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BJD Doll FAQ

Journal Entry: Mon May 16, 2011, 4:52 PM
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Skin by pjuk



'Not Stock' Stamp by J7MiGi


Please read this if you are interested to learn more about the dolls I photograph. I dont have time to keep answering the same questions over and over again >_< I will be updating this journal entry as time goes on. Feel free to add a question in the comments section and I will try to answer it.




BASICS


What are these dolls?
They are BJD - ball jointed dolls. If you search Google with those keywords you will get plenty of results with companies and other info about them. This is the Wikipedia article en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ball-joi…. Also this LJ answers some questions too bjd-wtf.livejournal.com/ . If you want to learn more, I would suggest Den of Angels forum (www.denofangels.com/forums/).


Do you make them?
No I don't make the actual doll, I don't sculpt it. I am a customizer, I paint their faceups. I am basically a makeup artist for resin dolls. You can find the link to my commission shop and main Flickr faceup portfolio in the links above.


How much do they cost?
That really depends on the size, company and rarity of the doll (if it was limited). The most expensive doll I bought was a Unoa Zero, she was about $1400 USD, the cheapest one was a Pukipuki which cost me $160 USD. Note that those two examples only included a naked body and head, no wigs, eyes, clothes etc.


OMG how can you afford this?
Well I work and I earn money that I can spend on my hobby ^^; It took me many months to save enough for my first doll, putting aside a few bucks every week, but it was worth it. I believe this hobby really tests your patience but if you REALLY want one, you will get it sooner or later.


Where can I buy BJDs?
If you Google "BJD company links" you will find many helpful websites with huge lists of BJD websites www.google.com.au/search?q=bjd… I recommend checking the BJD Collectasy site since it is pretty much constantly updated bjdcollectasy.com/companies-ot….


Where did you buy your own dolls? (listing only current dolls I own)
Jess, Cassie and Bree - Fairyland Minifee Chloe dollfairyland.com/
Mocha and Ichigo - Latidoll Yellow Noa
www.latidoll.com


Are you selling your dolls?
Not unless stated. If I decide to sell any of them, they will be up on Den of Angels BJD forum. denofangels.com/forums/


I like one of the dolls in your monthly mosaic uploads. What is the name of the sculpt?
I don't remember every single sculpt names so I recommend checking my Flickr photostream and find the doll there. The title of my faceup submissions have got the company and sculpt name added.


Your dolls very much resemble my character. I was wondering if I could use your photos as a visual example for my stories/RP?
I am sorry, but my answer is no. These dolls already represent my own characters and have their own stories so I would feel very uncomfortable finding people using my photos for other characters. I hope you can understand and respect my decision.





FASHION AND STYLE


Where do you buy clothes for your doll?
I get them from many many different sources. Some are from Etsy, Ebay or DoA marketplace, others are from specialised bjd fashion websites like Brennil or Atelier Momoni, and sometimes I simply commission seamstresses. I care a lot about my doll's fashion, I want them to be unique so I always try to get clothes that are one of a kind or difficult to get but of high quality.


Where do you buy your doll's eyes?
I am a big fan of urethane eyes so lately all the eyes I buy are Dollflowers. For those ones I join group preorders held on order.bjd.in/dollflower/ which happen about twice per year.


Where do you buy your doll's wigs?
I usually get wigs from Dollga, nDoll, eBay, Etsy etc. But there are many more options available than just those, almost every BJD store sells them so if you have a look at the BJD company list linked in the fifth answer, you will find a ton of options :)





FACEUPS


What materials and tools do you use for your faceups?
- Liquitex Matte Medium and Varnish for sealing (check my Youtube channel to learn more about brush on sealants)
- Schminckle pastels
- Faber Castell and Derwent watercolor pencils
- Iwata airbrush with Tempera and Art Spectrum gouache paints
- Aqueous Hobby Color Clear Gloss or Tamiya Acrylic Paint Clear X-22
- various colored craft shimmer/glitter


How do you paint faceups?
I have a Youtube channel with a bunch of videos showing the work in progress of faceup painting. You can find the link just below the title of this journal entry.





HANDMADE WIGS


Do you take commissions for your wigs?
No sorry, I currently do not.


Can I buy one from you?
Sorry they are not for sale. If I decide otherwise I will make an announcement on my Facebook page.


What fiber do you use for your wigs?
I use both organic and synthetic fiber from Thermal Saran to Alpaca and others. My choice depends on the type of wig, colour and style I want to create.


