Friday, December 9, 2016

So long 2016, ya little bitch!

Where does the time go? 2016 wasn't the coolest year, to be sure, but the resin continues to flow, as it always will. Not a lot of big releases this year for me. Frankly, sales have dipped a bit, which I suspect is a trend for a lot of resin casters, but just like a lot of my toy brethren, the sickness of toy making has drilled it's way into my lizard brain and there's no turning back, god help me.

In addition to the multitude of bizarrely charming action figures I cranked out this year, I'm decided to expand my efforts a little, with both a clothing company, VSOP Attire, and a tongue-in-cheek line of weapons, Scraped Weapons. The latter is my way of pushing the boundaries of my resin casting with larger pieces that would still appeal to my low brow sensibilities in the same way toys do, and brother, swinging around a pair of glitter nunchucks that you created with your own hands is more satisfying than you can imagine. I joke about arming the people for the inevitable culture war on the horizon, but the truth is each pair of nunchucks is an art piece to me, with the hopes of eventually finding a gallery with the vision to hang 20 pairs of colorful nunchuck on the wall as an artsy statement on our obsession with weapons.

VSOP Attire is a collaboration with my old friend/steady hustler Michael Torres, who has the drive I lack to push the brand into stores and hype the new shirts/hats we're cranking out. I'm more involved in the creative side of things, coming up with designs and color schemes. The goal for 2017: Sweatpants!

I have a few toy projects on the horizon, including a fun collaboration with comic creator Fabian Rangel Jr., as well as the upcoming Inaction Figures 5 show, where I'll revisit the past for a whole new figure based on the greatest movie of all time. More info soon, although I'm seriously considering axing this web site format altogether (do people still visit web sites... is anybody reading this?). Big store update, including Scraped Resin hats and a few odds and ends on sale. Buy things...or don't. I'm gonna keep making 'em...ya little bitch!

Don't stop Scrapin'!

Friday, April 1, 2016

FROM PARTS UKNOWN Series 2 out today!

It's once again time to welcome the wrestling misfits from across the globe into the Battling Bastards arena for From Parts Unknown series 2! 8 colorful competitors step into the resin wrestling ring to either prove themselves as lucha champions, or get crushed by the Battling Bastards. Infused with a wide range of pop culture influences, series 2 includes the Saga inspired Gato Mentiroso, Eternernian tag-team champions Macholok and the golden pharaoh lucha libre, Ramses!

Each 4 - 4.5" resin figure comes carded with a resealable plastic bubble and features magnetic articulation, allowing for mix-and-match customization. Sold blind, meaning your figure will be arrive at your doorstep like surprise entrant in a battle royal! Which one will you get?!?

From Parts Unknown series 2 will be available in the Scraped Resin online store this Friday, 4/1 at noon PST for $40 each.

Monday, February 22, 2016

Who made who?!?: MAXIMUS OVERKILL

Why the hell does that truck have Green Goblin’s face? There were a lot of things about Maximum Overdrive that would stay with me years after my first VHS viewing, like that soda machine scene and Yeardly Smith’s shrill voice, but as a big Spider Man fan, I never understood the reason behind Green Goblin’s face being slapped on the front of the killer diesel. Was it some sort of odd product placement arrangement with Marvel, or did Steven King just do too much coke one brainstorming session and declare “And the main truck has Doctor Octopus’ face! Wait no…*schniiiiiifffff* THE TRUCK HAS GREEN GOBLIN’S FACE!” This throwaway detail is never really addressed in a satisfying way, and somehow became the most iconic thing about a 80’s horror trucksploitation movie. Just about everything about Maximum Overdrive makes me smile, and the further we move away from the 1986 cult classic’s initial release, the more I come back to that burning question: Why the hell does that truck have Green Goblin’s face.

I’m extremely pleased to present the latest Scraped Resin figure, exclusively created for the upcoming Inaction Figure 4 exhibition held by Clutter Gallery: Maximus Overkill. Emilio and company would have been truly fucked if my version of the truck made it into the movie, as ol’ Maximus would have not only transformed into robot form to terrorize the truck stop denizens, but comes equipped with a hardcore drill arm for easily cracking open the human’s hiding spot. It would make for a much shorter film, but at least that head would finally make sense.
Created out of repurposed vintage toy parts bootlegged into a new, gas-guzzling monstrosity, Maximus Overkill stands 4.5” tall, and features 3 points of magnetic articulation. He comes packaged in a custom windowed tin-case emblazoned with official decals, with an edition of only 6 figures being produced for the show. Get ‘em while you can, but don’t blame me if he convinces your Transformers collection to wage a war against all humans.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

The Legend of Pagoda part II

Pagoda is midnight double feature of Road Warrior and Hellraiser 2.  The blood-and-dust ruthlessness of Lord Humungus, warped through the morbid S&M Cenobite asthetic, topped off with a Raiden hat for good measure.  He is the boogeyman of the wastelands, seen by few, but known to all.  Armed with the chains that were rumored to contain him prior to his reign of terror and his tri-spiked signature shoulder pads, he is a supernatural force of nature.  A tidal wave of death and destruction that wouldn’t be out of place stalking Max Rockatanksy or the Lone Wanderer.

