Kitty Blue: "Not certain how I feel about her...she has some striking features but her face seems rather large compared to the others, love the make up, but the LE outfit is the same as Elysia."
Teddy: "Nice, but there's something about her eyes that doesn't appeal to me - I much prefer Elysia and Lumie."
Shawnee: "Funny, I love her eyes. It's her mouth I really don't like. It just seems too big for her face. Like kitty blue said, everything combined, her face looks too...large? for her head/body."
Stella Maris: "She looks very masculine, nope, not for me. ... Beat hard with the man stick I'd say."
nancy_schroeder_ca: "I'm not sure about the new Klaire, but I don't have room for another Trinity anyway! Maybe the next version will be better. She might look better with a different wig and faceup."
Stormlight: "Oh, the new girl is gorgeous! I think she looks a lot older than the other three. Like someone in her 20s rather than her teens."
bronzephoenix: "Oh dear, she looks so masculine to me!"
thothep: "I like all of Jude except her mouth feels too small, and now I like all of Klaire except her mouth is a little large..."
polyhymnia: "I think Klaire's face is pretty cool."
Jisatsu: "I was thinking Klaire looked so much like the first run of Narin 60."
monkeycancer: "RE the new Klaire doll, my first thought was 'guy in very convincing drag,' so I'm glad other people are thinking 'masculine.'"
jemmilly: "I like Klaire, but not Dollmore's face-up."
Despite gender policing from Stella Maris, bronze phoenix and monkeycancer, remarks seem overall more positive than I initially thought. I find it interesting that, even in a hobby where the dominant aesthetic for Asian BJDs is one of androgyny in facial features, people have limits to how much androgyny they can handle. I also find it interesting that DOAers are referring to "large," "masculine" and/or "strong" features as if they're bad things. I myself actually prefer facial features with those traits, but then again I am known for my affinity for stylized, almost caricatured headsculpts.
In good news, DOA says that Fabric Friends and Dolls allows year-long layaways [which, for a $3K doll, means $250.00 a month], but that still doesn't overcome my moral objections to direct purchase from Dollmore. GRRRARGH.
I also used to think that Dollzone only produced cheap, ugly, second-rate products because...well... In the early days, Dollzone dolls did indeed cost less than their non-Chinese counterparts, and I, as well as others, automatically assumed that Chinese manufacture meant an inferior product. Nope. I also used to think that they were ugly because they did not appeal to me aesthetically. All the sculpts had an unfortunate combination of large pointy chins, large pointy noses, short philtrums and long straight mouths. They all looked very similar and thus boring to me.
Now, though, Dollzone's sculpting has become softer and more androgynous [ref. Raymond, who looks very Soom-like to me, which is probably why I like him]. They have also ventured into experimental territory with human/flower hybrid dolls, and, more recently, human-faced bats. Beyond that, they have a greater range of facial features and body types, so I believe I'm justified in saying that their sculpting has improved and matured.
Dollzone seems to have gone through the same type of development that Impldoll [erstwhile purveyors of some truly inept sculpting] is experiencing.
Clearly I need to get another open-mouthed doll sticking out its tongue.
I wish I had more money for dolls. I'd like ~$600.00, enough for Muggins and Tonsil Hockey II.
I wish that Elysia wasn't solely available as various LE fullsets. Very few of my BJDs end up looking exactly as they came from the manufacturer, Araminthe, Janvier Jett and Submit being the notable exceptions in my current population. I derive most of my enjoyment from customizing the heck out of my BJDs and personalizing them as much as possible. In practice, this means that they end up with bright, scribbly faceups, wild faux fur hair and meretriciously mismatching outfits. Therefore, if I bought Elysia, I would, of course, remove the faceup, change the eyes and set aside wig and outfit, thus leaving me with hundreds of dollars of nontransferable doll stuff that I have no use for.
I'd love to get an Elysia kit -- unstrung, unpainted. Blah blah blah!!
April 19, 2004
I spent much of the weekend on the 'Net, paging through sites of BJDs. I reconfirmed that CH [CustomHouse] Gene is the most beautiful doll in the world and that I really want it. I also finally articulated what makes me uncomfortable about BJDs....
Physically, BJDs [speaking about the majority here] look prepubescent. Their heads take up a large part of their body proportions similar to the way that a baby's proportions do. They also have eyes that are large for their faces the way that a child's eyes are. Finally, the girls have no breast development, the boys comically small dicks. They look like kid dolls.
