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Multimedia Review
Winter Techniques
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by: Rick Cooper [ CLOVIS899 ]


Originally published on:
Armorama

Introduction

In the spirit of full disclosure I will admit it right up front; I have a man-crush on Mig Jimenez. Come on now admit it, you know you do too; he is like the Javier Bardem of armor modeling, but without the creepy haircut. I wouldn’t be surprised to find that Mig uses a compressed air tank from a captive bolt gun to power his amazing work with the airbrush. His new venture, AK interactive, has built up an impressive array of products in a very short time, much to the delight of modelers around the world.

Review

AK Interactive has now released their third video demonstrating various techniques and principles of weathering for the modeler. This particular DVD, Winter Techniques, provides pretty much everything you could want in a how-to demonstration of weathering vehicles in a winter setting. The DVD is right at 60 minutes in length, is narrated completely in English and is divided into three sections once you get past the opening credits. The DVD comes packaged in a nice sturdy case with a 6 page booklet with stills from the two featured models. The DVD is recorded in the PAL system and should play without problem in a computer, my copy played just fine in my small desktop video player that I have on my workbench.

The DVD, as mentioned earlier has three video chapters; the first is a short introduction about winter scenes and a few quick takes of various built models with, get ready for it, winter finishes! Bet you didn’t see that coming did you. The other two chapters deal with transforming two different models, the first is a nice lengthy presentation on weathering a 1/35 Opel Blitz.

The Opel starts life in a basic camouflage yellow base coat, but it doesn’t stay that way for long. I counted no less than 13 different steps to the weathering process, from a simple soft white partial coat, through the chipping stages, filters, washes, backing off over worked areas, more chipping, streaking, blending, rust, illuminating, dust, dry mud, splattered mud, canvas weathering, and fuel stains. All of this is accomplished with a dizzying array of mediums and products, filters, washes, pastels, enamels, varnishes, and acrylics, from Tamiya, Mr. Color, Vallejo, AK, Mig, and Vallejo, and I probably missed one or two along the way. The really nice thing is that when you see each step demonstrated nothing looks so difficult that it could not be replicated on your own model.

The second feature model is a 1/16 KV-2, you thought this was big in 1/35 you should see 1/16! Mig uses this particular platform to demonstrate the now famous ‘hairspray method’ of applying a worn winter white wash over a green base color. If you thought this meant simply some hairspray and white acrylic being attacked by a wet toothbrush you are in for a real treat. Mig takes the modeler through another blitzkrieg of techniques to create this masterpiece. Again, this is all very well presented and nothing goes by so rapidly that you are ever left with a “did I miss something” moment.

While the two features are fairly similar there are enough differences in the general methods that having the pair really helped me to see what the process was. One small complaint that I had with the presentation was it did not often mention drying time between techniques, something that would have really helped to reduce the learning curve for the mortals among us.

Conclusion

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then it would take a modeling mathematician to determine the true value of a DVD like this one. If you couldn’t tell before let me say that I really liked the DVD, I felt like everything was presented in such a way that even I could pull it off on my next winter vehicle. The quality of the photography, the close up shots in particular, was absolutely top notch. If you are interested in winter finishes at all and hope to bring your skill set to a higher level than this would be a great place to start. Now I’ve got to go and get started on a winter vehicle of my own; right after I finish watching “No Country for Old Men” and that scary haircut again!

For more images please see Here.
SUMMARY
Highs: Very high quality DVD with easy to follow techniques.
Lows: Little mention of drying time between techniques.
Verdict: I really liked this DVD, easy to understand, amazing work, easy to use on your own models.
Percentage Rating
95%
  Scale: Other
  Mfg. ID: AK 035
  Suggested Retail: $19.95
  Related Link: 
  PUBLISHED: Mar 30, 2011
NETWORK-WIDE AVERAGE RATINGS
  THIS REVIEWER: 88.70%
  MAKER/PUBLISHER: 91.28%

Our Thanks to AK Interactive!
This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
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About Rick Cooper (clovis899)
FROM: CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES

I have been modeling for about 30 years now. Once upon a time in another century I owned my own hobby shop; way more work than it was worth. I tip my opti-visor to those who make a real living at it. Mainly build armor these days but I keep working at figures, planes and the occasional ship.

Copyright ©2017 text by Rick Cooper [ CLOVIS899 ]. Images also by copyright holder unless otherwise noted. Opinions expressed are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of TankRat's. All rights reserved.


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Comments

I have this in my DVD library, but haven't had a chance to crack it open and watch it yet. Really looking forward to it though
MAR 29, 2011 - 11:32 PM
Rick mentions that all sorts of products are presented during the DVD, but how much of the focus is on enamels vs. acrylics? I don't spray enamels, so the more the DVD highlights acrylic techniques the more interesting (to me).
MAR 30, 2011 - 06:01 AM
basecoats are all acrylic, but i guess weathering such as oils, and the ak products e.t.c on any buld are gonna be enamel or oil based, but the latter techniques are more brushwork anyway so i guess most of the weathering does not apply to airbrush
MAR 30, 2011 - 06:27 AM
Oh, I agree - once you get beyond the base coat and camo you're talking about non-AB work (or at least steps that don't require an AB). But when I'm following a SBS I prefer to start from the same place so that I can gauge how close I've come to my target.
MAR 30, 2011 - 09:13 AM
Bill, you want to have your base well-sealed with an acrylic clear coat. Mineral spirits are the base for most MIG-type filters and pre-fab washes, so you shouldn't get nervous about using them. Oils generally make for a better wash or overlay IMO. My one complaint with these discs is the PAL format: I don't always want to watch on a computer, and don't understand why it's so much effort to get them formatted to NTSC standards.
MAR 30, 2011 - 02:16 PM
Bill, I want to apologize for the inconvenience of the PAL - NTSC issue. The issue is that the master is recorded in a format that makes a simple conversion.....well....not so simple. I will let you know as soon as this has been resolved as we are working on it currently. Soon each title will be available in both formats with subtitles.
MAR 30, 2011 - 02:53 PM
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