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Help Needed With Miku and One Other

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Friendlily

Though I'm currently painting other heads and characters right now, I have two "endgame" characters I'm working towards who are the reason I even got into dolls in the first place, and they are my two sons as seen below.

57gzILj.jpg

So yes, I will admit that is Miku Hatsune and some random weirdo (he's actually a lesser known Vocaloid named Fukase), but I got a problem with something called character development. As in, I'm addicted to it. So I created a whole story for them along with some other Vocaloids that had nothing to do with music, and they ended up being Miku and Fukase in name and appearance only. I decided to make them into Dollfie Dreams when I one day realised that whenever I was designing new clothing or an outfit, they were the ones to model it. They looked good in everything, so I thought it would be fun if they were dolls.

As you can see, I have a pretty cartoony artstyle, so my biggest issue will be translating them into the world of Dollfie Dream. They will need some pretty intense modding and customisation—there's a reason I call them my endgame characters for when I have honed my skills to be better. So that's where I need all of you guys' help and input. I already have chosen heads for them and edited them as such. Miku is a DDH-09 and Fukase is a DDH-08.

xkrb3ia.jpgjM5qWy3.jpg

Miku is currently an SS bust, flesh skinned, Dollfie Dream, while Fukase has a semi-white skinned, normal height Dollfie Dream boy body coming in the mail, because I don't think their height difference is big enough to merit him a DDS Boy body.

So because I have a lot of questions, I'm going to ask them in small batches.

My first question is: What expression should Miku have? You can read a little about her personality here. So she's pretty feisty, but because she's my "fashion model", so to speak, would her doll form really be that expressive? Should I give her a more neutral expression, or should she look a little more emotive? What's your opinion, because I would be happy to go with either. I will end up modding her mouth a bit to be a bit simpler, by the way. Not completely flat, but simpler. (Answered)

My second question is: Is it possible to completely shave off the lower lip on a DDH-08? Even if you haven't modded a DDH-08 but do own one, I need to know how much material I have to work with. I even left the shadows from the corners of the open mouth in Fukase's edit just so that I won't disappoint myself when the time comes to mod but it ends up being too thin, haha. I have seen photos on the internet where it seems the artist has shaved off the entire mouth, but I don't know if they used putty to fill in the holes. (Answered)

3rd question: What eye shape suits them?(Pictures and details posted below-Answered but it's still fun to hear other people's opinions)

Edited by Friendlily

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jadepixel

Looks like a fun project! My recommendation for Miku - I like the intensity of your sketch, would keep it close to that. I’ve found that more intense/emotional face ups feel extra intense in person once they’re painted on the head and not in sketch form. That might be something you test out while you’re painting with occasionally putting eyes/wig on your sketchy WIP head. If you use DDH-09 head you can probably get away with no mouth mods for that expression.

For Fukase, I’d avoid modding the DDH-08 mouth, it’s going to be a pain. The mouth is sculpted open and fairly deep, it’d be hard to keep just the upper lip and have it look natural. You may be better off finding a head with a simple mouth and modding the eyes- maybe DDH-07 or DDH-06.

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Friendlily
2 hours ago, jadepixel said:

For Fukase, I’d avoid modding the DDH-08 mouth, it’s going to be a pain. The mouth is sculpted open and fairly deep, it’d be hard to keep just the upper lip and have it look natural. You may be better off finding a head with a simple mouth and modding the eyes- maybe DDH-07 or DDH-06.

Funny story, I did once made some sketch ups using DDH-07, and I found that I didn't like it. The problem is that his eyes are set a little low on his face and DDH-11 was a little bit too delicate for him. With DDH-06 I would need some additive mods to lower the eyelids. Though it looks like he's going to need some additive mods either way if I want to keep using DDH-08 it seems.

Unless... You didn't say that it was impossible, right? I've scrutinised the DDH-08 before using photos I found on Mandarake. I'm aware that I'm going to have to remove a lot of material (right and left corners of the mouth, scrape from the bottom lip and slope all the way to the tip of the chin, shorten the nose, etc.), but I don't shy from hard work. Best case scenario I figured he'd end up with a profile looking like MDD Liliru. Worse case scenario I poke holes in the face. For that reason I was going to simplify Miku's mouth so that she could match him a little better. But of course, looking at a bunch of photos is nothing close to having the real head in hand, so all of my calculations could be totally off, and that's what I'm worried about. 

In case anyone's curious, here's my rough estimate.

Lk2heLi.jpg

I made my best assumptions on how deep the mouth is, please correct me if I estimated incorrectly. Is this feasible, or will the vinyl be too thin? If that's the case, then I'll look into additive mods or consider another head.

