Should I tell the face up artist I'm planning to sell the doll?

Apr 9, 2020

    1. He hasn't started on it yet. It's just that I've been waiting so long for this face up my style has changed and I had another doll (let's say doll B) painted by a different artist which I absolutely adore. The doll in question is also not so great posing wise, while the other doll(B) is impeccable and all in all better.
      I want to buy another doll by the same company as the one I love and have it painted by the same artist again so they match.
      Should I tell the artist in question that I'm probably not keeping the doll?
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    2. Why would you? The artist just paints the head, what you do with the head it's your business only.
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    3. hmm personally would be a grey area for me. I guess depends if you use the face up to increase the price of the doll. If you are planning on selling it for more than just the nude doll price then I would say tell them and see how they feel about it. worse comes to worse they refund and ship back a blank head.

      I know as an artist, I would be pretty bummed if I did a faceup and then find it was sold right after. especially if person commissioning me went and used what I did to get a better price for their doll than if there wasn't a faceup. (no idea how much you are paying for the faceup)
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    4. Frankly, I think that's up to you. I would personally tell them that I've since then fallen out of love with the sculpt and that it might end up for sale once it returns. I don't want the artist to think I disliked their work and thus sold the doll. Most of them work hard on the sculpts we send them to make sure we end up loving every little bit of them so I believe it's only right to let them know.

      As for giving the doll a face-up to raise the sales price, I don't think that's very viable. Personally, I'd never pay more for a doll with a face-up than for one without. Even more so because everyones taste is different and what is a beautiful face up to me could be awful to someone else.

      In short, honesty goes a long way and prevents both parties from being dissapointed.
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    5. This is just what I was going to say.

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    6. I don't personally see any reason to tell the artist. You're paying them to do the job that they're doing, and what you do with the doll afterwards isn't any of their business. Service paid for, service completed, that's all that really matters. What's the difference between selling it now vs a year from now when it still has the same face-up?
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    7. My first thought when reading this was that in this hobby there is so much waiting. People fall in and out of love with dolls every day. Would you contact the company that made the doll and tell them that you plan to sell the doll because between the time you ordered it and when it arrived to you finished you didn't want it anymore?
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    8. My daughter in law does face ups on my dolls and I have often sold the doll soon after but not because of the face up but because of money and generally dolls sell faster If they do have a face up over blank. At least for me. But I never charge more for face up as for all I know person buying doll will have it done over. So telling her I am selling isn't that uncommon, but she knows I loved what she did, it's just money issues nothing more.
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    9. I have been a face-up artist for over a decade now, and I've had customers who sold their dolls soon after they received them back from me.

      On the business side of things, I didn't care. It's their doll, they can do with it whatever they like. I got paid for my services and that's that. Moreover, it's rather unlikely that potential buyers will pay extra for a face-up. Usually, face-up styles are such a personal thing ...

      However: To me, working on customs is not so much about "service for money". I spend a lot of time on my customers' dolls, not only the actual work I'm doing, but communicating, styling the finished doll, photographing, asking for feedback … Sometimes people send me mails concerning their characters backstory, their facourite music and lots of other references before I'm even starting to paint. And I want to turn the doll into a personality that their owner will love.
      So it depends. If someone had been raving and squeeing over how much they'd love their custom and then sell their doll right away, I'd be a bit upset. After all, this is not only about business, and your faceup artist is not a factory doing some kind of service like painting a wall.

      My advice: Think about the connection you want to have with your artist in the future.
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    10. I had this happen, after a fashion. I bought a Realpuki Soso on the secondhand market, and the small faceplate (and the doll's value) intimidated me from painting her myself. I hired Swandzz/PintSizedPalace to do an artist's choice faceup. I didn't do much with the doll while their faceplate was gone, and when it came back and the body and face were reunited, I realized I didn't actually like the doll as much as I thought I did.

      Because I have a doll YouTube channel, I made a video explaining why I was selling the doll. If Swandzz ever realized I sold the doll pretty much immediately, she could watch the video and see it had nothing to do with her faceup. I didn't feel badly about it at all; I'm more in the camp of "it's your doll, and you can sell it whenever you want to". (But if I didn't have a YouTube channel, I might have messaged Swandzz and let her know I was selling the doll, and why. Just to make certain there weren't any hard/hurt feelings.)
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    11. I am in a similar boat to Evie.

