Little Crow is a French photographer with a passion for dolls. Her photos stand out because of the lovely pastel colours and the frequent use of fantasy elements, giving them an ethereal atmosphere. Recently, she was asked by Groove to make some photos of the lovely Steampunkworld dolls, so we decided it was time to get to know her a little better!
How did you discover Pullip, and who was your first doll? Why did you choose her?
I discovered Pullip in 2007 when I was seeking informations about Japan. I fell in love with this cute faces of the dolls. I waited 2008 to buy my first doll. She was a Xiao Fan model. It was one of my favorite models, I liked her outfit, her make-up and generally her sweetness.
What do you like most about Pullip? What sets her apart from other dolls?
What I prefer in Pullip is the possibility to customize them. I also like the mechanism of the eyes and the articulated body. I think it’s these elements that really differentiate them from others dolls. They are more “original”.
You have an education in photography and also make wonderful non-doll related photos. What do you like about photographing dolls? What makes it different from photographing humans?
That’s a tough question !
I have indeed a degree in photography and I work with human models as well as dolls. What I like with these miniature models is that they are always with me. This is what differenciates humans models and dolls models for me. They are always available, they dress the way I want, pose exactly as I imagined and aren’t feeling cold during winter if I decide to put them in panties in the snow lol!
Where do you find the inspiration for making new doll photos?
Owww …. Good question !
Usually I think about a theme or an object, some music, a movie, something that’s going inspire me. Sometimes it’s just the character of the doll that will inspire me a shot. It really depends on the photo that I’m going to realize.
What do you find the most challenging when making doll photos?
There is nothing that I find particulary difficult. Actually, it depends more on the picture I have in mind. Sometimes it may be the light, sometimes the position of the doll. It really depends on the photo.
But if I had to pick one, I would say the light.
You have photographed both stock dolls and customized ones. Do you approach these differently? For example, do you take the (stock) personality of a doll into consideration?
I don’t think I have a different photographic approach when the doll is stock or customized. I always try to exploit the personality of the doll, whether stock or customized. I make sure to take a theme that would fit her.
Your photos sometimes have amazing special effects. Could you tell us a little on how you create these effects? Do you use photoshop, or do you prefer to build as much in ‘real life’ as possible?
Thank you !
Generally, most of the work is done in “real life”. I use photoshop after to refine details, apply textures, make my photo more “magical”. But I always try (with some exceptions) to not abuse of photoshop.
For this photo, I used a technic of double exposure/superposition. It’s actually simple: I took 2 photos, almost identical ones. One photo with the installation and one without. After I superpose them and delete somes details with photoshop… 😉
Now, it has no more secrets for you!
You have recently made some wonderful photos of the steampunk Alice dolls for Groove. Could you tell us a little about how this came to be? Where did you get the ideas for the steampunk Alice photos?
Yes ! I’m so happy to have had this experience ! It’s magical to take photos for Groove.
The Paris shop “Jolie Doll” contacted me about the opportunity to take pictures of the steampunk Alice dolls for Groove on her demand. I was obviously very touched and excited to take photos for them, so I accepted and had been put in touch with Kano of Groove. Jolie Doll served as an intermediary. (Thank you again, Jolie Doll!)
I didn’t get any guidelines and was able to unleash my imagination. Steampunk and Alice in Wonderland are two themes that inspire me a lot. So, the ideas came to me naturally. I tried to remind myself of the world of the book and then tried to marry it to steampunk elements to create my scenes.
What tips would you give beginning photographers?
One very important tip: Take pleasure! And that goes for all activities. The most important thing is to be happy in your work, know how to be self-satisfied and have fun photographing. Don’t hesitate to take an interest in the activity, watch tutorials to progress, set goals, but always take pleasure doing so!
Keep calm, have fun and take photos!