I know… it’s March, and a little late to bag on the Quarantine year… but it doesn’t look like we’re going anywhere any time soo, so whatever. What did I do in 2020? Well, I watched Tiger King and put on 10lbs, just like everyone else. I watched all of my planned distractions fall to the wayside as events were cancelled… Gen Con, concerts, festivals, vacations, the honeymoon… All cancelled. I remodeled a kitchen, and an office, and a den, and a spare bedroom. I started a band that fell apart, then started another. I painted, and read, and played games, and hung out with family.
All in all, not too bad of a year, but man I miss people.
So I don’t know if it’s a trend, or if it’s just the Google algorithm pushing me specific content recently, but recently I’ve seen a ton of articles and videos about how expensive it is to collect miniatures. I’ve seen articles and videos pushing people towards buying less expensive miniatures, buying pre-painted miniatures, and all of them mention the same thing: time is money, and painting takes time.
But here’s the thing… Aren’t hobbies supposed to be time-consuming?
Isn’t the whole reason that most of us got into gaming and into miniature collecting because we enjoy the hobby? Don’t we want to spend the time practicing our hobby? Sitting at the table slapping paint on figures shouldn’t be a chore. It shouldn’t be a waste of time,. It should be fun, rright?. It should be something that we look forward to doing at the end of the day after a long afternoon of work. Painting should be relaxing. Painting should be an enjoyable escape.
I don’t know too many people who play music recreationally, and hate every minute of it… Or complain about how expensive it is to maintain their instrument. If they do it as a hobby, they do it out of love.
And, hobbies, by definition, are expensive. And by that I mean that they are an expense. Hobbies are not cheap, and the kind of people that gravitate towards collecting anything tend to spend more money than most. We like having the set, we like having a complete collection, we like having all or most not just one or some. I don’t know too many miniature hobbyist who don’t have a big old shelf of unpainted lead sitting somewhere in their house… Or a box of an open blister packs sitting under a table somewhere because they liked and appreciated the sculpts. They liked the pieces. They wanted to own them.
So, yes. Miniature collecting is expensive. But stop complaining. You do it because you love it. If you don’t, stop. Because at that point it’s no longer a hobby, it’s a habit.