last post of the year!

December 31st, 2014 by _d2_

**clearly i need either a proofreader, or more coffee before i post these things**

but have no fear, it’s not the last post period!

i’ve been working on stuff for the kirin preorder, including drafting patterns for basic camisole and bloomers, working with a friend on getting fur wigs to send with each doll, and have found a source for acrylic eyes to include as well (in fact, kirin below is wearing a pair i got so i could see them in person – they are gorgeous eyes! )

i’m still deciding on a preorder start date (but it will either be 1/10 or 1/15) and have mostly worked out details, but there will be a major change –

i won’t be offering a set face up. i just couldn’t settle on a style, so what i’ll offer is either a blank doll, or will do a custom face up with simple body blushing for an additional fee (still to be decided)

i was hoping to do body blushing on my girls that i painted up already since we have sunny weather this week – but… well, yesterday was 31 degrees outside and today has so far topped out at…. 29. but hopefully this afternoon it will get up above freezing so i can spray the sealer safely outside and not have it cloud up on me.

on top of all this kirin excitement, i’ve been working on amaterasu as well and have her hands and fingers all sculpted and now i just need to joint them, then i have to finish the joints on her legs, and get her all smoothed out and sanded! my personal goal was to have amaterasu and otohime done by the end of the year, but i’m not going to make that…

anyway, have some kirin with cookies spam! and yes, those are REAL cookies! (we made some linzer cookies a little bit ago, and just cooked up the little cut outs as well, and they make awesome doll cookies…. of course we’ve also just about eaten them all…)

(please forgive her hands – i realized a day or two ago that i hadn’t really cleaned the seams off of her hands in all my excitement to get the girls together…)

teaser pics

December 19th, 2014 by _d2_

i’m working hard to get the rest of my sample dolls sanded, strung, and then i get to paint them all!

then i have to take the official pictures for her sales post (OMG! ) – the preorder will happen mid to late january. i also got the wonderful news that kirin is allowed on den of angels (one of the largest online forums for resin BJDs) – i think my heart skipped a few beats when i read that!

i’ve already started plans on my next doll, but i wouldn’t expect anything on my end until june or july ^^;;;;

anyway – here are some fun shots i took of one of the white resin cast kirins (i’ve nicknamed it opal kirin because of the look of the resin)

sitting pretty on my copy of the 1960s batman (hey, i warned you i’d been watching it a lot lately! )

i then started a shoe test – i knew already she could wear gene sized heels (which also seems to be the same size shoe that the high heel feet for bimong’s naraes… )

yep, she really is standing in that pose – i was freaking out as i found she wasn’t posing right in the resin – because it turned out to be smoother than the raw premier clay (that was a no-duh moment… i mean, her extreme curves would cause problems in any medium, but i had worked them out in clay and stupidly assumed they would work the same in another) but then i just ran wire from her head to ankle and she poses pretty well now! so all dolls bought will have the same (full elastic stringing, and then 16 gauge wire for the body and legs)

now, i knew she could wear high heels, but what about flats? i assumed she would as i designed her ankle to rotate enough that her foot could be flat on the ground (and she stands barefoot after all) turns out she can wear larger sized shoes made for volks’ yosd and similar sized dolls. so first up a pair of shoes from volks (i believe they’re the limited little lorina ones) – they’re a little snug, but otherwise she stands really well in them. i think future owners will definitely need to err on the larger side.

and then for a pair of yosd sized boots from dollheart – these were also a little snug around her ankles, but because they both lace up and zip up you can open the boot up wide to get her foot in and out. so i definitely recommend boots that have BOTH opening systems, otherwise you run the risk of her foot getting stuck!

but yes – she stands great in them too! (okay, i’ll admit this pose took me a few tries to balance right…. but she’s standing unaided! )

i apologize for the delay….

December 15th, 2014 by _d2_

i’ve seen a LOT of people eager for more pictures and info on kirin, and i’m sorry to say that i’ve fallen behind these last few days…

sadly, i’d been sick for quite a few days before kirin shipped, thought i had kicked it, and then it came back with a vengeance the day after she arrived… so these last three days, i’ve spent nearly all my time passed out in bed trying to get rid of this blasted cold/sore throat as fast as possible.

today is the first day where i’m really feeling a lot better and that i’m not going to pass out or throw up when i stand (yay!) but at the same time, i’ve still got a few things to finish up….

i tried to start sanding kirin yesterday – and it was going great – until my head decided it wanted to explode with intense pain any time i moved it just the tiniest bit… however, i’m going to give it another go today (i also need to make a bunch of eyes and sand some parts for my mom so it’s going to be a day filled with my most hated of all activities… sanding… ugh…)

it’s an early xmas!!!!