Edited by Friendlily
Attached an Extra Image

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OccultBeast
2 hours ago, Friendlily said:

some random weirdo

I was about to be like 'dang, you really trying to shade Fukase like that' but then you slid in a save lmao

I don't really have any advice to give re: modifications, but I do agree with Jadepixel that more expressive faceups are better than more simple ones.  They really lend a bit more life to dolls in photos, so I'll give a second vote for that~

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Friendlily
1 minute ago, OccultBeast said:

I was about to be like 'dang, you really trying to shade Fukase like that' but then you slid in a save lmao

 

Aaa, you recognised him? Because my version of the kiddos are essentially normal humans, I didn't think he would look familiar, especially without the X bandage on his nose. But since Rerulli has been using him a lot lately I suppose he isn't all that unknown, so I'm pretty glad! He's one of my favorites, if making him into a Dollfie Dream wasn't obvious enough, lol.

Anyways, although I'm still definitely on the lookout for more info on modding the DDH-08, I'll be prepping the images for my next question. I have a lot to ask!

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BeyondTime
1 hour ago, Friendlily said:

Is this feasible, or will the vinyl be too thin?

My first thought was that you might thin it too much to maintain its structural integrity. There are some folks here who mod heads, so they may have a better idea. 


The difference between Dollfie Dreams and Heroin? Heroin is illegal, Dollfie Dreams probably should be.

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Friendlily
5 minutes ago, BeyondTime said:

My first thought was that you might thin it too much to maintain its structural integrity. There are some folks here who mod heads, so they may have a better idea. 

Thanks for letting me know that. I'll have to figure out how to reinforce it if it gets too thin then, and I'll keep an eye out for those folks!

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OccultBeast
30 minutes ago, Friendlily said:

Aaa, you recognised him? Because my version of the kiddos are essentially normal humans, I didn't think he would look familiar, especially without the X bandage on his nose. But since Rerulli has been using him a lot lately I suppose he isn't all that unknown, so I'm pretty glad! He's one of my favorites, if making him into a Dollfie Dream wasn't obvious enough, lol.

Yeah, for sure!  His fluffy hairstyle was all I needed to know it was him~  I don't keep up with any Vocaloids other than Miku (it uses up enough energy just keeping up on my queen!), but I still knew it was Fukase from what very little I've seen of him.  I guess it helped that I knew they were both Vocaloids, so my brain just jumped right to the only redhead I could remember seeing, because I know he's not super popular.  He's real cute, though~!

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Friendlily
9 minutes ago, OccultBeast said:

Yeah, for sure!  His fluffy hairstyle was all I needed to know it was him~  I don't keep up with any Vocaloids other than Miku (it uses up enough energy just keeping up on my queen!), but I still knew it was Fukase from what very little I've seen of him.  I guess it helped that I knew they were both Vocaloids, so my brain just jumped right to the only redhead I could remember seeing, because I know he's not super popular.  He's real cute, though~!

Wow, I used to keep up with Miku a lot more, but even today she's still my queen, too! But when I began to flesh out the story and personality I created for her, I gradually disassociated from the image of her being a world wide famous diva, but as a much more personal character that I deeply related to. And thus I bought less merch and became a lot lax about keeping up with her promotions. Still listen to songs with her, though. And occasionally buying particularly cute figmas and nendos.

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Friendlily

My next question is a lot less technical and more of an aesthetic choice than anything (but a lot more fun!).

Currently, I only have 22mm O-type eyes from Volks (I got them by accident because Volks had some sort of online event, and I mistook them for K-type eyes, lol. I was so clueless then), so I edited them in my little sketches accordingly. But I plan on making custom eyes in future, and I'm not going to give them my usual itty bitty pupils because on 3D faces, that looks... stupid.

So my question this time is: what eye shape should the pupils be? They each fill up the eyes differently, and therefore give off a different vibe. And I love all of them so I can't decide! Also, Miku got an eyebrow lift, what do you think?

Round Eyes:

8hUGOUz.jpgjM5qWy3.jpg

With her flatter eyebrows before, Miku looked a little bit stiff, but now she looks pretty epic. The upper part of her whites peaking through really deserved eyebrows with more energy, too! Thanks for recommending more expression, everyone! I was about to go with a more neutral face, which would've looked more like ಠ_ಠ . I also plan on sanding the corners of her mouth so that her grin won't have to fight with the more sullen sculpt of DDH-09. I'm a lot more comfortable with modding DDH-09 because I have a semi-white head in my possession. The vinyl is plenty thick enough to hold up against some scraping, but observing how vinyl flows on the inside of sculpts, it tends to spread itself a little thinner the more detailed a surface is, so I still have concerns with modding Fukase and am still looking for more info on DDH-08.

Anyways, what I like the most about this eye shape is how awesome the two of them look together. What I learned over the years developing my art style was that the more eye whites are showing in a character's resting expression and the smaller the pupil, the more impactful other expressions will be because the change in the amount of white showing will a lot more drastic. That's obviously not 100% applicable to these kids in doll form, but when they are paired together the contrast is beautiful. If you cover their eyebrows, you can still see that Fukase is the much calmer one in this dynamic; his eyelids are more relaxed than Miku's. Otherwise, by himself he looks pretty perky, and the viewer can't tell how relaxed he is until they see Miku.

