Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Elbow Joint




I am actually following through on my idea for the elbow joint. Here you can see how much I carved away from the ball by comparing it with the other lower arm.






It may even give me a little more than a 90 degree bend at the elbow?



The next step is to mold the upper and lower arm in Moulage molds, then cast them in carving wax in order to test string them and see how they work under tension.




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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Single Joint Thoughts




I have been asked for pictures of what I am trying to do with single joints, but the problem is, I still have only a vague idea of what I want to do. For one thing, I am still trying to do single joints that have the ball attached to one of the limbs, rather than be free-floating (not attached to either limb). The other thing I want to do is to have the end of the limb that rotates on the ball, have a flat circle in contact with the ball, instead of having a 45 degree angle cut away. This means that the flat circle should be very shallow, and the limb with the ball attached should be undercut quite severely, to allow a range of motion for bending at 90 degrees.



I don't know how well this will work, yet. I am trying to keep it simple, yet I do want the joints to be stable. The range of motion with single joints is limited, but the stability should be easier and better to control? As soon as I find some time, I will try this out on Carving Wax Test Doll. I already have one of her elbows carved away, around the ball. I will try carving away some more, and see what happens?




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Monday, August 29, 2011

Elbow Joints




Today I looked at the brown wax elbow joints, but once again, was too exhausted to do any work on them. They have also been added to my To Do list. The hip joints are looking pretty good, and so are the torso pieces. If I can just get the right knee joint fixed up, and the elbow joints working, then I should be ready to mold and cast some of Aalish's brown wax parts in carving wax.




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Sunday, August 28, 2011

Knee Joint




Today I looked at the right knee joint that needs a lot of work, but I was too exhausted to do anything with it. This is now on my To Do list.




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Saturday, August 27, 2011

Calculating Shrinkage Revisited




I will be the first one to admit that I am not very clever at doing math, and that is one reason I studied Art at University, and not Science. It isn't that I don't like numbers, I do! I have a calculator, and I use it all the time. Of course, the trick to using a calculator is knowing which keys to punch in to do what you want to do. Fortunately, most of the practical math I do in my studio is adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing.

Shrinkage is one of those things that should be thought of at the design stage of BJD development. This is when the working drawings are made. The working drawings should be full size drawings that show the front and side views of the doll, at the very minimum. These drawings are very useful for making the armature for the doll's original sculpt.

If there is any shrinkage, in any of the materials used to make the doll, the original sculpt of that doll must be larger by the total amount of shrinkage of all the materials that have shrinkage. So the one of first things to know, when designing the doll, is which materials are going to be used, and what their rates of shrinkage are.

I am going to use Aalish as an example.
Aalish is being modeled in brown sculpture wax to make the original sculpt.
The brown sculpture wax is being molded in moulage molds, and cast in carving wax.
The carving wax is refined, and molded in plaster slip casting molds, and cast in CompoBell CS-1000 doll composition slip.

The brown sculpture wax used for the original sculpt does not shrink. 0% shrinkage.
The carving wax shrinks 2.78%.
The CS-1000 slip shrinks 6%.
The total shrinkage of all the materials is 8.78%, which I round off to 9%.

First of all, I subtract the percentage of shrinkage from one (1.0).
1.0-.09
.91
Next I divide the height I want my doll to be, when finished, by .91 (91%).
60cm / .91
The answer is how tall my original sculpt must be to be 60cm when finished.
65.93406, can be rounded off to 66cm.

I will want to make my working drawings of the doll, 66cm tall.

Previously, I had figured that I should make Aalish 63cm tall to end up 60cm when finished. Now I see that Aalish will probably end up being more like 58cm tall when finished because I did not figure in the shrinkage for the carving wax into my original calculations.

Yeah, well, I am too far along at this point in time to quibble over 2cm, so this is going to have to be a lesson learned. I will know better when I make the second BJD.

Many thanks to dollutional at Enchanted forum for teaching me this way of calculating shrinkage.






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Friday, August 26, 2011

Lower Torso Work




Today I finished smoothing the inside of the hip socket on the lower torso. I try to do a little bit of work on my doll every day.




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Thursday, August 25, 2011

Level of Detail

I really like the level of detail that Ryo Yoshida puts into his doll in the Yoshida Style Ball Jointed Doll Making Guide (2006).





All the fingernails and knuckles in the hands, toenails in the feet, ears, eyes, and other details in the face are so well done. This is the level of realism that I would like to strive for with my own BJD, Aalish.





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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Another Moulage and Carving Wax User




Another user of Moulage and Carving Wax is Juli over at Just This and That.

Juli made her own carving wax, and ordered 5 pounds of Moulage.

Moulage search label.

Carving Wax search label.

It is very interesting for me to see how other people use these amazing reusable sculpture and design materials.




