Doujinshi Review: “Paint or Die” by SOLOIST (Riv)

13 Sep

Riv’s bold graphic style has become a favorite of mine and so I’ve made it a point to get any new doujinshi publications I can. I am happy, for once, to get a SOLOIST doujinshi that isn’t Touhou themed but is Riv’s original work. During Comic Market 78, a 44 page color & monochrome illustration book entitled “Paint or Die” was released. I’m glad to say that it’s a pretty nice little tome.

The cover features a shimapan-clad catgirl with an appetite for chocolate bars. I won’t lie, but female crotch bulge creeps me out a bit. Riv has the original CG version of this image here on Pixiv in a 1024×768 resolution.

The inside of the front cover, of course, treats you to shimapan zoom layer. Always a pleaser. I guess. *female apathy settling in*

The first illustration is a catgirl, with what appears to be meatbuns. Includes thigh-highs and gratuitous panty shot. The page to the right of this image includes an introductory paragraph by Riv in both Chinese and Japanese. According to the Pixiv description for this image, Riv drew it for a CG lecture in a magazine. The picture’s title そんな目で見ないでください (sonna me de minai de kudasai) could be translated as “Don’t look at me with those eyes.” or ” Please don’t look at me like that”. Cute, eh.

Some sort of maid girl character design. I wonder why they often have little heart badges near their waistline. Must be a maid cafe thing.

I am noticing a theme and that theme is shimapan. Also, you can see this book has a crease in the corner. It arrived at my doorstep that way and I’m not too happy about it. I have no idea if it was the doing of Toranoana or Shopping Mall Japan, but it really sucks when you pay 5x the original item cost in deputy fees to acquire it.  /endrant

A lovely little dog-eared girl.

A purple-haired elf or demon lady perhaps. I find the anatomy in this illustration particularly well done.

All of these characters are for an original doujin game cover. Riv claimed to be a little worn out after drawing this one. ;) (View on Pixiv)

Another doujin game cover. (View on Pixiv) There’s another version of this image that only features and girl in the foreground, and it’s pretty darn awesome.

This is probably another doujin game. Ren ai, I bet. I was pretty excited to see a drawing of male characters for once.

Here are some typical moe style images that we know and love. The left illustration is also on Pixiv and its title ひまわり笑顔 (himawari egao) means “sunflower smile”.

These are characters illustrated for a Taiwanese novel. (View on Pixiv: The seeker 01 & Girl and Sword)  I find that Riv’s bold drawing style really suits strong fantasy female type characters. More so than gentler moe characters, anyway.

Well, it doesn’t get much more moe than two mikos in each other’s laps.

The rest of the book is in monochrome. All of the monochrome artwork is a pleasure to look at, however, I chose to only photograph a few pages as an example. This one features a variety of nekomimi characters.

I think Riv’s sketches are fantastic. I feel in some way like the style of sketching in these is similar to my own. It’s also interesting to see how much different the images feel without their signature coloring. Particularly the eyes. A graphic style is so different when you strip it of the CG.

These two images are just gorgeous. The girl with the leaf is undoubtedly one of my favorite Riv illustrations overall.

Overall, I’m fairly pleased with this book. Of course, I always want the books to be larger and to include more color illustrations, but the monochrome work in this book really is very nice. While not as impressive as Yumeiro Mangekyou in terms of presentation, “Paint or Die” is still a really lovely little compilation of Riv’s work.

Related Links:
Buy P.O.D. – Paint or Die at  Toranoana.jp
Riv on Pixiv
Riv on Twitter
SOLOIST

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