Wednesday, March 4

Read n' Reviewed: Worn Art Collection: Wooden, Worn Art Thematic Collection #1

Trying to recreate the look and feel of natural wood in various states has long been the model and diorama maker's mission. Nature - and wood - is all around. So when Paul saw this new book on modelling just that subject he had to read it. See what he thought about the book in his review...

Name: Worn Art Collection: Wooden, Worn Art Thematic Collection #1
Editor: Murat Özgül
Publisher: AK Interactive
Softcover 88 pages - Portrait Format
English text 
Available from this link  and all of AK Interactive's distributors
This is volume 1 for what will be in a new series by AK Interactive called the Worn Art Collection, and quite presumably will be about any type of worn subject matter. Weathering is undoubtedly one of those “hot” topics that we will probably never hear the end of, although it’s clearly a subjective issue, although I don’t mind it myself as long as it is done correctly and in context. 
Wood is the first chosen subject for this new series, and from the cover, you can see an interesting variety of subjects that will be covered ranging from a Gaz Truck with wooden parts and load in the rear tray, an unpainted Mig 3 fighter with the wooden wings on display, and a rustic-looking little robot made out of wood. 

Opening to the contents page, we get some more teasers on the articles in the book, and also an introduction from the Chief Editor Murat Özgül on the rationale behind this new series, but if it’s about weathering then why do you need a reason? There are eight articles so there is a decent number in there for your precious dollars. The magazine first goes into the theory of wood, the different types, and how it weathers so the basics are provided for your foray into weathering wooden subjects. 
The first article is by Jean-Bernard André of a flat diorama called Russian Dollhouse, which is a segment of a wall with windows sitting by a body of water with a swan swimming past. The author walks you through how he created the whole scene from scratch using a variety of materials, although the bulk of the “wooden” structures is actually made from plaster. The author uses acrylic paint up the wooden surfaces and chipping fluids to weather it, although I would say that the use of plaster gives the wood a bit of a flat look, and maybe some more graining would give it a more convincing finish, but sometimes with photography, close-ups really do not illustrate how a subject matter looks in real life. 
The next article is titled From Cradle to Grave, which is the Mig 3 featured on the cover by Yanglei Zheng who uses Trumpeter’s 1/32nd scale Mig-3 kit as the basis of the article. With the focus on weathering for the magazine, the author does that and predominately focusses on his weathering techniques throughout the kit. Of particular interest is the use of painted wooden base colours, and then using pencils and oils to simulate the wooden finish and looks very convincing. 
Next up is Marcel Ackle who has done a very nice little diorama called Art of Wood Painting, although that title is a little deceptive. In a completely scratch-built scene of a little shed, the author shows you how he scratch-built everything in the scene, and then how he simulates wooden walls and doors, brickwork with cracked rendering on the outside, a rusty corrugated roof, and even a little graffiti cartoon character. Very nicely done piece of work.
Moving back into more traditional modelling territory, we have Marcin Jankowski’s Eisenbahn Waggon, using Thunder Model’s 1/35 German Gedeckter Guterwagen G-10, otherwise known as a train car. There is plenty of wood in this subject, which is finished in a red colour reminiscent of the old red rattlers that used to go around Sydney. Nothing on the building on the kit, but a very comprehensive run-through of the paints, filters, washers and pigments on the wooden and metal surfaces of the train car. 
Volkan Ayhan takes his inspiration from Matt Dixon’s Lonely Robot series and creates his own Robot Woody. Another purely scratch-built model, the author takes us through how he created his robot using coffee stirrers, or paddle pop sticks in this neck of the woods. The author then takes us through his weathering treatment which is pretty much purely with paint, and then the creation and painting of the base that the robot sits on. 
Sancar Buhur takes us through his little diorama, Back to the Village which portrays a pair of Soviet soldiers coming across a Russian/Eastern European woman in village. Once again, the project is entirely scratch-built, although the author, in this case, focusses much more on how he re-created the wooden surfaces, although this is fair enough given the subject matter of the book.
Rubén González Hernández takes us back into the painting and weathering of another kit, this time Mig Productions 1/72 Railway Port Crane. The author takes us through his step by step guide on how he built, painted, and weathered this kit, although this is one subject that would definitely benefit from being in a diorama or base. However, you couldn’t really ask for more in a publication on how to weather wood. 
Kreangkrai Paojinda builds and paints MiniArt’s Gaz-MM Model 1943 Cargo truck and gives us a comprehensive walkthrough of his project. Once again, the topics covered include more than just wooden surfaces, and this one even includes a mattress which sits over the bonnet. 
I feel that this will be a very interesting series to follow, although it may come to a question of longevity as how many weathering topics are there? However, it must be said that what you get in this magazine is definitely worth a read, and while the various authors may stray from the actual topic, how many subjects, in this case, wood, will be purely made from wood?  Nonetheless, weathering wood is covered in each of the articles so they cover what they say they will. 

The next issue will be interesting with arguably the biggest “grenade” in modelling, which is chipping - so that one will be interesting to see. 

Paul Lee

This book is now for sale on the AK Interactive website... Thanks to them for sending this book out to Clayton to read and review...