Saturday, 2 May 2009

Photo Story - Débutante

Well, its been a while but I have a pretty good excuse for that. ;) 
It all started about a month ago, as I found these pretty kitsch acrylic photo frame sets from a local shop and instantly thought of them as shop displays. It´s funny how once you start building dioramas as a hobby, you also start seeing everything around you in scale. So, the tacky frames I wouldn´t usual touch, not to mention pay good money for, came home with me.



I had only bought the small set, but as soon as I got home and put them in my doll display case, I wanted the bigger set too. The small one seemed perfect for shoes and bags an such, but the squares were definitely too small for boots and an idea of a huge boutique diorama was starting to for in my head! I went back and bought the bigger set too.


The idea I had was this huge and modern upper class department store type store for fashions and accessories. I didn´t have a table big enough for it, so I decided to build in on the floor next to my doll showcase that was impeded into the diorama as a window display. The walls consisted mainly of empty FR doll boxes - its a material with a nearly endless supply in this household. ;) I also temporarily decapitated one of my Model Muse barbies, and found another poor soul that had been experimented on from the bottom of my zombie barbie drawer. They made great mannequins for the shop and since they are even skinnier than FR I had this fun idea to make an FR doll complain about the unrealistic images of beuty they created! LOL!
Then there was the shop counter to be made and making dioramas is all about scavending your environment for stuff that is easily turned into something else. And as I said before, it becomes new new of seeing things all together.
The counter is a Misaki doll box balanced on its place with bluetag. On top of it, two jewellery glass boxes as display cases for smaller and more valuable merchandise and a plastic cash register from a cheap pirate barbie toyset I bought from a supermarket. The marble staircase is the same one I made ages ago for my doll house and the round acrylic stand for shoes and vase is my spouse´s pencil cup. 
NOTE: Among the pictures above, in one on the left you see a doll walking up the stairs pasts the wall display. Can you imagine how precarious it was balancing that doll there, without a stand and the wall display levitating there with nothing more that couple of sewing needles! Man, how many times it fell and created a nice domino effect. Sigh. All the other dolls were on stands, but that mean erasing them with photoshop from all the 170 pictures!
As you can propably quess by now, my diorama was quickly turning into a photo story. It just seemed that the dolls has a life of their own and I thought it would be fun to write so dialogue to bring out their personalities.
 
The story was suppose to revolve around these two characters: Charo and Tori, who are simply out shopping for a début outfit for Charo who is very much not interested in the whole business. The story actually begins with Charo complaining about the high heeled shoes Tori lend her as she would have preferred her own military boots for comfort. Her general lack of interest and fashion sense keeps agravating Tori through out the story line. But as I brought in more characters as extras, they started to demand attention for their own and soon my "little" diorama project had swelled into a 1700 file pile of photos.
 
 Along the way I had to introduce more and more characters such as the emotionally unstable Akito Yuri and her friend of a mother hen Sophie York. As one can imagine, a diorama build from loose boxes in a house with three cats it about as stable as a snowman on June, so I felt that if I wanted to share this fun it had to be done now or never. So I called my friend Marika - it was around 6 p.m. I think and she rushed to my house right away - and as always, with visitors. Marika´s tourists (in the middle) also wanted their part of a story and as 5 more of my dolls entered the scene I had to build the diorama even bigger.
 
In the earlier picture above the diorama ends right there with the left edge of the photo. As in the one below, more wall has been build and a lounge added to accommodate all the dolls in one scene.
 Originally, I hadn´t planned for thse sort of wide scale picture to be taken at all and it was now I realised that the second shelf of my doll display case was showing  (you can see legs of dolls sitting there) so I decided to write it into the story line. In the end of the story, the ladies in the "upstairs café" abandon their seats and take interest in the happenings below in the boutique.
 
So, that´s what I´ve been up to these days. It took me about a month to finish this photo story but here it is, finally. If you want to read the whole 170 page epic, click here