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amaninjapan last won the day on December 21 2018

amaninjapan had the most liked content!

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  1. Thanks for all the kind words, @estrangedtwat - Most importantly, I'm glad you enjoyed yourself! My section of Japan has much more to offer so please feel free to come by again. Hope you enjoy the shirts - I'm not into the shirts anywhere nearly as much as the lithographs because I consider shirts a 'consumable' and always find it bittersweet that they essentially have a finite lifespan if you 'consume' them the way they are designed (to be worn). I've loved wearing many 'favorite' shirts over the years and always end up sad when they eventually deteriorate into glorified rags. But at the same time, they're designed to be worn - so it's just as sad to have shirts just tucked away in a closet, never to be worn. So wear them with pride and rock out with them while you can! And enjoy the Kobe - you've literally been on this journey with me since day one, were the first person I traded/bought lithos with and been a great friend every step of the way. Can't think of anybody who deserves it more! Just sorry that it ended up being a late Christmas present
  2. Thanks @liqddynamite - Your help has been instrumental to making this collection a reality. It's kinda funny that you mention the time and effort because it took more than I could have ever imagined back when I started. If I knew then what I know now... I actually wonder whether I'd do it all over again - hard to say. The concerts, without a doubt; I loved all the travel and meeting great people and making new friends. But the sacrifices made all in the name of this silly collection... Anyway, it's all done now! A few people have asked me to list my "Top 10" favorite litho designs of the tour, so here they are. This is just a list of my favorite designs - rarity, value, size, print type, print quality has nothing to do with it. 10 - Wellington Maori - Still think this is significantly underrated. It's just beautiful AND a great cultural reference to Maori culture. 9 - Odense - Europe 2018 had several viking-themed designs and this came very early in the leg so I feel like this didn't get the love it deserves. The colors are magnificent and as much as I love the 'classic' Guns N' Roses font, I still think it kicks ass when they choose a different font that just ends up feeling 'just right'. The warm vanilla sky white also wins me over. 8 - Los Angeles Skater - One of the first lithos I ended up purchasing. Those colors are just fucking amazing. Every time I see it, it almost makes me want to pull out a copy of California Games and pretend its the 80s again. 7 - Cincinnati - Clearly a favorite around here. It took me a while to warm up to it but it does pop in real life. I personally would've loved to have seen it with a white border but still a masterpiece. The way that space is speckled with stars is gorgeous and almost makes me think it might have been even cooler if those stars had been foil or glow in the dark. 6 - Foxboro pair - Okay this is two lithos and not one but I think this is a reasonable exception. A really novel idea that was executed perfectly. I've seen some of these multi-poster designs done by other bands and they're never great on as many levels as this. Both designs look amazing on their own and the artist's signature style really works well with the composition. Plus I am a HUGE fan of designs that reference famous works of art. 5 - Zurich - This one just freaks me out every time I look at it, it's that awesome. Like I mentioned, I am a huge fan when poster art references an older composition but combine that with another love of mine (distinct art movements) and you've got yourself a winner in my book. I'm also a big fan of both LIFE and TIME magazine so it made me feel a little warm and fuzzy inside when I saw both their logos had been used. 4 - Philadelphia (2016) - I am a huge fan of punk and this just sorta screamed Sex Pistols to me. And then again, mix in the art reference and it wins me over instantly. I think this was the first litho I ended up buying on Ebay and I'm glad I did because they became very hard to find for a long long time. There's a couple on Ebay now but those are like the only two in the past 18 months or so. 3 - Osaka - My first show of the tour and naturally my first in-person litho purchase. I won't go into too much detail about the concert or else I could be here all day but this design is like the gift that keeps on giving for me. I liked it a lot but didn't LOVE it when I first saw it but the more I had it on display, the more I looked at it, the more I realized how amazing it is. There's so many subtle aspects of it that hit you over time. The red really pops in real life; the ghosts of Duff, Slash and Axl hidden in the smoke and flames; the way the windows are done in such a way that the litho almost look like they're illuminated from behind; the beating heart of the beast being the GNR logo. Just magnificent. 2 - Madrid - I think it's a real shame that many people will never get to see this design in person. The art reference itself is already magnificent and using yellow as a contrast color on a blue sky is just dreamy - but what is hard to see unless you look at it in person is the pseudo painting textures that Arian Buhler has managed to bring to life on a print. He manages to not only create an impasto effect in some areas (making it look like there's thick paint textures) but in others, he makes it genuinely look like the canvas texture is showing through the paint layers. 1 - Kobe - I think this speaks for itself; I think many have said plenty about this design already, including myself. I guess it's possible that my list could change, especially the order of them - but at least for now, I think that's an accurate representation.
