Armored whale action figure is no fluke

Mechawhales are the creation of 3D artist Hauke Scheer. Photo: Hauke Scheer
Mechawhales are the creation of 3-D artist Hauke Scheer. Photo: Hauke Scheer

If you want to skip out on posing for photos during the next family vacation, do what Hauke Scheer plans to do — use a 3-D-printed version of yourself as a stand-in.

The Scheer family might let him get away with it, since the fully articulated action figure of himself that he created is a pretty good likeness. The quality of his miniature plastic doppelganger — and the geeky scheme to get out of family portraits — tell you something about Scheer, 39, who earns a living making 3-D-printed figures of mechanized whales and other crazy characters from his home in Frankfurt, Germany.

“I am a total geek with a huge collection of comics, science fiction and fantasy movies and, of course, action figures,” Scheer, who runs Deep Fried Figures, told Cult of Mac. “I started sculpting my own figures during my early teenage years at a time when lots of characters I loved were not available in figure form. After a while, I realized it was even more fun to make characters of my own.”

6 brilliant action figures that will empty your bank account

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This Steve Jobs action figure was barred from release by Jobs' family. But the others on this list weren't. Photo: In Icon
This Steve Jobs action figure was barred from release by Jobs' family. But the others on this list weren't. Photo: In Icon

Everyone loves action figures, right?

With the rarer offerings regularly carrying price tags that put them out of reach for most allowances, however, they’re no longer exclusively for kids. With that in mind, here’s Cult of Mac’s list of the must-have figures with price tags to match. Featuring everything from pro wrestlers to sci-fi characters, we’re sure you’ll find something to tempt you.

Play nicely, now!

3 great services to help rid yourself of nerdy crap

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Steve Jobs action figure
If you actually have one of these unproduced Steve Jobs figurines, maybe don't sell it. Photo: in icons

Scott Dadich, editor-in-chief of Wired, recently dispatched a chilling memo to his worker bees about keeping their San Francisco hive clean. Among other things, Dadich bemoaned the “dorm room” look of the office.

“It’s an embarrassment,” he opined in his overwrought missive, which was leaked to The Awl. “Coffee stains on walls (and countertops and desks), overflowing compost bins, abandoned drafts of stories and layouts (full of highly confidential content), day-old, half-eaten food, and, yes, I’m going to say it, action figures. Please. WIRED is no longer a pirate ship [emphasis added].”

Whether you work at Wired or not, you have no shortage of options if you’re suddenly in a panic to sell your old nerdy crap (or buy all-new nerdy crap — take that, Mr. Boss Man). While you might be tempted to go straight to Craigslist or eBay, those sites can be unpredictable or leave you vulnerable to murder. Here are three alternatives if you want to ditch your excess junk and prefer to keep your guts where they are.

Surreal photos capture Stormtrooper’s life on Earth

FULLSCREEN

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

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Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Photo by Darryll Jones

Eric is a Stormtrooper who escaped the exploding Death Star and wound up on Earth.

Now he wears jeans, enjoys lavender-scented bubble baths, drinks Johnnie Walker whisky and sings a song about his tomato allergy.

No longer a member of the Galactic Empire guard, Eric serves as muse to British photographer Darryll Jones, a self-described 39-year-old child who has turned his fondness for toys — especially Star Wars action figures — into a Force on Instagram.

“I have always loved toys,” said Jones, a food and lifestyle photographer who does work for the Tesco supermarket chain when he’s not taking pictures of toys. “I recall quite vividly setting up little dioramas in my room or in the garden and playing out the scenes in my mind, imagining that the little plastic figures could come alive.”