Monday, June 5, 2017

Preparing my entries for the Australian Model Expo 2017

The Australian Model Expo is held here in Melbourne every year, on the June long weekend. It is the biggest scale model show in Australia. This year's expo starts in four days, and I realised over the weekend that I have to polish up one of my two dioramas that I intend to enter.

My Tunisian Tiger diorama needs a little work. There are two things about it that still niggle at me:

1. The black frame base looks crap at the front. When I was building up the groundwork, I used masking tape to protect the upper surface of the frame. Unfortunately, when I peeled it off it took some of the surface with it. At the time I tried to re-spray it black, and it looks okay from some angles, but from many angles if the light hits it just so you can see where the surface peeled back. I will need to sand it back and re-spray it. Pain in the arse.

Tamiya 1/35 Tiger I tank scale model North Africa

Tamiya 1/35 Tiger I tank scale model North Africa
You can see what I mean in this shot. Urgh, not pretty.

2. The clothing of a couple of the Panzer crew is a tiny bit glossy. I need to do a dullcoat on these guys.

MiniArt DAK Afrika Korps Panzer Crew

MiniArt DAK Afrika Korps Panzer Crew
Not so easy to see the semi-gloss highlights on these two, but trust me, they're there.

So this is tonight's To-Do list. It's pretty straightforward, but there is plenty of scope for me to screw up the basework if it doesn't go according to plan. I'd love to leave it as it is, but it really does bother me, and I'm sure it will count against me in the judging if the base looks cruddy.

A note on entering models in competitions

Aargh, such a tricky subject. Let me say up front: I do not build models to win trophies in model competitions. I build them as a hobby, and I am only answerable to my own standards.

Last year I entered several models in the 2016 Australian Model Expo. Some I didn't expect to win, I just wanted to share my efforts with the punters, but one in particular I really thought was in with a chance. It didn't even receive a recognition within its category. If this happens and the winning entry is just light-years ahead, I totally get it (and you know, each year you do see maybe 3-6 models in the whole expo that just take your breath away, that truly are light-years ahead of the competition). But to my eye, the winning military diorama last year was pretty average.

It all boils down to this: I just don't get the judging process.

I have such a love/hate relationship with entering my models for judging. I like to share my efforts, I absolutely love to see everyone else's efforts. I don't give a shit if I get a little cheap plastic trophy. But also, if one enters a competition, one is of course hoping to win.

I don't want to sound like a sore loser, but for the life of me, I can't understand about half of the judges' decision for the winner in each category.  So much so, that last year I actually emailled the Expo organisers asking for advice on what judges look for, so I could improve the reception of my models in the future. The response I received wasn't much help...

I'm going to stop now, because there is no way to write about this without seeming like a whiny, spoilt sore loser.

I will enter this year, with full references and a build diary.
I will be in a dirty mood next Monday if I don't get even a "Highly Commended", I promise you.
I will tell myself I do it for my own satisfaction, not others'.
I will suspect if you're not a member of a modelling club it lessens your chances of winning.

And I will keep on building models whatever happens.





After a little work this evening, this is what the slightly glossy crew look like after some dullcoat. Much better.

Slightly out of focus shot, but much better!

This stuff works a treat. Mr Hobby Flat Clear - good stuff.

And below is the basework, sanded back, with a protective surround ready to keep black paint off The Precious inside.  I learnt my lesson about airbrushing at night last week and how foolhardy that is, so I'll leave this until tomorrow evening when I get home.

1 comment:

  1. That Tiger looks friggin' ace Dave ! ...Ian