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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Doll Master Nº 2




Not to be thwarted by a DVD that didn't play in my DVD player, I searched online, and found this film on YouTube (where else?). Yeah, I was intrigued by the ABJD aspect of the film, okay? This is a great film for those who believe that ABJDs have souls. Personally, I would like to believe that if dolls have souls, they are souls filled with Love and Kindness, not souls full of hate and revenge.

These are the last translated lines of the film:

Where does the fault lie?
With irresponsible people?
Or with the dolls?
For feeling love on their own?

Do you love Resin? Maybe the Resin loves you, too?




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Monday, August 22, 2011

The Doll Master









Today I found a Korean DVD at the local used-book store called The Doll Master. Unfortunately for me, when I got the DVD home, and put it in the player, it would not play, so I returned it to the store for a refund. Gah.

We have NetFlix, so I think I will have to add this DVD to my queue. The film features ball-jointed dolls.

Wikipedia entry: The Doll Master (2004)




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Sunday, August 21, 2011

Carving Wax Shrinkage




The talc ingredient in the carving wax helps keep shrinkage to a minimum, however, there is still some shrinkage. The cue ball I used as a pattern to make the hip joints is 2.25 inches in diameter. The carving wax balls I cast in the moulage mold came out 0.0625 inches less in diameter. That is about 1/16th of an inch in 2.25 inches, or .02777%. Almost 3% shrinkage.




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Saturday, August 20, 2011

twigling's Zen Booklet Online Again









Zen & The Art of Articulating Dolls Using Balljoints by twigling, is now online again, from her new web site.

http://www.twigling.com/zen-and-the-art-of-articulating-dolls-using-balljoints.html

This is the best available book about making ball joints there is!




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Friday, August 19, 2011

Live Model Pose Reference



Caution: The links in this post contain Artistic Nudity, and may NOT be Work Safe.

I have been using Art Pose books for a long time for making figurative sculpture. While a book of poses is not the same as having a live model, they are certainly much less expensive. It is always recommended to refer to humans for reference, when sculpting the human figure. I would like to point to a site that has a variety of live male and female models, photographed in rotation, 360 degrees, moved 15 degrees per photo. That gives 24 photos per pose. It is enough to get a good 3D feel for each pose.

The poses may be purchased individually, for a relatively inexpensive price, or a book CD of poses may be purchased. I have purchased a book CD of poses from these people in the past, and was satisfied with the purchase in every way. This is a reputable company, dealing with Art Models, for the purpose of making Art. It is not a porn site !!!

So here is the link:
PoseSpace.com Home Page Contains Artistic Nudity !!!

Click on the Pose Tool tab to view the models and poses.




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Thursday, August 18, 2011

One More Wonderland




I am pointing to this film because it is new to me, and I enjoyed it immensely. I like this still frame from the film because it gives an idea for displaying an Alice doll in a doll-house, but the doll-house does not have to be to scale, right? Alice shrinks and grows throughout the story. Delightful.



Out of all the Alice In Wonderland's I've recently watched, this one, from 1966, directed by Jonathan Miller, and originally aired on the BBC, is perhaps the best for seeing Victorian costumes. I especially enjoyed the performance by Peter Cook, as The Mad Hatter, and the Tea Party is one of my very favorite scenes. I don't know, but I think that you must be truly obsessed with Alice In Wonderland to appreciate this version of Lewis Carroll's story. None of the actors are dressed as animal characters, but are dressed in Victorian costumes. I found it on YouTube (71 mins.).

Here is the Wikipedia article: Alice in Wonderland (1966 TV play)




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Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Assembling or Re-stringing a BJD




This is just a quicky post today. I found a wonderful blog post about assembling or re-stringing a resin BJD. The cool thing about it is, the tutorial is for stringing a BJD Kit: a U-noa Sist BJD. I have heard of these dolls before, but this is the first time I've seen them in photos, up close, with detailed shots of the joints. It is the joints that I am interested in, as a dollmaker who does not own an ABJD. Here is the link to the post:

Assembling (or Restringing) a Ball Jointed Doll

As an added bonus, this BJD collector also sews for her dolls. So once you've finished looking at the re-stringing tutorial, take a look at the clothes she sews for her dolls.

One day, I too will be making clothes for Aalish.....




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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Something From Alice




Today I watched this Czech film, inspired by the Alice In Wonderland story. It is very dark and dreamlike. It follows the book very loosely. It is filled with so many things, often used in unusual, yet delightful ways. Other things might even be considered disturbing. I found it at YouTube.

Alice (1988)
by Jan Švankmajer
original Czech title is Něco z Alenky, which means
"Something from Alice"
Alice is played by Kristýna Kohoutová.






Alice falls down a hole and lands on a pile of leaves.






She finds a small key.






The small key unlocks a small door.






She drinks from a bottle and shrinks. The live actor turns into a stop-motion animated doll. The white rabbit is a stop-motion animated stuffed rabbit.