  3. Well I didn't choose the destinations because of the lithos And honestly, I don't mind people who flip stuff for a profit. Let's face it, if it wasn't for Ebay and people like that, we would ALL have problems getting most lithos. We can't go to all the shows and we can't always have a friend going to a show who can pick up a litho. We as merchandise collectors need people who get multiple lithos for the specific purpose of making it available for purchase to people who didn't go to the show/couldn't get one at the show. But when these people grab twenty or thirty lithos instead of like five - that's where I think I draw the line.
  4. I stopped counting after a while but I'm guessing it was definitely less than 50. Not living in the US really took my legs out from under me. I know a few people who ONLY went to US shows and went to 50+ shows, whereas I focused on hitting foreign countries and using it as a reason to travel again. I saw them on five different continents (regret not seeing them in South America) so I think I did pretty well, all things considered. Unless your brother was buying 50+ lithos, I wouldn't have minded. Me and my friends do the exact same thing. My friends have their job (make sure to keep my place in line or keep a spot for me at the rail) and I have my job (get everybody merch). Whoever has the job of getting merch might get weird looks when they're walking away with 15 shirts and 10 lithos but I honestly have no problem when they already have names on them. When people buy 50 lithos or 100 shirts to flip on Ebay, that's when they can go get fucked. You guys know who you are. Podcast is here:
  5. I'm fine with being called crazy
  6. No I am not. I have asked around through numerous channels and as far as I can tell, nobody is as stupid as me!
  7. I agree. With a lack of new music (which doesn't bother me as much as it bothers many other people), GNR not throwing out a deep cut or two and the setlist kinda being on automatic for all of 2018, the artwork was definitely something to look forward to. If anybody has any questions, feel free to ask them. Not sure if I can answer them all nor can I guarantee I want to answer them all, but I'll do what I can. I think that unnumbered lithos are a possibility but if they weren't sold at the venue then as far as I'm concerned, I have no interest in them because they're not part of the limited edition run. Most importantly however, the artists in nearly all instances have absolutely NO control over the actual printing of the lithos - so anybody claiming they have "Artist Proof" prints is either fluffing the truth or straight out lying. The ONLY exception are lithos like the Sara Ray variants because, well, because they're exactly that - variants - and other 'unique' printing situations like the Hatch Show Print lithos and possibly Jimbo Phillips' Sacramento. In those situations, the artist is involved with printing to a certain extent. But the normal procedure is that the artists submit a 'printable' file to Bravado and Bravado organizes the printing. Referring to any 'extras' as "Artist Proof" prints would be inaccurate and misleading. The artists aren't proofing these prints. Generally speaking, it is understood that the band takes 20 or 30 'off the top' to hand to their VIP friends and guests. I've had reputable band crew and merch crew both mention it on multiple occasions and I'm pretty sure other litho collectors have heard crew say the same. Usually these seem to be, intentionally or unintentionally, the low numbers. This seems to be backed up by most peoples experiences because the lowest numbers almost NEVER end up being put up for sale on Ebay etc. However, there are definitely exceptions. I've traded with a couple of people in the band's inner circle a couple of times and even though one of them was a super low number, the other ended up being a very middle-of-the-road number and I know that person got that litho from the band's personal stack. On the flipside, at least a couple of my lithos are numbered in the teens and I personally bought those from the merch stands myself so just because you have a low number, it's no guarantee that that used to be a band stack litho.
