• Doing the BJD Hobby Your Way •

May 31, 2017

    1. This hobby is full of diverse and different people. Some of us join the hobby out of curiosity, others come because they are avid writers, some of us are drawn to the creative aspect, etc.

      And all of this is reflected in our dolls - how we treat them, and how much time we spend on them, their importance in our day-to-day life, etc.

      I personally enjoy this hobby because it's the perfect intersection between three things I already love and adore: art, stories, and dolls. And for me, that's what the hobby is all about. I can write a character, customize my doll to fit the character, take photos, enjoy posing her, etc. Additionally, my doll is very comforting in times of stress or sadness. And I've found this hobby to be exactly what I hoped it would be - a creative outlet and a source of happiness and comfort.

      So. I'm wondering how you use this wonderful hobby! How do your dolls affect your everyday life?
      Are you an aspiring author, an artist, a collector of art, or some combination of all three? Or do you use the hobby for something else? Share below!

      *if a similar thread to this already exists, I apologize! Feel free to move or delete this thread if needed!*
       
      #1 Mori Carter, May 31, 2017
      Last edited: May 31, 2017
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    2. I think there is a similar thread already, where it asked why you joined the hobby. Not sure though.

      Regardless, I joined this hobby to help myself be a better wife, mother, and general person. I have severe anxiety and deal with depression. I use this hobby to uplift myself and to give me something to mull over that is positive. I get to create, plan, and care for my doll without worry or stress, because she's resin. I cannot hurt here or disappoint her, if that makes sense?
       
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    3. @BenEMcD What an incredible way to use this hobby! I think people who are wary/suspicious of BJDs underestimate the therapeutic and relaxing effects these dolls have. I'm happy to hear that your doll(s) can help you in such a way. :)
       
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    4. I'm an artist and lover of pretty things, and I use the hobby for relaxation. It's nice to not have to meet a deadline or a specification, and to just lay out my art supplies and go. Or to doodle up a zillion ideas and then choose the best few to make, with the understanding that the plan may change halfway through the project. :D
       
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    5. even if there is a thread about "why you joined" i think that's pretty different from your question! the motive for joining doesnt always stay the same and sometimes has nothing to do with how one experiences it.

      Personally, i really enjoy envisioning characters for my dolls and dreaming up stories for them. I'd say writing stories but let's be real, I only ever record them in IM chats when i'm telling them.

      I know some people like to "shell" their pre-existing OCs as dolls but I prefer to make characters specifically for the doll i own (or plan to own, as it were lol). I dont think i'd ever be able to detach the character from the object.
       
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    6. I'm not an artist or a writer.
      I'm not particularly crafty or even terribly creative by nature.

      I'm just a collector.

      I do what I do strictly for my own amusement. I think of my dolls as interesting objects that I like to look at and tinker around with... Basically as toys, not to put too fine a point on it. I'm fond of my crew of little resin minions, and I value them very highly, but they're a pastime rather than a passion or a ~LIFESTYLE~. :lol:
       
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    7. My dolls all end up as characters in a fictional world I'm making. Some of the dolls I have planned are meant to shell out characters I've already established. But two of my dolls, one being an impulse buy and the other the grail doll I thought I'd never get, I got first and then began working on their characters after.
       
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    8. Pretty much the same as the above... I like to draw but don't consider myself particularly good, and have always enjoyed writing and creating OCs... but as I've grown, I've devoted less and less time to both pass times :/ There's not much room for attempting to improve my current art style, or even write down new snippets of my OCs lives, when I have a degree to finish and a job with 0 hours that all tend to make me even less motivated... But my OCs have been a real source of comfort and enjoyment for years, I couldn't survive without them in my head, and even if I only imagine them, with no written words or drawings, they're still there. That's why I love this hobby, I don't have to take much time out, I can have my OCs right there in front of me, not stuck in my head... it's one of the best feelings in the world, and makes me feel like the me I've let slip away as I let writing and continuing to draw get put aside
       
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    9. It's started with me wanting to shell my OC from pathfinder but slowly grew. I love the dolls as art. I love being able to pick clothes and wigs for them. I love being friends with artists and other collectors. And I love that I can just change them and take pictures if I had a bad day. It can be relaxing!
       
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    10. I'm a costumer & have always loved miniature things. I love sewing for my dolls & letting them use all the miniatures I've collected forever :D Plus I write, so of course did a whole storyline for them, and have been doing photo books of the crew living their lives in Crosston Creek, the little town I created in my mind for them :d I love taking photos - got away from photography in my 20s so it's nice to be able to take it up again!
       
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    11. I love miniatures, crafting, and beautiful things and the bjd hobby combines those things :aheartbea Making things and working on my dolls is very relaxing for me and so is simply sitting back and admiring them. They are a great source of artistic motivation and inspiration and the community is so much fun to participate in!
       
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    12. I'm both a character designer and a collector. It seems like bjd are a good outlet for creativity and designing that's different than drawing on paper or screen, and it also is a way to collect something that is not just a cool figure or game (like my two big collections), but also a more delicate piece of art. For me, it also gives me another outlet to enjoy historical designs, ideas, and characters, which is a big deal to me personally.
       
