Taken from my blog (which has pics! [link]
That's right. It's official. Enchanted Dolls will soon be also available in fine resin.
Oh what a journey it has been! The minute I came back from a show in Germany in the fall, I began following on leads for resin manufactures until I found the manufacturer of my dreams who GETS ME. Really, really gets me; My minute perfectionism, my high demands for my dolls, the vision of what I want to create. Together we have big plans for this resin ED line. Sorry I've been keeping a tight lid on this secret. I've been wanting to announce this amazing news for weeks, but having been burned by manufacturers before, I didn't want to jinx it. And now finally I have physical evidence and results to show how amazing this line is turning out!
The resin EDs are copies of my porcelain dolls with some improvements. They are the same size of 13.5″( 36cm), but they have 3 different pairs of hands with various levels of finger expressiveness. Also, all the joints have been altered for a tight fit to improve the body lines and recalibrated for a non-leather-lined traction. So far, 5 different head molds are available, but I plan to make more soon. I am also planning to create a raised foot, self -customizing option for a heeled shoe. But that's in the future.
These are my first impressions of my very first experience with resin.
The resin parts themselves by far exceeded my expectations. They are incredible quality. They are very tough and a little flexible, so that even their tiny fingers can take a tremendous amount of abuse! My porcelain dolls are very strong but a bit brittle, while resin dolls are strong and also durable and don't require gentle handling at all. The resin has a UV retardant mixed in. They are silky smooth and pick up every nuance of my porcelain dolls' skin surface. There are some dramatic differences in how resin and porcelain each 'take' and retain the surface paint, both aesthetically and technically: China paint on porcelain being hard, permanent and absolutely non-removable through human means, while Acrylic and whatercolor on resin being soft and removable with solvents and abrasive materials.
That's the main contradiction I'm facing with porcelain and resin dolls: while porcelain requires gentle handling and full awareness of the doll because though very strong, it is brittle and vulnerable to medium velocity impact, its surface is completely impervious to scratches, UV, dirt or paint damage. Resin dolls on the other hand are a lot more durable and can easily survive a medium velocity impact and all kinds of very rough play and probably even small children, but their acrylic-based surface paint is not molecularly bonded to resin the way China paint is to Porcelain, and so one has to be aware of not accidentally removing paint through careless abrasive surface contact. Although touching it and gently wiping/washing it with wet cloth is quite safe because it's sealed with varnish. I've tested it.
So, gentle handling is still advised, but not because of the doll itself, but for the sake of the paint.
Even though I'm not very pleased about this impermanence, I understand that this is the primary characteristic of resin which is common to all resin dolls, ball-jointed or not, and despite this, it still makes up for this minor shortcoming with its other amazing characteristics, such as incredible strength and customizing versatility.
The articulation of my resin Enchanted Dolls is the same as my porcelain dolls. All the joints were altered to improve a movement range and after testing all kinds of stinging up methods and playing with elastics, I realized why I developed a steel spring articulation to begin with: it's because elastics absolutely SUCK compared to carbon springs. They suck. Sucky-sucky-suck-suck.
That's why I had decided to keep my complex, signature steel articulation style in my resin dolls too. It's takes a long time to do, but it's so worth it. The registration of the joints is very good due to the spring tension, even though most joints are not lined with leather and are very smooth inside. I lined only two parts with fine leather: the chest joint and the neck joint. The rest is resin on resin contact and due to isolated-joint stringing system, the registration is still remarkable. I love springs.
My first painting attempt 3 days ago was a spectacular failure. I naturally assumed I can do anything, and when I couldn't create my beloved misty blushing effect with acrylic paints on resin, I was so upset I almost lost it. I kept trying to do it and resin just kept "grabbing" the paint half a second after I applied it and I couldn't do any blending to it. Acrylic dries really fast, but not this fast. I was shocked and frustrated at seeing this new characteristic of acrylic on resin, nearly to tears. I kept failing and wiping it off and starting again and failing again and thinking: "This can't be! How can this be?! I know acrylic like the palm of my hand. How can I be failing at something I know? I went to art school for five years, damn it!!" Well, Acrylic is impossible to mist without an airbrush, it turns out. It's something I didn't know because I've always painted a wet on wet acrylic, which blends just fine. While wet on dry is pretty impossible. I plan to buy an air brush for large area blushing, but meanwhile I used whatercolor to create the misty blush on her face and body. The look it creates on the skin is similar to that of china paint, but that's as far as similarities go.
Chad said this was because I got a bit too arrogant since I haven't failed for a while. I should say without false modesty that most of my attempts end up in success. This was a huge reality check to my ego.
In most ways painting a resin doll is way easier than painting a porcelain doll because it doesn't require specialty tools, specialty paint, an extremely steady hand or a highfire kiln to bond the color to porcelain and that means anyone can do it with readily available art supplies. Like anything else, it does require practice and I, unaccustomed to the new technique characteristics, was struggling for control of my tones, lines and blushing. I was a novice. About 36 hours into my attempts I began to figure it out though. I couldn't sleep until I did.
I still think that China paint allows for a far more control, especially on a miniature scale like my dolls' faces and hands, not to mention the whole permanence thing. In fact, getting to know the beauty of resin gave me a whole new appreciation for how amazing porcelain really is. I think I just missed it after not working with it for a few days! It remains my first, high maintenance love, while resin is my new mistress.
Resin dolls can balance a lot better without a stand than my porcelain dolls. I don't have stands made for these yet, but I'm working on it. Wigs, custom boxes and stands is my next project for my resin line. I am so excited about the new boxes! I think you guys will be too when you see the sample. It's something very special.
These are my first four resin prototypes. I haven't had time to paint the other two yet, but perhaps next week I might. I'm still working on developing this line and can't say exactly when I will begin taking orders for these. Hopefully this spring I will be able to take the first batch of 20 orders or so. I will honor my wait list and give the people who've waited the longest the opportunity to order first. I'm still working out the prices, but because they are quite expensive to manufacture, high quality dolls they will retail for around $1500 CND -$2,000 CND. I'm still working it out.
I'm also considering offering the option of a limited number of blank dolls to artsy people who like customizing their own dolls. I frequently get requests for blank dolls and with porcelain it is absolutely out of question, but with resin it's possible but I am undecided. On one hand I am really eager to see how others would interpret painting of my dolls, on the other hand, I am a bit protective of them. Perhaps you guys could offer some insight on that. Is this something you would like?
Well, I hope this was worth the wait. Whoever is interested in purchasing one of these dolls, please email me as I'm making a resin nude doll wait list.
Eventually I plan to create limited resin costumed lines too, as well as accessories, but that's in the future. One step at a time.
It looks like my announcement coincides with the premiere of the last season of Lost. Got to go watch it. Hopefully it won't be a huge disappointment like the last two seasons.
New Season of Lost and Resin Enchaned Dolls!? Wooo!