Mark Nagata / Max Toy customs

Sorry for the lack of posts, been very busy with a ton of customs and the upcoming 5th Anniversary Kaiju Eyezon show .. which opens November 3rd, at Double Punch store / gallery in San Francisco next week ! I’ll have another post devoted to that show and post the customs being sent in … I can’t believe the amazing customs the artists have done and can’t wait to show you all !

First up, I have this custom Hell Lotus figure in the Nov 3rd show in Singapore.

Using the basic Hell Lotus figure which is already cool to begin with .. I sat for an hour or so and was stumped about what to do with it. I didn’t want to simply repaint it .. thats too easy .. as i gazed into the souless eyes .. it struck me … a trio of faces, two being Kaiju ! Kinda like an angry God with three heads … oh and flames too !

Not sure I can pull this off, but away I go heating up the head, popping it off and cutting away .. too late to change my mind at this point !

I decided on Kaiju TriPus and Kaiju Dualos heads .. cutting each to fit all three together .. using Apoxie Sculpt I fused them together …. plus added a new neck plug to reattach the head later after clear coating …

more views of the new heads …

top view shows you the way each is fused together. At this point I’m not sculpting the flames just yet, but will let this dry so i have a solid base to work on top of …

Here’s the flames being added between each face transition … at this point I don’t have any more inprogress pics … so without further ado … Ta-Da ! the final piece !

Thanks to Jackson and everyone at Mighty Jaxx for inviting me to this show.   More info on the show and how to purchase at their web site :


Next up we have this Ice Scream Man custom I did for the Dia Del Helado Muerto show at Clutter Gallery in New York, opens November 10th.

Using a Brutherford Industries Ice Scream Man resin figure, much like the custom above I had to sit awhile and figure out what the heck I was gonna do with this one. It’s a great concept figure to begin with so i was trying to not to destroy the feeling of it.. but also wanted to incorporate my usual Kaiju theme .. meaning how do i get my Max Toys in there !  ;-P

I thought that having it inverted back up and adding a few Kaiju scoops would be cool .. but how to hold up the cone ? Ah, I thought I’d make a tentacle wrapping up around the cone to hold it up .. cool .. thats it !

Picked a nice large wood base and glued in some wire where the tentacle would go …

ah, works nicely … I can see it now taking shape …

using Aves Apoxie Sculpt to rough in the basic shape, I’ll let this dry so i have a nice firm base to work off of …

So at this point have lots of detail done …

Here we have the the test fitting .. I decide to add an “Eye” peering up at the cone, too …

and the back side .. looking good so far … for some reason I decide to re-read the shows concept / description and …

Oops !!!  .. it’s a Day of the Dead subject, so the tentacle was totally wrong for this concept ! Arrgghhh … Ok, so scrap the tentacle .. no worries, I know what to use this tentacle for .. as you will see in an upcoming post  ;-P So, I have to think fast, I still need something to hold this Ice Scream cone …Day of the Dead .. Skeletons … Ah !

I thought I skeleton hand emerging from the ground and holding the ice cream would work out nicely … So with this new concept I set about it … time for a new base and to start over …

Using wire and Apoxie sculpt to tack into place the figures .. yes the anatomy is whacky but i wasn’t going for real .. but more a cartoonish feeling …

Test fitting this hand .. seems good …

The sculpting went really fast .. I guess all my years of Universal Monsters and Goosebump book covers it’s second nature to me  ;-P

added some ground cover and went out to the backyard to grab some rocks, too ;-P

Final test fit and it looks good.. also worked on fusing the two Kaiju parts as well, using Apoxie sculpt to make some drips etc .. also re-sculpted the Ice Scream man teeth back in after cutting them out …

Base coated the whole piece with Monster Kolor black and dry brushed over it with white.

Here’s the painted base, with added dried up weeds and such .. the whole piece had a final MK matte coat to seal the paint.

Now to paint the cone it self … I knew I wanted very vibrant colors to contrast with the base colors … plus it would be glossy and have glitter in it  ;-P

Titled, ” I Scream Kaiju !” my entry for this show 😉

Phew … done and sent off  😉 So there you have it, just a few of the customs I’ve been doing the past month. As you can see making these customs can be tricky but i do like the challenge each one proposes each time. For more information about this show or to purchase this piece contact Clutter Gallery via this LINK.