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    13. I've loved dolls since childhood, including making a lot of my own rag dolls or repainting Barbies as a kid, so the customization aspect and the variety of male dolls is what initially drew me in. Now, I roleplay my dolls' characters, and I think that keeps me in the hobby more than anything. I also still like customizing and sewing and other artsy stuff, but it's the characters more than anything.
       
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    14. I just enjoy the beauty of dolls. I've collected all kinds of dolls over the years, but now am smitten with BJD's, probably because there are so many different ones out there and you can do so many different things with them. I don't create characters or write about them, but I do love to sew clothes for them and find just the right wigs and eyes to make them look beautiful or cute so I can enjoy looking at them.
       
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    15. I love the process of creating and fleshing out characters, but that's more of just a fun mental exercise which rarely results in anything more than a one shot short story, or a half-baked attempt at a few chapters I later give up on. However, to me that part is almost secondary (or rather, it's just an intrinsic part that comes with the doll in the first place.)

      I use my doll(s) as muses, photographically and occasionally in writing, though both have taken a huge backseat up until very recently. Depression is a hell of a drug :| I'm excited to slowly be reintroducing myself to artistic hobbies as I reexplore my creative side in other ways, and I honestly think this hobby is the perfect excuse to dabble in all kinds of different mediums, each that can be addressed in a different timeframe and mood? For example, writing for tiresome, boring days, photography for adventurous expressive days, prop/clothes making for calm, focused lazy days. Even just having something beautiful to look at and fidget with is therapeutic sometimes. I eventually want to become more involved with the community but... I don't know how well I will/would fit in really. But I don't particularly mind. There's always some sort of community overlap, like forum websites and art sharing sites.

      I used to think of myself as an aspiring author but I don't really see that in my cards at the moment. I don't have much time for recreational writing, but maybe that will change ;) I just appreciate the hobby for what it is as an artistic and artisanal outlet and subject. It's just so versatile! And doesn't require me to do a whole lot when I'm in some sort of bad way. A semi-solitary, art and craft based, deadline/timeline free hobby is perfect for me and where I am in my life! :chibi
       
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    16. My dolls are a representation of my characters and stories, which really are a part of my everyday life, so...my dolls are a part of my everyday life too! I don't really consider it a lifestyle or anything, but it just...permeates. Whether I'm taking pictures, or I'm excited about something in the mail, or just looking at my dolls or thinking about my characers, there always seems to be some part of my dolls in my head. The same sort of thing happens with shows or other hobbies I'm invested in; dolls just happen to be so immersive for me that there almost seems to be something doll-related going on! It's pretty cool, and I like having something to occupy my mind. :3nodding:

      I also end up getting pretty attached to my dolls; I was always the kind of person that put a lot of emotional emphasis on objects that I considered close to me, so... Dolls are definitely included in that! Aelic especially is a comfort for me, because I've had him for a long time, and he's just cute and cuddly~ So dolls don't really rule my life, but they are a big part of it! And I like it that way. :kitty1
       
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    17. @KiyoshiSenshi I totally get what you mean! I feel the same, although the level of attention/brain space my doll/character gets depends on what's happening in life, if you know what I mean.
      For example, right now is a time of huge change for me, and I've been stressful and emotional as a result...so while I don't have the time and energy to go outside and photograph my doll, or work on her character, she is still valid. Holding her is relaxing, and her presence is inherently comforting and grounding. I can't help but feel happy when I see that little resin face after crying my eyes out XD.
      But anyway, thank you for sharing! I think your response makes a lot of sense and resonates with a lot of people, including me.
       
    18. @thorneless What an incredible response! I think you put into words something that I've certainly felt often...using the hobby to "dabble in all kinds of different mediums, each...can be addressed in a different timeframe or mood".
      I'm so glad you mentioned this. This ability to have a hobby(BJDs) that is actually a combination of other hobbies(sculpting, faceups, photography, writing, storytelling, sewing, knitting, etc) is part of what makes it so unique! You can decide what part of the hobby you want to participate in depending your mood/situation. Even the examples you gave were super relatable for me. :)
      And on a bigger scale, each person can decide what they want out of the hobby, and tailor it to their needs/wants.
       
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    19. @Mori Carter Exactly! It's incredibly rewarding for all types of people. I think that inclusivity of anyone who is interested in having a hand in the hobby/community is pretty amazing! Not to mention how accepting and supportive everyone I have seen thus far is towards newbies and specialised hobbyists who might not even own a doll or have any intentions of buying one. I love that it's not a snooty 'you have to have X dolls, Y skills and be at least this tall to ride this hobby' type of yacht club. Equal opportunity expression and love of little resin people <3
       
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    20. I'll be honest. I have no idea what I'm doing in this hobby any more. Originally, I joined the hobby because I've always been interested in dolls, toys and miniatures, particularly in those items that display a high degree of realism. I'm a photographer, and I thought realistic dolls would be great models (which they are). I spent a lot of time taking photos of my dolls, all of which are avatars of my original characters, but even that isn't fulfilling any longer. I find that I don't even like most of my dolls nowadays, so I've been systematically getting rid of them. These days, "doing the hobby" for me means completing the few dolls I plan to keep, and admiring them as three-dimensional art.
       
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