joi, 11 decembrie 2014

Second part of the Bunch

The japanese pilots are from a Tamiya 1/32 fighter plane. I don't know which one because the plane is not mine. I just did the pilots and let my friend to have his way with the makanichs.
This is not the first atempt with this kind of figures as you can see here . I belive that all serious kit producers understood that in this era, of well detailed figurines, to continue to put in their boxes some chunks of plastic is a bad advertising.
The sculpture is meant to fulfill airplane modelers demands. That means the pilots had to have all buckles and buttons in place, the harness measured in scale and position of the one seated in cockpit matching the chair and the control stick. Unfortunately, my cockpit figure came without his goggles.
Now, for the collors. My opinion is that the highly stretched wartime economy of the empire couldn't provide an exact standard of materials and models. I read somewhere that even bolts in wartime Japan were a matter of approximation. I'm sure this was an exageration, but I guess in that period it was hard everywhere.
So I choose to have some variation from one figure to the other - color of boots, model of leather helmet, life vests etc. I added patches just to break the monotony of the uniforms. I'm not sure if they existed or if there been any rules for that. I assumed patches were used at elite or special units.
Special mention - The cockpit figure is seated on my WWI american gas lighter "grandpa' Zippo".

East meets West it's a 1/35 set from the new producer (at least for me) Riich.
Although the sculpture details are not mindblowing, the postures are indeed. I never get the challenge to make embraced figures with different uniforms until now. The image on the box makes you dream about what you can do. When you start working you'll discover that carefully planning of construction and painting is of most importance. To ad to that, you may want to represent different shades of skin. In my mind, when I saw the scene, the guy assaulted by the soviet tanker's rivers of joy is an american italian. So it had to have chestnut hair and mediteranean skin. Ivan was to be paler, and somewhat pink-ysher in his cheeks.
For Natasha charmed by Telly Savalas, I used the same tone of skin as for Hruschev (maybe they were related). I don't get to work with women so often (don't get me wrong, I'm ok). Let's say it was a bit awkward to hold her and get my paintbrush under her skirt. Especially with those pink cheeks.
If I would be a fan of this scale, I'd like a diorama with those figures more than other ones shooting and pointing to the enemy.
for the dust on the boots I used pastel powder, but keep it to a minimum - after all those was propaganda moments.

The Italian Infantry at El Alamein wrecked my nerves ! They are not bad, but not so good to worth time to follow al those intricate gear belts that start from waist in the front and ends in neverland. They are from several corps of armies (paratrooper, infantry, bersaglieri) so that they all wear different tunics, pants and boots. I recived them together with a set of AUTHENTIC colors (I will not say the name) which was suited maybe for circus outfits. The "green tella" being grey-ish than the "grey-green", the "marrone" almost red and "tella tuta carista" an insignia blue. I doubted this was made to be camouflaged in the dessert.
Faces vary in quality from the paratrooper that has the luck that his hemiplegic face is halfcovered by the helmet, to the guy running with the machinegun that has an original italian 3 day beard.
Black cock feathers will be always difficult to represent in stiff plastic, but it's a huge leap from a former set from ItaAerei.
The officer with the binoculars it's tributary to the stiffness of ancient molds and his face with a small and mean mouth made him hated from the very beginning. Adding sandals with socks and a very small Beretta gun.....

Next year I will cope with another bunch of Modern Soviet Paratroopers from Afganistan, Israelian paratroopers, Koreean tank crew and whoo knows what else.
But until then I will start (at least) a plane or two for my soul.
You can see more pictures of my work here -

Happy holidays !

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