[DESIGNER VINYLS] Hot or Not?

Posted by Sanjeev 
Sanjeev Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> It just occurred to me: if you're gonna collect
> something, make fuck-damn sure you'd still be
> collecting it completely in a vacuum. In other
> words, completely take peer validation, artist
> pandering, hype marketing, etc., out of the
> equation. If you'd still be satisfied with a shelf
> full of whatever it is you're considering even if
> no one else on Earth knew or gave a shit about it,
> then you're in good shape.

Couldn't have been stated any better.


> This is obviously not the case for the vast
> majority of those collecting designer vinyl...

Designer vinyl has always reminded me of, at best, of the absent-minded doodles of a high school student and, at worst, the (probably carcinogenic) bootleg vinyl toys I've seen for sale on carts at the border crossing in Tijuana, Mexico. If you wouldn't pay more than a few pesos for an impressionistic rip-off of a cross between a super deformed Kamen Rider and Godzilla and Superman or whatever, then you shouldn't pay hundreds of dollars for the same toy just because it was designed by an "artist" and was produced in limited quantities. I also think there's an unspoken expectation of mutual hyping and promotion among the artists that guarantees biased judgement. Even if one artist doesn't like another artist's particular "piece" they feel obliged to find a reason to like it or pretend to like it so they can get the same treatment.

--------------------------
I want YOU for Moé Sucks Army



Edited 3 time(s). Last edit at 09/07/2011 06:20PM by Scopedog.
ed Wrote:
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> Anyone who tells you there is still a cool kids
> club in that "scene" (which it has become) is
> lying to you. There are no cool kids in the ranks
> of mouthbreathers anymore.(they might think they
> are, I can assure you they're not cool kids)
>
> Sorry guys, I never thought I would say it, I'm
> pretty much (with the exception of Paul's and
> Pushead's stuff) done with vinyl. At least in it's
> "modern" state.
> Maybe something here and there, other than that
> I'm not finding anything appealing.
>
> It's all contrived garbage. That and not going to
> skullbrain anymore have put a lot in perspective
> for me.
>
> Ben is right, collect old robots. Or other stuff.
> Just make sure you're having fun doing it,
> otherwise you're going to end up with a worthless
> pile of crap that you don't like lying around in
> your basement.


It's kind of a downer thing, but I am right behind you. I can count on one hand the number of non-vintage vinyls that I want, and I'm not willing to jump through the hoops or pay out the ass for any of them. Right now I'm all in for 3A, Cris Rose resin, Transformers, and general robutts.

My biggest gripe right now is that I wouldn't mind converting a couple of my overflow vinyls into 3A or resin purchases, but there's only like, 3 toys you can actually sell for as much or more than you paid for them at this point, and of the two of those I have, I want to keep both. I can't even get retail on the rest.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
ed
At this point, I have a bin of garbage, I mean toys that I'm just posting on ebay once in a while.
I've made enough to buy two vintage tins with the money from those sales, and every night I check those toys out (well, one...the other hasn't been sent from Japan yet) and I'm happier now with my collecting than I've been in a very long time.

It's nice not having that noise every day.
There's like two threads I check for news on Skullbrain, and otherwise I just Mark All Threads as Read so I don't even notice. Much nicer.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
ed
But seriously Ben, how much "news" gets posted there?

I've still managed to keep up with anything new from Masatos emails. And nothing new is catching my eye at all.

Oh you guys talked about that blobpus toy a little. Does absolutely nothing to me, looks and feels like a flat faced version of anraku's dako toy.

Funny bit of trivia that I found recently. Mason let me borrow his Gatchaman DVD set to watch. One of anraku's early animations is apparently an "homage" to the opening scene of the first episode of Gatchaman. I was laughing out loud when I saw it.
ed Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> At this point, I have a bin of garbage, I mean
> toys that I'm just posting on ebay once in a
> while.
> I've made enough to buy two vintage tins with the
> money from those sales, and every night I check
> those toys out (well, one...the other hasn't been
> sent from Japan yet) and I'm happier now with my
> collecting than I've been in a very long time.
>
> It's nice not having that noise every day.

While I agree with you on how much noise you have to weed through to find any relevancy on SB, I still have friends on there Ed. You're right it gets lonelier and lonelier all the time with people moving on (include yourself in that category) but where is a japanese vinyl collector (well one who collects vintage repros and patchi) suppose to go? I don't have much in common with the robot collectors here, nor do I have much in common with the hype neo kaiju designer toy collectors there. I think I should start my own forum. It's like that stuck in the middle song.

