Sharing my joy and love of collecting!Sharing my joy and love of collecting!Diary

Hello! First article here!

Some quick introductions. I've been collecting off and on for over a decade, since 2007 or 2008, don't rightly remember. I was one of those folks who always thought anime was "stupid" and "for kids" until a roommate I lived with in college opened my eyes by cajoling me into watching Ghost in the Shell and Fullmetal Alchemist. From there, it was a long slide to the lifelong anime fan I am today. It took some work, but I even got both my parents watching anime now and we'll watch a few episodes of something whenever I go over and visit (they're currently halfway through Arifureta after finishing up Amagi Brilliant Park).

Anyways, I've seen a lot of articles recently just about being upset about the state of the collecting scene or folks announcing they're quitting... so I wanted to write a counterpoint as to why this hobby is amazing. No criticism to other folks who don't feel the same way, they have their circumstances that are 100% valid for them. I've just seen a lot of more articles that are somewhat negative in tone recently (at least to my perception), so I wanted to provide balance and share my own joy from the place I am in.

I started collecting, as I said, many years ago when mostly all you could get were prize figures. Some of my first figures were from Neon Genesis Evangelion and I bought WAAYYY too many Asuka and Rei figures. I took a break from collecting (and watching anime) for a number of years but keep coming back after awhile. The last time I came back to collecting was when I kind of remembered a few years ago how much I actually loved anime and got back into watching it (having been disappointed with a lot of recent 'normal' tv shows and movies being made by Hollywood). Now, with a better job and my own (small) place, I really could collect.

The figures I have represent the memories and emotions I felt for those shows/characters and I'm proud of every single one of them. Sure, a lot of folks may look down on my hobby of collecting little anime people... but what's a normal hobby? I spend a lot of money on little figures I can display and enjoy for years while my friend spends a lot of money on sports season tickets that'll be gone by this time next year... in the end they're both a hobby, they're both "unnecessary" expenses, and it's all the same in the end.

I said unnecessary above, but not really. A good (healthy) hobby can be necessity, especially in troubled and uncertain times. I've been working from home for over a year now and was furloughed for a time. Living by myself, it can be a little sad when you're just trapped with yourself and your own thoughts, but this hobby has really helped the past two years: the excitement of the hunt for the grails, the joy of finding that rare figure I've been searching for, stumbling across an amazing deal, getting the figure and finally admiring it in person... it's been a godsend recently.

Sure, I've probably over-collected a bit and could've spent that money on "better/wiser" things, but at the same, the joys of a hobby and the positive impact can't be undervalued either. Yes, I am at the tipping point of collecting "too much", so that's why I've scaled back future orders to just specific shows/characters so as to avoid just continuing to buy and buy.

Another joy I've found via this hobby is photography. I'd see people post these really cool pictures of their figures and I thought "I'd like to try that!". So, I bought myself a DSLR and started the parallel hobby of learning photography, which has also brought me a lot of joy, goals, and something to do during these times. I like to think I'm getting double the value for my $$$ for each figure: I get the joy of having it and displaying/admiring it, but I'm also getting a photography subject at the same time... two hobbies at once! With my photography, I've started doing Instagram for it and that has been an immense joy as well: growing the account, interacting with others on there, and it's just made this hobby all the more valuable and meaningful to me.

It's important to know the limits of your own hobby (as I said, I'm scaling back future collecting) and it's equally important to enjoy what you have. Don't let others dictate your hobby and make you feel ashamed of it... always remember the why you found joy in this hobby and what it does/could mean for you. There are definitely times I look at my "owned" list of "pre-ordered" list and think 'oh my God, look at all this money and space'... but what else do I do? These days there's not much to do, so the money I'm now not spending going out to taprooms with my friends, going out to eat as much, or going on trips, can, for now, be applied to this hobby. Which, has been something to enjoy/revel in/work at during these times when it was hard to do anything at all.

I also do battle with manic depression, not made easier with the constant stream of bad news these days. I'm very fortunate that I have amazing friends and family around me, so I'm not necessarily using this hobby as a crutch, but it has been something to focus on, bring some light, and (in the case with my photography and instagram) something to actively work on/towards. I'm the type of person who needs something to be working towards, so growing my instagram account, getting better at photography, and the hunt for grails have all been really fun goals that I've been able to pour my time and heart into.

