Ball-jointed dolls use ball and socket joints to create excellent articulation. These are a popular choice for collectors because of customizability. They are most often found in two sizes: mini and full size. Regardless of size, this kind of doll is known for having appealing limbs that can be easily manipulated by collectors.
A BJD is a type of doll. This type got its start in 1999 with Volks Super Dollfies. Super Dollfie and Dollfie are registered trademarks, but they are often used when referring to any Asian BJDs. This is erroneous because there are other producers not mentioned by this name.
German artist Hans Bellmer created dolls with ball-joints during the 1930s and used them in his photography and surrealistic artwork. Artists today, such as Japanese doll artists, continue this trend of artful doll photography.
These dolls are made to be looked at as art, not to be played with. They're so expensive that an artist's typical price range is a few thousand dollars up to two or three hundred thousand for some of the oldest models around. They're still available in Japan and artists regularly release books that show off their work along with prices and photographs.
Volks, a Japanese toy company, created the first ever commercially produced BJD doll. The dolls are 57 cm tall and made of polyurethane resin. The dolls have elastic string joints and were primarily designed for women.
Anime was the early influence on BJDs. Companies such as Volks, Cerberus Project and the Delf line, all influential BJD suppliers, were originally based around creating resin figurine kits with an anime feel to them.
Over the past few years, Korean customizers have been producing more and more BJDs. Customhouse and Cerberus Project were among the first Korean companies to start making BJDs, but now there are many more in the Korean market.
The knockoffs of BJDs were produced before companies began to produce their own sculpts. The early knockoffs were made of low quality materials that could not be repaired or adjusted, but they were low in price. The first BJD company that released an original sculpt was Dollzone. They have since been followed by other Chinese companies making high quality BJDs to put on the international market.
Modern Asian BJDs
Customized Asian doll typically range in price from $100-1000. Their bodies are made of polyurethane resin and are articulated by thick elastic cords. They follow an Asian aesthetic but also come with designs that are hyperrealistic. Most dolls are anatomically accurate and can stand by themselves, unlike Barbie dolls.
A female doll with a removeable face. You can change the eyes with velcro tabs on top of the head for wigs.
BJD dolls are customizable, and can be changed with different clothing or head. You can replace wig or eye. Some owner of BJD doll also change their body part by using sanding machine or epoxy putty.
Dolls made from resin are water-resistant, which makes them easier to paint. Body blushing and faceups are done with acrylic paint or brushes, and a layer of sealant is applied afterward. Professional body blushing takes time and skill, but some companies have it automated.
Posts about Japan
Japanese furniture manufacturer Volk releases a new doll company called Super Dollfie
Volks created the original dolls in the Asian BJD world, the Super Dollfie. They were trendsetters in the industry and set a standard for size. They are still producing new dolls and exhibits around the world.
Established in 2000, Araki is most well known for his collaboration with Volks and his solo work with Alchemic Labo. He has created a range of BJDs that include the U-noa Quluts, Unoa Zero/Unon, and U-Noa Chibi.