Also Ed you don't have a pile of garbage! What about your mid size hedo collection or your Anraku?
ed
Chris you are right on a couple of things there I suppose.

I have other boards that I read, and I have folks who are local that I can chat with. I've kept in contact with the dudes from SB that I'm friends with. I text and email them every day, it's just easier to do that for me at this point.

As for the garbage I mentioned, that's mostly stuff that I bought 4 years ago and things I don't collect anymore. The anraku and hedos are still on display and I have no interest in changing that.

There just comes a point where your sanity is far more important than reading a message board. I was angry every day, that isn't a good way to feel about toys that you collect to enjoy. Rather than dwell on what that place has become, it's easier to just move on to the next phase of my collecting and enjoy what I have and the friends I have made over the years.
I wish I had toy collecting friends that lived near by. I have to move out of Buffalo. Oh I got the Diatryma Birds in this week. Here is a pic:


Hukkokudo Diatryma Birds by Beautification Syndrome, on Flickr
Ed, it just sounds like you've been spending too much time around those curmudgeonly Northeastern TBDXers - its rubbing off! ;)

But in all seriousness, I don't understand the repulsiveness toward the toys in general (not just you but a lot of posters in this thread). I can understand if you don't like certain releases, but it sounds like you are pushing off almost the whole industry because of certain collectors or hype or a general dislike of the majority of releases. Just buy what you want and ignore the rest. No hostility needed. Am I oversimplifying or missing something?
Lixx Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> I wish I had toy collecting friends that lived
> near by. I have to move out of Buffalo. Oh I got
> the Diatryma Birds in this week. Here is a pic:
>
> [farm7.static.flickr.com]
> 9ff18d9_b.jpg
> Hukkokudo Diatryma Birds by Beautification
> Syndrome, on Flickr

These look like a high school student's absent-minded doodle made into a carcinogenic vinyl toy sold on a cart at the border crossing in Tijuana, Mexico. I hope you didn't pay more than a few pesos for them.

--------------------------
I want YOU for Moé Sucks Army
Scopedog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Lixx Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I wish I had toy collecting friends that lived
> > near by. I have to move out of Buffalo. Oh I
> got
> > the Diatryma Birds in this week. Here is a pic:
> >
> >
> [farm7.static.flickr.com]
>
> > 9ff18d9_b.jpg
> > Hukkokudo Diatryma Birds by Beautification
> > Syndrome, on Flickr
>
> These look like a high school student's
> absent-minded doodle made into a carcinogenic
> vinyl toy sold on a cart at the border crossing in
> Tijuana, Mexico. I hope you didn't pay more than
> a few pesos for them.


Hahahahahahahah. OK Scopedog that's your opinion. You obviously know nothing of the history behind these. They are reissues of a very old mold made by Daikyo from the early 70's, maybe even earlier (Daniel would know). While you can shrug them off as a highschool doodle made into vinyl, some of us love the simplicity and character of a primitive rough sculpt. Obviously if you're into complex robots you would not like these.



Edited 4 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2011 11:01AM by Lixx.
Scopedog Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> Lixx Wrote:
> --------------------------------------------------
> -----
> > I wish I had toy collecting friends that lived
> > near by. I have to move out of Buffalo. Oh I
> got
> > the Diatryma Birds in this week. Here is a pic:
> >
> >
> [farm7.static.flickr.com]
>
> > 9ff18d9_b.jpg
> > Hukkokudo Diatryma Birds by Beautification
> > Syndrome, on Flickr
>
> These look like a high school student's
> absent-minded doodle made into a carcinogenic
> vinyl toy sold on a cart at the border crossing in
> Tijuana, Mexico. I hope you didn't pay more than
> a few pesos for them.


Thanks for the reductive reasoning. Like Lixx explained, these have nothing to do with the hyped up 'cool kid' stuff we are sick of.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
Thanks Ben. I can respect anyone's opinion on toys, beauty really is in the eye of the beholder, not everyone is going to like all toys. Actually Scope I had the same opinion when I first started in Japanese vinyl believe it or not. All I kept seeing were Secret Base and Blobpus (at first- I had no idea all those wonderful Toho toys were being made) and I thought to myself "This is utter shit that looks like it came out of a bubblegum machine!" Now I still don't like those toys lines but I've come to appreciate people who collect them.
Sanjeev (Admin)
Lixx Wrote:
-------------------------------------------------------
> ...but where is a japanese vinyl collector
> (well one who collects vintage repros and patchi)
> suppose to go?

*Sigh*...

The 64-million-dollar question.

