Here’s some more about my process of making my first BJD doll ^__^
After splitting the torso, I was able to work some more on the second head that I’d started, and tried out some different methods of sculpting. I was finding it easier to sand away the dried clay to add definition and refine shapes, rather than to shape it too much with the wet clay. I was also wetting the dried clay with a paintbrush, and adding fine details with a large sewing needle!
It’s definitely helpful to do a few heads I think, There’s clear improvement from head to head, and so much to learn about how BJD’s work! Getting the cut of the head cap in the right place so you can still fit your fingers in for the eyes, but not so far forward that the seam is visible past the wig… Also for me, learning to slow down and get the base right before putting on the features. I found it very useful to try to get the featureless base sanded and symmetrical, and make sure the forehead is big enough (a common problem) before getting into the features. I would also strongly advise getting your eyes set in place early on too! Trying to shift an eye around after you’ve got the nose just night is a nightmare!
The arms started off pretty basic and thin. Drying out propped up in a pincushion until i could slide out the straw inner. I drew my planned cuts for the joints, but ended up cutting them further until they were quite flat – this was because the arms weren’t fat enough! The ball joints were the right size according to my plan, but they were too big to be worked into the straw-hollows :/ I have since decided that the shoulders are too angular too, the balls should’ve been placed more in line with the arms, instead of jutting out so much. You learn so much so quickly when you make your first doll!
The elbow, knee and hip joints started out as above, and were gradually built onto, and shaped to move nicely back and forth. Finally, I had also returned to the torso, and added a ‘nubbin’ to the front and back of the lower section, to catch the upper half onto when posing, to enable her to hold the most extreme forward and back bends more easily.
These took me up to the 10th April, so apart from hands and feet, I had most of my doll fleshed out (so to speak) in a little over 2 weeks.
Test stringing and ANOTHER head next time!
Thanks for reading!