Here are two things I wrote when trying to flesh out Pagoda’s origin story: The first is a comic book script for a short two-page story about Pagoda’s parents fucking, hehehe.  I’d like to imagine something like this appearing in the back of on old Dr. Strange comic or something, and is essentially Jason-X fan fiction when you really boil it down.  The bastard son of tentacled swamp yokai and a masked slasher who falls from space, I think the origin goes a long way to explaining how Pagoda has evolved into an unkillable force of nature.  I’d love to see this illustrated some day if anyone with macabre art skills is interested in taking a stab…

Somewhere within the swamps of Cambodia…

-A vengeful demon, who’s appearance is a series of fangs, tentacles and eyes squirms through the muddy waters, searching for prey when a meteor is seen surging through the night sky. 

-The meteor crashes into the swamp near the demon, piquing it's interest.  It begins to get closer to the landing

-The meteor is revealed to be a crashed escape pod from some sort of space station.  The door parting revealing a large humanoid figure within.  The demon, sensing a victim on board, begins to shape shift…

-The demon’s transformation is complete as it takes the form of a beautiful, nude Asian woman, slyly covered by her long mane of black hair.  She beckons the man closer, promising to relieve him of his pain.

-She is surprised when the figure, a hulking brute wearing a ripped set of coveralls and steel goalie mask, grabs her forcibly, attempting to make a victim out of her instead. 

-Shock gives way to the reveal that she is no easy prey, as she starts to revert to demon form, wrapping tentacles around the masked monster and plunging venomous fangs into the beasts flesh.

-We see the masked face of the brute as her hallucinogenic poison takes effect, and the demon sees the undead evil behind the mask. 
-Her vengeance gives way to sympathy and admiration as she probes his mind, seeing the horror that has been inflicted against him, as well as the horror he has inflicted tenfold.

-Her tentacles pull him further into the swamps waters, a feeling that he finds intimately familiar as he allows himself to be pulled under water.

-We see another image of mental hallucination with the demon (in nude female form) wrapping her arms around his shoulders, with the masked brute allowing himself to be physically comforted for the first time in his adult life.

-We see the swamps in the morning light, as a muddy set of footprints can be seen leading towards the mainland, the brute barely visible as he stomps towards his own destiny.  The demons tentacles can be seen happily unraveled among the swamps vegetation, with pink flowers blossoming. 

The second part ties his legend to the day the atomic bombs drop, changing the earth into a violent ball of dust and gasoline that was predicted by Mad Max, Fist of the North Star, Fallout, etc.  If it weren’t for the nuclear apocalypse occurring, it’s likely Pagoda would have eventually escaped somehow and became the Michael Meyers of Cambodia, but fate had other plans and as it turns out, being an unkillable force of nature is a highly regarded skill when trying to survive the nuclear wasteland. 

The following letter was found within ruins of a Cambodian temple that is rumored to be the boyhood home of Pagoda.

"May Buddha forgive me for what I am about to release.  But man has finally gone too far and fire now bleeds from the sky.  We have failed in our quest to bring balance to this world, but we will not lose peacefully.  Those that have ravaged this world will pay.  May this demon cleanse the earth of those who would corrupt it, so that we may be reborn anew and try again.
This is the first time I've ever referred to the boy within the chamber as a demon.  I felt that word on my lips the first night he was brought to our temple, but now, this close to death, I'm sure that is what he is.  This is his story.
He was brought to the temple as a young boy.  Even then, there was death in his cold eyes.  When our master died the night he arrived, we foolishly took it as a bad omen, but the curse he brought was so much more.  He is evil compounded.  Death personified.  A dark Godling, hatched in the age of man. 
We strongly suspected he was responsible when we found his teacher strangled.  But when his classmates were found dead... we should have taken the hard steps necessary.  But the new Master, eager to prove himself capable of great healing, insisted we channel the boys unique talents in a way that would focus him.  So we taught him our art of combat.  And in doing so, we put a weapon in hand of the devil himself. 
He seemed to enjoy killing, and all who tried to reason with him quickly died.  By his 16th birthday, he had murdered half of the temple, and it took the rest of us to subdue him.  Killing him would have been in defiance of everything we stood for, so we wrapped him in 1,000 chains and intended to keep him locked in our underground meditation chamber forever.  It was I who agreed to feed him.  When I accepted the task, I intended to poison him over time, but as I looked into his eyes, I did not see a murderer staring back, but instead a demon following the only nature it'd ever known.  I don't think we can blame him for what he is, and shudder when I try to understand how Buddha saw fit to allow him to exist at all.