At the same time, BJDs also seem adolescent and adult. They have luxuriant wigs, the hair on which could never be so thick or full on an actual child. Only a teenager has time to grow the waist-length hair popular with these dolls. BJDs' swappable eyes recall vanity contact lenses that teens or young adults use to look cool. As the final point, every BJD's facial paint scheme -- called by the age-neutral term "paint ops" when discussing action figs, is called "makeup" or "faceup." Makeup is associated with teens and adults more than children. Hmm, maybe they're teenaged dolls. [Volks actually has a line of Super Dollfies called SD13 which is supposed to have a "more mature body," but that just convinces me that the default bodies were LESS mature and therefore childlike.]
The same ambiguity about how to relate to BJDs as characters appears among BJD owners. Lots of them refer to the arrival of the doll as its "birthday," giving the impression that it was born recently and is therefore a young child. And then you even get a few people calling their BJDs [as the Volks Web site -- "Choose what kind of daughter you would like to have" -- encourages] their kids. That's just too weird for me.
The overwhelming majority of BJD owners put their BJDs' ages in the mid- to late teens and have them act selfish, willful, mischievous -- like very stereotypical teenagers. BJD owners also usually sexualize their dolls with fetish wear, shirtless modelling and/or photostories about lust, infatuation and sex. Since the dolls are objects and they are frequently endowed with sexual meanings, I think they're sex objects.
Here is my problem -- it's a child-shaped sex object. I don't care if you say that it houses a teenaged character. It's still a child-shaped sex object that exaggerates and stylizes the youth-like features of the object [big eyes, "pure skin" -- actually a type of Volks resin for the BJDs, lack of secondary sex characteristics], so that the youth-like features become salient and attractive. There's a pederastic tinge to BJD ownership when I think of it this way.
I love the ambiguity of the dolls, even though it makes me uncomfortable. They have human-like shapes, but their huge eyes and overall small size make them seem like stereotypical faeries or some sort of non-human creatures. Due to purposely ill-defined sex characteristics, they look very ambiguous and androgynous. Their pre- to post-adolescent age range somehow unfixes them from the aging process so they seem outside of time or age, therefore assignable to any time or age one wants to assign them to.
Adoption: the process of buying a BJD on the secondary market. Some people use an extended metaphor of their BJDs as children.
Blushing/Brushing: application of chalk pastels and/or acrylic paint to a BJD's body to represent variations in skin tone. Called "blushing" when applied to a doll's head, but "body blushing" when applied elsewhere.
Bonding: emotional attachment that an owner ostensibly develops to a BJD.
Boy/Girl: a BJD, depending on the assigned sex of the doll, almost always used with possessive pronouns [e.g., "My girl looks so cute holding your boy!"] as part of the BJD:child metaphor.
Dolly diet: restriction of BJD-related purchases, usually because one has recently overspent.
Event head: a limited edition head issued by a BJD company as part of a sales event.
Faceup: hand-painted blushing, eyebrows and lips on a BJD's head. Term seems to be a combination of "face" + "makeup."
Fullset: a limited edition BJD sold with a particular faceup, eyes, wig, outfit and sometimes accessories. Also used as an adjective, as in, "I'm selling her with the fullset dress and bonnet, but keeping the shoes."
Group order: a business transaction headed by an organizer who combines many small orders into a single large one, takes orders for participants, then submits all the orders as a single large purchase to the doll company. Item prices factor in a base price, a percentage of shipping from the doll company to the organizer, then shipping and handling from organizer to partner. The organizer collects payment, places the order, receives the items, then ships them to participants.
Grail doll: the one particular BJD that someone really wants, but often has difficulty acquiring because of limited edition, scarcity, expense, etc.
Heel feet: BJD feet sculpted with toes flexed up so that a doll can wear high heels. Sometimes sculpted as a single piece with the calf to eschew ankle joints and add stability.
KIPS: small silicone discs used by Volks in a BJD's joint sockets to help the doll pose better. A type of sueding.
Mod: either a truncation of "modify" or "modification." To make change to a BJD, usually through the addition of sculpting epoxy putty or through the use of sandpaper and other subtractive tools, or the change itself.
MSC: Mister Super Clear, a Japanese spray used to seal a faceup or body blushing.
MSD: Mini Super Dollfie, the line of ~40cm, 1:4 scale BJDs created by Volks. As the first commercially available BJDs of this size, they have also become the standard by which other dolls are measured. Thus MSD also refers more generically to the size of the doll, i.e., 40cm and 1:4 scale. Sellers of BJD clothes, accessories or props may refer to things as "MSD" or "MSD size," which does not necessarily imply any association with Volks MSDs.
NSFW/NWS: not safe for work/not work safe. These labels appear on shots of BJDs with visible nipples and/or genitalia that, it is assumed, may not be prudent to view at one's workplace.
OC: original character or a BJD representation thereof, in implicit contrast to the many BJD representations of fictional characters from other media.
