When I first stumbled upon Icie’s review of Tinkle’s 2nd artbook, I was in despair. As it wasn’t a commercial release, obtaining it would be near impossible for a mere tanuki. Or so I thought until my search led me to Yahoo Japan Auctions. The artbooks were there, getting auctioned at half the price I got Tinkle’s first artbook for. Mustering all my interweb resources, I tracked down and subscribed to a popular deputy service to join the bid wars. Hence began my descent into the world of unlimited 2D merchandise that is YJA.
Just under a week since my foray into YJA, I’ve already splurged USD220 on purchases. The spoils -
2 X Tinkle’s 2nd Artbook
1 x Goodsmile’s 1/8 Akihime Sumomo (special figure release with game)
It worries me a great deal since I’m trawling YJA daily in search of more rare items to buy (Goodsmile’s 1/8 Nemu figure being top on my list.) It’s taking ALL my willpower not to purchase a third Tinkle artbook. Plus, I’m not sure how long it’d be before I succumb to the array of fabulous Feena merchandise. The only thing that’s keeping me from going on a rabid bidding spree is the deputy’s service. They do a great job but their fee, though not unreasonable, does make you think twice about getting that YJA item. To this date, USD44 of my 220 purchase goes to their service (a good 20%).
Ah well, at least I got the Holy grail of artbooks and a fairly rare figure. Hoping to find the Nemu figure some time. Now if you’d excuse me, I have some auctions to browse.
Continuing from Part 1, here more
lame justifications confessions why I collect 2D goodies.
While many boast of their art collection in terabytes, I look up to the folks who do so in tonnage. (Ok maybe realistically in kilograms.) Like Zyl, who also understand the pleasure of possessing the physical copy of a beautiful illustration, I revel in the joy of actually thumbing through an artbook. No muted digi-bytes or scan artifacts. Just pure artistic glory in its unadulterated form.
It all began with an innocent gift from Zyl – a freebie which he almost threw away in Japan. The fantabulously gorgeous K-Book playing deck. Featuring artworks from only the best of the best in Japanese moe-illustration, it opened my 2D sight/mind, surging me forth, like a tanuki hell-bent on siscon to acquire the most beautiful 2D illustrations Japan has to offer. Just over a year, I have a small but deeply loved artbook collection.
Personally I prefer commercial releases as opposed to doujins since they are more value for money – featuring more for less. I’d advise against anthological collections like Girls! girls! girls! since chances are you’d only like a portion of the artwork by the same few artists. Do your research and go straight for the fabled master’s collection itself. As a bishoujo enthusiast, I’d say Tinkle, Mikeou, Suzuhira Hiro and Goto-P’s works are good starting points.
PVCs up next.
With rising commodity and oil prices, I find my disposable income slowly shrinking with inflationary forces. Even though I’ve been driving for years, I never fail to feel the pinch every time I top up my vehicle since it’s the price of a 1/8 PVC figure. Even while enjoying the occasional culinary indulgence, I can’t help but think this delectable dish could get me an even more delicious artbook. I believe I need a raise/strike lottery. XD
Since that’s unlikely to happen soon, it’d be wise to sit down and count the cost of my passion so that I could exercise more financial prudence for the rest of the year.
While visiting Kinokuniya today to claim my prized Zero no Tsukaima perfection visual collection, I was pleasantly surprised to find their artbook section better stocked than ever. The new additions may not necessarily be Japan’s latest releases but are all surely solid artworks by very popular illustrators.
One of the finds was Kozue Amano’s 1st 2 artbooks, Alpha and Stella. I was simply elated to be cradling these gems in my bosom as I headed out to the service counter for a preview. Sadly, I was rather underwhelmed. Amano sensei’s artwork in Alpha was not as polished or mature as her later artbooks while Stella suffered from an over-expanded Roman Club (RC) and Crescent noise (SN) section that was honestly, less than stellar. Even though the Aria and Aqua segments were breathtaking as in Cielo, the RC and SN bits in Cielo were very much superior, making it the clear choice for cash-strapped Aria fans (like myself).
Mutsmi Sasaki fans in Singapore would also be glad to learn that she has a new artbook, EST which is now available in Kinokuniya. Besides her favourite works from Happy Lesson and Futakoi, EST also features artwork from Myself; Yourself. Pity there’s not enough Hinako goodness in it.
Nao Goto’s Galaxy’s Child and GotoP’s Hiyori Nagomi have also been restocked. These 2 artbooks are ranked 4th and 2nd in my artbook collection respectively. Grab them while stocks last!
Note: This is a community broadcast service to fellow fans of Japanese artbooks in Singapore. No bribes or monetary incentives of any kind occurred between Kino and tanuki-kind, though they are most welcome to start.
Utmost gratitude to Zyl who, against all odds, acquired the most hallowed of artbooks for me
Tinkle’s Tsukiyo Chakai has to be the holy grail of 2D artbooks. I have been monitoring its price on Amazon JP since last Sep and it ranges from 9000 to 12000 yen, 4-5 times its original price. The last I checked (and that was a couple of hours ago), there was a listing to sell the book for 12000 yen. It is gone now, presumably sold. That is how scorching hot this publication is.