Posted in BJD, doll adventure, doll photography, Dolls, graphic novel, miniature adventure, miniature photography, miniatures, On Our Own, photo novel, Photography, toy adventure, toy photography, toys

(Re)Begin the Beguine

Well, that didn’t last long. I appear to have redone my redo one day after posting it.

Here’s the thing – there’s a rhythm to a graphic novel panel that just isn’t there where you post all of the photos in a blog. So, take the first panel from On Our Own (which I didn’t change)

I very deliberately set it up so it was 3 good things to one bad, all of which could have happened on a single day. That calculation wouldn’t have happened if I hadn’t had the idea of a “page” encompassing those four photos.

The second page keeps the pace, but changes the focus

Now the pace has sped up a little – the first three events could have happened in a few hours, as could the fourth (depending on how far she was travelling.) BTW, is any of this clear from the photos? So, on the first page, there’s a sick person in the fourth panel and some idea of happy play in the other three. In the second page, I tried to include enough of the clothing to make sure what was happening (sick person is running a fever, two other people make a phone call, then a new person packs her bags, and she arrives in the fourth panel.)

Now we get to first problem panel.

What the hell has happened to our pacing? Three of the photos *could* have happened in one day, but the fourth? Clearly the person who has died in the second photo could not have been buried already. So, that seems all wrong.

And the fourth panel?

Now we’ve somehow spread it out over at least a month (based on the eviction notice). And, wow, those girls sure have bounced back fast.

So, anyway, I think I was really rushing to get them placed in their trailer, but it really goes outside the bounds of the pacing in the first two pages.

So, I backed off and slowed the pace down. They’ll get to the trailer when they get there, and there’s no time for them to get someone buried in the first episode. I also won’t be able to spell out exactly who died, but that can wait as well.

Here, then, is the (hopefully) final version of the last two pages.

Same two pages are the same, here’s the new page 3.

and the new page 4

Now all reasonably within the bounds of a day or two, and I’ve gotten the characters to the point where they are on their own.

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Posted in BJD, doll adventure, doll photography, Dolls, miniature adventure, miniature photography, miniatures, On Our Own, Photography, toy adventure, toy photography, toys

On Our Own: Episode 1 (redo)

In lieu of a premise song (“here’s a story, of three girls named after plants . . .”), I’ve created a premise episode for On Our Own (used to be called Overhead). Done, naturally, in just hands. Well, actually, in hands plus some clothes, because I realized you couldn’t tell them apart with just their hands.

I promise no other episode will be so grim – I just needed to get all of this behind them so that they could move forward. By their next episode, they’ll have started to absorb it all, and they may even feel like dancing again.

So, anyway, here it is.

Posted in BJD, doll photography

From an adventure tale to a story of kinship

My Overhead/Up-Above/who-knows-what-else-I’ve-called-it has gone through its (hopefully) final change. Because I recognize that the treehouse/adventure angle just isn’t where the heat is, I’m going to redo it from the beginning (which I had to do anyway, due to all of the wig changes) to focus on what matters. That is, to focus on the sweet relationship between the sisters.

So, I’m going to go back to the start and try it again, and really place the sisters in a story line so I can look at their relationship. In this case, as one might suspect when three young girls find themselves living by themselves in a trailer, it can’t be an entirely happy story line. But, I’m worn out on drama since all of trauma in My Doll Adventure, so I’m just going to pass lightly over the back story.

What I’m working on now is the premise episode, which involves the death of a parent, the finding themselves destitute, and finally locating the lowest of low cost habitats (in this case, a very small trailer). And, just for the fun of it, I’m telling the whole story with just hands.

For example

or (spoiler alert)

So, we’ll see how that goes. It won’t be all grim, I’ll start off with some normal days before the illness begins (or, as many normal days as I can express with hands alone).

And that will mean that I’ll have at least one episode up from my existing stories. Then it’s just a matter of deciding whether I start Daisy’s story again, or whether I get pants for the big guy in Betwixt and begin that.