Recast: an illegally duplicated BJD, often much lower in price than the legitimate original. Recasts may be literal recasts, i.e., products of unauthorized use of official molds, or copies achieved by reverse-engineering a mold from an existing legitimate BJD.
Reshelling: deciding that a different type of BJD would make a better representation of a character [often an OC] than the doll one currently has, selling the current shell and buying a new one.
SD: Super Dollfie, the line of 60cm, 1:3 scale BJDs created by Volks. As the first commercially available BJDs of this size, they have also become the standard by which other dolls are measured. Thus SD also refers more generically to the size of the doll, i.e., 60cm and 1:3 scale. Sellers of BJD clothes, accessories or props may refer to things as "SD" or "SD size," which does not necessarily imply any association with Volks SDs.
Shell: a BJD representation of a fictional character, often an OC.
Sleeping head: a BJD head with fully or partly closed eyes. Fully closed eyes do not require the use of eyeballs and may not even have sockets, while partly closed eyes have sockets and can use eyeballs. There is no standard terminology for sleeping heads. One company's "sleeping" [e.g., Fairyland] is another company's "romantic" [Soom], "reminisce" [Elfdoll], "slack afternoon" [Dollshe], etc.
Split: a type of group order where an organizer advertises that they want to buy a doll, but only for certain parts. The remaining parts are then available for split partners to purchase. Group order procedures then follow. Also the act of selling parts of a doll separately on the secondary market.
Sueding: the addition of some type of grippy material to a BJD's joint balls and/or sockets to help the doll hold poses better. Materials include suede, hot glue and KIPS discs.
Yellowing: the discoloration of a resin BJD when exposed to sunlight. May be counteracted to some degree by stabilizers that keep the resin pigmentation from changing too much, the addition of UV resistance to resin, coating the BJD with MSC or another sealant or just keeping the doll in the dark, but is ultimately inevitable.
The first Dollmore BJD I lust after is the 1:6 scale Melissa Hon, who first entered my field of vision about three years ago as the inresination of the protagonist of Intellectum, the doll-based series I never did, about a magical library, its employees, patrons and denizens. I have never seen owner pictures or sales posts for her on DOA or Ebay, and I only found someone who owned her a few months ago, but she has not procured pictures for me because she has been too busy. My desire for this particular doll has only increased over time because I have never seen her for sale outside of Dollmore, where I cannot bring myself to purchase her. In short, I want her because I haven't been able to obtain her.
The second Dollmore BJD I lust after is the latest sculpt in their Trinity series, Elysia. She's 105cm tall, which is about 41 1/3 inches. That's 1:2 scale -- child size! To compare this with dolls with which I'm familiar, the length from her shoulder to the lower edge of her wrist ball joint is 30.5cm, just a smidgen taller than any of my male Soom Faery Legends. From hip to floor, she's 54cm, which is on the smallish side for the total height of a 1:3 scale female BJD. She weighs 7.15kg, which is nearly 16 lbs.! The fullset version I linked to contains doll, faceup, wig, eyes, dress and shoes for $2780.00. $140.00 EMS s/h to US is extra.
I love her because her full features suggest childhood, but, despite her childlike size, she is generic enough to represent other older ages. Her open mouth makes her look pensive, wondering, speaking or stupefied, depending on the angle, so I like its multitude of interpretations. I like her because she is so big...not as unwieldy as a mannequin, but as big as I always think 1:3 scale BJDs should be when I see glamour shots of them: large enough to enter the uncanny valley, but small enough to remain obviously unhuman. I also like the fact that her joints are simple and almost perfectly spherical where possible, giving her the air of an antique doll.
- Soom Faery Legend Cylin. There are still quite a few of her available on the DOA marketplace for reasonable prices.
- Soom Faery Legend Asis. Skijump nose!!! ^_^
- Dollmore Kidult Melissa Hon. Been wanting her for years, but have never found her on the secondary market. Wah wah.
- A mer-BJD. Either one of Asleep Eidolon's 1:3 scale ones or a custom-made 1:6 scale one with parts from Soom Wave/Soda.
Anyway, I'm just making some notes for myself based on PMs that have been hanging around in my DOA inbox for a while.
- For custom sculpting, MA accepts .obj files, and it is okay if the .obj files do not show eyewells, neck hole and headcap. One can specify head circumference, neck circumference and eye size. They would do a truly 1:6 scale head for Juniper [8mm eyes, 10cm head circumference and 4cm neck circumference] for $800.00.
- For resin matching, MA will either match a photo [not recommended] or a body part, such as a headcap. For example, I'm thinking of getting an MA 60cm girl body with custom resin color for Yamarrah. The custom color would add just $30.00 to the base price. As Yamarrah's head is a semi-translucent resin, I may go for a semi-translucent body, which would also jack up the cost maybe $20.00. Still amazingly cheap, though...
