Collections: What’s the lure?

I have a confession to make, and it isn’t one that I make lightly. But here goes:

I have a knack for collecting things, or perhaps it’s just a weakness of mine. I have collected all sorts of items over my lifetime (well, at least since I’ve had a job anyway, which means I started at about age 12). I have collections of; books, music books, comic books, toys, movies, music, video games and a small number of musical instruments). I’m pretty lucky as my wife shares at least some of my interests at heart, mainly books, movies and some video games (yeah she’s pretty awesome that way).

What I’m getting at is that I can never seem to want just one of anything (well my wife excluded, I’m not from Utah, a Mormon, nor do I have an interest in being polyamorous). So I have a huge array of Spawn Toys, and some polystone statues, the newest of which showed up at the house this week from a great place called Side Show Collectibles [this is what really got me to thinking about just how much of my life has been spent collecting]. So here we are at the heart of the matter, as I said previously I can’t seem to ever own just one of anything, and now I have the “bugg” again. I spelled that with two g’s because it isn’t a disease for me (I can stop at will & I do for long periods of time), nor is it a stomach virus I am speaking about. I wish I could say that I am in-thrall of pop culture items, or that I have a need to archive and curate such oddities, but the truth is, I get this weird internal desire to just “have” stuff. Mind you this stuff looks awesome, and has incredible detailing, paint jobs, clothes, weapons etc etc… but I digress.

So this is how the story plays out for me, perhaps it is the same for you. You stumble across something in a store/catalogue/on-line/at a friends house or at a convention (whatever!!) and you have some room in your budget to pick up an item that really gets you excited. Then you see what other companies have to offer, and pretty soon, you’re weighing one item against another, planning for more purchases, rationalizing with yourself over possible purchases, and then either you go a little crazy and later suffer some buyers remorse, or you snap a lid on that “bugg” real friggin’ quick and move on. I’m getting better at snapping a lid on it and moving on, after all I’m not made of money, and I have a crazy ass dog; who likes to sink his teeth into things that we love, hell even the way he chews his own hind legs gets pretty ghastly if he has an itch he just can’t quite scratch.

The thing I wished I’d had available when I was younger was Youtube, yup it has come in handy when squelching your need to own everything in sight. I’m pretty fond of “Hot Chix Cool Toys” 1/6 scale toy reviews, as a means to seeing neat items up close and personal, hearing all about it, but not having to pay $200-300 bucks for that un-boxing rush of new item coolness.

The items I do have are pretty cool, and I have every intention of displaying them in my home when the time is right. As it stands now I wouldn’t bother displaying every single piece, some of the items have lost limbs and accessories or been damaged over the years. Every so often I find an item that catches my eye and I just start to assemble large volumes of it, I have a small collection of War Hammer 40K items, which I spent many hours painting, but have never played a single game with (I probably don’t even have an army to skirmish with, as I bought the cool alien species, Orks, Tyranids, Cadian forces blah blah blah…) I’d be more interested in building a detailed diorama and setting them up on it, rather than rolling dice and going to WAAAAAAGH with them anyway.

Not to mention that I also have a large collection of paintings which I have done, and now that I spend so much more time working on a computer in my particular field of expertise, namely graphic design, I have a substantial collection of personal Photoshop Composites building up on my hard drive[s] (yes plural). On the downside I don’t paint with acrylic’s at all any more. I have a few canvas’ left, but I have just become so enamored with HDR style Photoshop compositing. To be honest, I can’t even really remember the last time I stayed up all night, or even into the evening to draw some comic book pages, or pin-up art. No, scratch that, I was taking life drawing classes again at the end of last year and it was taking a real long time for me to remember any tips & tricks I had learned as an avid comic book artist from my teenage years. (Crohn’s Disease did a real good job of keeping me in my room/house for days & weeks on end as a pre-teen, so drawing was a great way to escape & explore beyond my bedroom walls). But that was life drawing of human nude models and not anything comic book related.

Some of you might think I have collectors ADHD, and that is probably true. I can get bored with stuff fairly quickly. Although now I am getting more comfortable saying that collecting is my hobby and not a habit.

But, whatever, I like to collect stuff.