Today is Christmas and there’s no better time than now to review the year. 2017 was quite eventful. For every challenge there were victories, rewards, and more. There are many things for which to be thankful. I’m grateful to my many friends in the Godzilla community. I want to thank all the followers of MyKaiju Facebook page has pass 15K likes. I extend a special thank you to those who support my toy photography. So much happens in a year from box days to conventions. Here are a few things that made 2017 special. 2017 got off to a fast start rewarding Shin Godzilla with 7 awards at the 40th Japan Academy Prize Awards.

Shin Godzilla wins 7 awards

2017 was a year of translation and special projects from a series of concept book covers to discovering the structure and secrets of Shin Godzilla to making origami.

Concept Godzilla novels

I had the good fortune of appearing in G-Fan magazine a couple times this year. In addition, I was a guest on Kaiju-Cast and feature on Kaiju Addicts TV.

MyKaiju toy photography in G-Fan 2017
Photo by David Eric Dopko

G-Fest XXIV was another great success. Meeting old friends and making new friends makes the weekend most memorable. It was an honor to be a member of the judges and panel for the Summit Kaiju Toy Photography Contest.

G-Fest XXIV Summit Kaiju Contest Panel
From left to right: Mark Callaway, John Ruffin (me), Nick Shev, Alex Andrea Kalantzis, Jon D. Bumpus, Jeremy Soles, Jessica Etchells, David Eric Dopko and Christine Chapin.

This year my toy photography took new steps forward. I learn a lot by doing the series of Godzilla movie posters. My skills evolved and my learning increased.

Showa Godzilla Poster sample

The box days were plenty bringing figures, books, and dvds. It’s difficult to pick the best thing I got this year, but the prize was finding a copy of Goro Maki’s book.

Spring and Asura

My collection grew considerably. There was the addition of the Gabara, Godzilla 1971, Hedorah, MechaGodzilla 1993, the surprise release of Godzilla 1975, Godzilla 1995, and more. The X-Plus Gigantic Shin Godzilla has become its centerpiece and crown. Shortly following the crown was the smaller creepers, Shin Godzilla second and third forms. X-Plus kept us looking for more money as they rolled out new figures.

X-Plus Gigantic Shin Godzilla

Throughout the year, my friends and I traveled to our favorite spots searching for new things for our collections. New York is our favorite destination.

Me and friends in New York in front of Toy Tokyo

The height of 2017 was no doubt meeting Shin Godzilla Director Shinji Higuchi and Special Effects Cinematographer Keiichi Sakurai at the Famous Monsters Convention in Dallas, Texas. Kaiju officinado and founding member of the Monster Attack Team, Ed Holland, invited me down to meet them. I’m forever grateful!

Shinji Higuchi and Keiichi Sakurai and Monster Attack Team
Shin Godzilla co-director Shinji Higuchi and cinematographer Keiichi Sakurai with Monster Attack Team officers and members May 2017 during Famous Monsters of Filmland Convention Dallas! That’s me on the left. (Photo by Ed Holland)

2017 brought some lows with the highs. It was a tearful year with the passing of Mr. Godzilla Haruo Nakajima (d. August 7, 2017) and his wife, Tsuchiya Yoshio (d. February 8, 2017), and illustrator Basil Gogos (d. September 14, 2017). We continue to pray for the loved ones of our Godzilla heroes.

Haruo Nakajima

I’m looking forward to 2018 which promises some unique experiences that only have been dreams. I thank you for following and supporting MyKaiju.com.