Laura Garijo Engendrito

The Unique Dolls and BJDs of Artist Laura Garijo (Part 1)

In the first installment of our interview with Laura Garijo, Laura, also known as Sakuli, describes her journey to doll making, and introduces us to IrrealDoll, a magical world of dolls and BJDs.

BJDmagazine: Tell us about your background. Were you trained as an artist?

Sakuli: First of all, thanks for the interview, BJDMagazine. My real name is Laura Garijo. I studied Fine Arts in Seville, Spain, for years. I specialized in graphic design and engraving, but my true vocation is illustration and doll sculptures. I didn’t have many chances to do personal projects, and when I could do them, I always thought about making my own dolls, or working by myself in my spare time. Fortunately, I have been working with my friend, Kat (Insomnia-doll), who is another doll artist, and we enjoyed investigating how to make our dolls.

I felt so happy when I could spend time on my own projects during the last year of my education. I started writing and illustrating a book, and started my doll project called Engendritos, a series of creatures that emerged spontaneously.

Laura Garijo Illustration

BJDmagazine: When did you discover BJDs and what attracted you to them?

Sakuli: I became interested in BJDs about 7 years ago (how time flies!). The first time I saw a little blurry photo on the Internet I was totally captivated. What a perfect doll, I thought. I had always loved dolls – I spent hours playing with them as a child. But these ball-jointed dolls were something different. Besides being really beautiful, they were special because I could choose wigs, eyes, and even the face-up! They’re special because you have the ability to create a custom doll, just for yourself.

Laura Garijo Engendrito

BJDmagazine: What resources did you use to learn to sculpt dolls? (Books, online tutorials, classes)

Sakuli: Experimenting is the best way to learn anything, so I started by teaching myself. I asked my sculpture professors, who helped me sculpting and molding. But they didn’t know enough about resin and dolls, because they had never done anything like that. So, finally, I used the Internet and some books, which were a good help for me.

Laura Garijo Engendrito

BJDmagazine: What was your first attempt at sculpting a doll? What did you think of it?

Sakuli: It was a long time ago, haha! Well, I first tried creating dolls when I was a child using fabrics,painted faces, and clothes. And more recently, I made a face…a mask with natural hair, acrylics eyes, made from air-dry painted clay. At that moment, I was proud of the result. But now… I can just say that was a long time ago, haha!

My first true attempt at sculpting a doll head was disastrous. Someone recommended using plasticine to model the head for creating a mold. But it was terrible. The doll head died during the molding process.

My second try was much better. I sculpted the head of my character, Suichi, from Puppen fimo and then created a mold from it. The materials were better, but I had resin problems. I’ve made several versions of Suichi, but now I want to create the final version by making small modifications to the current head. You can see Suichi by visiting my Flickr gallery at http://tinyurl.com/62bvfxf

Laura Garijo Suichi BJD

BJDmagazine: What do you like the most about sculpting dolls?

Sakuli: I love seeing how the dolls grow. It is incredible how a lifeless thing like clay can become whatever you want. It’s magic. And I like the whole process of sculpting, painting, and dressing to create a character.

Laura Garijo Ringo SD BJD

BJDmagazine: Tell us more about your current doll sculpting project, Enyo. What was your inspiration for him? Who is he?

Sakuli: Well, during my last year of art education in Kiel (Germany), I was thinking about making a whole doll. I had started a body, bigger than an MSD and smaller than an SD. It was for the Suichi head. But I ended up buying a Dollstown elf body for him, because of the problems I have had with resin (bubbles!!), and I really love the sculpts from this company.

Then, I wanted to sculpt something smaller. I thought about creating a YOSD size doll. But  I changed my mind after sculpting two very small heads the size of bon-bon candies. I used an air-dry clay that I didn’t like very much. It was difficult to sculpt, but these little creatures looked very cute in their own way. So I decided to make a doll with different proportions. At first I did a sketch, and then I started modeling him/her. My dolls from the Engendritos series don’t have a gender.

Enyo is a little creature invisible to the human eye. Engendritos is an imaginary species that lives in our homes or like wild animals. They wear animal skins shaped like baby pajamas with ears. They also like to imitate and make fun of humans [...] Oh! And the Engendritos names come from butterfly names. For example, Enyo’s name comes from Enyo lugubris.

Laura Garijo Enyo BJD

Please join us Thursday at 9 a.m. (Boston Time) for the second part of our interview with Laura Garijo.

You can find Sakuli on: 

Flickr: http://www.flickr.com/photos/27235642@N07/

Her Blog: http://sakuli.blogspot.com/

Her Website: http://www.lauragarijo.com/

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About BJDmagazine

BJDmagazine is a free online magazine for the ball-jointed doll community. We feature DIYs articles and how-to's, interviews with prominent BJD artists, BJD photography, and product/doll company news.

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