Where do you buy your fiber?
From dozens of different shops. Because I started making wigs just recently, I am still in the process of testing out the quality and general experience of a variety of suppliers. I've bought my fiber from a different shop every time, and no, I do not have a favorite yet, they all have their pros and cons. You can find plenty of stores on eBay and Etsy or by using your favorite search engine.
Here are just a couple:
www.dollyhair.com/
www.reborndollhair.com/
www.etsy.com/shop/StephanieASm…
www.dollmore.net/


How did you learn how to make wigs?
I learned the basics by spending about two weeks researching during my free time. I've bought a guide on Etsy, I've read articles and tutorials that I found on the web and watched videos on Youtube. After I learned the basics I kept researching the ABCs of hair styling and hair dyeing.
Some links that I recommend checking (remember that you can always learn more, so extra research will only do you good, I've read all of these plus many many many more).
www.blythe-doll-fashions.com/2…
pinterest.com/joannecranston/d…
desertmountainbear.blogspot.co…
bjdmagazine.com/2011/01/11/tut…
dolls.wonderhowto.com/how-to/m…
www.dollmakersdream.com/Doll-w…
www.fantasydollsbyd.com/New_pa…




How did you dye the hair?
The same way as you'd do with human hair. If the fiber is organic (such as angora, alpaca, etc) it is very similar to regular (human) hair and you can change its colours just as easily. So far I've tried Manic Panic dyes and PaintBox, both worked just fine.





PHOTOGRAPHY & VIDEO


What camera do you use for your photos?
From end of January 2014 I switched to a Nikon D7100. Before that I used a Nikon D90 with a Sigma 1:2.8 DG Macro lens.


Do you edit your photos?
Yes. A lot. Editing photos in Photoshop is the part I enjoy the most.
Jess Purple - before + after shots by AndrejA


What editing program do you use to make your videos?
I use After Effects.




Q&A VIDEOS

I made two videos that answer additional questions that I received.





These are the questions and the timing for the video above

00:16 

I've been interested in these kinds of dolls for about a year and a half now, and I was wondering if you had any tips for someone who's looking into trying these sort of things for the first time?
00:31

What brand of watercolour pencils do you use?
00:38

What brand of pastels do you use?
00:44

What kind of sharpener do you use?
00:56

What gloves do you use and why?
01:10

Do your customers typically ask you for specific colours and etc, or are you usually the one to decide what the doll's makeup will be like?
01:30

Wouldn't an exacto-knife be dangerous on resin (scratching, particularly)?
01:39

i like the song! What is it?
01:49

What is the little green thing that you use to make small repairs?
02:00

You do the lower lashes and eyebrow hairs several times. Are you simply retracing previous lines, or adding more lines?
02:14

Do you brush color right off the pastel sticks, or do you shave it and dip your brush in the powder?
02:29

What program do you use to edit?
02:38

How much of a plan do you have before you start working on a faceup?
02:51

Do you plan on doing a FaceupStories on >insert sculpt name03:08

How many times do you seal the faceup?
03:19

What brand of gloss do you use?
03:25

What type paintbrushes do you use and what is their size?
03:39

Where do you use paint and where do you use pastels exactly?
03:55

Is there a certain kind of paint that you use for the airbrush?
04:04

What brand/model of airbrush do you use?
04:12

When you're using the watercolor pencils, are they entirely dry or have you wet them a little bit? I've used them before, but I feel like the lines don't look as smooth as yours.
04:27

What if u made a mistake?? how do correct it? Do u clean it with something?
04:42

I noticed you used one brand of watercolors when doing the eyelids and another one when you were drawing the creases of her eyes, does that help make the color more visible faster or it doesn't really matter which brand you use for different parts of her face?
04:58

I don't own an airbrush would pastels work just as well for the airbrushed steps?
05:11

What sealant do you use? And why do you apply after every layer?
05:25

Can you use eyelashes intended for humans?
05:35

What do you do with the back of the lashes? I've noticed that you place them so that the back kind of sticks out. Do you clip them when the glue is dry?
05:49

What sealant kind of glue do you use for the eyelashes?


  • Drinking: Starbucks Decaf Late
Add a Comment:
 
:iconmechromancia:
Mechromancia Featured By Owner 1 day ago
Hi, I hope you don't mind me asking but where did you get and what colour is the wig that Jess is wearing in this photo? www.deviantart.com/art/Silver-…
Many thanks.
Reply
:iconbull116:
bull116 Featured By Owner Edited 5 days ago
Hi  Andre, I really love the fact that you customize and face-up dolls. It's really beautiful and professional. Do you do dolls' face-up business for customers? If I have a blank doll head, can you do face-up upon request? If yes, what is the range do you usually charge? Thank you so much

(Excuse me whether I ask a private question, you can inbox me if you're not comfortable to answer in public)

Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner 4 days ago  Hobbyist General Artist
Sorry I stopped taking commissions a long time ago.
Reply
:iconyukotvxq:
YukoTVXQ Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2015  Professional Interface Designer
May I know what kind of gloves and glasses do you use? I'm going to start to repaint some dolls (let's hope I'm not horribly untalented OTL) and I would like to know what kind to use for protection. I already wear glasses and it's always kind of uncomfortable to wear another ones on top of them, are they really necessary? 
Reply
:iconvicksy:
Vicksy Featured By Owner Jul 13, 2015
What brand doll eyelashes do you use for your faceups?
Reply
:iconponys321:
ponys321 Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I  have an My Little Pony vinyl figure, and am wondering what to remove the eyes with. So what did you use to take off the eyes on your My Little Pony faceup?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
It is the exact same method and using the same things as for regular dolls. I made multiple videos that go in detail on my Youtube channel :) 
Reply
:iconkervanos:
Kervanos Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Hi~ :)
Where did you buy your airbrushing supplies?
Also, there are tons of Iwata Airbrush Models. Which one do you use?
Reply
:iconbeb-art17:
BEB-Art17 Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2015  Student General Artist
okay a question i didn't see. which dolls are 14 inch, or do you not have any? i'm trying to learn how to pose my moxie teenz girl and i'm looking for more clothes. < that wasn't a question i already red your answer on that. but any tips would be cool too. i want to get in what your doing. :D 
Reply
:icon13ryna:
13ryna Featured By Owner Edited Jun 22, 2015  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Can you provide the specifics for the exact airbrush you use or a link to the model? I couldn't find that bit of info anywhere in your F.A.Q. and there are so many different kinds of Iwata airbrushes. Thanks so much. I just love your beautiful work. :)
Reply
:iconhane-no-hi:
Hane-no-hi Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2015
Hello !
 Who boughts you the doll ?
(I'm so sorry for my bad english )
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I have a job, I buy them myself :P
Reply
:iconsatirical-gore:
Satirical-Gore Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015  New Deviant Hobbyist General Artist
You answered a similiar question at 4:12 in your second FAQ video, but I'm having a slightly different problem. When you do the lines on the faceups they come out very smooth, however I've noticed that mine end up rather grainy looking. Any idea what could be causing this?
Also, any tips for symmetry? Especially in the eyebrows and eyelashes, I have trouble with this.
Thanks a bunch~
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Edited Jun 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
There can be many reasons.
First one is the amount of times you layer the colour. It will not happen in one layer, you will have to seal it and then reapply the colour on top again as many times as needed. 
Another reason might be that you do not sharpen your pencil as often as you should.
Third reason is that depending on the sealant it might give it a slightly rough surface.
Fourth reason is bad quality watercolour pencils that have inconsistent pigment.

Symmetry is a matter of practice. keep turning the head upside down or take a photo of it, it helps you see mistakes easily since our brains tend to get used to the asymmetry. Keep tweaking the shapes until you are happy with it. Mine are never perfect in the first try. 
Reply
:iconsatirical-gore:
Satirical-Gore Featured By Owner Jun 10, 2015  New Deviant Hobbyist General Artist
I will try these. Thanks for the advice and your time!
Reply
:iconyoguretti:
Yoguretti Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2015  Student General Artist
Hi
I have a question:
You say you use shimmers/glitter but you don't say where you buy them... I'd like to buy the same type but I'm afraid of them being too chunky and not good for the work. I'd like to get fine glitter like the ones you use.
If you could tell me, I'd greatly appreciate it.

