toyboxdx toy blog brog: is graceful art of daily expressing japanese toy
October 10, 2010
September 23, 2010
September 13, 2010
We arrive at Walker’s at 9:27 and wait for him a few minutes to show. He drives up in his truck and greetings are exchanged. He has that awesome gregarious good nature that makes picking up a conversation, even when it has been a while since you last talked, seem like no time at all. Matt is a guy with a lot on his plate, yet always makes you feel welcome.
Dave, Sanjeev, Regan and I prepare for sensory overload, and we are not disappointed.
The room smells of fresh paint, paint thinner and insanity. The machines hum, the air is thick with creativity and toys in various states of drying.
Matt takes us upstairs and unloads a bin of toys for sale. A few of us pick through and acquire some gems to add to collections and gladly see some new projects sitting in the office.
Regan is enchanted by a Weta space gun and it occurs to us all, how perfect the outfit she wore was for the occasion. Steampunk meets 50’s sci fi chic.
Matt shows some of his new acquisitions and the smell of Bullmarks is both familiar and comforting. A collective buzz soon gives way to a realization we have things to do and projects to finish.
Walker puts us to work, in helping him bag and prep some projects. We readily agree and all enjoy the quiet repetition of bag, header card, toy , staple, repeat.
I help him label and bag some Monster Color orders while Dave and Sanjeez rub some kaiju out… um yeah anyway.
Dave makes a discovery of a variation on the jumbo Raideen fist, and gives the night a level of historical jumbo significance.
In the meantime personal projects are discussed and timelines figured out, and jokes made in good nature at one’s another’s expense. Much like the community here, ball busting is a favored pastime.
With the work done late that night, we take our leave and promise to be sure the next visit is sooner than later. Matt thanks us and Regan and I are amused at the almost twisted Santa’s workshop nature of it all. Matt Walker is the mad hatter genius of our toy making community and we are all better off for it.
Visit Matt at his website and check out some of the cool things he is working on:
September 9, 2010
Coming soon…Sanjeev, Dave, Regan and I take you to the hideout of the ever hard working Matt Walker and his Dead Presidents studio.
August 29, 2010
August 21, 2010
Josh: Mason, Regan and I decide to get brunch, and then head back and open some packages that arrived earlier in the day from Japan.
You all know the feeling. It is that birthday or holiday come early half giddiness..
Two boxes sit on my bed. One slightly larger than the other. Kanji scrawled and exploding on the surface.
I realize one of them holds a number of items Regan purchased on Yahoo Japan in the past couple months. I sense her excitement . I first open the larger box and find waiting a Banso G5, A vinyl Bullmark reissue of a Ultra 7 Batt op, and a GA 51 first version that I bought on a whim.
Mason looks on with interest at the later, and it occurs to me he only lacks a first version of the GA51 in his Gaiking collection.
Handing the GA51 to Mason, I tell him to complete his set. He happily obliges me and takes the toy.
Regan is chomping at the bit and I hand the knife to her and let the madness ensue…
But I will let her (and the photos) tell you about that.
Regan: The first box I unwrapped was the die-cast Takatoku Umi-Bozu. Oh god, I love this dude. I love his Kewpie-doll arms, his blonde coiffure and his crazed (extendable!) stare. I love his seemingly dubious red…friend….thing and his completely inexplicable marble…projectile….thing. This toy is like the embodiment of my early 20s – I have no idea what’s going on but I know that it’s AWESOME. Next up were the Irutan pieces: the standard-sized Bullmark vinyl, Grip die-cast and plastic necklace of completely unknown origin. All I really want to say about these toys is that I have never seen anyone so thrilled to be a cowboy dolphin. I’m never going to let him watch The Cove. Next was, well, I have no idea what this toy is. Josh maintains that it looks like a Kure Kure Takora reject. I really just love the irony of a wind-up octopus dressed like a sushi chef. Did I mention he has feet? ‘Cause he does. Lastly was the orgy of Rockbat: the Blazer motorcycle vinyl, the 2 Rockbat mini vinyls and, of course, the disco version. These toys are amazing – particularly the sparkly charm of the latter. I can feel you rolling your eyes right now but you know what? I am still a girl and I will make squeaky noises at Rockbat all I want.
Josh: After the girl plays with her prizes I manage to find a few more gems hidden among the others myself. I unwrap a underrated Yonezawa Red baron wind up, a few Gaiking puzzles and a Godzilla v.s Megalon soundtrack 7 inch.
Mason leads us to the kitchen and opens up Gaiking. Putting him together, he flys him around and we all sit back in our chairs drunk with nostalgia and happiness. Watching the moments of relived childhood wash over others is a gift in itself. We as a community need that. It is what keeps the toy boomerang alive and well.
Today was a reminder for me, why this hobby keeps us coming back.
June 17, 2010
A flash back moment of an epic battle between one geeky clothing designer and Nakajima Ultra Earth
“In one of the more surreal moments of my life… I am tasked with outfitting an Astro Mu 5 figure . In my entire fashion career, he was the most difficult creature I have ever had to dress, second only to an angry Siamese I stuffed into a Frankenstein costume.”
June 14, 2010
You know you have become predictable when:
He: ” I have these Gaiking baby shoes so if we ever have kids”…
She: …”they can stare at them in the packaging”?
June 9, 2010
So what do you get when you have half a dozen toy nerds descend upon an unsuspecting Dim Sum joint, with a box full of protos and a mind full of marketing ideas?
Regan and I arrive before anyone else and soon get a message from Alen he is almost there. I imagine him zipping in and out of traffic with a passenger seat full of Nekosaurs and think about how crazy he drove when he had a damn Volkswagon new Beetle, and not his monster of a Solstice. He is likely listening to the Gatchaman soundtrack and blowing past Honda Civics, humming along, wishing he was dressed in his Condor outfit.
Everyone soon arrives and we make our way to the table. They smartly stick us in the corner of the back room, out of the way, as the waiters seem to be curious about what this rag tag bunch is up to. Why are they carrying a box of robots to their table anyway?
It does not take long for the waitresses to be amused and pick up various Sofubi Neckos and giggle and comment on how “cute” they are.
We have gained fans, and the pork buns are rolling around the table while Alen in his bemused but stoic Ceo persona, hands out the goodies.
Various Matt Walker painted vinyls make their way into our greasy hands. Chops sticks on one side, and sparkle Monster Color Nekos in the other.
Course two is a new selection of Neko USBs, and before long Alen pulls out the big guns…A licensed VOLTRON USB which Yen has quietly been working on, as well as a Popy style catalog for future releases!
After lunch we head out, and a few other items are shared and traded. Dave thoughtfully brings Regan her three talkers.
She happily puts them in the car, and we plan for a meeting at Mason’s house later for dinner (bacon) and a Godzilla movie.
Not a better time could be asked for.
Next Brog: Mason’s dinner party and collection.