The Black Hole Collector (what type are you?)
by, 06-26-2012 at 09:14 PM (1363 Views)
It sounds so cryptic, doesn't it? But, recently I realized I am one of those "black-hole collectors" that I've often heard about. The term came about when a collector and her friend found out I had purchased a custom that they had been interested in. They saw what I had the high bid and won the horse. Then, the comment was made to me: "Well I guess I'm just going to have to order a similar one, because Pompeii's bookshelves are like black holes. Once she buys a horse, I never see it for sale again" -- Granted, she didn't say it in such an endearing tone... but it was still something that made me think about my perspective on the hobby.
Within the hobby there are many types of collectors. After all, this hobby is a very dynamic and unique community... most people are actually more than one of the types of collectors. In my time recently in the hobby, these are the sorts of collectors that I've noticed:
[B]I see it, I like it, I want it Collectors[/B]: These are the buy first ask questions later sorts of collectors. Often times committing to purchase a horse without thinking about the payment options and everything included. Then, when the time comes to pay there is serious buyers remorse and they either back out of the purchase or pay and immediately sell it.
[B]Easy to Please Collectors[/B]: People who look for horses that they like and collect based on anything and everything. There's no real scope or goal to the collection, it's just a matter of buying whatever tickles their fancy at the moment. They typically don't sell unless they need shelf space or get bored of looking at the horse. It doesn't matter if it's LSQ, PSQ, or shelf quality so long as they can enjoy it for their intended purpose.
[B]Short Attention Span Collectors[/B]: People who purchase new horses weekly and often sell existing horses that are sometimes not even weeks old for half of what they bought them for (leading to some sweet success for people on MHSP or Ebay!) in order to get money to pay for the new horses they've purchased.
[B]Model Horse Toy Collectors[/B]: These people feel that these horses are plastic, they don't care about them in any sense other than to protect them as an investment so that they can sell them at a later date or accrue a valuable collection. There is no sentiment tied to any show victories or purchases. Very sterile and cut and dry sorts of collectors who feel it's silly to be attached to a model in any way.
Sentimentalist Collectors[/B]: People who purchase any and all horses-- especially those in sorry conditions because they feel bad for them and want them to be in a valued place. These people sometimes fix the horses up with markers and paints to make them appear not as ugly. Additionally, these people hang on to their entire collection from their youth due to emotions attached to them (though that aspect is certainly not limited to Sentimentalist collectors!)
[B]Barn Management Collectors[/B]: People who keep models in a situation as though they were real horses in a barn. These people can do anything from buy blankets and halters for their models to actually making pedigrees and offering models for "stud" -- it's not that they're crazy, no, it's that they're looking for that sort of barn owner experience without owning 32 acres, an 18 stall barn, and managing 60 Real horses. No stress, No fuss, just the fun aspect of owning horses and managing them as if they were real.
[B]The OCD Collector[/B]: These collectors will often purchase one type of horse. The type may very, however. They may only collect the Peter Stone Ideal Stock Horse mold, or only collect Pintos of any scale or manufacturer, or even only collect a specific breed or customization. I also like to count people who only collect one TYPE of horse in this category as well (for example: Only OF. Only OF Stone. Only customs. Only resins. Only Stock Horses, etc) I don't put people who collect one type of scale into this category though.
[B]Artists[/B]: People who tend to just paint and sell rather than collect themselves. Or, sometimes they have a small shelf of unpainted resins or 3-6 horses they keep for their show string. The only model purchases they make are for parts, bodies, and other things they can repaint and turn a profit on. This goes for tack makers as well, only they keep some horses around for tack-fitting purposes. (NOTE: The artist collector type is often combined with other collector types!)
Live-Show-Quality Collectors[/B]: People who hold an unrealistically high standard to their models (particularly seen with OF collectors) and whine/flail/go crazy when there's a small lint in the gloss behind the horse's scrotum (aka in a place no one but them would see it) and constantly returning/replacing horses that are less than perfect. These are the same people who tend to throw a hissy fit if a judge pins a class without putting their flawless horse in 1st place.
[B]Success-Driven Boredom Collectors[/B]: People who have the money to buy the top quality [I]everything[/I] and often win out at each show they go to. And as a horse continues to win they eventually bore of showing it and offer it for sale with a slew of NAN cards. This is also blended with the following collector...
[B]The Model Horse Trainer[/B]: These collectors will purchase NIB Breyers or other OF/less expensive horses that have merit in the show ring. They will then pick some fabulous documentation for the model and show them, earning NAN cards. When it has proved a successful horse, they offer it for sale for twice the price due to it being a proven success at shows. More often than not, these people do not provide the winning DOCUMENTATION that they showed the breed under, since they will end up using it again on a similar model. [I](Author's note: I WANTED to be this kind of collector when I first got into it... but enjoyed showing my horses too much to let them go!)[/I]
[B]The Black Hole Collector[/B]: Once these guys get a horse, it's theirs for life. Any OOAKs, Painted Resins or Customs will only be seen in glimpses at local shows and nothing more. You live vicariously through posted photos of their collections or are forced to order similar horses through the YCI or just custom orders from other artists. If they can't afford a new horse, then they simply will not purchase it so they don't have to sacrifice another element of their collection.
My thoughts on being the Black Hole Collector.... It's not that I WON'T sell my horses if needed. If I ran into hard times I absolutely would (though I'd hate it!) but, if I see a new horse that I want, I won't sell another horse in order to get it. I also buy a model with the intention on keeping it forever, not just for a few weeks until I get bored and move on. I do tend to get attached to my models, particularly the customs and OOAKs because I associate them with happy times. With showing, winning, taking photographs, etc. I remember many details about the sale and even have the original photographs of the horse saved for reference. So, it's almost like a cross between sentimentalist (though I only collect LSQ) and being a black hole. I wish I could be more of a Trainer but in the end I hate letting them go, LOL!
Now, sometimes I buy a horse and I never really click with it. In those cases I will let it go without looking back. But, that's only happened 3 times in my last 2 years of collecting. So all in all I have a pretty good track record. In fact, one of the horses I sold I would love to get back but he was a OOAK so I think he is lost to time, as it were! Oh well!
What kind of collector are you? If you don't fit into one of these categories, make your own!