Thanks a bunch in advance!
Reply
:iconnotophile:
Notophile Featured By Owner Jun 18, 2015
You can buy shimmer powder at luts! They have a couple of different colors to choose from too.Neptune Smiling Icon 
Reply
:iconyoguretti:
Yoguretti Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2015  Student General Artist
Luts? I've searched and couldn't find anything of the sort... :/ Do you think you could give me the site?
Reply
:icongiraffeslippers:
GiraffeSlippers Featured By Owner May 25, 2015  New Deviant
i've been looking for the doll that was in the 1st Q&A video that said "Jess" am I able to get that one?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner May 26, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Please check the answer to the question Where did you buy your own dolls? 
Reply
:iconflowerbud27:
Flowerbud27 Featured By Owner May 21, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
You answered a question similar to this, but where do you buy RAW alpaca fiber? Thx
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner May 22, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I share links to suppliers in my Youtube video www.youtube.com/watch?v=XXv1Oe…
Reply
:iconflowerbud27:
Flowerbud27 Featured By Owner May 22, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Ok thank you very much!
Reply
:iconamethylia:
Amethylia Featured By Owner May 9, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Thank you very much for the tips :D can't wait to start this! I also notice that makeup blush works too instead of pastel, it stays on my doll so I guess real makeup powder can work too :) I'll try! but I know now which kind of pencils you used for the base! I really appreciate xox
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner May 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Just a warning that human makeup is not recommended to be used on dolls because of staining issues and risk of certain ingredients in the products affecting the material the doll is made from. It might look fine on the first day but cause irreversible damage shortly after.
Reply
:iconamethylia:
Amethylia Featured By Owner May 10, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Ohh thank you very much for the information :) I won't use them :) I really appreciate :D!
Reply
:iconmi-chan785:
Mi-chan785 Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2015
I think I have a similar problem as :iconcharo29: (if I understood right), I use Liquitex Mate and it makes the face... well, I don't wanna say "sticky", since it doesn't feel like it, but dust sticks more to it than before... is this a common problem? Or am I doing something wrong?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Apr 29, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes, it is one of the pros/cons that I covered in my Youtube video Brush on Sealants. Liquitex Matte Medium has extremely good tooth which is fantastic while painting the faceups, but that causes the dust to stick to it more easily, this is why I use Liquitex Varnish at the end to smooth out the surface.
Reply
:iconmi-chan785:
Mi-chan785 Featured By Owner Apr 30, 2015
I see, thank you very much!!
Reply
:iconcharo29:
Charo29 Featured By Owner Apr 10, 2015
Hello,
      I have a big problem. It's when I seal with Mr. Super Clear. The powder (powder) adheres to the face. What I can do to make your face is clean? Thank You.
Reply
:iconnuriko2008:
nuriko2008 Featured By Owner Mar 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
i cant seem to find what type of eraser you use for mistakes. there are so many type out there it would be helpful to know. is it just a basic everyday 2.00 eraser or a certain professional brand? thank you for you time!
Reply
:iconserachi1:
serachi1 Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2015
Ah never mind the question I put on the web, so the Draculaura doll u used is either 12 to 20 dollars depending on what box you bought, so how much more would you charge for the sailor moon alter?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Sorry I stopped taking commissions 2 years ago. Nowadays I only do this for fun :)
Reply
:iconserachi1:
serachi1 Featured By Owner Mar 17, 2015
ah I see, lol sorry. I'm just so obsessed with sailor moon right now
Reply
:iconcyome:
Cyome Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015   Digital Artist
Heyy, i'm poisoned.cherries on instagram, i've been a fan of yours since around late 2008 and really wanted to get my paws on a faceup made by you when i get my first BJD (planning on getting a minifee chloe or celine) and i keep looking around but can't really see anywhere anything about comission prices and such :( *sad panda face* my dream ever since then has been to have my first BJD painted by you (as weird as it sounds, i'm sorry) so.. How can I have a faceup done by you? I mean, do you still accept commissions and so on or..?
Thank you so much!
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 10, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Hey! Sorry I closed my commission shop about 2 years ago when I started my full time job :( Nowadays this is only a hobby for me. I hope you will find someone who brings your ideas to life :)
Reply
:iconabominablesnowdog:
AbominableSnowdog Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2015  Hobbyist Artist
Can you use regular colored penciles if you dont have watercolored ones?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 6, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I would not recommend it since regular pencils use a combination of waxes and oils which could leave permanent stain marks in the long run. Plus generally it is easier to use watercolours because they have a softer core and there is less chance that you will scratch off the sealant underneath.
Reply
:icontamara123lol:
Tamara123lol Featured By Owner Edited Mar 4, 2015
Hi Andreja, can you tell me what are other options of sealing a bjd face? Because i don't have and i can't afford an airbrush. Thank you. :)
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Reply
:icontamara123lol:
Tamara123lol Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2015
And do you still use a mask for Liquitex Matte Varnisch?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Yes better be safe than sorry.
Reply
:iconpicadillys:
Picadillys Featured By Owner Mar 2, 2015  Student Digital Artist
Hi Andreja, I was wondering what face mask you use/what face mask you have found is best for you? Thank you c:
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Mar 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
Check my Q&A video it shares the exact type of respirator and cartridge that I use
Reply
:iconkiitomi:
kiitomi Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015
Hey Andreja! Your faceup videos have really helped me so much as i am so new to the world of faceups!! You are so talented and amazing!!
I noticed that you used distilled water to thin out the Liquidtex matte medium before using it on your airbrush. Any reasons on using distilled water? Won't normal tap water or drinking water work?
Reply
:iconandreja:
AndrejA Featured By Owner Feb 25, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
I use distilled water just because tap water where I live is extremely hard (high in mineral content) and could affect the effectiveness and longevity of liquitex. 
Reply
:iconmolliemoooshroom:
MollieMoooshroom Featured By Owner Edited Feb 21, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Wow, I Absolutely love all of your videos! Thank you so much for this, its really helped since I've recently took up doll-customization.
Reply
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