To most people I have pretty strange hobbies. I get called weird a lot. When I’m asked how I got interested in these things I can honestly say I blame college.
I wasn’t exactly normal to begin with at school – I was that kinda-goth kid who listened to Japanese music and dressed strange and loved creepy things – but college really opened my mind to new levels of weird; being weird was the normal thing to do. I loved college ❤
One of the classes I enjoyed most/procrastinated most in was a digital media type class that we pretty much spent creating and designing fake Myspace pages and watching funny YouTube videos. The last big assignment of the class was to make a powerpoint presentation showcasing how different types of online media can be used to successfully promote a band/individual/product. It was during my research for this class that I stumbled onto the blog that blew my tiny little mind – http://www.mistula.com/uno/
These were dolls! The most amazing dolls I had ever seen, with moving joints and realistic eyes and faces – and they were in a band and they had actual music! I shared this revelation with my friend in class (who is one of my bff’s now), she wasn’t as excited as I but she did think they were pretty cool.
I needed to know more, so of course when I wasn’t doing research for my classes I spent all my time looking up ball-jointed dolls and the numerous companies that created these wonderful resin creatures. I joined a forum with the biggest online community of ball-jointed doll enthusiasts and soaked up as much knowledge as I could. I needed one of these lovely things in my life. And in case you were wondering – yes, I did include this discovery as part of my presentation; Mistula used every type of online media I needed to showcase. Easiest project ever!
Now fast-forward to college:take 2 (when – due to lack of employment during what was meant to only be a gap year – I decided learning how to art would be more fun than going to the job centre), I had scrimped and saved and thanks to incredible timing the sculpt I had been ogling for months was suddenly on sale – HELL YEAH! I didn’t have to think twice. Probably the best decision I have ever made. Again, I can truly say I loved college. I don’t make friends so easy as I have social anxiety and it takes me a looong time to get used to people enough to be able to share my weirdness fully, but thankfully I met a girl who was so unashamedly weird and awesome and lovely that it didn’t take me long to come out of my shell and when I told her of my incoming BJD she encouraged me to bring him to class once he arrived. And I did. And everyone accepted him – so much so he came to class regularly and was photographed taking part in class a lot.
It was during this college course that we had an Introduction to Photography class. I loved it. I had the perfect model who would sit in any pose and not complain. Did I mention how much I loved college?
Somehow, magically (by the power of parental wanting to buy an awesome christmas present) I ended up with another two incoming BJD’s. By my second year all three were regular attendees of my classes. They influenced a lot of my artwork (and still do).
It’s now almost six years since I started collecting – I have a rather nice little tribe going. They are still my favourite subjects for photography even if I don’t snap them regularly. I’m constantly trying to improve with a camera so I can show just how amazing they are. This means learning a lot of the basics for all subject types, my best seem to be plants and landscapes. And toys. And ducks . . .
So that’s pretty much what got the ball rolling: one intriguing google search result is responsible for my lovely weird doll tribe, my commitment to improving in photography, and a lot of duck portraits.
To learn more about BJD’s and my tribe head over to their page in the top right or check out their galleries on Deviant Art at http://deedeelunastelle.deviantart.com