Please introduce yourself
My name is Daniel. I’m 31 years old. I’m originally from South Carolina, but currently live in Maryland. I’m in the US Air Force. I got into Instagram b/c I’ve always enjoyed taking pictures and I had just gotten into watches when I got an account. I saw lots of awesome pics and users on there and I’ve really enjoyed interacting with other watch lovers. I don’t meet many watch nerds in person, so it’s great to have a way to connect with others who share a similar passion. My other passions include music and fine fragrances. I’ve been playing guitar for 16 years now.

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Is there a story behind your Instagram name mesaboogie85?
My username comes from Mesa/Boogie, which is my favorite guitar amplifier company. I wanted a Mesa for years and finally got one about 5 years ago. It seemed an expensive purchase to me then, but it costs about a third of most of my watches lol.

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When and how did your passion for watches start?
I always liked watches. Growing up, I wore Citizens, Fossils, and Casios. Nothing fancy. I got bitten by the watch bug in 2013. I was shopping for a new watch and grabbed a G-shock on Amazon. I decided that I needed a dressier piece, so I got a Fossil on a leather strap. I also wanted an automatic, so I picked up an Invicta 8926OB. That went on and on. I bought about two dozen watches my first year in the game, all cheapies from Orient to boutique brands like Christopher Ward and Steinhart. I got some help and advice from my buddy James aka @jimmer1971. I started researching dive watches and came across a picture of an Omega Planet Ocean. I immediately fell in love with it and that became my grail. I never imagined I’d spend that much money on a watch, but I was smitten by the PO. I saved up some money and ended up buying a 2201.50 42mm Planet Ocean. It was everything I thought it would be and it started my love for Omega. After that, I had my eyes set on a Tudor Black Bay Blue 79220B and that was my next big purchase. I sold off all my cheapies and put it towards the BBB. It was also the watch I wore during my wedding in 2015. I told myself that I was done buying watches for a while, but that was definitely not the case lol 🙂

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Which watches are in your current collection?
My current collection includes: Planet Ocean 2201.50, Seamaster Pro midsize 2551.80, Aqua Terra 38.5mm “Spectre” blue dial, Speedmaster Racing opaline silver dial, Grand Seiko SBGV019LE, and most recently, a Seiko SRP787 “Turtle”. I also have a Sistem 51, a Casio Pathfinder, and some G-shocks, but I only wear them when I need a watch I don’t mind banging around.

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Why these watches?
I gravitate towards Omega b/c I love their designs. The signature curved lugs with the polished bevels are gorgeous. They’re also not as common as some of the other luxury brands I see around. I bought the Grand Seiko b/c I admire the level of detail and perfection that goes into making them. They are truly stunning to see in person. The way the indices and hands shine like diamonds. The elegantly curved and polished cases. Grand Seiko is one of the best kept secrets in the watch world. You get so much watch for the money. I also wanted to get a quartz model because the 9F caliber is technologically marvelous. The high accuracy is a big plus. Also, I have too many automatics and I’m running out of space in my watch winders!

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Do you have a favorite and why?
My favorite watch: This is a tough one. Overall, I would say the Grand Seiko is my favorite because it truly feels like I’m wearing a special piece. It’s also pretty unlikely I’ll see another one in the wild, so there’s a sort of exclusivity factor. The Aqua Terra is also special to me because I bought it on my honeymoon. It’s the one I’m not allowed to sell lol. The PO is my favorite diver. Man, I’ll just say the GS is my favorite!

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What are the most important factors when you buy a watch?

There are a couple of important factors when I buy a watch: Does the watch fit ok? I have small wrists, so I tend to wear mid-size pieces. I can get away with bigger pieces with short lug to lugs (Thanks, Omega!). Does the watch have a classic look or will it look out of place 20-30 years from now? Does the watch offer value for the price? All luxury watches are overpriced, of course, but I look for the ones that really give me something for my money. Functionality is important. I like divers b/c of the elapsed time bezel, great water resistance, and excellent visibility in the dark. I like my Speedy for it’s chrono function. Resale value is important, but not critical to me. I buy watches that I intend to keep, which is another important factor: Is this a watch I can see myself wearing for the foreseeable future? I’m not much of a flipper anymore and I’m intent on collecting lifetime pieces.

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What are your grail watches and what’s so desirable about them?
My grail watches right now are: Audemars Piguet Royal Oak 37mm white dial, Planet Ocean Liquid Metal Limited Edition (POLMLE), Lange Saxonia annual calendar moonphase, and the Grand Seiko SBGA011 “Snowflake”. I used to hate the design of the AP RO, but something about it really started grabbing my attention. I saw it in person and the fit and finish is remarkable. The POLMLE is THE quintessential PO for me. It’s a beautiful mix of the 2500 and 8500 Planet Oceans. It has the applied open font numeral indices, thin arrow hands, liquidmetal dial and bezel, 2500 bracelet and hippocampus caseback. I love what Lange does with their watches. The craftsmanship is unreal and I’d love to have a moonphase in my collection. The Saxonia has a lot going on, but the dial remains clean and uncluttered. The The 38.5mm case size is perfect for such an elegant watch. The Snowflake is what got me onto the GS brand. The dial that looks like freshly fallen snow, blue seconds hand, incredibly polished titanium case, and the Spring Drive movement make it an incredible package.

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In your eyes, what makes the perfect watch picture and do you have some tricks?
I’m by no means a great photographer, but I do enjoy taking and editing pictures. To me, the perfect watch picture should focus on the timepiece. I like having an interesting background, but the watch should be the centerpiece, not a prop. When I snap a pic of my watch, I take several from different angles to make sure I get a clearly focused pic. I make sure the hands are all visible. I try to focus on the details of the face in my closeup pics. Lighting is very important as well. I try to get reflections and shadows off the dial as much as possible. Sometimes, I like to play with the AR coating on my Omegas. I’ve gotten some pretty interesting blue hues on the Planet Ocean and Aqua Terra, which goes well with their maritime theme. Almost as important as the picture itself is the editing. When I first started my Instagram account, I oversaturated my pics. Now, I try to give my pics a more true-to-life representation of the watch, but cleaned up and with a little saturation to highlight the color of the dials and background.

See more great pictures from mesaboogie85 on Instagram

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