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Asking face-up creators to 'copy' their dolls for you?

Dec 8, 2009

    1. Hello... :)
      I hope this wasn't discussed yet, if so, please send me a link to the thread.
      I'm putting this into Dolly Debate, because I DO think, that it can be a sensitive theme.


      Do you think it's okay to give a face-up creator a headmold they own themselves and tell them "Please paint my doll like you painted yours"?

      If you would run a face-up-service, how would you react to a request like that?
      Do you think it's rude?
      Would you don't mind it and just do it?
      Would this hurt you because you like your doll to be 'unique'?
      Or would you tell the customer that you won't do this for him?
      If so, why?

      And YES, I am asking because I think about requesting this from a creator. :doh
      I personally think that the opinion to this depends from person to person but I'd really like to hear what you think.

      Thank you very much, I'm glad for any response!
    2. i've had several requests to make copies of my baha for people, and have turned all of them down.

      for most people, this hobby is just a personal thing. a lot of them don't take or share pictures. copying, to me, is not a big deal especially for people like that. but to make a copy of my own doll for somebody else does bother me (any of my dolls, not just my baha). they are my characters so in a sense they would be copying my characters, and i would be recreating my characters to be used by somebody else. i put a lot of myself into my characters and their doll forms (including their face-ups) and that is not something i'd be comfortable with seeing in somebody else's hands.

      i agree that it would vary person to person (or even circumstance to circumstance). not everybody has characters for their dolls that they've invested as much into, and would probably not mind doing a mimic of their face-up.
    3. It is totally unacceptable for me as a faceuper because of this exact reason:
      I wouldn't tell the customer though how much effort I put in inventing the doll's personality, I'd just tell him/her "It's impossible". But in general I'm against copying "ready-to-use characters".

      Of course other people can react in a different way, I saw examples of that: an artist painted two dolls very much alike, one for herself and other for customer. It was a very good and really unique custom faceup.

      I see also a different issue here: faceup artist can paint a doll for some customer and then may want exactly the same faceup for personal use. How would that feel?))) Because actually nobody can prevent him/her to do that)))
    4. I would probably feel a bit honored because they like my work so much, but I wouldn't copy the face up exactly. I would ask them if I could do something similar to my own in stead of completely the same. But then again, why not? It's not like with all these dolls in the world there you can never have them all have a different face up. (now that was a weird sentence)
      Anyway, if I saw an artist's own doll's face up and I loved it, I would ask if I could get something similar, but not exactly the same.
    5. I don't feel it's out of line to tell a faceup artist what qualities in their work you like, or to reference their other works to get what you want from them. If you say, "Hey, I love the lips on head A and the colors on head B, can you do that?" it usually gets good results. Copying parts from faceups that they have already done makes sense; the artist has already done those and knows how to do them already. Asking for an entire faceup or for the artist to recreate a very unique faceup by someone else doesn't sit right with me, though.

      EDIT as I return to this several years later, in 2011... I still feel the same way, the most success I've had with faceups is referencing the artist's previous work.
    6. If you would run a face-up-service, how would you react to a request like that? - I have actually had more than one person ask for a faceup like one of my dolls. Predominatly my small pale littlefee Milk. I am honored that they liked my doll that much.

      Do you think it's rude?- I suppose it depends on how the person asks. The people who have asked for "like" faceups have always been really really nice and respectful. So I didn't take any offense.

      Would you don't mind it and just do it?- I'm not quite sure what you mean, But I don't mind it. and I do my best to get a faceup in the same feel. I have been lucky no one so far has wanted me to replicate it on the same mold.

      Would this hurt you because you like your doll to be 'unique'?- In the case of Milk not really. Hes kind of a one of a kind even if its just to me. I have others who have really liked one of my Okja's and she stands out kind of alone because of other changes I have made like her tattoos.