Anyway, yeah, I saw one of those dino-birds for the first time in person at Ed's a while back. Surprisingly nice...didn't think much about it from pics online, but in-hand, it's actually a fun lil guy. I definitely wouldn't mind picking one up at some point.



Kingboy D Wrote:
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> it sounds like you are pushing off almost the
> whole industry because of certain collectors or
> hype or a general dislike of the majority of
> releases. Just buy what you want and ignore the
> rest.

I recognize that it's a bit of a funny irony for me to be saying this given my former statement about collecting something in a vacuum, but the reality is that we don't collect things in a vacuum. I genuinely love robot toys, so I would still collect them in a vacuum...BUT if it weren't for this board and all the tight friendships (offline) I've made in this hobby, I wouldn't be nearly as involved as I am. And I most certainly wouldn't be *making* toys either. That's just how it is.

Now, if the community I had grown to love and had become an integral part of suddenly got flooded with a bunch of rich kids--resulting in a super-inflation in the number of toys produced (while seeing the quality drop)--I'd be pretty damn bitter. Nearly to the point of not wanting to touch these damn things ever again...

But just like how Ed's keeping his M1 Hedorah's and his Anraku toys, I'm keeping my Max Toy Company stuff and quite a few other designer vinyls. A ton are getting dumped, but the ones that really bring me joy to have are staying put.
Not trying to cause trouble or stir the pot, just creating healthy conversation. So to continue my thought pattern...

But in a sense, you are saying that perhaps you bought some of these because of the hype, and now you recognize it for what it is and are sickened by it, and now you lost interest in a toy. Otherwise, if you genuinely liked it from the get-go, you would still hold onto it regardless of what others felt about it. Who gives a crap - you collect for yourself, not for others' approval.

(And if anyone bought something because of hype and never really liked it - it happens. Just be able to admit it. I know I'm not going to judge. But that is different than buying something you like and now dislike it because others do.)

If you are trying to impress others, get what they like and/or get the harder to find items. On the opposite end... If you have some things that are now overhyped and you are trying to play the rebel, get rid of it. But in a sense, that is sort of "posing" too. It sort of seems like everyone here is stating they are fed up and therefore will get rid of all the stuff that everyone else likes. And more are jumping on the bandwagon, creating an all-new type of anti-hype. Its sort of hypocritical, in a sense. Now I see through this, and I don't truly believe this knowing some of you. But to an outsider, this is what it might look like.

Regardless of what the masses or anti-masses feel, I buy what I dig and can afford (or more specifically, what I feel its worth or what I would be willing to pay for it) and don't regret any of it. I do understand that tastes change and therefore things get sold off. But sell it because of the right reasons.

----

Not a continuous stream of thought from before, but touching on some similar issues...

One thing mentioned recently was the Saruman. Yeah, that all of a sudden became a hot item, and everyone snatched it up. Now they are all being sold. It never appealed to me, and I never looked twice at it. Why buy it in the first place unless you love it?

Some people are completionists too. I used to sort of feel that way, but now I see that as kind of silly. Why buy everything of a line if you don't like them all? Whether it be SOCs or Anrakus. There are some Anrakus I absolutely love (Drunk Boy, Cobalt), but most of the others look like complete messes to me. Plus, as I mentioned before, there is no way in hell I would drop major money on even the ones I love. I just don't see that its monetarily worth it. Too many other things in life that the money could be used more productively on. I can understand perhaps a vintage item of which there are so few left, but a new item creating "false" demand? This is a hobby - there has to be limits. Just my two cents.

Anyway, just providing thoughts for discussion.



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/09/2011 11:53AM by Kingboy D.
I only sell to make space and usually then it's agonizing over what I might have doubles of or what is the least desirable of the lot. Even though the Sarumon is quite unpopular and people can't give them away (I tried to sell my GID version as I have two of them, for space reasons) I decided to keep mine. Why sell them? I actually like the big sculpt (my only issue is the arms are bent entirely wrong). There is a reason I bought every toy I own, so selling is hard.
Rambling brain dump...


Wow, all doom and gloom.

I have alot of contemporary "designer" vinyl that I'll probably never get rid off. I think 2006-2009 was a great period with lots of seminal pieces (starting to sound artsy fartsy) for contemporary. Then the wheels came off and everyone wanted to be a rock star...

It can be tricky trying to determine what to buy at retail and what to bargain hunt after retail. And if you frequent the boards, it can be hard not to be pulled into certain hypes. Or just spontaneously buy something while waiting months or years for something vintage to surface. And yes, tastes change, one's individual taste can become refined or more focused.