Behold Immortality of Soul's Infernale, a very pointy, stylized dude with narrow eyes and an open mouth done convincingly. He has two optional magnetic tongues; one is just sticking out [:p], while the other is licking his top lip [:d]. I admire his adherence to the angular, squinty bishounen aesthetic, as well as the obvious joy with which he was sculpted.
I've wanted to watch this movie ever since I learned of it, partly because my first BJD was a Customhouse Jun [Zephque], partly because the BJD community refers to Doll Master as the equivalent of BJD: The Movie. Further comments when I'm done.
If you're so inclined to watch a horror movie about dolls, you can find the entire Doll Master film on Youtube with subtitles.
P.S. You know what actually is really fucking creepy? That life-size doll hanging from the ceiling as a lamp holder in the weirdo BJD owner's room. It looks like it's being tortured. :( Won't someone please think of the mannequins? :p
The 1:6 scale action fig world has its own nasty aspects. For example, there's the pointless, recursive hostility toward likeness figs, as detailed in my discussion about the upcoming Hot Toys Selina Kyle. There's also the Cult of Triad, a group that remains determinedly hostile toward any legit criticism of the company. And, of course, there's the everpresent, inescapable, insidious objectification and misogyny. No sniping though, unless you're trying to bash some sniper from some army in some war with correct, in-scale camo and little bullets in his little gun and zzzzzzzzzzzz... 1:6 scale military crapola doesn't interest me at all, except insofar as I can exploit it for my kinky civilian ends. I am not, however, about to say that my mismatched, pink-haired suburbanites are more creative and therefore better than historically accurate soldier dudes.
I should just stop buying 1:3 scale BJDs.
Anyway, my interest in 1:6 scale BJDs conveniently reduces the scope of BJDs I'm interested in to just a few types of dolls by a few companies, including, but not limited to, the following: Soom Minigems and Faery Legends, Dollmore Kidults, Lumedoll Lumelights, Souldoll Soul Littles and Dinkies, Elfdoll Hanas and Doonas, Unoa Lights, Notdoll Yohimbin, Miriam and Lucy, Xagadoll Lara, Illusion Spirit Spirit, et hoc genus omne. Of course, said interest also frustrates me, as most of the companies in this sub-realm offer female dolls, but not male ones. [I love you, Lumedoll!]
As far as I'm concerned, 1:6 scale is superior to 1:3 scale because there's so much more available in terms of clothing, furniture, accessories, sets and stuff. It's also less expensive on the whole and much less of a space hog, so I can cram way more 1:6ers into the same shelf space that would only fit a few 1:3ers.
I named her Mick. She was made of wood pulp composite and had a nice old musty smell. She had a lovely, small, foreshortened head with uptilted features and knowing, side-glancing eyes.
I customized her by giving her a mohawk of blue and purple and gluing stars over the areas where her skin paint had chipped. I also gave her rhinestone studs around the border of her pinnae. Then I dressed her in all the awesome clothes that I could never wear myself. Naturally, she also dressed as Jareth, with a white blouse, my black velvet cape, the pants seen below [har!], an artificial bulge and an appropriate wig.
She was classy, demanding and vulgar at the same time, rather like Frank from Rocky Horror, as you can tell from the photos below. Incidentally, the button on her pants says "I heard it was come as you are, so I came in my pants."
( Mick and her naughty, naughty pants. )
I no longer have Mick, as I got rid of her when we were moving apartments from Somerville to Cambridge in 2005. I was in one of my phases where I thought that having dolls was rather silly and impractical, especially life-size ones. She went out on the curb on trash day, but not before crabbily socking me in the mouth with her arm when I was disassembling her. I am confident that she went on to provide enjoyment for someone else, though. Like many desireable items left out on trash pickup days in our college-student-heavy neighborhood, she quickly disappeared before the garbage trucks came. No doubt she ran off with someone to become yet another moody and glamorous art project.
There were other life-size dolls too, such as the Styrofoam drag queen head who sported glittery rainbow eyelashes and helpfully stored my hot pink bob wig. There was also the African-American model that we discovered somewhere, decapitated, and reassembled by carefully balancing her loose head on her neck. I never named them, loved them or missed them the way I did with Mick, however.
I may no longer have Mick, but I still have my memories of her, which involve either feeling either a) deviously daring as I dressed her in flamboyantly explicit outfits or b) extremely frustrated by her limited articulation. She could swivel her arms and wrists, but that was it. She detached into just six pieces: her head + torso, two arms, two hands and then her waist + legs.
Despite Mick's limitations, I really had fun with her. Clearly, I haven't stopped thinking about her after all these years. Indeed, though I no longer have her, I have still kept the quintessential items of her wardrobe -- the FUCK pants, the "came in my pants" button and the pride button -- just waiting for the time when they will be used again.
