2/09/2016

Dasha and Elise Model R&D Exclusive Fashions



Photo by Kha Hoang

Last year Rudi Teruel, of R&D Dolls, offered limited editions of fashions from Kha Hoang and FuZin. These are the last two that I purchased and they are just lovely.

"Bleu de Chine" is a complex gown of many folded pieces - almost Origami. Like a good sculpture it looks great from all sides. My model is Fashion Royalty Dasha.


"Bleu de Chine" by K (Kha Hoang)



Below: Model Elise Jolie is admiring her new gown in the mirror.


"Golden Dream" by FuZin



Here is Rudi's Facebook Album of R&D Exclusives: https://www.facebook.com/rpteruel/media_set?set=a.10152812160331945.1073742055.519746944&type=3

There are several in there I'm sorry to say that I missed out on.


Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice Collection by Mattel

I'm quite surprised by the good looks of these dolls and the low price of $39.95 each.  I thought I was on the wrong website.



Batman has the new Ben Affleck sculpt. He's fierce! This is so not like Mattel it's wonderful. They're calling the body type Poseable Hero Male. No more Mr. Wimpy.


The Superman Doll uses the new Henry Cavill sculpt. Not bad at all. The hero body is super muscular. No information about the costume or measurements of the doll are posted with the listings.
Wonder Woman Doll's description: The wild card in Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice™, Wonder Woman is the daughter of Zeus and an Amazonian princess! Sculpted and costumed just like the movie character, she’s fully articulated and ready to fight with her sword, shield, and her iconic “magic” lasso. Knee-high boots, armored bracelets, and a headdress complete her warrior’s attire.

The costumes are not removable without cutting them off. I think these figures still have a lot of play potential in spite of that. The molded hair on the male figures doesn't bother me although it would be cool if they could have done rooted hair. I'll wait to see them in the stores before jumping although I'd like to have Wonder Woman just for the new articulated body.

Check out this video for more information.




2/08/2016

Black Lipstick Gene, Wigs and Props

I was fooling around with Black Lipstick Gene yesterday. She got tired of the 1940's look and I had a modern wig just waiting for a bald head.

It's a Monique Gold wig (http://store.monique.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=CTGY&Store_Code=monique&Category_Code=WIG-MGC&Product_Code=&Search=&Sort_By=disp_order&Per_Page=-1.)
The wig is called Jade #415 and it's priced at $19.  Gene wears size 4-5. It comes in 7 colors and 5 sizes. 

I do not recommend them for someone who is used to hard cap wigs from Ilaria, Chewin, Patta and the like. You will find that these wigs have a lesser quality fiber and construction. They are not well-styled right out of the box. Their benefits are the lower price of $12-$27 each depending on size and style and they do have a stretch band inside so the fit is more flexible. They come in a very wide variety of colors and styles.

Be prepared to do some styling, perhaps with a hair product and pointy snips in order to get the look you want. I was not pleased with my results as I feel the top of the wig is too pouffy. I would have had to do some thinning.

If you're good at it - this is definitely a great way to go for quantity and choice.

Her glasses are by Horsman for Urban Vita.


 The wonderful drafting table is a Tonner Tyler furniture item. The clip on lamp works. The drawer opens as does the top of the table which is held in an angled slant by a rod you pull up inside. The stool comes with the set.  Recently a nearly new set sold on eBay for $50.99. The seller also included the Design Essentials set which is adorable. Tonner furniture is perfectly scaled for our 16" dolls. It never looks too small.


The sweater Gene is wearing is a handmade product from Retros. The buttonholes are real working ones. I love this item. I purchased the jeans from Marlbe last year. It was a very small edition from Marcelo Jacobs.


The platform sneakers she is wearing are from Ficon. Sadly, I broke one of the zippers. These are fitted inside to support a fashion foot with a built-in wedge. I'd buy a replacement pair in a minute if I could find them.

Another item in this photo that I've used zillions of times is the CED folding screen. There are two in these photos. They are wood with three panels that depict scenes in Italy. The screens are two-sided making them incredibly useful and easy to customize if desired.  Folding screens are an essential tool for a quick photo set-up. They're also easy to make from foam core board.


Kingdom Doll Star and Turn on Your Lights

The third in a series of three Kingdom Doll "Angel" dolls, Star, arrived last week and I am very happy with her.

She is super photogenic. Here's a shot taken with my iPhone.


She is wearing her own lingerie and wig. Her necklace had opened which escaped my eye during the picture taking.

Her beautiful silver shoes zip up the back. I have a vague memory of being told these are her 'signature' shoes. They are the same style that Liberty came with and the pink suit from the Liberty event also used this style.



 I never leave my gals dressed in lingerie and Star's first redress was into this beautiful, slinky dress from one of Sandra's conventions. It's a favorite of mine and looks great on many of my girls.
The wonderful, curly wig is a Cheryl Wood creation. You may recognize Tonner's Snow Leopard from his Golden Compass line.


 The whole scene is very jungle-tropical. I really didn't plan it this way. These days most of my studio photos use very simple backdrops and props. I'm too lazy to do elaborate dioramas.  But I do have a bunch of different artificial greens and in this case, I just pinned a few to the huge bulletin board I have in back of my shooting table. There were some empty spaces and I Photoshopped that away. I also used PS to darken the background because I thought it competed too much with the foreground. I kept the focus on the doll's face to draw the viewer's eye there.

I see loads of indoor photos in which there is barely any light on the dolls' faces. So many people with beautiful dolls don't know how to light their photos. I just want to scream, "Turn on the damn lights!" You don't need professional equipment.

There is a false belief that using a flash is anathema. Seriously? Have you ever been to a professional studio? We're not aiming for Annie Leibovitz here; we just want to see your dolls!

As I stated, the top photo on this page (and the shoe shot) were made with my iPhone - using it's built in flash. In many cases, the phone's flash doesn't do what I want it to, but there's a way to make it work. Admittedly, it was daylight in room - actually it's in the bedroom. I opened the shades and the room was pretty bright but I knew I'd need some highlights and the only way to do that was with some direct light. I didn't hold the camera directly aiming at the doll, instead I angled it a little off to one side.

Here's a shot that did not work:


 The angle is all wrong. Her hair is too bright. It's a discard.

The beauty of digital photography is that you can keep going until you are satisfied. You get instant feedback. In my studio, I constantly move the lights and change their power and/or the settings on the camera until I'm happy (or until I'm so tired I can't go on.) You can take multiple shots with your phone as well. But do us all a favor, don't post all of them. Pick out the three best,  then toss two of those.  I look back at the last 15 years of my own doll photography and really should toss 80% of the images but I'm keeping them as a record of what I've had in my collection. Of course there are days when I can't take a decent picture no matter what.

EDIT, EDIT, EDIT.


There are websites, books, ezines and loads of information out there. The problem is, you may not even know you need one.

A great all around source of tips and tricks:  http://www.digital-photography-tips.net/