Friday, 2 December 2016

Random Pony Thoughts About...Minty

Let's take a moment to consider a specific pony.
Various and sundry Mintys
What is it about Minty?  Why is she so popular?  Is it because she's green?  Because she's appeared in three of the four generations of MLP?  Because of her enthusiasm for socks?
G1 Minty.  Perhaps the least minty-Minty
There should certainly be more green ponies.  It actually irks me that one of the Mane 6 isn't green, which would have completed the rainbow.  All the Mintys are green, though, and it makes them stand out among all the pink, purple, and white ponies.  Green ponies often seem to be some of the most popular with collectors.
Nothing says Christmas like a pair of Mintys
G3 Minty is one of the few characters who's at all interesting, mainly due to her starring role in A Very Minty Christmas.  She gets as much character development in 30 minutes as any G3 pony gets in six-odd years of cartoons, back cards, and merchandising.
I'm just saying
Does anyone else think that when Hasbro designed G3 Minty they confused G1 Minty with Mint Dreams?  There's definitely more of a resemblance here, I'm just saying.
I swore I was going to stop with the Mane 6
Minty is like a potato chip.  You can't have just one.

Elf

Sunday, 20 November 2016

You're damn right I'm celebrating!

Hell yeah, they are!

Eight and a half years where one of two paycheques each month went to my loans.  Because that's what a loan is, it's an amount of money that you borrow, and that you're expected to pay back, with interest.

Four jobs: one retail, one mail room, one that I'd rather have stabbed myself in the eye than go to every day for four years, and one I enjoy and where I use what I've learned in university on a daily basis.  Because sometimes you have to do what you need to, before you can do what you want to.

Am I working "in my field?"  Technically no, but as I said above, I use the skills I learned in university all the time.  I have a job where I research, write, communicate, negotiate, and problem solve daily - all the skills I enjoyed using as an academic. I'm not saying I'd keep going to work if I won $50M, but as working for a living goes, I'm finally in a good place now. Because good things come to those who work for them (although sometimes it doesn't feel like you'll ever get there).

I've worked hard.  I've paid off my loans a year before they were due.  I've gone without some things I'd have liked to have.  I haven't travelled as much or as far as I wanted to.  But I've also slowly grown my collection.  I've gone to the MLP Fair every year and saved my pony money to spend there.  I've bought a house that I love and that I can afford.  Because life is like that, ups and downs, good times and bad.

That's why I feel it's so important to stick to your budget as a collector (as a human!)?  The fact that I have more disposable income now is not going to change that. My only debt now is my mortgage and I want to keep it that way.  That paycheque is going into savings now.  I want to retire early.  I want to do a few things around the house.  I want to have more emergency savings than I have now and more savings generally.  I want to give more to causes that mean something to me.

But first...one paycheque...one full paycheque is getting spent.  On whatever the hell I want for myself.  It won't be entirely on ponies (a lot will be on ponies) but it will be fun.

You're damn right I'm celebrating!

Elf

Friday, 4 November 2016

Rainbow Pride

Rainbow Pride was a quick custom - obviously made from a Rainbow Dash.  Her symbols were designed to cover pen marks on both sides and match the colours in her hair.  Since her hair and eyes were in perfect shape, I kept them original.
Elf

Friday, 21 October 2016

It's a Collector's Prerogative...

...to change her mind.

I've changed mine numerous times over the almost twenty (!) years that I've been collecting as an adult.  The first was probably relatively early on when I decided that, if I was going to end up with a couple of hundred ponies, I should decide on a focus.  The focus that I chose was to decide to collect ponies rather than ponies and LPS and Pound Puppies and action figures and etc, etc.

(couple of hundred ponies...teehee)
See-through ponies were not on my original list...
A few years later, as I was updating my want list, I realized that I was coming close to having all the G1s on my list.  I'm not going to lie, I panicked a little bit.  As much as I live the belief that a collector should be able to find enjoyment in their collection without having to constantly add to it, I do enjoy adding to it, as well.  This moment of mild panic caused me to re-evaluate my want list in a way I hadn't previously.  This was the moment when I moved past my original collecting goals (that I wasn't even fully aware of) and consider ponies that I hadn't considered before.
...Neither were molded symbol ponies...
...Or Sea Ponies.
There were still ponies that didn't make the cut, however.  For years I hated the look of the Shady pose, to the point that I wouldn't have any pony in that pose in my collection.  The broad forehead, square stance, and thick legs did nothing for me.  It was only years later, when I had bought a couple of ponies in that pose for a swap partner, that I re-evaluated.  By which I mean, I suddenly realized that I didn't hate that pose.  I'm not sure if it was living with those ponies for several months that did it, but it opened up another avenue of collecting for me (complete with several moments when I chastised myself for not adding some of these lovely ponies to my collection earlier).
Can-Can line of Shady pose ponies
I've gone on record numerous times saying that I disliked certain types of ponies (3-D symbols, sea ponies, princesses, and others).  Several of these have since joined my herd.  I think of this progression as a natural part of a collector's life.  You learn, you grow, you re-evaluate, you enjoy.  Collecting, like all things in life, should be a journey, not a destination.

Just remember: Geek Cave =/= TARDIS.  ;)

Elf

Friday, 7 October 2016

Phoebe

Another free-form custom, Phoebe was created in a similar way to Iris.  She started out as a Pinkie Pie, again with many ink marks on her body.
She was dry-brushed, adding colour to cover the ink stains on her.  She also had shimmering patterns added, as well as sparkle glaze and jewels around her forehead.
This was the first custom that I added tinsel to the hair.  It's a bit unmanageable, and I'm not sure I'll use it again, but it does add some additional sparkle to her.

Elf

Friday, 23 September 2016

Iris

Occasionally, I like to do some free-form customizing.  That is, taking a general idea and running with it, rather than fully planning out a custom.  That's how Iris came to be.
Iris started as a Desert Bloom with a great many pen marks, but very nice hair.  I kept her original hair and began adding sections of paint to cover the pen marks, also leaving much of her original body colour visible.  The paintwork was done completely with brushes - no airbrush was used on her.
On later layers of paint, I added shimmering colours, some of which were done using pattern stencils.  I also added glitter sealant to give her some extra sparkle.  And to finish her off I added several jewels and microbeads around her face.

Elf

Friday, 9 September 2016

Sparkle So-Softs 2

They're sparkly!  They're fuzzy!  What more can I say about these customs?
SS Surprise
SS Twilight
All of these but Magic Star are McDonalds ponies whose manes have been sculpted.  They were all fully repainted and sealed to match existing G1 So-Soft ponies (except in the case below, of course).  I then slowly began to apply the sparkle flocking to each pony, beginning with the symbols and working my way around the body.
SS Elfpony
SS Magic Star
Magic Star was a blind bag Rainbow Dash whose wings were removed for another custom.  It is difficult to apply the flocking evenly.  A few of these are not as fully covered as I would have liked.  The yellow in particular looks patchy, but I'm quite happy with how the others have turned out.

Elf