Let's face it -- I want another mannequin. I mean, really...did you honestly think I would be able to resist the prospect of a life-size doll that's positively cheap compared to the wads I regularly blow on BJDs? You can get a simply posed, full-body mannequin with a realistic head for between $90.00 and $250.00, excluding shipping. Compare that to how much I'm investing in my Jareth, one of my dream BJDs, and you'll see why I consider mannequins cheap.
Anyway, now that I shop around for mannequins, there are so many more choices than there were when I bought Mick. A decade ago, I sought in vain for affordable mannequins with "plus-size" figures and/or basic limb articulation and/or head sculpts that had features besides vacant eyes, overstuffed lips and square jaws. Look at some of the options that the Mannequin Store [which apparently hasn't changed its site layout since I first came across it over 10 years ago] now offers.... I could settle for the adjustable sitting mannequin in standard mannequin body type [albeit with relatively larger breasts] and then make her fatter with strategically placed polyfill.
Their category of flexible mannequins contains two types of articulated mannequins. First, they have soft-bodied mannequins with wire armatures. The key words here are "flexible," "bendable," "soft" and "wire armature," just as a note to myself, for future search term use. These come with blank heads or solid, realistic heads, which look rather small and incongruous. Anyway, they're poseable down to their fingers! Just $250.00 for a female soft body with a hard head! I wonder if you can swap the heads out...
Second, they have hard plastic mannequins with a combination of ball and hinge joints. The key words here are "flexible," "jointed" and "pose mannequin." The "pose woman," as she is called, has ball-jointed shoulders, swivel head and waist, as well as hinged elbows, thighs and knees. For some reason, her wrists do not move. The articulation reminds me of the non-Fashionista articulated Barbies. Anyway, she's just $400.00.
They also have another type of articulated mannequin filed under their sitting female mannequins. She is billed as an "adjustable sitting mannequin." She appears to have swivel head, neck and wrists, as well as hinges at the elbows. Unlike the hard plastic ball/hinged mannequins, she has definite body segments and exposed metal joints. She also has a larger rack than your average female mannequin. For some reason, she's priced at $250.00, much less than the jointed mannequins mentioned above, maybe because she doesn't have knee joints. Her combination of realism and naked, mechanical articulation really appeals to me. I even like her head sculpt. I would totally get her over the aforementioned jointed mannequins, even if she didn't come with knee joints. [If she did, I would definitely choose her over the earlier jointed mannequins.] Of course, she's sold out on the site. :( Damn damn damn.
There are also a few more body shapes available for mannequins. Here's a "plus-size" mannequin with more fat on her than the standard mannequin. Tragically, she does not have a head. I can't stand mannequins without heads. They creep me out.
And here's a mannequin who's "eight months pregnant," apparently with a baby mannequin? I'm not sure how they reproduce, given their lack of genitalia.
My dream mannequin would be a "plus-size" female with the articulation and head sculpt of the adjustable sitting mannequin, plus knee joints, and the ability to stand up or at least remain propped upright against a wall. I'm thinking that the adjustable sitting mannequin with knee joints must exist, as she's shown in the photo with knee articulation. I'll have to ask the Mannequin Store who makes her. Maybe some other place has her in stock. I will find her!
Darn dolls. I know how they reproduce now...by planting seeds of ideas in people's heads that then grow to fruition and cause greater and greater purchases.
EDIT: OH MY GOD! Ball-jointed mannequins with articulated ankles [which is probably overkill] and load-bearing, locking joints! Also tension-jointed mannequins, which look cheaper.
And a standing mannequin with raw elbow joints.
1. Like dolls in general.
2. Learn about BJDs.
3. Research BJDs obsessively.
4. Select BJD.
5. Save up for BJD.
6. Purchase BJD.
7. Wait with impatience for BJD.
8. Debox in ecstasy.
9. Repeat steps 4 through 8 ad infinitum.
10. Wire limbs.
11. Paint own faceups.
12. Perform minor subtractive mods with X-acto.
13. Make hybrid.
14. Design clothing and wigs; commission others to make.
15. Design and perform additive mods with Aves Apoxie Sculpt.
16. Digitally sculpt own BJD head; use established doll company for some internal modeling and casting services.
What does the future hold?
Digitally sculpt own BJD body; use established doll company for casting services.
Manually sculpt own BJD head; use established doll company etc.
Manually sculpt own BJD body; use established doll company etc.
An alarming percentage of BJD enthusiasts end up making either their own original BJD heads, bodies or whole dolls. With Jareth 2.0, I guess I can definitively say that I, too, now belong to the alarming percentage.