I can somewhat identify with what you're saying Chris. I check this board every so often, but I'm more of an outsider here as I really don't get Chogokin or robots for the most part. Whereas Anraku makes sense to me, Chogokin seems like a spidery mess to me.

For years, I've been complaining about the signal/noise ratio on Skullbrain, but unfortunately its one of the few places to keep up with stuff. Yes, there are blogs and emails that announce stuff, but that doesn't go as deep as say naming all of the Butanohana micros. That's really cool.

Sometimes it can really suck. I'm clawing my way out of a hole from an unlucky M1 bag. I have a store that claims they included a toy when they shipped a hold box to me yet its MIA. I have people low-balling my already low sale items. I mistakenly ordered a wrong item that I have no interest (sloppy cut and paste before waking up with coffee).

The mutual hyping and promotion among the "artists" is quite transparent to me. Reminds me of authors that write blurbs for each others book covers. One or two come to mind who have (or seem to have) integrity and they probably wrestle with the hype and bullshit.

Still, there's also alot of amazing contemporary work IMO (or there was) that goes unspoken, no hype, no bullshit. Not mindless doodles in random umteenth colourways. For example, Charactics (now defunct) made some great work (for contemporary) IMO, but rarely gets discussed.

But at the end of the day, I'm happy with where I'm at. Not looking to impress anyone online. My friends and family can't really understand or appreciate it. That's okay. I don't get alot of what they are into or how they spend their money. I have no credit card debt or other bullshit that others seem to fall into. No dependents so if I want to overpay on something, that's entirely my decision with virtually no repercussions.

Kinda sad to see so many cool people come and go through the years.

Blah blah blah...
Although I wasn't around when SB first came about in Fall 2005. I lurked a bit here and there in 2006, finally signing up in 2007 when realizing I was into japanese vinyl way more then my brief period with Biskup toys. I have to say that even then it was a much different place then it is now. There was cheerleading and lots of plus 1's still but not to extent now.

The japanese toys that came about from 2005-2009 (I agree with Peter) were of much higher caliber and collectibility (at least for me) then the releases now. The only thing I can really think of that I still like new is Hukkokudo reprints, SOME Target Earth stuff, Butanohana, maybe the occasional Zollmen, or new Bullmark stuff. When I think back to those earlier years mentioned you could still get Anraku under $200, Charactics had amazing little sculpts (much like Butanohana), you had Emupaiya, Kaiju Ken, M1 was releasing fabulous reprints of older Bullmark especially with GID vinyl, Marmit, Bear Model. CCP was doing all the Spectreman series. Shikaruna did small runs with really great paint application as opposed to now going to one off hell with crappy paint apps. Same with Gargamel. Zollmen was just coming about. It was a special time.

Then the wheels came off and it became about one upping each other, flipping trophy pieces for ridiculous prices, every noob wanting the same 10 things, and only certain toys getting hype hype hype. I remember what I like most about those years were everyone seemed to be into different things and you could learn about a new toy every day that you previously never knew about. Now it's the same few toys getting too much coverage and a lot of the people that made that place special just leaving.
ed
You guys all make interesting and valid points.

I'm not being doom and gloom at all, I certainly have no problem with people buying what they want and when they want.

Kingboy, there is a lot of history there that has soured me a lot on that world of "collecting" or shopping as I call it these days. I lost interest in most of the toys because too many were being released, lots of extraneous factors changed as well. I'm not dragging it out in the open here though...I've moved on and realized that a lot of it just isn't for me anymore.
The other part of collecting for me is hunting things down.it's kind of a mission to research it, find it, buy it and enjoy it. This is where I differ from a lot of people I suppose, but if I put hard work into finding something I enjoy it a lot more.
Occasionally it's nice to be able to go and click buy it now on some store's website, but after time passes and every day some new thing is coming out, it gets tedious.
That being said,I need to like what I'm buying too. I've found that researching old shows and vintage robots and tin has been very rewarding for me over the past year or so since I bought my first. I come home every night and check out my toys now, for a while I walked by the case and never opened it or looked in. That isn't healthy for anyone.

At the end of the day, yes it's bittersweet that things have changed so much that I'm not interested in a lot of things that I used to collect, but I think it's completely natural to evolve and move in a different direction too.

Rambling a lot, but I think I made myself a little more clear.