      Or would you tell the customer that you won't do this for him?- You know to be honest I would rather have someone come to me directly and say. "I really love your dolls look. I would love to have you do the same kind of faceup on mine, because its what I have pictured for my doll" Than try and avoid me and use another artist and just "hope I don't notice". That would make me more upset, than to have someone ask me flat out to duplicate something.
    7. I had did this a few days ago. I asked if she would recreate her dolls face-up that is cosplayish, that is known to the world. Sorry if this is off subject. Now if her dolls face-up wasn't world known I wouldn't ask such a thing. I might even chicken out and do it differently from hers anyway.:sweat
    8. I'm still fairly new to taking commissions, but when hashing out ideas on how to paint a friend's doll, he pointed to two of mine and said he liked X part of this one, and Y part of that one, and could I do it like that? Only in different colors. So it was similar, but not identical, and I had no problem with doing it that way for him.

      But 100% identical? I don't think I'd care for that. I do predominantly fantasy faceups, so it would stand out significantly if I copied from one doll to another.
    9. I have never asked for an exact copy of a faceup, even if the one I'm referencing is what I envisioned for my own doll. I can always find something to change. And for any references I am pulling from their own dolls, I say "I really like the way you painted ____ on your ____. Can you do something similar, but change _______?". Usually it's things like lips, eyes, blushing..basic facial features. I would never, no matter how much I love the face, ask for entirely unique features such as tatoos belonging to the character, or very unique marks. For instance- Sims' Milk. I LOVE Milk. He's such a unique and ADORABLE doll. I would never ever ever go to Sims, or any other artist, and ask for a Milk-esque faceup. Only thing I would ever do is say "I like this color for (blushing/lips)".
    10. I don't think this much of a problem. If it's a unique face-up I even would be glad to do this. There are ways it can still look unique (hair, eyes, clothes), so why should I bother if it's just the face-up.
      If it's the whole character that is copied and I couldn't figure out my doll anymore, then I think my doll would lose her/his character.
      When you're ordering a well known doll from a company with default face-up, then there are a lot of people having, in a way, your doll (not looking at clothes, eyes, hair, piercings, etc). I think it's similar.
    11. Not that I can even do my own doll's face ups - but if I could do them and had my own face-up service, I wouldn't agree to doing the exact same face up (of one of my dolls) for a client's doll.

      Call me selfish, but my dolls are based on characters from my own stories. If I ever managed to get the 'perfect' face up for my doll (that represents his character perfectly!), I'd certainly want to keep his face up unique as I would see his face up as being part of his character.

      On the other hands though... if the client asked me for a similar face up, but with different colors used (i.e. not a 100% copy of my doll's face up); I don't think I would mind such a request.
    12. Well, you can always ask! Just say: 'I love your doll, "X" and would love it if I could have something similar, would you be into doing that?'

      I occasionally get asked to recreate certain faceups I've done in the past, which I don't mind doing in general. I don't do the all-out artsy stuff where I color the whole doll, for example, on commission because I need to keep a clear demarcation between what I do for others and what I do for myself, or do to sell as an art piece on ebay or whatnot (which I have only done once so far, actually).

      The stuff I do for myself lately is not at all conventionally 'dollfie' so I doubt people would want me to do that to their dolls, anyway! ^_~

      But I don't think there's any harm in asking nicely...
    13. I have asked this of face up artists myself. Only because I know they would do a good job of the sculpt as evidenced in their work. I have asked for similar but not exact face ups, and have always respected their opinion if they decided not to do it. However I havent ever been turned down and the results have been fabulous as they have turned out differently but in a similar style. I dont see any harm in asking someone politely if their face up is what you imagine your doll with but you are not stealing the character.
      I have never asked face up artists for an exact copy of a specific and individual work they have done which would be an obvious copy. For example if they had a distinctive tattoo on their face, I wouldnt ask for that. The ones I have requested as a similar face up for example...A very pale face up like on their sculpt, but maybe slightly darker here and there. And one I asked for I asked for some slight changes. They were very subtle face ups and I had a different style and hair design for them different from their dolls. So the doll still looked unique.
    14. I have used artist's previous face ups as a reference to point out qualities I would like in my doll's face up. Of course I haven't asked them to copy it straight, but in one case both my doll and theirs was blonde and I wanted a very similar thing. The artist had no problem with me referencing their personal doll (our sculpts were different, however) and saying I would like something SIMILAR.

