Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Uamou Christmas Tree

Next up in our parade of Tokyo Christmas trees is this one in the Uamou Studio. Beautiful decorations!

Speaking of Medicom....more sofubi exclusives

Recently I wrote about the upcoming RESTORE x Medicom exclusives. On the same day (Dec 10), Project 1/6 will release a slew of other sofubi exclusives (presumably online and at the shop):



Max Toy

New sofubi and other toys spotted at Medicom Project 1/6 shop

We stopped by Project 1/6 (Medicom's flagship shop in Shibuya) the other day and snapped some pics of what's in stock.


 More after the jump:

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Plaseebo x Todd Robertson Mecha Brain Crawler

Bob Congee (Plaseebo) writes in to tell us about a new collaboration with Todd Robertson, whose mecha virus creations have been seen at many a locale, including Pachisummit, the Blobpus x Masayoshi Hanawa exhibition, and of course the Lot F gallery. Bob we also know well from his many sofubi creations and customs which have been shown at countless shows worldwide.

The two have joined forces to create a stunning short run of figures, called the Mecha Brain Crawler. Here's a description of the collab, in Bob's words:

"We are pleased to offer the second collaboration with one of our favorite customizers. For this offering Todd has infected the Plaseebo Night Gamer vinyl brain and Bobs hand cast resin Octocrawler base with his "Mecha Virus" to create the "MECHA BRAIN CRAWLER ".

Using Styrene, aves sculpt, found electronics, vintage vacuum tubes, resin, vinyl, and glass marbles, Todd has created a masterfully crafted  original figure lusciously painted with MonsterKolor, Montana sprays, acrylics and One shot. This unique character is based on Todds original backstory."
More pics of the figures, followed by Todd's backstory of the figure + ordering info:

 More after the jump:

Grody Shogun sofubi assembling (Monster Kara update #3)

Here's a video of the sofubi assembling process. Luke is assembling blank GID Monster Kara parts.

A bit more on the release's progress: Irene and I have finished designing the headers, and we got them + the prints printed at a really nice place in Tokyo. I think you guys are going to love how they turned out. So that's all done, and we're still right on track to get everything shipped as scheduled. :)

Monday, November 28, 2011

Sunguts exhibition at One up Akiba

The latest solo show at One up Akiba features the sofubi figures and customs of Sunguts. The showcase is chock full of figures at great prices. As always, write to Ken-san (One up's owner) to ask about ordering. (And tell him KK sent you. ;-) Here's his e-mail:

Show pics:

1,000 yen each.
 More after the jump:

New from Uamou

New images from Studio Uamou:

 More after the jump:

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Yoyogi Park Flea Market

Well, this was a new experience - in Japan anyway. It brought back memories of cruising flea markets as a kid. This is the real deal, with people sitting on the ground with tarps covered with stuff they don't want. Well, there was a twist. Most people get around Tokyo via subway, not private car, so a lot of vendors brought their stuff in suitcases, plopped them down, opened them, and voila, there's your shelving. ^_^

It was mostly clothes, but you've also got your odd knickknacks, Radiohead CDs, Twin Peaks VHS sets, toys, trash, and tawdry magazines. Ah, the deals they were a flying! I didn't buy anything, but Irene found a few things.

Pics from the gathering of the merchants of pennies:

 More after the jump:

New from Grody Shogun

New images from the Fort:

Irene bonked her head on this ornery critter.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

New Fuei Shokai character: Erlkonig

Hot on the heels of the release of their first character, Slender Man, Fuei Shokai is back in the saddle with a new one, called Erlkonig, The figure looks to have the body of Slender Man, but with new paint work and other noticeable differences.

Erlkonig has a cape, as well as a crown of sorts...a crown of nightmares, that is. The headpiece is composed of three real bones, this time from a badger. (Incidentally, Slender Man's teeth were human, but Fuei Shokai has emphasized that they were found, not purchased.) The crown looks to be tied together with a wire.
Erlkonig was just released in Japan - this weekend, in fact. It's being sold at Tacoche, a store on the 3rd floor of Nakano Broadway. The price is 7,000 yen. I asked Fuei Shokai if the figure will be available elsewhere, and they said international distribution of their line is being handled through Lulubell (as with Slender Man). No word yet when Erlkonig will be made available overseas.

Erlkonig is an old Danish folktale, which later became a poem by Goethe, a Schubert composition, and so on. Erlkonig (Elf King, from the original Danish) is an evil mystical being that stalks the forest and carries children away. Creepy stuff.

Fuei Shokai's new toy version of the legend certainly carries a sinister connotation!

Monster Kara Update #2: Sofubi parts prep

The Grody Shogun x KK debut Monster Kara order is coming along very nicely. Here's a video of me sounding very tired + Luke using a new tool (new to the Fort anyway) to drill holes into the Karakuri bodies. (Like with many other sofubi figures, when toy bodies are cast, the only hole is at the neck, so either someone at the factory or the maker has to create arm holes.)

So, there's an inside look at the parts prep stage of toy production. We're moving right along with the Monster Karas and are right on track.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Super Sentai Series Christmas Tree スーパー戦隊シリーズクリスマスツリー

Here's another Christmas tree set up in Akihabara. This one celebrates the 35th anniversary of Super Sentai, the live action TV show. Like the Akiba Kamen Rider Christmas tree, at the base of each side of this one are backlit images of the show's characters. On top are a couple of toys.

 More after the jump:

Mai Nagamoto art 長本 真衣 のアートワーク

The other day, I covered the Uamou x Mai Nagamoto (長本 真衣) exhibition at Studio Uamou. We got to see Mai's paintings, customs, and dioramas, as they intersected with Uamou's toys and characters. A few images from that show:

We often look at toys and toy imagery here, but, when possible, I think it's nice to sidestep and look at an artist's other work, to get a more well-rounded picture of their work, inspirations, color palette, and design sense.

So I was happy Mai when sent me more images of her artwork and gave the OK to post them here:

You can check out more of Mai's work on her site.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

New from Grody Shogun: Meet the flash monster

One of the most fun and interesting things about Grody Shogun is the way Luke pushes boundaries and challenges collectors to stretch their perceptions of toys and collecting. A while ago, he told me about an idea he had to convert plastic toy waste into a figure. Yesterday, as Irene and I visited his studio, he put the concept to the test and created a new toy before our eyes. There's no name for the figure yet, so for this article, I'll just call it the flash monster.
When a vinyl part is pulled at the factory, there's excess plastic jutting out. That's cut off one piece at a time with an exacto knife.

What you're left with is a cylindrical piece of waste plastic, called flash. Every toy maker has mountains of flash, which is typically thrown away, since what else can you do with it? What indeed. Luke hit on the idea of stacking pieces of flash to use as a body for a toy.
 More after the jump:
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