Thursday, June 25, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
Hippo-Rider as painted by Leecifer. find more of his painting here: Lee's flickr
Originally, the Apocalypse Parade figures were meant to look like degraded sculptures of antiquity that were cast in the form of those cheap plastic toys that most of us have played with at one time or another. You are probably familiar with the type: cheap PVC or rubber animals sold as sets in drug store toy aisles. As opposed to purchasing the "farm" set or the "jungle" set or the "random assortment of dinosaurs that didn't live in the same geologic time period" set, my collection offers the option of playing with the end of the world. The Apocalypse Parade figures hope to intellectualize these ubiquitous toys of our youth as having a pseudo-religious and faux-archaeological value.
Wing'd Rhino & Bombardier Gorilla from the Black Gold Set
The Hippo-Rider, Wing'd Rhino, and Bombardier Gorilla were the first three figures in the set, and I think best exemplify the look of time-worn sculptures of centuries past. As I continued to make more figures to go with these first three, the themes inherent to the figures began to mutate as did the figures themselves. To me, the figures began to tell a story. The next two figures, Snailion and Conch-Elk, evolved from that story.
Hippo-Rider from the Black Gold Set
In my head, these resin miniatures became reproductions of "real" statues belonging to a lost culture that prophesied their end of days, wherein the Almighty would send an army of animals, angels, and mutants to retake the Earth from the tainted hands of humans. The ancient culture that created these "original" statues is largely undefined and the murkiness of this faux-history aids in the transformation of these toys from dollar-store-fodder to fictional lost artwork. The next set of Apocalypse Parade miniatures, when finished, should further expose this fictional lost culture and its doomsday prophesy.
Snailion and Conch-Elk from the Black Gold Set
The first set offered for public consumption is called the "Black Gold" Apocalypse Parade. It is cast in black plastic resin with gold paint accents and a lovely gloss. There are six sets of five figures each, with five of those sets being publicly available and one set remaining in my personal collection. Cost per set of five figures is $35 + $6 shipping in the US (international shipping is $10) payable by PayPal at firstname.lastname@example.org. Feel free to contact me at this address if you are interested in a custom set.
All photos from the Black Gold Set were expertly taken by toy photographer extraordinaire, Kirkland Jue of Toybotstudios Blog
Check out his blog for amazing photos and news of Japanese toy culture and beyond. He's also a wizard behind the airbrush, so check out some of his custom toy painting too.
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Bert- thin, slightly balding male
Erny- plump male; Bert's roommate
Two men are sitting opposite each other at a small table. Upon the table sits a solitary slice of blueberry pie. The scene begins with both men staring at the slice of pie as if frozen in time. Behind them is a framed watercolor painting of a smiling woolly mammoth hanging next to a window that admits a faint amount of street light. The flowered wallpaper gives evidence of domesticity, recalling a 1950s kitchen.
Bert: Hey, Erny, you gonna eat that pie?
Erny: The thought had entered my mind. Yes, I am planning to partake in this sugary compote goodness wedged between two pieces of bread-like crust.
Bert: Well now, I am glad to see that you have an adequate ability in the description of all things pastry. You show much improvement from the days when I picked your soiled flesh up out of the gutter in Greenwich Village and landed you in a respectable area code. Now I ask you again, were you planning to devour that entire piece of scrumptious purple pleasure by yourself?
Erny: You see, dear Bert, that it is absolutely necessary for my person to ingest that piece of pie by myself. The doctor told me just the other day that it is essential to my health that I consume more starch, fruit, and sugary foods. So, obviously, this single item fulfills all three of his demands. I would gladly share a bit of it with you but the insurance company requires that I comply with all of the doctor's requests or they will no longer carry me.
Bert: They'll no longer carry you! I've been carrying your bulky weight around with my wallet for the past seventeen years. Who does your laundry? Pays your bills? Lies to your mother about your honest Baptist lifestyle? As far as your doctor's wishes, I think you consumed enough sugar last night with that layabout by the garbage cans outside of the deli. What was it? Six wine coolers and four whisky sours, I believe.
Erny: Wow, I think you might be right. That's exactly what I had. You must be pretty good at research, you know, being a stalker and all.
Bert (somewhat surprised): What are you talking about?
Erny: You think I don't know about the shrine you've built to Kirk Cameron up in the attic? Don't you think the police would like to know who's been making those obscene calls to Kirk's house sounding strangely like a Muppet?
Bert: But how did you know? I've never told anyone. I'm rather ashamed about the whole thing, actually.
Erny: While you were at work, I joined the neighborhood watch. They know everything.
Bert: How would they know anything?
Erny: Don't you think it's odd for a forty-five year old man to buy old back issues of Teen Beat and Tiger Beat at garage sales? And not just asking to buy them, but asking specifically for issues with Kirk Cameron and 21 Jump Street-era Johnny Depp on pages opposite each other. People remember these things.
Bert: I'm so ashamed.
Erny: Hey, it's all right. We've all got something twisted in our closets. Remember when I joined that cult that killed Jayne Mansfield? The next day I woke up strung out on goofballs with a bloody knife in my pocket. And do you know where I woke up? In Don Knott's guest room next to a certain drunk young blonde from Charlie's Angels.
Bert: Get out! You and Farrah?!
Erny: Yeah, you know, you just got to look back on these things and laugh.
Bert: I guess you're right. But anyway, about that piece of pie....
Erny: I already told you that my doctor says I need to consume more...
Bert: Would you please shut up? You orange-faced balloon, still buying your clothes in the Husky department aren't you? What happened to that miracle diet you'd been ranting about? I thought you said just one little pill and you would magically lose those extra pounds.
Erny: Well, I'd rather not talk about that particular remedy. Rather painful in the pocket book if you know what I mean.
Bert: Actually, I do not.
Erny: Well it turned out to be a tapeworm in that pill. Cost me a hefty price to have them pull that thing out of my intestines. Painful, too. You realize where they've got to pull it out from, don't you?
Bert: Well, let's say I go down to the corner store and pick up some vanilla ice cream. That way we can make pie a la mode. With each of us contributing to the whole, we can share equally.
Erny: Sounds fair.
Bert: All right then. I'm off.
Bert exits stage left to go to the store. Erny is left sitting alone, staring off into space as if daydreaming. Still looking off into space, he picks up the fork and takes a bite of the pie.
Erny: Mmmm, blueberry.....