Yes [sigh], I have become a dollmaker.
( Read more... )
God forbid you use your acrylics, watercolor pencils and brush-applied matte varnish to create a schematic, suggestive faceup. Nope nope nope! You have to go through this nitpicky, time-consuming process of waiting for appropriate temperature and humidity, spraying everything with extra super special sealant imported from Japan, then letting it dry, then applying a few brush daubs of delicately shaved pastel, letting it dry, etc., etc., etc.
While you're at it, you should be doing the eyebrows individual hair by individual hair with an expensive, microscopic brush...same with lines in the lips.
Let's say you want to mod your BJD: thin the neck, let's say. You can't just scrape it down to size with an X-acto, plop the head on and call it a day. What were you thinking?!! You have to smooth your rough shaping down with a series of successively finer sandpapers until no one can tell that you've done any work on the doll. We do not accept jerry-rigged solutions constructed with sweat and hot glue. We demand perfection in all areas.
Oh yeah, and if you want to make a hybrid BJD of a body from one company and a head from another and jointed hands, say, from a third, we'll be watching to make sure that you follow the correct protocols. First you have to ask online about proportions and fit because we can't have your doll being aesthetically offensive. We'll let you know if your proposed hybrid looks good enough.
Just as important as the proportionality of your hybrid is the hallowed concept of resin matching. You need to find out the relative colors of your hybrid parts. If your desired parts don't match perfectly in tone, you have two options. First, you can choose other options that do provide a perfect match. Second, you can do body blushing, which is like a faceup for non-facial parts [see excruciating process above], so that no one can ever tell that the hybrid parts were originally different colors. We do not allow BJD hybrids with "paper white" heads, "fresh white" hands and "beauty white" bodies to exist without their colors being evened out. Too many shades of white make us implode.
Guess what? My faceups involve no super special Japanese spray sealant whatsoever and, instead, lots of watercolor pencils, Prismacolors, acrylics and improvised tools [Q-tips, X-acto blades, toothpicks] to direct the pigment. Sometimes I haven't even bothered to seal the heads before scribbling directly on the resin. And then... I don't even wait for paint to dry. I use -- wait for it! -- a hair dryer.
My mods avoid sandpaper. I prefer instead to do exactly as much hacking with a craft knife or saw as is necessary to make the mod functional. It doesn't have to look nice; it just has to work.
As for resin matching, I don't really care. I mean, once I put a WS Elfdoll Kathlen head on an NS Soom Uyoo body [=Absinthe], and the world didn't end! Later, I stuck some NS Dikadoll jointed hands on an Angelsdoll massive girl in "Volks compatible normal" [=Janvier Jett], and the planet remained on its axis! Shortly after that, I decided to stick a rose grey Iplehouse Luna head on a B&G Dolls grey body [=Lura eventually], and the sky did not fall!
It's mind-blowing, isn't it? It's almost like there's another aesthetic option besides that of the minutiae-obsessed, anal-retentive facsimile of reality.
Then she just changed her mind. >_< Blaaaaaahhhhh. That's the first time this has happened to me, in my many transactions on the forum. So irritating!
twigling says in an old DOA thread,
I think you can drill/cut the slot in the wrist ball so it is deeper and comes further down on both sides towards
the palm of the hand to increase the range of motion.
I wonder if I can do that with a craft blade? I'd certainly play with them more if they could move their damn hands more realistically.
EDIT: The problem may also be that the wrist balls are set too far in the sockets, in which case a thick layer of hot glue could push them out and make them more flexible.
EDIT 2: Tutorial to increase wrist mobility.
Anyway, Fairyland gets my award for most confusing naming system. I'm writing a list of their sizes and names below because there are too many Fees and Pukis running around. And I can never keep LittleFees and MiniFees straight. MiniFees are the mature 40cms, while LittleFees are the child 25cms, but I think that the LittleFees should be larger than the MiniFees. ARGH!
Doll clothing with out-of-scale buttons. I see this a lot on clothes for 1:3 scale BJDs [i.e., ~60cm or 2 feet tall]. Makers of doll clothes will go to incredible lengths to replicate and scale down all the details of, say, a shirt or a jacket, and then WHAMMO! They'll completely spoil the whole effect by using 1:1 scale buttons [suitable for human clothes] as fasteners.
And they're not doing it for a purposeful aesthetic effect either. This is serious, unfunky clothing that they're making, insofar as doll clothes can be serious. It's especially hilarious when you're looking at suits for BJDs: "Oh I like the structure of this jacket. The detail on the lining makes it look almost GOOD GRAVY WHO PUT BUTTONS THE SIZE OF SAUCERS ON THE CUFFS???"