Even with the meager sustenance we provided, he's grown into a hulking brute, spending every waking moment straining at chains that won't break.  Never asking for release.  Never saying a word.  Like a stone pagoda, placing a giant shadow over our temple.
I had almost found peace in this unholy arrangement.  I was beginning to think that our true purpose in life was not to strike balance within this earthly realm, but to instead contain this unholy being from the rest of the world.  But once the first bombs began to light up the night sky with fiery death, and my brothers began bleeding from their eyes, I see now that our path has been compromised.  Our fate is what we make of it.  Powerful men with powerful weapons have seen fit to destroy the world.  But they know little about true power and when they see the weapon that we have unknowingly been sharpening over years, only then will they realize the error of their arrogance.

-The last words written by an anonymous monk, moments before he was strangled to death

Finally, some of you have noticed the 2 chase variants, both featuring a resin helmet instead of his signature mask/hat.  These are parts from a collaboration with the illustrious Mark Ultra on our Lord Demonico figure (DCON 2013 exclusive), and I'd like to imagine an alternate timeline where Pagoda was transported into Demonico’s dimension and not only defeated him, but stole his time helmet, allowing him to unleash his terror throughout the annals of time. 
Again, prime comic book material that I’d love to flesh out further somewhere down the line.  These two variants will be go out on two random orders, and are some of my favorite Scraped Resin pieces of all time.

Pagoda, his variants, and the opportunity to get a free Vault Clone are available at the Scraped Resin online store.  And don't forget to hit up Cheap Pop Shop, who put together the shiny and chrome packaging artwork!

Thursday, October 29, 2015

The Legend of Pagoda part I

LEGION OF DOOM: Nothing makes a statement like spiked shoulder pads.

Coming back from DCON 2014, drunk on inspiration and stuck with a bunch of chunky figures that barely sold, I told myself that the market wanted 3.75” figures and I was a fool to argue.  Part of me didn’t buy in to this, seeing the move as caving in or selling out, but the truth was I always wanted to try a 3.75” piece and thought I might be able to come up with something truly spectacular.  The results were Pagoda.
Up to that point, I had focused on the 4.5” TMNT scaled figures, as not only were these my favorites growing up, but thought it would help distinguish me from the pack.  I also figured that nostalgia would eventually catch up to this scale, putting me ahead of the game.  What I hadn’t anticipated was this meant heavier figures, which were more expensive to make/ship, and didn’t fit in well with collector’s resin collections that had mainly been in the 3.75” scale. 

KNOW YOUR HISTORY: An actual title belt went into Pagoda's DNA.

The upside of this was I had a whole list of cool looking 3.75” scale figure parts in my head that I never had the chance to use, and when approaching my new idea, I literally used all of them.  Robocop gang member arms?  Sure, why not.  Prince of Thieves Sherriff of Nottingham’s crazy legs?  Kinda big but let’s make them work.  Road Pig’s shoulder pads?  Throw some actual screws on them and mold those fuckers up! 
The original version had a completely different head, which would have been a ski mask with night vision goggles, and full on devil horns which I really loved, but the kit-bashed head was too small and forced me into another direction. 
Enter Mirage: The Corps are off-brand GI Joes that have a fully fleshed out world of their own at this point, and features some really bugged out characters.  They recently released a new wave of figures, including the strange Raiden-meets-Vega fusion soldier Mirage.  Seeing his figure on eBay for the first time was like seeing a $20 bill on the ground.  I couldn’t believe my luck, quickly looked around to see if anyone else had noticed it yet, and then snatched it up to spend before anyone could say boo.  It’s a unique look that surely would have been a favorite as a kid, and I figured if I hadn’t used it, some other enterprising bootlegger would lay claim to it eventually.  It also cemented Pagoda’s Asian tone and origin story, with everything quickly falling into place one this key piece was locked in.

OUT WITH THE OLD: Original packaging design

Around the same time, I started talking with a very established designer toy store that I had frequented for additions to my own collection.  They were very complimentary of my work, and after a few meetings, they offered me a chance to release something through them.  Not only would this bolster my fledgling reputation, but it would be a dream come true to have my work sold in a place I held in such high esteem. 
Cut to months later as I put the finishing touches on the last Pagoda, the store owner finds themselves in the unfortunate situation of having to permanently close their doors, leaving me heartbroken, and Pagoda without a home.  Bitter and dejected, I wanted to put the entire ordeal behind me and boxed the completed Pagodas, where they remained until the glorious day that Cheap Pop Shop broke them out of their prison.

TAG TEAM CHAMPIONS: New packaging designed by the magnificent Cheap Pop Shop.

Featuring new packaging, removable shoulder pads and magnetic articulation, PAGODA is here to welcome the designer toy apocalypse, where he will reign supreme, crushing all inferior bootlegs into resin dust.

IN WITH THE NEW: Fully packaged and ready to wreck havoc.

Who is this walking nightmare and how did he come to rule the post-apocalyptic wastelands after the bombs dropped?  Check back next week, when we'll dig into the second and final part of the Legend of Pagoda.  This figure will go on sale for the first time on Friday, November 6th in the Scraped Resin online store.