December 12th, 2014 by _d2_

she came! or rather – THEY came! yesterday! and i’m probably going to use waaaaaaaaay too many exclamation points in this pic heavy post. so, i apologize now.

but i got my resin casts from donn over at bishounen house – he did such an amazing job on her.

firstly – le box! it was a smaller box than what i expected, but everything was packed so efficiently.

so efficient, so organized! way to go donn!

i think my roommate will probably swear that by this time i was giggling – but i’d like to think it was more of an evil cackle. you know, like cesar romero’s joker, but i’m not that cool (btw – did i mention that i’ve recently been making my way thru the 1960s batman series? no? well, i apologize in advance for any weirdness that might be causing as well)

eeeek! look – unwrapped the tan girl and one white girl

the white resin was a lot different than i expected, even though i had seen the sample in person. some how she looked less like other translucent resins i’d seen before and more like opal/frosted glass – which is TOTALLY cool in my book! visions of soft blue and purple swirls up the girl’s arms and legs came to mind, completely ruining any previous thoughts i had about what to do with them.

it was also at this point that i sort of got way too excited and forgot to take pics of a lot of stuff – i just wanted to see them strung up!

without arms or feet as i needed to put the wires through the hands and feet

two girls together – i really like how they look together!

and look at these hands! i was so afraid they wouldn’t come out because i tend to sculpt these tiny little fragile fingers…

so, then i took the time to put in wires and string up my girls and watch another 5 episodes of batman (oh robin, you were so cute! )

and i managed to snap a crappy pic that my roommate said looked like a selfie. i shudder to think of any of my classy girls doing something so silly and narcissistic as a selfie, but i’m sure they probably would…

and that was the end of the box opening, but not the end of my girls! this morning i strung up the original kirin, who i swear came back more even and more beautiful than when i sent her! (probably a good even coat of grey primer has something to do with that… )

of course, they still need to be sanded to finish removing the seams and such… and then i need to take a good set of basic pics and repost preorder info – i’m hoping to get some orders in january.

but i got some semi-professional looking shots of her!

and then for some more basic comparison shots – it’s sad that i can’t seem to get nice shots of the white girl, but maybe with her face up her actual features will start showing?

she stands between 40 and 42cm, depending on if her feet are flat or in high heels

next to a mini sized dollzone girl body

finally confronting the elephant in the room

December 7th, 2014 by _d2_

omg – can it really be? yes, i’ve finally written up the post on xiàng!

who is xiàng? why she’s my side project to keep me sane as i worked on a project with my mom – a potential online class on sculpting a BJD. she started out as just a random idea on what it would look like to do a mature looking elephant doll. i’d seen a number of little/chibi elephants but never something adult or majestic.

i’m pretty sure i got the adult part, but not so sure on the majestic. anyway, here is the story of xiàng’s creation. she’s still in progress, of course, but i’ll share more of her later on.

so first i started with a very rough lumpy head and trunk – at this point i wasn’t entirely sure if i was going to joint the trunk or just leave it as is.

after letting the clay dry a little bit, i started some detailing – oh, poor dear and her fat trunk! you can also see she’s on a torso – i started it as an optional “standard” torso to mold and cast in flumo as i start making more of my own dolls – it’s sized to fit with kirin’s arms and legs, however i was starting to have other ideas for little xiàng

a few more days passed, and not only did her trunk get a much needed slimming down, but also the start of ears! i was looking at both kinds of elephants and decided to go with the asian elephant since the females didn’t have tusks, and thus the small ears, but i think they are the right size for this little lady.

my next step was to work a bit more on her ears, make a head cap, and made the final decision to cut her trunk apart to joint. i knew it was going to be a challenge, but at the same time, i felt like it would really bring her to life.

