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Shelling cartoon characters... How do you shell them?

Oct 3, 2017

    1. I have a cartoony drawing style, and my comic has been in this style before I attempted dolls. I was wondering if anyone tries to get cartoon or anime dolls to match their art?
      Personally, I pick out traits- Yuka had upturned eyes, a long nose, and a rather undefined chin, so I got Little Monica Elena, though the art is very different from the doll, the general feel still stays.
      Yin has an upturned nose, a small nose bump, and slim eyes that look very innocent.
      People asked for examples, and I'm always happy to supply.
      This is my first character, Yuka- shelled as Little Monica Elena, vs. the art of her.
      #1 SecretSnek, Oct 3, 2017
      Last edited: Oct 10, 2017
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    2. That sounds fun!! Do you have pictures of your characters that you’re willing to share? :)
    3. I too have a very stylized way of drawing,so I give myself a lot of freedom when it comes to shelling characters.
      For example,I draw pointy noses like this ^ while a button nose is a downturned c -I also tend to give most characters very high foreheads.
      So when choosing a doll,I imagine the character with more realistic features and find the sculpt that suits best.
      I actually find this pretty fun,it's like seeing a different version of my characters-plus I'm happy to share them unlike with my drawings.
    4. Im thinking the same actually. The dolls i've gotten were sort of realistic looking, but somewhat cartoony. I've been trying to adjust my art style to fit them but I'm having such a hard time doing it omg. Though I've seen people do cartoon ish styles on normal looking dolls and it's pretty awesome sometimes. (I've also seen realistic styled anime dolls and it was scary tbh)

      My style of drawing has always been very cartoony and unrealistic, so I'm planning on getting a straight up dd at some point.
    5. Same here, I have a rather cartoony art style, I feel. Very simple shapes, y'know? So I try to copy what traits I imagine the character having and finding dolls similar to them, or even just going with what "feels right". It's much easier for the dolls who have sculpts that inspired the character, but for ones where it's the other way around, it can be a little difficult, but manageable. I feel like it helps that I don't usually draw lips unless they're particularly prominent or there's lipstick...
    6. Hrm I guess it depends on the doll and the character. There's a whole variation of styles with bjd- not broad but varied- so generally there's something I can mod to fit most characters. I draw my own OCs in a semi realistic style, so most BJDs work pretty well. There's always modding, if you wanted the exact look from a drawing style.
    7. If you ever end up taking pictures of your dolls you should totally share. I love so much to see cartoonized dolls. I also agree that modding is a super cool idea, i opened up my first dolls eyes fairly easily.
    8. Hmm, my art is more cartoony, but I think my dolls capture the style I want to have more than the one that I have. I'd like my style to be semi-realistic someday, like my dolls.
    9. I think cartoon-ish drawing style is very unique and cute! Vinyl dolls like Dollfie Dream, or SQ Lab resin dolls should be a good fit! Also do you know about Obitsu parabox dolls? They are not strictly "resin bjds" but cute nevertheless!
    10. I try to find a sculpt that captures the essential "feel" of the character, rather than trying to get something dead-on; a lot can be done with the aesthetics (faceup, wig, etc), as well. A "cartoony" or "anime" styled character doesn't have to be limited to just the "anime" styled heads, after all.

      Look at the eye shape of your character, the jawline, the shape of the nose, the overall expression. And look at dolls (blank, with default faceups, with company faceups, in different wigs) with those things in mind. You can find ones that aren't on your radar by posting art of the character you're looking to match in the Visual Concepts subforum (with an idea of how realistic vs how stylized you might want to go).
    11. For my characters that started with 2D incarnations, I look for sculpts with certain features that resemble their 2D counterparts, but also they have that "realism" that my art style lacks (I draw majority anime style).
      For example, Ashe was the first 2D character I shelled as a doll. Things I looked for: bishonen proportions, pout/frown, narrow face. Dollshe Husky was THE ONE to be Ashe. I replicated his 2D look as best I could, but doll-Ashe is definitely a "life" of its own for the character, if that makes sense.
    12. Well, for me I have a few characters that are based on cartoon characters, so I just sought out sculpts that seemed to have matching facial structures to them. It helps that the art style of the series in question has a pretty decent balance of stylized/realism, so finding good sculpts for them wasn't too hard.

      For my OCs, They are based off of how I portrayed them in my art-style to the closest possible degree. My style tends to lean between graphic novel and anime. Think Young Justice cartoon style, or Avatar (not the movie with blue alien cat people :roll:), or Voltron: Legendary Defender. Something like that. Since the style has a pretty humanistic, more realistic aesthetic to it, I tend to focus more on bjds that fall into that aesthetic.:3nodding:
    13. i updated the post with my own examples!
    14. I have not tried this but maybe in the future I will; though it would not be an original character of mine but an existing cartoon character .
    15. Ooooo, that sounds really cool O: Mine is basically Animal Crossing, anime, and Scott Pilgrim mashed into one style xD
    16. When I go cartoon to doll, I look for the main features that would totally loose the character if they were missing. I have twin boy OC's, I used to draw them a lot, but sadly i have let my drawing skills slip.
      Long before the BJD hobby, I had found Barbie size dolls to shell the boys into. They needed very strong noses, thin faces, sharp features and of course, amazing hair. They started as Disney Mattel John Smith dolls.
      When i got into the BJD hobby, I found most male dolls had very soft features, and the few that didnt, still didnt have the long angular face I was looking for. Then someone showed me Iplehouse and my paycheck went out the door. My twin boys are shelled as BJD's now, FID Arvid. He was so perfect. I am now saving to get them in EID size because I can never have to many Arvids. lol
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    17. Anime/manga/manhwa? Or cartoon? Cause big difference. Most of the dolls have a somewhat anime aesthetic (some a lot more than others of course) but only a tiny few (Bishonen House for instance) have a Western cartoon look to them.
      Of course, you can make them into all sorts of original stylized characters.
    18. I suppose I mean animated feel in general, whether it be Western or Japanese.

      That's so cool O: Did you give the Mattel dolls faceups?
      #18 SecretSnek, Oct 11, 2017
      Last edited by a moderator: Oct 11, 2017
    19. Yes I did :) Tho my first versions of them were quite terrible looking. I have updated Mattel versions of them still. I love having my boys in all different sizes. I need to do pics of the lineup together.
    20. I'm not very artistic myself, but I've shelled a doll that is heavily influenced by Sakimichan's drawing! I'm missing a few items for her, but I think Minifee Marcia was a great choice for 'Headphones Girl' :)

      by Tina, on Flickr

      by Tina, on Flickr
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