: In the right hands, it can be produce fabulous work; in the wrong hands--voila, Changeling Press.

That being said, these covers are beyond hideous. Unless, of course, there is a unplumbed genre of erotica involving department store mannequins--and then, perhaps, these covers are right on the money.

Christy Pinheiro, EA ABA said...

Okay, I had to come back. I don't get the Apple Crisp thing... am I missing something. Is it gay humor? Are they talking about his balls? What's actually "crispy"?

Brian Busby said...

As if looking something other than human isn't bad enough, the man on the cover of Apple Crisp isn't exactly well-endowed. After all, this is meant to be a work of erotica.

JRSM said...

Regarding 'Apple Crisp', here's the helpful blurb: 'Cass is a gardener at a magical museum near Hot River. He takes loving care of all the trees and plants and is pleasantly surprised when Fidel, a Transcendent apple tree sprite, decides to show his appreciation. Cass quickly learns that Fidel is harder to resist than his favorite dessert.'

There was a comic novel called 'A Melon for Ecstasy' a while ago, about a man who was turned on by plants... I hadn't realised that this genuinely was some people's idea of erotica. The fabric on the character's pants is creepy, too.

Poser is, I guess, like Photoshop--lots of amateur horrors shouldn't distract me from the fact that some people can do excellent work with it.

Bob: these must be contenders for that title--they're not just badly chosen stock images. Someone spent a LOT of time on these.

Ben: You make a persuasive argument against civilisation being always in a move to a higher standard.

Peter L. Winkler said...

Dakota Cassidy sounds like a porn star's stage name. Quite fitting, actually, considering her books.

JRSM said...

Yes, it surely can't be real.

JRSM said...

Although it's surprisingly tasteful, compared to the content of the books!

Mirko di Wallenberg said...

I am glad to read that most of your readers find these covers horrible and so do I! They say "do not judge a book by its cover" but this does NOT give me the urge to buy the book and pay them with my, these days, very hard earned money! When I see these books I run away as hard as I can, which is a pity because the writers have probably given their best to write a good erotic story and maybe I am missing out on a good read or discovering a good new writer which I hadn't noticed yet! OK, the days of James Avati and Robert A Maguire are long gone but this... no way! A lot of erotic books have great cover which give the reader the appetite to buy the book, even if the story is not that enticing. Having a great covers and good story isn't that the ultimate goal for every editor and publisher so you'r books are sold! Problably not! Sigh!

Matthew Adams said...

I have to admit, the apple crisp cover made me laugh so hard I sucked my apples back up into my gut. What I don't get about the cover is the two apples (crab apples?) sitting on the fence, which I think belong to Fidel, yet Cass is also holding an apple in his hand. Do tree sprites normally have three apples, or has Cass been taking bits out of another tree sprite's forbiden fruit?

Word verification is sporksho, which strikes me as an appropiate title for my next erotic novel.

JRSM said...

'Sporksho' by Dakota Cassidy, Matthew Adams's previously unsuspected pseudonym!

Anonymous said...

Wow, that must be how the cover for Charles Stross' Saturn's Children was cooked up. Gack!

JRSM said...

That's an awful cover, isn't it? I really enjoyed Stross's previous book, but could not bring myself to buy that one because the cover was appalling.

Schatzi said...

It's like covers by SecondLife!

Gaaaaah!

JRSM said...

Yes--with all the class and distinction that implies!