Vinyl Toy Designers

Vinyl Toy Designers

People know me for my rock photography and immersing myself into the inner sanctums of rock stars.

But there is another creative tribe that I love to hang out with.

As an ardent collector of cool urban vinyl designer toys (above image), toy designers are also my favourite creative people to bond with, especially when they’re in town for toy conventions.

Nothing like chatting with them about their latest toy creations and convention adventures as well as going for local meals with them after the shows.

8, 9 and 10 September 2023 was the recent Pop Toy Show, held at the beautiful Marina Bay Sands Convention Centre. Once again, I caught with my old toy designer friends and made new fun ones.

Since the first toy convention in 2008, I’ve been a keen and enthusiastic attendee with kindly gifted Exhibitor passes from dear toy comrades (above image). Thanks, Jeffrey Koh and Mike Ozzo.

One of my favourite Japanese toy and T-shirt designers is Oyakata-san ie. Punk Drunkers.

Proud to have finally met him and hanging out “footloose” at his booth (above image).

His sought-after on-line stuff are difficult to buy and I told him so. Haha. I love his T-shirts and jacket designs!

His slogan, “Uncool Is Cool” is cool indeed!

I also finally met Alex Solis, break dancer, hamburger lover, farm owner, artist and toy designer extraordinaire.

Alex Solis, Kyle Wilson (hailing from Canada) and me after devouring delicious hamburgers and cold beers at the Black Tap at the conclusion of a fruitful 3-day convention (above image).

Toy designers love to eat!

Here’s me and the late and highly respected Frank Kozik enjoying Singapore Slings at Raffles Hotel (above image).

Me and Morgan “Sucklord” Phillips at Newton Circus “sucking” on a sumptuous mussel (above image). We reminisced about the great Chinese food in New York’s Chinatown.

Me with John “Crash” Matos (above image) at a cafeteria, about to have our lunch. He designed cool guitars for Eric Clapton.

Me and Jon Paul Kaiser at Lau Pa Sat hawker centre, with other hungry creative friends (above image).

Josh “StashFranklin with a local favourite bubble milk tea firmly in his hand (above image).

Toy collector extraordinaire Yeo Hon Beng hosting dinner, at Geylang, to visiting Filipino artist couple Arman and Ivy (above image).

My buddy, the prolific Pete Fowler at Meditation Chamber, the music room in my home (above image).

A UK rock concert fanatic, Pete is known for his Monsterism toy figures and designing album covers for the band Super Furry Animals.

The immediately likeable and talented Mark Nagata (above image).

A triumphant Luke Chueh loves to come to Singapore (above image). Always great to hang out with Luke!

Nathan Hamill, son of Mark, is a cool and talented artist (above image).

Jason Freeney at a mutual friend’s home, about to devour durians (above image).

My kind buddy Mark Chang from Taiwan. He works closely with the legendary Phunk Studios in Singapore.

Me, Luke and the multi-disciplined and humble Quiccs from the Philippines. I have several of his toy figurines.

The cool and talented Shinichiro Kitai of Devilrobots (above image).

The fun Beast Brothers (above image).

Ruslan “SSUR” Karablin and me comparing our Rolexes during lunch at National Gallery (above image).

Super-friendly Simone (Tokidoki) Legno (above image).

Let me now switch gears away from the toy designers and turn my attention to cool toy collectors and dealers.

Me and toy collector Chris Stein of Blondie exploring toy shops in Singapore (above and below images). He brought me to Toy Tokyo when I was in New York City.

Toy tycoon Jeffrey Koh in his cool toy office when it wasn’t congested (above image) It’s now even more congested. Yes, hard to believe.

My former reclusive studio/man cave was in the same commercial building, that’s how we met.

Mike Ozzo at his current legendary toy shop – (before) bare shop and (after) fully-formed shop.

He specialises in cool hard-to-find Japanese designer toy figures.

Word of caution – do not ask him stupid questions and do not shake the toy figurine blind boxes.

Jackson Aw of Mighty Jaxx (above image).

It’s not a coincidence that Toy rhymes with Joy!

I look forward to hanging out with my creative buddies at the next Toy Convention !