In-scale buttons exist! I know this because I see them with some regularity on 1:6 scale clothes. I know they exist for 1:3 scale clothes as well, but I'm not sure why they aren't used very much by makers of doll clothes in 1:3 scale.
I mean, surely, if you can be arsed to put in-scale zipper flies and functioning pockets on your denim dolly jeans, you can put freakin' in-scale buttons on your dolly shirts, right?
You know what...while I'm pissing and moaning about BJD stuff, let me get this off my chest. Asian BJD companies can now officially stop with the Alice in Wonderland [sic] special edition dolls and/or outfits. Way too many doll studios have done or are doing something with this concept. Boooooooring.
If Asian BJD companies want some non-Alice concepts, I can supply some. Let's try the Chinese zodiac, the months of the year [not the same as the non-Chinese zodiac, more of a personification theme], celestial bodies [again not the non-Chinese zodiac, more of a personification theme], fairy tales, seasons [mud season!], weather, trees/flowers, the Wizard of Oz, Peter Pan, ceremonial dress from different cultures, the Major Arcana of a Tarot deck, medieval Western European character types [king, queen, knight, damsel, jester, maid, serf, etc.], characters from famous ballets, et hoc genus omne. Some of these concepts have already been appropriated by some companies, but I think they still have a lot of life in them.
Furthermore, we need more therianthropic characters. I'm not just talking dolls with resin ear attachments; I'm talking dolls with non-human limbs and torsos and such. We have not yet reached market saturation on centaurs, especially female ones, and merpeople. I also strongly advocate for naga [human/snake hybrids], human/bear hybrids and human/zebra hybrids. We definitely need more human/arachnid dolls [Soom Vesuvia and Impldoll Colin being the only ones I know of]. And we're also seriously lacking in human/insect hybrids. That's just for starters...
Plagiarism: it's wrong. Don't do it.
Knowing this, I have to wonder why other companies [coughVolkscough, coughSoomcough] charge up to 4 times that amount. Obviously, I have willingly paid for multiple Sooms and Volkses, so I'm not complaining, just wondering where the markup comes in. I think we're paying for the brand. >_>
Clearly the solution is to bring a few people to work! I have nothing on my walls anyway; my only decoration consists of a few toys. [My sweatshirt over the back of my chair does not count as decor.]
I should get a bookcase...for...um...my reference books! That's it. To be fair, I do have some reference books, looking pretty silly, sitting on top of my filing cabinet. All 4 of them can go on the bookcase, and so can the some of the small populations.
While I'm at it, I should order a bulletin board.
While I'm also at it, I need to rid myself of all those 1:3 clothes I don't want.
Imagine my surprise when they recently released Elvira. She's certainly not original or stunning, but she's very cute. I see in her the same traits that were exaggerated flaws in earlier sculpts, here and now refined into parts of a wholly conceived aesthetic program. Nice to know that their sculptors can learn from their mistakes.
I like expensive dolls, namely, resin Asian ball-jointed dolls. For example, my incoming Lola Paprika was $309.00 including doll, eyes, faceup [painting], outfit and shipping. Because she was on a special sale, she would have normally cost more. Without the steep discount, the same items would have cost me just about $615.00. You can see why I, accustomed to such prices for 60cm BJDs, call Lola Paprika my “cheap” 1:3er.
Anyway, even as I revel in the thought of getting such a beautiful doll for such a relative bargain, I am also highly aware of the loads of money which I casually drop upon BJDs. This is obviously a luxury interest, which sometimes leaves me ambivalent about spending so much. Surely that money could go toward things either more necessary than or just as enjoyable as, but cheaper than, BJDs. [For example, think of how much 1:6 stuff I could get with $309.00! At the rate Hot Toys’ prices are going, it would just be 1.25 fully kitted figs, but I digress. I could also get scads of crack…I mean Rement.]
Then I think about my BJD spending in context. In general, I don’t spend a lot of money. I don’t pinch pennies, but I also don’t spend excessive amounts of money when furnishing my necessities. Dolls and their accoutrements represent pretty much my only excess. Since my finances are stable and organized, I can afford to have BJDs. I am in such a position of financial and class privilege that allows me to say that I don’t think my interest in expensive dolls is a problem.
Today’s profundity has been brought to you by Angelsdoll, purveyor of BJDs with relatively realistic and affordable shapes. Today’s profundity has NOT been brought to you by Hot Toys, whose prices I find galling for 1:6 scale. [Funny how $125.00 is my limit for 1:6 scale spending, but a mere sneeze in the bucket against my 1:3 scale spending.]
Fantasy Doll $150.00 w/o s/h, shoulder width 8 cm, neck circ 8.8 cm
Spirit Doll $380.00 w/o s/h, shoulder width 11.5 cm, neck circ 9.5 cm
Super Gem ---, shoulder width 10.5 cm, neck circ 10 cm
Looks like the Spirit Doll body would be the most proportionate...also the most expensive...but it does have the "big boobs" option!
