The Little Women by Davorka Andjelic
Davorka Andjelic scouts the nooks and crannies of London, UK in search of the best locations to photograph her unique handcrafted dolls.
- Description: Combining paper dolls and interesting landscapes to create fun photographs.
- Duration: Ongoing since 2009
- Notes: My creations are open to interpretation!
Inspired by a paper angel that my friend gifted me as a Christmas present, I began making paper dolls of my own six years ago. Over the years, the dolls gradually developed, inspired by children’s work at the primary school that I work in. When I started using Instagram about three years ago, that is when I really started experimenting with photography.
I used old photographs as backgrounds and set about finding interesting colours and textures too. Soon, I was making my own settings, taking the dolls on my travels and trying to find the right scene for each doll. All I try to do is create images that will resonate with each person differently.
Combining paper dolls and everyday settings or interesting landscapes is my attempt to link past and present. With each doll, I am creating photographs that deal with a range of emotions like belonging, loneliness, individuality and so on. I take one day at a time. Whatever I feel on that day, influences the images I make. For me, creating a little tableau and finding the right composition is an extremely relaxing experience.
I find the dresses for the dolls mainly in old Vogue magazines. I chose dresses that appeal to the most to my taste. Also, how can you say no to a red Valentino dress! The posture of the original model plays a large part in selecting the right kind of eyes.
A number of locations in London work well for me and I revisit some of them with different dolls. While the main reactions and feedback I receive are from Instagram, 91 I get some fun and even puzzled reactions when I am out shooting too!
The most common comment I receive from people, however, is that the project reminds them of their childhood. This makes me very happy as I always hope that my images provide people with an escape from everyday realities. I want to awaken the child that we all have in us and remind us of our happy, carefree days. And, someday, I hope to create a children’s book dealing with the simpler moments in life, with my photos as illustrations.
I used an Apple iPhone 5s for most of my images as it phone allows me to stop and take photos whenever I find an interesting setting. I very rarely use my Fuji Fine Pix S 2950. For a project like this, whatever equipment you have at hand will serve you the best.
— As told to Natasha Desai
To view more images by Davorka Andjelic, you can visit her Instagram.