Why are People Jokin' on Toy Collecting?
Think Toy-Hatin' is cool? Well the joke's on you! Okay Okay... Lame Joker jokes aside. Today we want to talk about something that some think is childish - toy collecting. For our fellow toy collectors out there: do people give you strange looks when you frantically search for that ultra rare toy in the toy aisle? Do you sometimes tell people you are getting this for your little cousin? Do you scream like a MOFO when those other toy stores send you that hard-to-find toy all banged up? You are not alone, and you should not be ashamed of your awesomeness.
For toy collectors, collectible toys are an artful interpretation of famed heroes, pop culture, and other visions/realities. In this way and like appreciation for any art form, toy collecting is an admiration and tribute to the craft and creativity of this artsy.
Despite being an art form, there are not a lot of statistics or surveys out there on toy collecting. There are some that call toy collecting as an "underground" culture and that may not be far from the truth.
We did a simple survey of our fans, and many said they hide the fact that they are toy collectors and only tell their close friends/family. Are they ashamed? We did not ask, but we think it is strongly associated with how the public views collectors and the quickness to judge.
Even the media plays on the "childish" stereotype. ABC News did an article on toy collecting, and they called the article: "Action Figures for Adults Who Won't Grow Up." Although we commend ABC News for raising awareness on toy collecting, saying adults won't grow up is in a way reinforcing the stereotype.
In this light, to celebrate toy collecting in a positive way, we are proud to feature Toy Photography Virtuoso, Joe Milone and his work. Joe is an avid collector and we support him 110%. Check out his thoughts on toy collecting, fun discrimination, and of course - his awesome toy photography. Last, but not least... For toy collectors out there, remember to embrace it and show the world we're here! Cause who would want to live in a world without awesomeness?!
Hi Joe! Can you tell us your name and where you are from?
Joe Milone and I reside in Clearwater, Florida
What is your favorite toy line? Any specific favorite figures?
My favorite toy line would have to be Masters of the Universe Classics by Mattel. My favorite figure always changes, but as of this writing, I would have to go with The Play Arts Kai Arkham City Joker. The articulation and paint is just top notch.
What is your dream toy that you wish to be made?
I would love to see NECA make a Jack Nicholson Joker figure in both the Quarter scale size and in the seven inch line. Sadly, I think the cost for his likeness is just too much.
How do you feel about "fun discrimination" in the toy industry and what should we do about it?
I always felt like you should be able to enjoy whatever you'd like. As a kid She-Ra, Jem and the Care Bears were just as cool as He-Man, GI Joe, and Transformers to me. I don't know if the industry will ever change, but I think parents should allow their kids to play with whatever toys they want.
Can you walk us through how you came up with the photos for this collection?
When I was deciding on what I wanted to display for this gallery, I read the Woozy Moo mission statement and inspiration struck. I specifically chose subjects that are gender neutral. I also included a shot of He-Man and Battlecat, because Masters of the Universe is one of my signature subjects.
Any final thoughts to share with fans?
I'd like to thank Woozy Moo for the opportunity to showcase my photography. And if you'd like to see more of my work, you can find me on Instagram @jcmilone