Posted in BJD, doll adventure, doll photography, graphic novel, In the picture, miniature adventure, miniature photography, movies, toy adventure, toy photography

In the Pictures: Start of Summer (Redo)

These last two weeks I’ve been working on finishing up the first episode of In the Pictures – where the two sisters discover that one does not simply put a movie away, because it has a way of coming back. I’ve left the first part of the story the same, and added a bit on the end to make it a less abrupt stop. I’ve also moved the action from the front door to a wardrobe (in part, because I loved the Narnia series and the wardrobe-into-another-world idea. I’ve also (naturally) given the sisters a dog – a bull terrier named after the bull terrier in The Incredible Journey.

So here, then, is the new Start of Summer.

Maybe a movie? [dang – doesn’t look like the videos work on this site. You can see the post with videos at my main site

or just see the video

Link to just the video

[dang – doesn’t look like the videos work on this site. You can see the post with videos at my main site

or just to the video

Link to video

Posted in BJD, doll adventure, doll photography, graphic novel, miniature adventure, miniature photography, toy adventure, toy photography

Underfoot: The Doll Graveyard

Underfoot has gone through some changes since our last adventure. The two characters have new names and a new location. Meet Cosette and Mathilde and their adventures in France.

Also, the new site is up at www.smalllifestories.com. Still in pretty preliminary form, but some pieces are ready.

That said, I’m going to post the new adventures here, as well as on the new site. And so, on to the Underfoot adventure.

Posted in Amy, BJD, doll adventure, doll photography, Dollsbe, graphic novel, Iplehouse, miniature adventure, miniature photography, Olive, overhead, photo novel, Photography, Strawberry, Supia, toy adventure, toy photography

Overhead: First night in the treehouse

After building a rough platform in their last episode, Fern and Olive are finishing off the floor of the treehouse.

Well, maybe Fern is doing most of the work.

When it’s all done, they relax and admire their work.

Then Willow puts on a record . . .

. . . and everybody dances.

All three sisters decide to spend the night in the treehouse.

The sisters sit up in the treehouse
The sisters sleep for their first night in the treehouse

******

I loved every part of working on this episode, from the sweet vibe between the siblings, to being able to totally forget about developing a plot and really focus on the moments.

I tried to get real moonlight for the two nighttime shots, but it’s been extra especially hazy up here in Portland and the quality of the light just wasn’t all that great. So I relied on the toy lantern and a long exposure for the first shot (with the sisters awake), and I rigged up a small flashlight on a microphone stand for the second one (with only the dog still awake).

We’ve got one more week in the trees, where I’ll try to complete the treehouse structure. Then I have to catch back up with the Mia Fiorello story. Surely they’ve made it to the island by now . . .

Posted in BJD, doll photography, Dollsbe, Iplehouse, miniature photography, Olive, overhead, Photography, Photoshop, Supia, toy photography

Dancing dolls

I take back everything I said about Olive’s (my Iplehouse Amy doll’s) posing ability in my previous post. Apparently, although she’s not always able to resist the forces of gravity, she can totally dance.

I think her dancing ability comes from the way her chest joint pivots. Unlike most of my ball-joint dolls, she can move on all axes at once in that joint, giving her very lifelike bends.

So, this week, in celebration of finishing the floor of the tree house, the sisters dance in the meadow. I tried to give them dance movements that were respectful of their natures.

The littlest one, Fern, is all straightforward enthusiasm:

while Willow, true to her nature, is graceful and reserved.

But it’s the middle sister, Olive, who really shines and just gets carried away in the movements.

Like all of my exuberant doll movements, I photographed these with the dolls lying flat on a surface, and my camera on a tripod pointing straight down on them, like this:

It lets me pose them without having to worry about which one of their joints is going to crumble first 🙂

That’s the floor of the treehouse below Olive – I think it turned out pretty well, for a first effort. In the future, I need to find a tool that will cut straight through Vinyl, but for now, the slightly jagged edges are fine.

Also, you might have noticed that I’ve re-wigged all of the dolls. The cute short wig that Fern is wearing just came in, so I switched her with Olive, and I stole a wig from another doll for Willow. I think these wigs work better on them. To me, it makes them look more related.