it was here that i decided i needed to start the body based on a design i had done a year or two ago. one of my many, many hobbies is collecting monster high dolls – they’re so much better than the fashion dolls from when i was little, and even though they’re all girly-girls, somehow they feel a lot more positive about being different and aren’t really over sexualized like some of the other dolls i’d seen…. not to mention they have some of the most fabulous shoes i have EVER seen.

and so i made my rough clay starts for the torso, legs, and arms – my goal is to make a doll in my style but that can wear the monster high clothes and shoes. however, i do plan on giving her an ankle joint so that her feet can be flat as well as in high heels – due to the height of the heels, the feet are actually almost completely flat so she should be able to wear flat shoes fairly easily. if i succeed, when standing in heels she’ll be only about 25 or 26cm tall (or about 10 inches)

and a quicky pick to see if i’m crazy or not – i know it might seem weird, but it was instant love when i saw her face on that rough little body (and actually, her head is SMALLER than the monster high girl ^^ )

i also wanted to try out a new (to me) style of joints for the hips and shoulders – the balls are going to be attached to the torso and not the limbs.

and after a few days of sculpting on other things with a little work here and there on xiàng i came to the crazy scary part – cutting apart the torso and her trunk. her trunk was so tiny i was sure i would break it rather than cut it along the lines that i had drawn, and yet the dolly gods were smiling on me because there was only one mild mishap (a piece broke in half but was a clean break so really easy to fix! )

for the pic, she’s wearing 8mm glass eyes and a 4.5 inch wig

you noticed she’s back on the larger torso? yeah, that’s because her body was like this – (you can see i also have a rough hand started too)

to make the round joints work, i drew out then cut curved slits on the hip balls, but it would be a bit before i could really test them since i had to work on other things rather than sculpting and drilling out her legs.

but i did take some time to round out the trunk pieces, adding in joints and then came time for a trunk test!

for the time being, her head was done as i focused on her body. after cutting her apart and hollowing out the pieces, i did a test stringing to help visualize the joints, as well as to figure out how i was going to do the slits for the shoulders. the human arm has a much wider range of motion than the leg so i knew this was going to possibly be a tricky joint to pull off….

during this time i had a really really REALLY crappy day and so i did something really stupid to make me smile. hey, sometimes you just have to laugh at stupid things.

of course, i later found that i needed to make a small indent at the bottom of the slit so that the arm could hang more naturally – so her happy face shoulder turned more into a weird heart slit thingy…. not that i got any decent pics of that….

i also started her second hand – i tend to do hands strangely, at least according to my mom…. i start with a lump of clay that i then cut into fat sausages and roughly pose, then when it dries i carefully carve them down and sometimes reposition the fingers or thumb if i find i don’t like how the hand is looking. of course i already had one hand done, but i tried to compare the in progress hand to the mostly finished one :

as you can probably tell, i broke a couple fingers in the process – these hands are super tiny! so while glue dried i worked on cleaning up her ears, face, and torso:

and it was at this time i tried to get some posing shots, which also lead to the preview picture i shared earlier –

and compared to the monster high girl again –

you can see i also started sanding pieces, this included hands as well…. but then i accidentally dropped a hand in my cup of tea T_T – thankfully the hand wasn’t damaged or anything, just colored yellow…. but look at these lovely hands!

btw – i have small/slender hands and that’s my pinkie her little hand is resting on

well, since then i’ve started some feet lumps, did some more sanding, and even cut her leg apart – though i didn’t take any pics of that stuff…..

so here we stand – a partially finished little xiàng with a special guest, that super secret project that’s taken up the last few months of my life ~_^

waylaid by SNAFU

December 4th, 2014 by _d2_

i had hoped this weekend i’d be spending my time writing this HUGE post on what all i got done during my radio silence.

instead, my biggest and most important project was so full of mess-ups and last minute frustrations and failures that i’m so far behind on other things that i don’t know when i’ll officially be able to post anything…

so instead, i’ll leave you with a small teaser pic that i had shared with some friends on facebook as well:


i've been drawing for as long as i could hold a pencil and art became my first language. though i've only been sculpting since 2007, i fell in love with the idea of being able to bring my drawings to life. i am heavily inspired by medieval macabre artwork, japanese yokai, and oddly enough, sherlock holmes. currently i'm living just south of beautiful portland oregon ^^