Pikachu, use Thunderbolt!

“Reds Pikachu is going up against my Charizard in a sparring match. Who will be victorious?“

About the figure:

This 18,5 cm tall Red figure from Kotobukiya comes with a 7 cm tall statue of Pocket Monsters trademark face, the well known Pikachu. Red himself was sculpted by Nishimaru Yoshihiro and his electrified pal was done by Nishimura Naoki.


The figure was released in Japan on November 2011 in order to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the franchise.  A Vol. 2 of this series was released in April 2017 and is featuring May and her Mudkip.

For a videogame character that hasn’t a lot of details, they did an awesome job portraying Red as powerful as possible. You can really feel the intensity by his pose and this facial expression.

If you look closely you will notice that his index finger does not touch his baseball cap. I don’t know why, but I do like this little detail a lot. You can also see Reds little belly button while his shirt is floating.

The backside of this jacket is rather plain but the backside of his cap is modelled very nicely.


I had a very hard time hiding the base of this figure, because Reds Pokéball shaped base holds him with a screw in his right food. He also has giant pegs. For a figure that size, I think it’s a little excessive.


Pikachu on the other hand is not attached to the base at all. Therefore it can be easily used in a picture. Like Red it is also sculpted with great attention to detail and the little transparent sparks coming out from his cheeks are a nice touch too.  With his nearly 7 cm in height this version of Pikachu rivals the amiibo one but this one of course is a much better build.


About the series:

Nothing much to say: It’s freaking Pokémon! A franchise which is now two decades  old, that sold 200 million copies worldwide, spawned 18 feature films, got turned into a trading card game and recently reached his seventh generation of pocket monsters. People who started playing the original Pokémon Blue or Red edition on the game boy back in the nineties are full-grown adults by today but still love the new games, enjoying the joy of catching, trading and collecting those little digital creatures.


Thoughts about the picture:

Even though I haven’t played recent generations, my Pokémon history goes all the way back to 1999, when the first game finally launched in Europe. I picked up my blue version, chose Squirtle to be my starter, played countless hours and even managed to catch all the 151 pocket monsters.  Since then the franchise accompanied me to this very day and recently I rediscovered my love for the game by playing the new “Sun” edition and well as Pokémon GO.


To honor 20+ years of little monsters inhabiting our handheld consoles I did this figure photo of Red, showing him in the middle of a Pokémon fight. It was my intention to build some sort of Arena but I ultimately ended up by creating some sort of back alley underground fighting area for young trainers to go up against each other with no tournament rules whatsoever.

Behind the scenes:

First I had to craft those stands you can see in the background of the final composition. Since I wasn’t 100% sure how to build those and since I didn’t want to spend much money on the backdrop I ended up using straws. I remembered a teambuilding course I attended once, were we had to build a bridge out of said straws. So I thought, it might also work for stands.


I glued everything together by using a hot glue gun (what would I ever do without one?) and then sprayed over it to give it a nice silver paintjob. Once it dried off I applied a few boards of balsa wood and also mounted some wire mesh fence on top of it. Here you can see the finished stand in its full glory.

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Using the same technique I also made some of these reels you always see at the edge of a playing field as well as a tiny stadium spotlight. The spotlight is filled with tiny LED lights that have been used in this older photo. For the field I used a structure mat and applieda piece of cardboard. After that I painted a white Pokéball shaped circle on it.


Since this composition needs more space than usual and also got a little tricky in terms of perspective I ended up doing some testshots to see if everything would work out fine.


When I was convinced that it will end in a satisfying result I arranged the final composition.

Canon EOS 5D, 90mm Macro lense / ISO 100 / Exposure time 0.6 sec. / aperture: 20n


Time and effort: 
The stands and the station light took me about 10-11 hours to make. The setting was then put together and shot in about two hours.

CostsCosts of the props:
The packages of straws, the balsa wood and the silver paint cost me about 10 EUR. The sand mat I used is a model railways landscape one and cost around 15 EUR. Altogether the setting was very inexpensive.


It became “Picture of the day” on “My Figure Collection”.


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