Triangular Eyes:

wdR6fq4.jpgowzFnoJ.png

One pro to this is that it probably the most accurate shape in translating my art style. I always draw my pupils as triangles, only ever drawing them round on very specific characters and personalities. It's like a call back to that detail while still looking fairly decent. However, one con is that I do lose that bit of contrast between the two of them, but at least Miku's face still looks the faintest bit more aggressive (eyebrows covered, of course). I can't shrink the triangular pupils any further than how they are now, even if it's just to get a sliver more white in Miku's eyes—they'll just end up looking a little uncanny on 3d faces.

Rectangular Eyes:

2ayoCGK.jpgWrpcK5r.jpg

Obviously, this shape is the most drastic from my art style and the least expressive, but it's such a gorgeous look for my kids. With her eyebrows, Miku looks very brave and dependable, and Fukase looks like the sweetest soul you will ever meet. If I end up making rectangle shaped eyes, I think I would stare into them all day... But I'm also not used to the two of them looking so soft! ;;

Which shape is your favorite? I'd like to hear your opinions—This has been so hard for me to decide, even harder than picking out a head sculpt to begin with!

Edited by Friendlily

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engelinvitro
Posted (edited)

I'm super late to this thread and I'm not sure if this information is still relevant to you.

Here's an example of an 08 head with the mouth sanded completely flat. It's being compared with a blank DWC-02 head.

I've modded two 08s now and I found that the vinyl is cast thicker on these heads. It gave me some room for error when it came to reshaping the mouths and buffing the surface. One of the heads I've modded actually had a speck of dust embedded near the lips, and I was able to sand it out before going into full panic. However, I can't promise the same structure for every 08 head. There could be a chance one is cast thinner than others; it's still pretty risky.

I also ran into problems with sanding mouths flat. My first try at flattening 01 head didn't go so well because the nose and mouth areas were riddled with air pockets that ran deep into the vinyl, and my desperate attempts at smoothing those out resulted in a noseless 01 head (that Still has air pockets) ;-; That's another risk that comes with sanding vinyl, so do keep it in mind.

Edited by engelinvitro

engel in vitro
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Friendlily
Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, engelinvitro said:

I'm super late to this thread and I'm not sure if this information is still relevant to you.

Here's an example of an 08 head with the mouth sanded completely flat. It's being compared with a blank DWC-02 head.

Oh, yeah, this is still completely relevant! It’s gonna be ages until I actually start working on these two; currently practising on other characters. So I’m still keeping an eye on this thread for all the info I can get, also because I don’t want to clutter the forums with all my Miku/Fukase specific questions.

The fact that your two 08 heads were cast slightly thicker gives me a bit more courage, and the pictures you provided were really, really informative! I’m a little impressed at the extent they were able to sand down... Thanks so much for your input, this was super helpful!

Also... what eye shape do you think suits them? You don't have to reply after helping me out already, but I'm still conflicted over this even to this day, haha.

Edited by Friendlily

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Gabihime

I think you should go with the triangular ones.  Eyes are a huge part of what makes a DD “present” and read as the character they’re meant to be.  You’ll be doing your own eyes then, but as someone who has made literally dozens of eye styles in the past, if you’re comfortable drawing them, then making them basically isn’t much more work if you’re doing acrylic. (And you can get really impressive effects with acrylic too).

I’ll be making some eyes a bit later this year for my male vinyl doll, the male protagonist in my work, and he has tiny little Yakuza like pupils lol.  I’ll definitely have to do custom eyes for him.

So yeah, go with triangles!  You want these kiddos to feel like yours.  Don’t be scared.  Just roar into it!

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Friendlily
On 10/4/2020 at 11:07 PM, Gabihime said:

I think you should go with the triangular ones.  Eyes are a huge part of what makes a DD “present” and read as the character they’re meant to be.  You’ll be doing your own eyes then, but as someone who has made literally dozens of eye styles in the past, if you’re comfortable drawing them, then making them basically isn’t much more work if you’re doing acrylic. (And you can get really impressive effects with acrylic too).

Hmmm... You make some really good points. And it might give me a little bit more space to add extra details to their pupils that I don't normally draw. I mean, I have the circular volks eyes already, so for custom eyes I might as well go with a new shape. But they also look so cute with the rectangle eyes... 

On 10/4/2020 at 11:07 PM, Gabihime said:

I’ll be making some eyes a bit later this year for my male vinyl doll, the male protagonist in my work, and he has tiny little Yakuza like pupils lol.  I’ll definitely have to do custom eyes for him.

Really? This is quite interesting to hear! My kids are pretty emotional and sensitive. My tiny pupils are more of an art style thing—otherwise they'd fit in well with those shoujo leads. When they aren't being huge idiots, of course. Curious to see how your boy turns out! Where can I find him, if it's not too much to ask?

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