Chris that blue diatryma is fantastic, it was the last one I was missing. I realized I didn't need to be complete :) That was originally a gift if you bought the whole set of the second wave you know.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/10/2011 07:17AM by ed.
Thanks for providing the thoughtful responses, guys. No disrespect intended with my posts. Just trying to create some healthy conversation and delve deeper into what you guys are saying. Some interesting viewpoints. For me, I just didn't see a lot of what you are saying because I really only focus on what I like (what I generally term "Bullmark style" stuff). So I mostly skim over most other stuff or don't visit the threads at all.
im officialy old and cranky, and dont understand you young folks anymore.Thats so far beyond insane, it boggles my mind.
One is looking at $1400 for this pair. Yikes. So basically one is paying $1200 extra for the "custom" paint jobs and exclusivity? What a joke.



And the Nags? I still don't get them. They're not even pleasant to look at. Alot of Japanese toys are just a pleasure to look at over and over. I don't see that in these figures. Might as well be looking at burn patients...
I drink alone...





and I need to write a damn book.;)
I'd rather pay $1400 for a pair of monkey generals? (what are they?) than $3000 on a Nag.. ugggh Nags.

I'm liking Kaiju Negora at the moment. The Big Fish is a delightful accessory.


The only thing annoying me a bit is the dual tail.
MattAlt (Admin)
>>The only thing annoying me a bit is the dual tail.

Neko-mata!
Haha thanks for the backstory Matt
The problem I have with "designer vinyl" is that it has no back story. No nothing really.

Granted, I like and have my share of designer vinyl (Secret Base, Gargamel, RxH) and have no apologies or what not about liking and collecting them. Whatever. Really don't care that they're unpopular up here. IMO, they look great in groups. The paint can be really eye-catching. Relatively cheap at retail. But designer vinyl can only go so far.

You buy a designer toy and that's basically it. You're done.

But with vintage, you can revisit the TV shows (or see them for the first time). Maybe track down a bootleg soundtrack or some youtube videos of commercials. Or maybe some print material or trading cards. Or research the names of the villains or...

That's my basic gripe about "designer vinyl".

Maybe this is why some people start modding or mashing up figures.
Sanjeev (Admin)
I can totally see that. I like some designer stuff because it really carries the flavor of toys and media that have come before, though. Like Yamomark's kaijin designs give me a real tokusatsu vibe--like they should be monsters of the week for a Kamen Rider or super sentai show. Similarly, Mark Nagata's kaiju designs are totally fun in my opinion, and don't carry the debatable BS that goes with a lot of the "hotter" stuff out there.

So in a certain sense, these guys (and some others, I'm sure) are making brand new characters, but they're almost an extension of vintage toys, if you will.
Those Negoras are beautiful. The tan and black one is an event exclusive, in Chicago? Brutal. I see that the Max Toy Co Flickr describes the grey one as a Hyper Hobby magazine offer... does that mean it's a mail-in, for Japan only?

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
asterphage Wrote:
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> Those Negoras are beautiful. The tan and black one
> is an event exclusive, in Chicago? Brutal.

Yeah for the Toy Karma 3 exhibit for rotofugi.. it was also a lottery exclusive too. DOUBLE BRUTAL.

There have only been 3 incarnations of it so far all exclusives; the 2 I posted and a clear yellow one which was first released to the max toy club and didn't go public as it sold out.

I hope there is a clear/glow release that's a bit more easily obtainable.
I'm way into those "real cat" color schemes. If they did it in calico as a general release, that would be absolutely perfect.

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
Anonymous User
asterphage Wrote:
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> I'm way into those "real cat" color schemes. If
> they did it in calico as a general release, that
> would be absolutely perfect.

I think you mean "purrrrfect." Eh? Eh??
MEOWGNIFICENT

-Paul Segal

"Oh, the anger is never far, never far." -SteveH
Look familiar?

Source:
[www.rajetoys.com]
I'm all for re-imagining a design in a new light, even if I don't like the end result. It's kinda amazing, though, that there's not one mention of the 'inspiration' for this guy on that site.

Introducing Prometheus Rising Studio.
[prometheusrising.net]
I make 3D printed mecha action figures.
Prometheum5 Wrote:
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> I'm all for re-imagining a design in a new light,
> even if I don't like the end result. It's kinda
> amazing, though, that there's not one mention of
> the 'inspiration' for this guy on that site.

What's it inspired by?

--------------------------
I want YOU for Moé Sucks Army
Sanjeev (Admin)
Scopedog Wrote:
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> What's it inspired by?

Josh Fraser.
The Inazuman RaijinGo cars for the feet are kinda funny.
Most definitely Gaiking. The horns are a dead giveaway. But the knee pads are another clue and the stylized face on the chest. The headcrest too.
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