by: James Bella [ ]
introductionThis soft cover book consists of 80 pages, with many high quality color photos printed on glossy paper. Broken down into 4 separate chapters, each one contains a written article along with text explanations to compliment the photos. Since this book focuses on the personal touch of each individual modeler, a good portion of each chapter is dedicated to the construction of the model. This includes the kits and AM items used, and the little extras that were done prior to painting. To make it a bit easier to flip through the book, an icon of a hobby knife or paintbrush is portrayed on the upper corner of the right hand page, designating the construction or painting section.
1/35 Scale 18 Pages
This chapter, co-authored by Walter Perna and Alessandro Bruschi, concentrates heavily on extreme weathering techniques. Fading colors, airbrushing shadows and desaturation are just a few of the many techniques and ideas that can be gained from the first chapter.
Semovente da 90/53
1/35 Scale 10 Pages
The second chapter is written by Jean-Baptiste Verlhac, and using a resin kit portrays a photo of an Italian SPG that was sabotaged by its own crew. Scratch building techniques are touched upon, with a fair amount of this chapter devoted to the changes made to the base kit. Painting and final weathering are almost a second thought in this short chapter.
Achilles Mk II C
1/72 Scale 26 Pages
The longest chapter of the book is penned by Andrea Vignocchi, whose mainstream models are of the winged type. Andrea went all out on this Braille scale build, including a full interior and adding tons of external equipment. The construction, painting and weathering are covered in more detail, with ideas that can be used on any scale. Much of this chapter is comprised of photos with text, with the last six pages devoted to constructing a diorama base. Given the space allotted, this of course is not a complete SBS, but gives a good start on what can be accomplished and some of the materials to use.
Panther Ausf. G
1/35 Scale 24 Pages
The final chapter, by Kristof Pulinckx, is very well balanced on construction and finishing. As in the previous chapters, the author adds, or deletes, small details to set the model apart. Paint chipping, weathering the running gear and tracks are the predominant areas covered in this chapter.
conclusionTo paraphrase Thomas Abbondi in the preface; “This volume focuses on the main character of our world: the modeller himself. A personal touch is what makes each scale model unique, interesting and exciting to be looked at. And crucial for the evolution of our hobby.” Perfectly stated, in my opinion.
This book is not a step-by-step guide to becoming an expert in painting and weathering. Although many great tips and tricks can be found here, the main purpose is to show four individual modelers using basically the same supplies, and finishing off with four uniquely weathered models.
From start to finish, everything flows smoothly and the format of the book makes it very easy to follow along. No matter what subject or scale is portrayed, many useful tips and techniques can be picked up by beginners as well as seasoned modelers.
In my opinion, one of the main reasons we weather our models is to give it individuality, which is the highlight of this book. Also, the term 'weathering' may usually be associated with what happens after the painting is done, but many times the construction of the model dictates the type of weathering needed. There are some spelling and grammatical errors, and some of the photos are in reverse order, but nothing that should confuse the reader and most likely will be easily overlooked. The inspiration factor alone is well worth the admission price.