About toykarma

Over the years Mark Nagata has collected thousands of toys and a fair amount of titles. The man behind San Francisco-based Max Toy Company is widely known as: Toy Collector. Illustrator. Magazine Founder/Publisher. Toy Designer. Artist. Author. Husband. Father. But the one description that might fit best is an unofficial one – Kaiju Toy and Art Ambassador. In the Japanese-inspired art and toy area, as well as throughout the larger toy collecting community, Mark is welcomed and recognized for his personal passion and commitment to supporting artists all around the world and the unique works they create. Beginning as a collector in his youth, Mark has had for years a keen eye for great art and a personal interest in collecting that he has spread through a variety of outlets. Trained at the Academy of Art College in San Francisco, Mark honed his skills working for himself and for some of the most notable businesses in the country. As a freelance commercial illustrator, he completed works for such prominent companies as Lucasfilms, DC Comics, Hasbro Toys, IBM, Sony, and numerous advertising and design firms, both national and international. Mark’s colorful style graces over 40 cover paintings for R.L. Stine’s Goosebumps book series – Give Yourself Goosebumps. After hundreds of assignments, Mark made the decision to move in another direction, and that choice has led to whole new career as a successful businessman. For four years, the owner of one of the largest Ultraman toy collections in the world co-published Super 7 Magazine showcasing the finest in Japanese toy collecting. “I’d been collecting Japanese toys all along and suddenly realized it would be cool to have a magazine of some type devoted to them,” Nagata says. Mark’s devotion to presenting collectors with a selection of original figures inspired by classic Japanese toys from the 1960s and ‘70s as well as new versions of licensed Japanese characters is at the heart of Max Toy Company. Named for his son, Max Toys specializes in custom and limited editions of “kaiju” (Japanese monsters) toys and artwork. Many of the original toys produced are hand painted by Mark, a tradition that goes back to Japanese toy makers of the past. “Since our target is the soft vinyl Japanese toy collector, which is a very small niche, our runs of toys can be extremely small,” Mark says. “Runs range from 500 pieces of one toy to just one for a hand-painted, one-of-a-kind custom figure.” Through Max Toys, Mark has taken great pains to widen the reach of his two passions – toys and art. He played a significant part in the development of the first group kaiju show in the United States. Held at the Rotofugi Gallery in Chicago, Illinois in 2007, the “Toy Karma” Show featured detailed work from artists from Japan, the U.S. and South America. Participants marveled at the custom-painted toys and art on display. “Toy Karma” led to Mark being asked to be one of the artists spotlighted in the “Beyond Ultraman: Seven Artists Explore the Vinyl Frontier” exhibit at the Pasadena Museum of California Art. The October 2007 show, held jointly with the Los Angeles Toy, Doll and Amusement Museum, marked the first time – in a museum setting – that the influence of Japanese toys on California artists was explored. The exhibit featured more than 30 of Mark’s original paintings, toys and a selection of his vintage toy collection. Mark continued to be at the forefront as interest in Japanese-inspired art and toys expanded in 2008. Prestigious art houses Philips De Pury and Christie’s in New York and London sold Mark’s hand-painted custom kaiju toys in its auctions, spreading this unique art and toy movement into new and uncharted areas of the art world. In 2009, Mark once again took his love of toys and art overseas this time to a receptive and welcoming audience in Tokyo, Japan. Here, Mark curated the “Kaiju Comrades” Art Show, once again bringing together artists from various aspects of the kaiju toy realm in this first-of-its-kind toy art show. The following year found Mark in Barcelona, Spain co-curating with Emilio Garcia “Kaiju Attack,” the European country’s first kaiju art show. As the growth of kaiju art and toys increases worldwide, Mark continues in his unofficial role of Kaiju Toy and Art Ambassador. He has written and had his artwork and toy designs included in several books and magazines, both domestic and international. In 2010, Mark served as guest lecturer on kaiju and the toy-making process at the Morikami Museum in Florida. The San Francisco resident and his art can also be spotted in the first volume of the “ToyPunks” DVD and the “Toys R Us” DVD, while the video for the number one song by Owl City “Fireflies” featured Mark’s popular Kaiju Eyezon character. During this same time period, Mark has spearheaded the “Toy Karma 2” and “Kaiju Comrades 2” shows and has plans for future shows both in the U.S. and overseas. “Max Toys allows me to produce original artwork, new toys and work directly with a lot of talented artists,” Mark says. “Max Toy is a synthesis of toys and art, both life-long passions.”
This entry was posted in airbrush, art show, art toys, Japanese toys, kaiju toy, mark nagata, Max Toy, Max Toy Company, monster kolor, painting, soft vinyl, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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