Then what? Then she would go on the “big dollies” shelf along with Sardonix and Junebug, and she would sit there, making friends with them and quietly yellowing. She would come out for doll meets, where the audience would ooh and aah over her and take photos, and I’m sure she’d have televised chats with Sardonix and Junebug occasionally, but I don’t think I’d take lots of pictures of her or play with her a lot. Certainly not as frequently as I play with my 1:6ers.
I’d like a big doll with pink hair. None of my past BJDs had the appropriate type of pink hair. Zephque had a pale pink wig with double buns, but it wasn’t pink enough. My Soom Uyoo version of Jennifer had a wig of pink yarn for a while that looked good, but too much like Anneka’s hair. My Soom Sabik Will had a bright pink fur wig of the appropriate color, but it didn’t have double ponytails, and he was too big for me anyway…
I think I would get a Volks Dollfie Dream body for the putative Breccia head. It’s nice and light and sexy and relatively poseable. It’s also kinda cheap. The only problem is that Dollfie Dreams stain really easily. I’d have to make sure that all her clothes were lined, and nothing denim and/or black for her! That’s easy…I already have the an42 pink and orange paisley dress that I’d want her to wear…and the stripey black and white socks.
She would be such a pretty doll!
I think I need a camera with a really good zoom lens, or I need a good zoom lens to put on my current camera.
This disjointed entry has been brought to you by the Society of Useless Sexy Expensive Dolls, or USED.
To quote Hoggle from Labyrinth, "Damn you, Jareth! And damn me too!"
Like I need more Jareths in my life...especially after I already got rid of a BJD one [but it didn't really look like him anyway].
EDIT: Well, shit. I see that Bobobie is on my list of cheating doll cos.
...But Charisma has a smirk...and a cheap price tag.
Did I mention the smirk? And the seductive androgyny? And the face that looks older than most preternaturally young-faced BJDs?
How morally compromised am I, considering the abandonment of my principles for a cheap smirk?
Now that I've gotten that out of my system, maybe I can go to bed.
If I bought all the 1:6 kidsy dolls that attract me, I'd have a whole school from daycare through grade 6!!!!
I do collect things, but not dolls. For me, dolls aren't just physical objects, but confluences of several of my interests, talents and hobbies. They are kind of like lenses that allow me to focus my skills in writing, photography, set construction, painting, figure customization, sewing [?!], etc. I have a lot of them because I have a lot of characters. I'm not collecting a full set; I'm making a cast so I can play with them.
In contrast to a collector of dolls, I would call myself a user of dolls, in the same way that collectors of computers may be contrasted to users of computers. While collectors may fetishize completeness and the concept of certain objects, users fetishize interactivity. They debox; they customize; they pose; they photograph their dolls. They use them as dressmakers' dummies, stress relief, story characters, construction experiments, etc. They may have lots of dolls, but they don't think that they have collections; instead, they think of their dolls as works in progress. They can always develop a character's personality or find a better outfit or repaint or re-pose.... To an untrained observer, a doll user looks pretty much like a doll collector, when, in actuality, the doll collector's dolls don't move, while the doll user's dolls are constantly fidgeting.
About three years ago, I joined DOA, right before it moved from a Yahoo group to a phpBB group. Here are some of my early posts [subject lines only] on the phpBB version, just for my personal amusement, I guess:
Nobility Doll comes out with innovative articulation in its Full Operation Nobility Royma. This male doll has a double-jointed neck, so his head can cock and bow as well as swivel. He also has double-jointed elbows and knees, as well as double-jointed thighs. And he has a "genital joint" so you can make his penis go up or down. And something's up with his nipples. The photos say "press papilla good feel," which I assume means that they are squishy vinyl, like a Dollfie Dream torso or an Obitsu soft bust.
I really have to wonder...does anyone want these features? When I survey the majority of BJD owners, they list the following among things that they want: more mature male and female sculpts, a wider range of body types including super-emaciated and Rubenesque, poseable hands, bodies that are well-balanced and solid in posing, therianthropic sculpts [including animal heads, articulated wings, movable mermaid lower halves or dragon tails], casual clothes and shoes that real people wear, etc. Double-jointed necks, squeezy nipples and Amazing Swivel Penises [TM] are very low on the list of wants, if they appear at all. Maybe Nobility was just going for as many innovations as possible in one doll.
Royma looks like David Bowie with the pointy nose and the pissy flat mouth. See headshots, nipple shots and Amazing Swivel Penis [TM] shots below.
Wrong, of course. BJD lovers should see below for my extensive critique of the puppetry.