I have a new distraction, which of course, everyone who knows me is aware of by now. I have fallen in love with collecting and dressing dolls.
I never played with them that much. Oh, I had dolls. My aunt bought me more than one Madam Alexander dolls. I had Tammy. I had Chatty Cathy and Betsy Wetsy (yeah, think about the marketing on dolls in the 50s and 60s and it is clear they were aimed at getting little girls to want to be mommies).
My friend of the time and I much preferred to play with our "dammit dolls" (yes, they used to call Troll Dolls that), making shoebox houses for them and setting up entire cities.
But I was also into model planes, horses, reading and writing even then, so dolls sort of took a low profile.
Over the years, I have collected mostly action figures. I did buy the occasional special edition Barbie (tm). But dolls were not my thing. Or so I thought.
I did try my hand at ooak dolls for a time. Never seemed happy with the results.
But then I discovered Monster High dolls, and Bratzilla dolls and eventually ball jointed dolls.
To date, I own seven resin dolls and a couple of vinyl and abs plastic ones as well. The resin ones are mostly being turned into characters from my books and stories. I have Conor Manahan (took him to SoonerCon and he was a hit), and Rhoyd Smytheson, and Alaric Braidwine and Shona and Arula (who is a character from a book in the works). I also have Anwyn and his sister Thala. Still looking for the perfect Ethine.
When I first discovered the dolls, I was amused by the way people treated them as though they were real people. In fact, I tried to talk to a couple of those folks at a con once and when I said, "I love your doll, what kind it is?" I got rather standoff responses (one girl covered the dolls ears as if to protect it and walked away--the other informed me in a cold voice that "it is not a doll, he is a small person," before going away).
Fortunately, I met enough people who had them and were willing to talk to me about them, and who even grin when I tell them about my first enounters with doll owners. Apparently, while the outside world only sees the ones who cannot separate reality from fantasy, and assumes all doll owners are "that way," as someone learning my way around the doll collecting world, it is not true. I have met fun and fanciful folk with both feet firmly set on the ground. Those are the kind of doll collecters I like to hang around with.
Besides, if you see me at a SF convention with a doll, you are also likely to see me carrying a copy of a book featuring the character that doll represents. I carried Conor around SoonerCon, and I think it helped sales of my novels tremendously.
So never judge a doll person by their doll. I am not one of the ones who declares that only Asian resin dolls count as true ball jointed dolls. I have Monster High dolls, Delilah Noirs and even a couple of cute little Disney Store Merida dolls from Brave. I have a Hujoo Jake dressed as a little skateboarder. I have a Bobobie Elfkin named Penny who is so cute it hurts to look at her sometimes.
Not only that, but I am learning skills such as wig making and doll reconstruction. I have a Delilah Noir that I plan to totally deconstruct and reconstruct, and I will post pictures and a tutorial when I do. I have made some new friends. Fun friends.
Besides, the writer in me is fascinated with the culture and the storytelling and the character building, and all the other creative aspects of costume and design. Because basically, that is what writers do, create characters and build worlds around them that ring with a certain reality.
So in the future, if you see someone carrying a doll around at a conventions, say something like, "Oh, I love him/her. What is the sculpt?" That will open up a lot of smiles and conversations.
- Current Location:That's for Me to Know...
- Current Mood: cheerful
- Current Music:In My HEad