Daisy goes for a bike ride

New daisy on bike 2

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For a project built on the premise that dolls can have adventures, the difficulty of taking great shots of dolls “in the wild” is a huge roadblock.

Either I use one of my studio shots (on the top) where I’m able to capture a sense of motion, and then merge it completely unartfully into the real landscape, or I get a shot realistically in the wild (on the bottom) that totally misses that sense of motion. I’m hampered by my inexperience as either a photographer or a photoshopper, and it’s really maddening. I’m inclined towards building my skill set in the former rather than the latter – after 8 hours a day on the computer at work, the last thing I want is to be fiddling with Photoshop in my spare time.

A meeting point in the middle might be to try something Elgin Park-like, where I build a realistic base (a path and some grass) and then set it up on a table in a real setting and use the real world as a backdrop for the miniature world.

 

* Daisy is the creation of Andrea Meyer of Wildflower dolls. If a doll can be a muse (and, I’d argue, they can) Andrea creates muses.

Episode 1: Daisy’s adventure begins

Daisy is the first adventurer.

Daisy sits in her window seat
Daisy sits in her window seat
Daisy and Annie get ready to go for a ride
Daisy and Annie get ready to go for a ride

Unlike the other dolls’ stories, I wanted to start Daisy’s adventure off slowly, with a day in the life. She’ll get her call to adventure soon, but right now she’s just a young women in a small town going about her day.

Since her journey starts a few days after the first image, she won’t be spending too much time in her room – so I just roughly tacked it together. I built the wood window frame and the foam board window seat, but the wallpaper (visible in the upper left of the first pic) is just tacked with a pin to the top of the foam board wall, and the wood floor (slightly visible in both shots) hasn’t been removed from its adhesive backing. The adhesive backing is actually visible in the second shot, but it’s not keeping the story from moving forward so I’m not going to worry about it.

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On the other end of precision-and-care spectrum, just barely visible in the second shot is a bit of pink wainscotting. Somewhere in my studio I have a highly detailed 24 inches worth of the stuff, which I made by patiently trimming popsicle sticks down to the correct size, individually painting each with three coats of paint, and then gluing each to a balsa wood backing. I’m not going to estimate the time that went into it, but you better get a good eyeful now, because this is the only shot that contains them.

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There *is* a second stretch of wainscotting that will be visible once Daisy gets the call to adventure and returns to her desk. But that piece of wainscotting fits below the window, and so is much shorter then the pieces I already created.

When I first started planning Daisy’s story, I carefully did a complete layout of her rooms, including the exact dimension of the door way and the location or her closet. But her story only needed a few bits of her room, so I never hung the wallpaper or even created a second wall.

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It’s odd creating a world that only needs to exist in bits and pieces, and it’s hard to know before the story is complete which bits need to be fleshed out and detailed, and which appear only once, in shadow, or not at all.

* Daisy is the creation of Andrea Meyer of Wildflower dolls. If a doll can be a muse (and, I’d argue, it can) Andrea creates muses.