Sunday, 31 January 2010

Advanced Aviation Modelling

Hmm. A bit of a geeky book perhaps, but I thought it might be worth reading as it mentioned exciting things like how to do battle damage and how to scratch build etc. Oh, and weathering. Some of what was said was very interesting, and I might be trying it. Probably on one of the simpler models though, which was suggested in the book to be honest. Anyway, I did read the whole thing through. There were some very good ideas and they were mostly well illustrated.

However, I did have a couple of problems with the book. One was that although purporting to tell you how to scratch build, the details on how to do so were rather lacking, most of the advice coming under the general diea of 'use your imagination' and 'if it looks right, it is right'. The second was that the painting section dealt only with the use of airbrushes. Now, this might very well be one of the best ways to paint a model--I wouldn't know, I've never used one--but the abrupt dismissal of any other method of painting annoyed me. What's wrong with a paint brush? I don't have the space, or ventilation, etc to use an air brush. I can't imagine even attempting to use something that sprays paint around in my bedroom, the garage is also pretty unsuitable for such delicate operations as there's a lot of woodworking stuff done in there making it dusty, and my parents would not be impressed by me doing it in the dining room. So, what I want to know is this: what's wrong with using a fine paint brush to do the detail? The whole process of airbrushing, particularly for camouflage, sounds exaggeratedly difficult. Next up: the methods of displaying models. What's wrong with hanging them from the ceiling? It's a legitiate way of viewing model aircraft in their natural element, and aside from the slight danger of knocking them down, it's a space effective way of storing them. But no. Glass cabinets appear to be the only way of doing things.

But besides these narrow aspects of the work, it was very interesting. And as an inspiration and incitement to try slightly different methods when putting the finishing touches on a model, it was certainly interesting. Battle damage and weathering was well explained, and it's certainly something I fancy having a go at. The attention to detail displayed was a little obsessive in my mind (get pictures of battle damaged aircraft so you can see exactly what shape to twist the damage into?!) but fair enough I suppose. If you've got that sort of time and those sorts of resources, to get hold of expensive modelling books on various aircraft types is undoubtedly something that'd be fun. But I'm working from a limitted budget and don't want to spend masses and masses of time researching for each model. I'm quite happy to trust the manufacturers in that respect.

Certainly an interesting book, if you happen to be interested in the subject. Otherwise, I suspect it'll strike you as a rather anarakky book.

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