      To me I think it is a matter of how the artist handles the request as opposed to it being 'simply impossible' to reference their own doll. To me I think an artist can paint up a doll head in a similar style and still leave their own doll unique, while giving the customer what they want. Of course they can say 'I can't replicate it exactly' but certainly they can keep some of the key features close to what is asked and still go through with said commission (and I'm not saying that they don't have a right to refuse, please don't think that, because they do). Personally I think if you're open to commissions this is a skill that you're at least meant to try and have, because sometimes people have similar looking characters - at least where natural face ups are concerned - and you're going to have to make them all look different from one another anyway.

      That being said, if it's a fantasy face up or face ups with tatoos or something and they want it exact, I can see where that would be a problem. Those are unique things that define a person's doll and really it's only natural that they'd want to just turn it down and say no. After all that's their doll and they're probably not going to want a doppleganger floating around.

      I don't think it's impossible to deal with this situation or that it requires someone take offence or flat out refusal, I just think there are multiple ways for an artist to still retain the originality of their own personal face ups while seperating such a request from the customer. In the end what the artist needs is boundaries that establish what constitutes 'copying' and what constitutes a 'similar face up'.
    15. Sheesh, what can I add to this ... I'm pretty much in tuned with what gridbug said above.
      *First I'd be flattered.
      *Second, so long as it's a 'natural' faceup, I'd try my best to replicate it - acknowledging that no two faceups can ever be entirely the same.
      *Third, if it were an original faceup designed to set apart a 'character', I'd personally turn the request down BUT I'd still be flattered and I'd offer to do something similar.

      It all comes down to the personal choice of the artist. So long as the request is made respectfully, I don't see a problem with asking. I can only hope they treat you with the same respect when replying ...
    16. I've not opened shop for commissions yet, but I would not mind if someone asked for something similar to one of my doll's faceups. I don't think I could do an exact copy, anyway! If someone asked for an exact copy of one of the more distinctive ones (especially on the same sculpt), I'd suggest something similar instead. I like my dolls to be mine, my characters; and I would want THEIR doll to be theirs, and their own character. Unless it was based on a popular known character from some other media, I think they'd be happier with something that was just theirs. Most of mine are not that distinct though, so there'd be no issues.

      I absolutely would flat-out say no, though, if they asked me to copy a doll painted by someone else exactly (even one of my own dolls who was painted by someone else). Partly because I just couldn't make an exact copy, but partly because the art belongs to someone else. Similar I might attempt to do, but not exact.

      And I don't think that applies to re-creating a damaged company default faceup or the doll's faceup by a previous no longer working artist. I don't know that I'd be able to do that at all, but I have no problem with people doing it.
    17. I don't think it hurts to ask- obviously some faceup artists will and some won't as shown by the answers in this very thread! The worst that can happen is the artist says no, the best that can happen is that they'll agree to do it.
    18. I guess its a personal thing. I would be unhappy if people asked me flat out for something that I've already done as a friend, but professionally is a different thing- people are paying money for me to get a job done. That said, i would suggest something similar, and not exactly the same. Its impossible to get something done the same.
    19. It is pretty possible for an artist to copy his/her own faceup, I wrote about this in the other thread. Not to every stroke but it would be near the same faceup. I did it for my own doll when faceup was damaged.

      I see a huge difference between asking to do a similar faceup and asking to do the same faceup on the same mold. In the 1st case I'd feel that customer likes my style, in the 2nd case I'd feel like my character would be stolen. The main reason for starting my own faceups was the urge to see my doll unique.
    20. It's an interesting question. One of the dolls I ordered I have loose plans to send off to have done, because I saw a perfect example on someone's commission site of the style I want for that face. Browsing through the site, though, I realized later that the image -- which was on the front page, not the commission or personal gallery -- is likely a personal doll.

      I want that style, but for a different sculpt, and with different brows, so while it's different, I'm still considering how to ask.

      Thankfully, I have a bit of a wait for the head to come in yet, so there's time to possibly ask if that's a style they are willing to replicate for a commission before it gets here and it's time to make firm plans. By the same token, I'm wary of doing so, since I don't have the face in hand yet, and would feel bad potentially wasting their time just in asking. Weird, huh? *laugh*