Why aren't more of these produced at a time? If it were me, I would make hundreds of these each time they are made so everyone can get one. I don't see the point of just releasing 5 at a time and waiting months for the next batch of 5 or 10.
I'll just quote myself here I guess.
As far as the blanks go there are lots produced and people who pay attention here were able to grab a couple colors easily. I actually did an open pre-order here on LRG with one of the recent colors so anyone who wanted it could reserve one within 48 hours just by saying they wanted one. There was no drop to chase or chance at missing out at all. I can't do any better then that as far as availability.
With painted runs it is up the the artist painting them and that is that. Retroband was up for painting 20 or so and Obsessed Panda asked if he could paint 5 of them. They aren't factories and very few people who do toy stuff actually do it for a living so it's whatever they are comfortable with and have time for and will have fun doing. My toy specifically is waaaay lower priced then most vinyl so instead of charging around 200 bucks for their painted versions they have been charging around 50 so it's less money for them on top of being more difficult because Tug O' War is pretty detailed and small.
I get as many of these produced as I can but you have to realize that I come out of pocket for everything at some point so a lot of it comes down to what I can afford and what I think I can sell. I don't make toys for a living, it's just for fun. Most stuff eventually pays for itself if I'm lucky but that isn't always the case.
If I somehow found an artist willing to paint "hundreds" of these for one big run they simply would not all sell. Not even close. Then I would be left paying the painter $35 bucks x HUNDREDS which would leave me in a $10,000 dollar hole give or take which would probably mean I couldn't ever afford to make any toys ever again.
The whole entire vinyl thing is a really delicate balancing act. No one wants to leave customers without something to buy and no one wants to lose a ton of money by overestimating the demand either. I cannot simply go to the factory that produces them and say hey give me 50 more please. I have to order waaaaay more then that at a time and even if I placed an order today I probably wouldn't get them this year.
Sure I could take all the stock I have left and sell it tomorrow but it's way more fun for me to do painted runs along with blank runs. When they are painted they look so cool and I get to work with Eric and Karis and make fun little headers for them and stickers. Plus working with painters is a blast as well. Tossing ideas around and seeing them come to life is incredibly satisfying. I spent a year sculpting this thing and another year waiting for production so having fun with them is my biggest priority because that's why I did it in the first place.
It's easy for anyone to say that they would order enough for everyone but it's not so easy to set aside significant amounts of money and hope that you get lucky enough to get it all back eventually through sales of one little toy. I do the best I can and like I said last time I did do an open pre-order here already and I plan to try and do that again for you guys in one way or another.