A question for face up artists

Mar 30, 2021

    1. I have been considering commissioning a face up sometime in the future and was wondering what to provide to the artist... I know every artist has different preferences and I am curious to hear them!

      What types of references do you prefer to work from? Do you mind written descriptions or do you work from photos only?
    2. Im not a face up artist, but as I've sent out many dolls for new faces I thought I'd give my two cents. What I do is a start a word document or phone notes where I jot down ideas for my girls. Then I create a pinterest board for her and I gather up references. Sometimes its real people sometimes it's other dolls. I try to find many pictures that have elements of what I envision for her. Then when I send her out, I screenshot the photos and send them along with my written description. It helps to have visuals because sometimes words alone don't properly convey the idea you have. Hope that helps a bit love!
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    3. Here there's my form if it helps).

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    4. I don’t really accept commissions but I do work for my sister and occasionally friends. If you want something really specific, both pictures and description help! Though sometimes I just get handed a head and told to just make him look natural or make her pretty, and those are fun too. Once you’ve chosen your artist, ask them what they need from you. All artists are different!
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    5. If I were to do commissions, which I dont currently, might at some point in time, I personally would like a sketch or something to work off of if there is a specific style. If there are any color changes or differences from the example I would appreciate specifications. If you have no idea look through pictures or just tell the artist to go for it and do something they like or are comfortable with, if it is an option they give. Try to figure it out before sending off the head to help the artist out a bit.
    6. I've been doing faceup commissions for about 7 years now. I have a detailed form in my commission listing like the one EchoUndine shared above, and I have filled it out with examples of the sort of descriptors I'm looking for. Say, for blushing, the client is prompted to specify 'light,' 'heavy,' or 'realistic' depending on the look they want for their doll. Eyebrows can be described as 'thin,' 'bushy,' 'manicured,' etc. I offer these choices as a sort of starting point, to help the client put their vision into words.

      The form, however, is optional. Most faceup artists will be able to work using different kinds of inspiration. I have done commissions where the client simply explained their doll's character and provided a few pictures of faceups they like the look of. I have done commissions where the client provides a drawing of their doll, with the details on the face to serve as inspiration for the faceup. I have done commissions where the client sends me to images of faceups I've done in the past, specifying 'eyebrows like this but in red' and 'freckles like this'.

      There's really no right way to do it! You and your artist work together to make your doll perfect, and you work until it's right. Before they're sealed, faceups are pretty easy to change if there's something you want to look different. From an artist's perspective, it is extremely rewarding to work with a client until their doll is absolutely perfect in their eyes. Makes it all worth it!