I'm closer to 40 than 30 now and that's scary. But even as I grow older, I've found I still love the ridiculousness, hype, and beautiful heartfelt moments of anime. Will I be actively collecting figures in another 10 years? Probably not unless I become ludicrously wealthy and can have rooms dedicated to it, but I will treasure the collection I have and memories/feelings it represents.

I'm very thankful for my collection and all the kind folks I've interacted with since actively joining this hobby.
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PeachyKirby The Cyberpunk Collector
thank you for sharing your story. i completely understand and sympathize with those who have negative emotions regarding the hobby,,, but ive always seen this as a space of joy. so its nice to have a stream of positive articles as well.
Thank you for making this article! It's always nice to see people show some love with the hobby.
Bro I just started in March 2021. I used to watch anime during my chuuni years but ofc I got no money back then.Currently i am working I can really start a collection.
Its expensive because of my taste but oh well, the reward will be worth it as i believe that my figures will last.
Chiming in to also thank you for sharing this article and your love for the hobby. I'm currently struggling enjoying my new figures due to work stress and the recent slew of negative articles were bumming me out. They're valid of course, but it's nice to see people still excited about the hobby too.
Thank you for the article. I noticed the negativity too and sometimes i think ‘this is a figure collecting database right? why is everyone so negative towards the hobby lol’
I’m in a similar space with my re-entry into collecting, better job, in a few months ill be in my own place, and my major pre pandemic hobby (going to concerts of foreign artists) is dead probably for another year at the very least so gotta do something to keep those serotonin levels up lol
That's a great introduction story.

Always nice when you get sucked into something because of others.

I love older series like that and now you have me wanting to add Ghost in the Shell to my current Anime rewatch list.

And it's great to see someone else sharing a positive blog here, there needs to be more like that here.
You know as a collector that blogged they were quitting, I noticed that to! So many frustrated articles lately. I didn't mean to discourage so many people from collecting, I just know that I personally am in a mind space where it's healthier to quit the hobby. Thank you for your spot of positivity! I recently have been rewatching my top 30 anime and I remember all the positive feelings associated with each and every one.

I've noticed the increase of figures for old anime, too! I was actually debating preordering the xxHolicxx one but it didn't fit my rule collecting criteria (DARN! 。:゚(;´∩`;)゚:。).

Thank you, once again, for your thoughts on figure collecting!
Yahallo Defrosting Ice King
I've seen you around the site and reddit and have usually agreed with your comments and viewpoints!
Now that I think about it, I'm a bit surprised that this is your first article! I hope you make more!
Anyways, this article deals with a lot of personal stuff so I just wanted to commend you for being so brave and sharing a slice of your life with the community!
Thanks for sharing what makes you happy in the hobby. I agree that a hobby is an important thing to have. It can really calm you or give you something positive to look forward to. I think a big issue with figure collecting is it might be the first time getting “luxury” items and that can bring a lot of guilt or also overspending (like dangerous). It took me about 1.5 years to manage this hobby in a healthy way. But as my profile says, I still enjoy the hobby!
Ooh, a collecting appreciation post! Awesome ^-^

I'm aware that a lot of people relate to these rather critical articles about collecting and therefore they keep popping up a lot lately. However, as for myself I can't relate at all tbh and in fact, am even slightly saddened that a hobby I personally appreciate so much, is such a strain on other people's life >.>

I'm in my 7th year and I adore my collection more than ever before ♡ Looking at my preorder list, there have never been this many amazing figures that cater to my interests! So many franchises I never thought would get the figure treatment are finally being recognized, it's amazing ♡ I've always dreamed of male Fire Emblem characters for example, good quality Fairy Tail figures, more gaming related figures, lewd males, re-releases of highly sought-after figures such as ITEM #464791, ITEM #758994 or ITEM #675897 - and all of this is happening rn! That's so freakin awesome ^o^

We're getting 2 absolutely beautiful Inuyasha scales this year after all this time, how cool is that! And who would've thought that ITEM #729563 and ITEM #736697 could ever be possible? :D We've even had NANA announcements recently! Like, what a time to be a figure collector!? :'D ♡♡

And I'm even discovering new favourites too: After all these years, I boarded the Hatsune Mike hype train and I love it xD

Apologies for my super ramble-y response and thanks for being a positive voice ^-^ I also wanted to let you know that I really liked your comment on this BLOG #50487 (if the voting system still existed, I definitely would've thumped this up (^_^)b
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