Here’s the Sunday Raffle Model Rangoli, in case you haven’t seen him yet:
That paint job – an extra dark Sooty Dappled Buckskin Sabino – is amazing, and the rest of him isn’t too shabby either. But you know what I really like about the True North mold?
The shaggy buzzcut of a mane! It’s just so stinking cute. If he were a real-real horse, I’d want to run my fingers through it.
I tend to appraise sculpts not purely on their anatomical or conformational correctness, but on the finishwork at the edges: the mane and tail, the ears, the hooves, and the muzzle. For me, that’s where the sculptor’s care and passion really shows: everything else is a matter of technical competence.
Getting the technical aspects correct is important, but it doesn’t always make you fall in love. Sometimes it does; but its things like pooky lips, fuzzy ears, and artfully messy manes that quickly turn admiration turn into adoration.
However, I am not real fond of having the first several releases of new molds (mostly but not exclusively the Premiers) be either expensive, or of extremely limited quantity. It’s difficult to get passionate about collecting something that becomes almost immediately hard to collect.
That’s what turned me away from the Esprit mold, initially. Although I’ve since added a few to the herd – most notably the quirky BreyerFest Special Run Prince of Chintz, and the beautiful Dappled Bay Steppin’ Out – I’ve been hesitant to sink any more effort into it. I wouldn’t have minded getting the Decorator variation of the Samba Surprise from last year’s BreyerFest lineup, but I got only one shot at that guy last year and it didn’t happen. So I sold the one I did get (Matte Palomino) and moved on.
Part of the appeal of collecting Vintage is that unless you pick an exceptionally hard mold to collect – like the Elephant, or the In-Between Mare – the ratio of rare and difficult to not-so-rare or -difficult is better. You can collect for a while before the rarities start to bother you too much. And unlike most of the newer molds, there is a small but real possibility that you just might run across one of those rarities at a yard sale or late-night online auction.
I never expected to own an Elephant with Howdah, but I somehow managed to snag one on eBay some years back, for considerably less than the going rate. (The Pink, Blue, and Woodgrain? Ah, well, I guess that is what the flea market is for.)
The actual True North release isn’t even out yet, and the likelihood of winning Rangoli is going to be pretty slim (I mean, just look at him!) but it’s a little too early to abandon hope yet.