  8. Some of the many things I've realized from these past couple years or so is that: - The amount of people who are serious litho collectors is a lot smaller than us serious litho collectors seem to think. By 'serious' I mean, I don't know, people who have more than 20 or so lithos. - The amount of serious litho collectors who want a complete set is an even smaller subset. I know quite a few people who have "all the 2016 lithos" or "all the Australian lithos" or "all the lithos they like" and have spent a lot of time and money getting them - but they have absolutely no desire to get them all. - The amount of serious litho collectors who have the finances to make a complete set a reality is also a very small subset. You know how we all know SOMEONE who has a weird collection? Someone who collects empty beer cans or Starbucks mugs or Beanie Babies or something. And you wonder what the appeal is? A lot of people even in the GNR fan community look at litho collectors the same way haha and I'll be the first to admit that I get why it's weird for a lot of people. Whenever the topic comes up with someone new to GNR lithos, I usually find myself chuckling and prefacing it with "Okay so hear me out, I know it's a little weird but..." About the crew and the band's inner circle: - It's not the same crew who worked on every leg of the tour so the amount of people who 'technically' might have the ability to collect lithos is probably smaller than you think. - The amount of the crew/band who give a fuck about lithos is also probably very small and a lot smaller than you think. - I've traded and given lithos to some of these people because they didn't get one themselves and without naming names, if these people, of all people, had to resort to getting lithos from me, clearly the potential for them to get their hands on lithos themselves is not what you might expect and/or lithos are not very high up on their list of priorities.
  9. Yeah I did! He is such a nice guy and I was flattered that he went out of his way to meet me; it was truly a highlight of not just my Hawaii trip but also the entire tour.
  10. I have archival boxes designed to hold 18x24 documents and 24x36 documents. Those keep them protected for the most part, but naturally being an engineer and having an interest in design, I have designed my own frames that I will be getting a local craftsman to make for me. I will be framing at least 3 of them and will probably have a spare frame that I will use to regularly cycle through my collection so as they all get appreciated from time to time. I don't want them to just sit hidden away for the rest of eternity.
  11. That's a tough question because there's different ways to answer: Toughest to buy or trade online: There's a whole bunch that have never been seen for sale or trade online from my experience: Bilbao is probably the white whale. There's others that are extremely rare and have only been seen online a few times - Madrid, Orlando United, Bangkok, Stockholm, Munich, Imola. Mexico City is tough too because it was so early in the tour and not many people were that big into collecting them back then. Toughest to buy in person: Probably the last Los Angeles show in 2017. There was a British guy who hired two or three of his douchebag friends to buy SHITLOADS of lithos from all the LA and San Diego shows. Me and my friends saw them walk away with at least 50 or 60 Slash lithos at Staples Center and they cleaned out several of the inside merch booths in San Diego too. We made sure we got there before them on the last day and did our best to make sure the didn't screw everybody over because they had outside merch at that last show. So it was a long day lining up for merch plus we were running on empty because we'd driven back from the San Diego show at 1 or 2am and only had a few hours sleep. The show was worth it though! And then there's just ones that were just tough for me to find personally. I started collecting them later than a lot of people so even though some people had no problem finding theirs, it took me a while to find lithos like Toronto 2016 and the Coachellas. I also had a couple of 'friends' promise to get me a litho from Regina and all they did was run away with my money. It's all good now though! Arian Buhler went out of his way to meet me in Hawaii too - Words can't express how happy I was about that! It was one of about twenty different reasons that Hawaii ended up being so unforgettable.
  12. Thank you to everybody who helped make this possible. You know who you are
  13. Looking forward to what the Hawaii lithograph will look like.