      On one hand, business-wise, I also think "the moment the person has the head again, they can do what they want". I understand that sometimes wait times, interest changes or whatever can make you sell a doll. Sometimes a face-up was a last attempt at rekindling a love but no matter what, it still doesn't work out. Sometimes other stuff happens that makes you sell it shortly after getting it back. Sometimes no matter how much effort I put in as an artist and did my best to make it happy, you will still have a reason to sell and that's okay.
      At the end of the day it's your doll, do what you want.

      However, from a more emotional standpoint, it sure stings when one puts in a lot of time and effort into a custom piece for another person and they turn around and sell it off right away. Makes you ask yourself if it was your fault. Was my work not good enough? Was my service so bad it soured the experience and attachment to the doll? And like Evie mentioned, sometimes you really get to know those dolls or the characters attached to them. With some customers you get really close during the process. And when they were pretending to be happy and then sell the piece right away it's the worst. Could I have prevented it if they had said something? Why did they lie to me? Not a big fan of fake niceness and happiness.
      Even if this is a business transaction, at the end of the day the artist is still just a human as well. You can't always completely switch off those emotions and insecurities.

      If I'm told beforehand "I will sell it right away" I would also kinda ask myself "what's the point". Why do you want me to go through all the trouble now to try and make you happy if it doesn't matter anyway?
      I understand it's probably out of being polite, especially when you already paid the artist or don't want to stomach any cancellation fees. But in the mean time the artist could have painted for someone who would have actually enjoyed the piece, instead of a customer who just pretends.

      I can't give you a clear answer there.
      I agree that it's your doll, do whatever you want with it. And that it probably might be nicer and more polite not to say anything to the artist. In the end they don't need to know what you plan with the doll.
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    12. I would add that the answer may also depend on where the faceup artist is located.

      In the Japanese BJD community, at least, it isn't uncommon for a faceup artist to ask that their faceup be wiped if the doll is ever sold. The thinking is that the doll may belong to the owner, but the faceup "belongs" to the artist. Reading through the responses already, this is clearly not the case in the English-speaking? American? community, but community norms do differ from place to place.
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    13. This is a good question and one that is difficult to answer. I look at it like this. You are paying for a service. You are paying for an item to be created (a face up). I see this as a business transaction.

      Here is a question for you. Let's say that you get a doll and have a face up done and then a week later or a month later you have to sell the doll for whatever reason. Would you then feel that you had to tell the artist?

      I don't see "not telling" as being dishonest. I see it as handling business as one sees fit.
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    14. I think maybe I have don't have the emotional ties to things I've sold as many others do. Once I've been paid for something, it's no longer mine and I feel have absolutely no right to tell them what to do with it. Personally, I think I'd feel a lot weirder getting a message justifying selling it than I would just seeing it listed for sale. Hearing a bunch of excuses (truthful or not) right after finishing the commission would make me more inclined to think you didn't like the work and I somehow ruined your vision for the character.
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    15. That's so interesting, I had no idea that was a thing. I am in the US, though, and it makes sense that cultural attitudes would differ from place to place.
    16. Thats really neat to know. I'll have to keep that in mind if I ever offer commissions to include it.
    17. At first, I thought this info would be irrelevant to the artist, but I stopped and thought it over again and changed the opinion. I think I would update the artist, so he wouldn't think I didn't like the face-up. I wouldn't want to accidentally hurt him or something.
    18. I want to weigh in again on this topic. I was speaking yesterday with a friend who is a doll maker (not BJDs) and a doll clothing maker. I posed this question to her.

      Her first response was how does the doll owner know that she or he won't fall in love with the doll when she or he sees it and want to keep the doll?

      Her second response was that when she is finished with a doll or an outfit, she doesn't care who buys it or where it goes. She knows that she has done her best and that is enough.

      I hope this helps.
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    19. Unless the artist was a personal friend, I would not tell them, period. The financial part of the transaction is complete, so unless they would choose to refund your money and return the head to you unpainted (which most would not), then quite literally, what would be the point in telling them? I can't think of a single reasonable answer to that question. I've had a faceup wiped and redone immediately after receiving it because I disliked it so much, but I certainly didn't share this decision with the artist when I first saw the pics - that would have been mean and unnecessary...and the odds are incredibly high that they will never even know. At this point, who's to say that you won't fall in love all over again when you receive it...or that your buyer will not adore the faceup should you choose to sell. In either event, no reason to instill bad feelings even before they begin to work on your doll!
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    20. I told him about my plans in the end. He mentioned on his own that he was sad when someone sold a doll he did a face up on right after and I felt it would be dishonest not to mention my plans at that point.
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