I started doing the commissions because I wanted a bunch of unarmored samurai for doing street skirmishes in the vein of several samurai films (Yojimbo, Sanjuro, 13 Assassins, Kill!, Ichi, Zatoichi.) Admittedly, my first commission was the archer monk; I used him to to test the waters to see how I liked the process and the finished product. If it was the first and only commission I did, at least it would be a nice shelf piece. He was a great success (and one of my favorites), so more suitable skirmish models quickly followed.
I have another samurai who is being molded. Unarmored of course, armed with a katana in a hasso stance (at least the best I could ascertain as "hasso." There is one complaint over at TMP from someone who says the pose is all wrong. I don't care -- it's an action pose for movie-style skirmishing, anyway -- It's my money, so I'll choose whatever pose I think "looks cool.")
I'm saving up money for yet another commission; I think the next one will be a classic sohei monk armed with naginata. In the future, I also have ideas for another peasant, a yari-armed samurai, another monk archer (a standing version of the one in the photo) and maybe an ikko-ikki monk. All of these will probably take another year or so.
So why spend the money? I could spend a few dollars for a few packs of minis to get some figures that are close to what I like, or I can spend extra money to get exactly what I want. So instead of having a shelf of hundreds of figures, a few of which I love, I have a shelf with a few figures, all of which I love.
Steve Barber will do just about any commission. Drop him an email and check it out. He'll give you a quote for free.