This weblog is also based on emails I write with other ScoonimDoll enthousiasts. Of course I only publish an email or a part of it with permission of my respondent.


From: Koen
date: 02-06-2014
Subject: How to pose a ScoonimDoll (part 4)
(see also:  The Usage of Supports)
(see also:  Gravity and other forces)
(see also:  Look into the camera)
(see also:  Digital refinements)

Hair and body language

The range of posing is defined by the amount of articulation points ( joints, wireframes, poseable mass, poseable fibers and such). The more points of articulation the wider the range of posing possibilities and the better emotions can be displayed in the posing. For body language however some features are more important than others. A surprising amount of body language is created in the body itself. The position of the shoulders and spine are supportive for emotions like:
- sadness (shoulders down, spine and chest bent forward, neck bent down)
- power (shoulders backwards, spine stretched and chest up, neck up forward)
- erotic (shoulders slightly backwards, spine twisted and bent to left or right, chest up, neck twisted and slightly bent back)
But also several other types of body language involve the posing of the body like: the body language for having questions, or being defensic, protective/caring, and so on. Of course these ‘emotions’ are also created by the posing of the limbs, hands, feet and face, but emotion is a package deal with a great number of subtile hints. Because we are so much used to read the emotions from a body any conflict in posing we registrate and explain as being unnatural.
As I may have mentioned already it is recommendable before posing the doll to make the pose or poses yourself and review every part of your own body. There is a logic in posing.
The same emotion can be created in many different poses. Happy dolls may jump, but not all the time. They can also display happiness when walking, sitting, etc. But actions like walking, sitting, ect. can also be combined with different emotions. For example: the pose for a happy walking doll is very different then the one for a sad walking doll. Same action, very different pose! Some combinations of action and pose are are better (more expressive ) for putting on photo than others. For example: the difference between a happy or sad pose when sitting is obvious, but when lying down... ??
When you are in doubt wether a pose creates the proper effect you can use a mirror. Watch yourself or the doll through the mirror. If a pose has flaws the (slightly) new way of looking at the pose will help you to have a fresh view, which usually is neccessary to recognise the flaws.
Tip: When you pose you need to find the emotion in your body. When watching the mirror try not to make appropiate faces when posing because it will distract your attention from the actual pose.

Also the angle in which you make the photo can have big influence on the sense of emotion you want to put in the picture. Even a slight change of camera angle can make a difference. Therefor I usually make a series of photos from several angles of a single pose.

The hair of a ScoonimDoll can also be posed. Next to the obvious use to suggest wind or strong movement of the head more subtile language can be made with hair as well. To understand what I mean you should read a One of the picture novels of ‘Asterix’ made by Uderzo and Goscinni. In these picture novels the main character Asterix wears a helmet with two featered wings. The position of the wings change depending on his mood. Similar to this you can add emotion to the doll by posing the hair. By covering the eyes more or less with hair you can create subtile differences in the suggestion of emotion. Emotion like disturbance, fear, anger, seduction, surprise, sadness, happines, agression, tenderness and so on can all be supported with different hair poses.

Below you will find a series of photos that I have commented regarding the topic. The photos come from three different photo stories that I have made which are or (at some point in time) will be added to the narratives section.

Photo above: Watching under the lit     Notice that especially the spine is bent. The head is also bent a little to the side, but the neck is bent a bit forward. Especially the latter supports the sense of curiosity that Stellai seems to have in this photo. The hair is not covering the eyes and seems slightly in movement to suggest that the photo is an action shot.

Photo above: Discovering Oksanna     Again the spine is bent and the neck is bent forward, but the head is now straight up to balance the body. The shoulders are posed backwards and the posing of the legs suggest that Stellai was walking, but stopped. The arm are posed a bit wide to suggest that she needed to recover her balance. The hands are posed in angle and the fingers are spread, but gently bent to suggest inviting surprise. (If the fingers would entirely have been stretched you would have sensed rejection).

Photo above: Leading the way     Even though she cannot go any further than the length of my hand it looks like as if Stellai is moving forward. Her legs are posed as if she moves forward and her arms are bent. Her neck and head point direction.

Photo above: Ohh, help me, I need to be 'rescued'!     A little bit complex pose on Suleiya with some clear accents. These are the posing of the leg upwards with the clog balancing on the left foot and the arm bent towards her head with the back of the hand 'swiping' her forehead. The subtile posing is in the sideways bent spine, the posing of the neck, head, hair and right hand. Extra realism is suggested by the left side shoulder that by posing it to the front suggests weight of the body.

Photo above: That's mine!     Stellai's knees are bent like she is moving forward into battle. Her chest is up and her neck is also posed forward. Calernae retreats. Her chest is down, shoulders a bit forwards, arms close to the body and protecting her keep. Her neck poses backwards. What I forgot to pose here are the toes. They look unnatural in this pose.

Photo above: Excuse me, but now I can see your naked butt.     Oksanna is posed in a twist. Her attention was drawn by me while she was watching Stellai's action. Her knees are bent together and her feet point inwards to suggest innocence. Her arms are posed close to her body to keep the paper 'clothing' in place and make her look more elegant. Stellai has a typical action pose. Self-assured and focussed. Her spine is bent forward and twisted to suggest the action of pulling in the rope.

Photo above: You really don't need to do this!     Oksanna's neck is of course posed forward. Her pose suggests warning. Her fingers, slightly bent, suggest tenderness but also a level of confidence, whereas stretched fingers would have suggested fear and no confidence. Her hair is slightly waving to suggest movement.
Stellai is pulling the chord. Her spine is bent forward and to the side to suggest the making of the tension in the rope before the jump. Her hair is randomly placed covering her neck suggesting that her focus is obviously not the hair.

Photo above: OMG!     Next to the obvious, Oksanna's neck is posed forward and her knees and feet are pointing inwards. The star in this photo is of course Stellai. Chest up, legs in position, rope tense above and feeble below, hair waving. The nylon chord that I attached to Stellai's left shoe and the desk to keep her in position I have digitally removed.

Photo above: Its just grass!     Three different poses here creating all different emotions.
- Oksanna is the most hesitative. Her knees and feet point inwards. Her right hand in classic position for being scared.
- Suleiya's pose also suggest hesitation, but far less than Oksanna. Her shoulders are posed upwards and her arms and hands are balancing, but her legs stand firm.
- Other than Oksanna and Suleiya, Stellai is clearly not watching the grass. This suggests that the grass is not an issue for her. Her chest is high, arms are wide, hands planted in her waist. With her pose she displays criticism towards Suleiya and especially towards Oksanna.

Photo above: You are my best friend     In this photo it is mainly the pose of the hair that tells the story. The spine is bent. The arm is placed close to the body. The neck is bent and her head seems to rest on my arm. The legs do not touch the table floor which suggests that the 'hug' was either in action or short time based. When the legs would have been flat on the table or in another resting-position it would have looked like as if Stellai was taking a nap.

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