Tuesday, March 31

Review - JM Villalba's new modelling DVD "RLM"

The man behind a fair few models and modelling books like MIG's "F.A.Q" and Andrea Publishing’s  “How To Photograph Scale Models" Mr JM Villalba has a brand new DVD featuring  on just how to best get the right colours of RLM on your favorite Luftwaffe bird – we have the DVD review in today’s news…

RLM - Painting and Weathering Luftwaffe WWII aircraft.
By J.M.Villalba
80 minutes of modelling included in this DVD
In 6 languages English, German, Czech, Italian, French and of course Spanish.
The new DVD is now available from JM's own website 

In this DVD JM Villalba promises to take us through all aspects of modelling, not just the painting, burnishing PE parts, instrument panels and cockpit assembly right down to the tiniest detail as well as the extras like seat-belt tutorials are here , also of course is the real meat to this DVD which included masking and paint layers as well as finishing using washes, modelling filters and fades as well as riveting your kite..
Featuring his lovely build of an Eduard 1/48th scale Fw-190D model we see just how JM makes and paints his kits, we already know that he can model very well and the taking photos part is sorted  

The video is fairly simple, DVD & Jacket.
The video is shot against a plain black background with any distractions erased. The stand that the model sits on whilst painting is also black, so the video looks very “schmick” and well presented. 
There are no words to be heard on the video – so those who like to put it on in the background and soak it all up through osmosis are bang out of luck. You must watch this video and read the plain white text to see what is going on. At no time though was I at all bored, and I have watched it three times now.
There is, however, music that is played to break the silence. It is nothing you might know or have heard of – and it is at the same time not intrusive to what you are watching. One thing I would say is that sometimes the action was a little far away from the camera. That is explained by the fact that the video was recorded entirely with an HDSLR camera, this type of camera is a bit limited in terms of the focus distance. Closer means less depth of field and therefore less sharpness, in HDSLR cameras, all the adjustments should be manual.
The HDSLR camera and cinema lenses have been used to produce a high definition master with the finest detail that unfortunately is not visible at the very limited and updated resolution of the DVD, the idea is to use the HD masters for a future HD download service (maybe). This video was, however, plenty fine enough for me to see the action OK.
For now, this is the only video of this on the market – so let’s have a look at what’s playing… The video is broken into chapters and I will describe the contents as we go along.

1 Painting the interiors
Start on a Fw-190D with the interior first we undercoat, then low lighting the panels inside. Att the very first stage JVM shows you how and what ratio to thin primers and what ratio to mix RLM colours. This is handy for a lot of people straight away. We look at how the cockpit interior is highlighted on the upper surfaces. JM washes the cockpit and shows us the mixtures he uses and the technique of his hand whilst he works away at it. The cockpit walls are completed – now onto the floor and rear cabin areas.
2 Painting the interiors Part II

We start off by a seeing a demonstration by JMV showing the PSI and mixture of RLM66 and adding the lower dark areas and then again the highlights like the cockpit walls. We look at the straps of the foot pedals (as well as the tiny buckles) and the seat in RLM 66 with darker, lighter and highlights. We look at how to make the guns look metallic and realistic.
3 Photo-etched Parts and Fabric Seatbelts.
We also see how JMV cuts, removes, folds and places his HGW seatbelts and then how it all comes together in the cockpit tub with Eduard self-adhesive zoom interior detail sets. The best way to prepare these sets and how to make them look realistic is shown in an almost effortless way by the author. He actually matches that awful shading of the Eduard RLM 66 pre-printed sheets pretty well also.
4 Preparing for painting
Using scale plans, a rivet making machine and some care and elbow grease JMV shows how he rivets his otherwise vanilla surface panels on the Fw-190, how he cleans and prepares the surfaces for the paint that is to come. Scribing the surface of the kit is also examined. It is good to see the care taken whilst all of this carving is being done. It reminds me to take care with my own endeavours.

We look at masking the interior as well as the peculiar method of pre-painting with a wash the rivets and panel lines. The reason is revealed in the painting section of the video. Primer then goes on to the outsides of the kit and we sand, then dust off in readiness.

5 Painting

The skilful hand of JMV is seen next as he finely shades his ‘190 with only and old badger 150 airbrushes. It shows how you do not need the newest and finest brush to come out with a good product. Shading around the panels using thin, filter-like paint is shown. 
We see the thin mixture he used earlier in the mottling and camo of the bird with Lichtblau, Grauviolett and then Dunklegrun. We see just how these colours are mixed and then practiced before they go onto the model (take note hasty modellers) with a lot of care and some smart use of masking the camouflage.
6 Weathering and masking pt I.
Using a very thin mixture (shown on the screen including again the PSI – we see JMV shade the access hatches and panel lines of the ‘190. The more roughly used parts of the aircraft get the same treatment. We see the modeller painting each of the panels with lightened shades as well to highlight each sheet of metal in a realistic manner. This includes using masks to create the ribs on the ailerons. This worn and faded texture of the skin is shaded with makes and then exhaust stains to further simulate wear.
7 Weathering and masking pt II.
JMV starts off by creating some masks for the numbers of the aircraft. As he cuts and creates, applies and then removes these masks you can see how he gets these good results.
A brown wash goes over the whole thing using capillary action in the panels in a spot wash (which shows why he washed the aircraft before he painted it with these faded shades.) The metallic undersides are included (in a dark Humbrol colour but not which one?) before we look at chipping the upper surfaces and a dark brown acrylic wash over the scratches. The way he layers his effects is very good to see in action rather than on a page. 
8 Gallery:
We see the finished product – Fw-190D-9 “Prenzlau Blue I” in all its glory – gee it’s a nice model.

And I suppose you could say that about the video. The materiel is always going to be popular – RLM and German aircraft – he has chosen well. And the techniques are a little off the well-worn path but that may be why he gets such good results. Maybe trying it his way could reap the same results? Only one way to find out….

A great DVD that will help all modellers and especially German aircraft lovers of all scales.

Adam Norenberg
Here is the short teaser promo to see how he goes with the tricky subject of RLM colours and application… 

The new DVD is now available from JM's own website