It seems that it was filmed in basements, attics, and dark rooms, filled with old things. Overall, I would say it is quite creepy.

Wikipedia entry: Alice (1988 film)




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Monday, August 15, 2011

Wonderland Things






Illustrator: Gordon Robinson, 1916.




Yeah, I am being distracted by Alice in Wonderland things as I am thinking about surrounding Aalish with things from that nonsense story. Here are some of the things: Dinah, the cat; Cheshire Cat; White Rabbit wearing a Waistcoat; Pocket watch; Skeleton Key; Small door with keyhole; Glass table; Bottle, labled Drink Me; Cake, labeled Eat Me; Lovely Garden; Top Hat; Mad Hatter; Tea Party; Tea cups and saucers; Tea pot; Sugar bowl; Mushrooms; Caterpillar; Hookah; Croquet; Hedgehog; Flamingos; Duchess; Cook; Pepper; Baby; Pig; Cards; Queen of Hearts; King of Hearts; Tarts; Knave of Hearts. I am sure there are some things I've forgotten?

So, for example, I want to make a flip-flop doll of a baby and a pig, where the baby is one end of the doll, and the pig is the other end of the doll, and when it is flipped over, the dress covers the baby, and exposes the pig, and vice versa. Only the heads and arms would be movable.

Curiouser and curiouser.

Also, in my search for Wonderland things, I have found references to the madness of Alice, which may be explored as themes for face-ups. All of these things can be combined in different ways to create an original Les Aventures d'Aalish au pays des merveilles photo story.




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Sunday, August 14, 2011

More Inspiration






Illustrator: Mabel Lucie Attwell, 1910.




I have been searching for Alice in Wonderland symbols. Lewis Carrol was the pseudonym for Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, (27 January 1832 – 14 January 1898). He was an English author, mathematician, logician, Anglican deacon and photographer. Nevertheless, what I really became interested in were old illustrations of Alice in Wonderland, done by illustrators other than John Tenniel.

Well, the ones I found, mainly from the early 1900s are incredible. I got side-tracked from the symbolism, and really enjoyed the illustrations in and of themselves.

I am still interested in the symbolism, but have put it on a back-burner for the moment. This is where I started:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alice's_Adventures_in_Wonderland




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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Inspiration




Inspiration is one percent, and the other 99 percent is perspiration. Yeah, so today I was doing some of the inspiration stuff. I was on YouTube looking at various old Alice in Wonderland videos. It seems that the first Alice movie was done in 1903. I certainly admire a 1903 film-maker for trying to make an Alice in Wonderland! My Aalish is an Alice in Wonderland character. Maybe she is nothing more than a Dream?

Things we do and things we see shortly before we fall asleep are most apt to influence our dreams.

1903... can you imagine? Lewis Carrol first wrote the story in 1866, just 37 years earlier, and film was in it's infancy.

Alice In Wonderland 1903

1903 Cosplay !!!




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Friday, August 12, 2011

Pots and Pans




I found some pots and pans on a neighbor's trash pile. I think they will make great wax pots, and so forth in my studio. They have handles and lids !!!






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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Backups Finished




I finally got the last data backups finished. At least all my doll stuff has been backed-up to DVD. It turned out to be about 47GB of data. I guess I like to collect a lot of doll pix? I've decided I'm not going to let it get that far out of hand in the future. Anyway, I was able to work on the brown wax lower torso while the DVDs were being burned. I try to do a little bit of work on Aalish every day. Every little bit helps.

I'm starting to get the itch to mold some of my brown wax parts, and cast them in carving wax. That is a good itch to get.




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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Still Backing Up Data




I am still working on the lower torso while making backups of my doll data. I really need to do this more often. I am so far behind that it may take the rest of the week to do it. The fear of a computer crash keeps me going. My computer is very old. I put it together in 2002. Since then, I have replaced the power supply, added a hard drive, and upgraded the memory, but it is still old. I do not want to take the chance to lose anything I have done since my last backup to DVD.




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Monday, August 8, 2011

Backups And Lower Torso




I realized that I have not made any backups of any of my doll data for the last couple of months !!! Yikes !!! Today I started backing up computer data to DVD. While DVDs are burning, I am working on the lower torso.




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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Wax Sheet Nº 3




Another way to line a socket with a wax sheet is to cut out a circle of wax sheet a little larger than the socket, then cut it into pie slices. Press the pie slices into the socket.






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Saturday, August 6, 2011

Wax Sheet Nº 2




The wax sheet I poured, cooled down, so I warmed a piece of it up in some hot tap water in order to make it flexible.






I put a couple of cast balls in the sockets to see which socket needed the wax sheet.






Then I used the cue ball to press the warmed wax into the socket.






Next, I removed the excess wax.






This is the lower torso after inserting the wax sheet, with the two cast balls in the sockets. They are much closer together than they were before.






The socket with the wax sheet inside, and the cast balls removed.






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