Saturday, March 19, 2011

my first ever GUNPLA was a mess...

The newer, younger and very good Gunpla modelers in our forums made me look back on my first ever Gunpla kit. I thought that blogging about my first Gunpla could be inspirational for some aspiring modelers out there as I think showing my first kit could show that we do learn from our every build and every modeler is bound to improve at some point.

Unfortunately I did not start young in this hobby and I did suck at it at first. I did not join any forums back in 2008 and just lurked at FichtenFoo's and Cody's Coop at that time. I must say I learned a lot but miserably failed to apply it on my first few kits.I also think I am about to hit my ceiling as I might never improve my SB skills coz I hate measuring stuffs. I might also fail to improve my works as a whole as I am an impatient person and modeler.

Anyways as most of you know, I started Gunpla back in 2008 and I was a 28 years old dad of 3 kids already. I was getting bored with my work ( computer graphics ) at that time and I needed an artistic outlet. I acquired the hobby after seeing my office mate's MG Strike when he brought it to the office, and I immediately bought a 1/100 High Grade Force Impulse Gundam in a nearby mall.

As I have learned the basics at FichtenFoo's  site, I was able to remove the seam lines with Tamiya cement at ease. I also sanded all the obvious nub marks and wet sanded the kit with a higher grit sandpaper of around 1200 grit. Yeap aside from starting old, I did my research and covered the basics back then. But the painting process was historical!

1st attempt: I spent around 3,000 PHP on paints alone on this kit! Yeap 3,000 as I re-painted this 3 times during the span of 1 month. I first painted it without primer and sprayed Tamiya spraycans in thick heavy coats directly to the plastic. The first painting attempt was a total waste of money as my finishing has some bubbles and some orange peels of some sort.

2nd attempt: I then stripped the paint with denatured alcohol that I got from a small hardware store. Luckily it stripped the paint without harming the plastic. I primed the kit with Mr. Hobby surface primer for my second attempt and repainted the kit with  Tamiya flat White spray cans for its base color.

I used around 5 Tamiya flat white spray cans in my second attempt. White is just a pain in the arse to build up and I just could not get a solid white. I eventually over sprayed too much white and there was a build up of paints on the crevices. I loss the panel lines and blurred all the details. I had to strip again!

3rd attempt: After stripping the second attempt paints... I just bought some industrial grade primer and flat white ( Bosny brands ). And with a bit of experience on how to apply paints from spray cans, the priming went considerably well. I was not able to achieve a solid white with the cans, but decided to paint the colors anyways.

Some Tamiya left over paints were used to paint the colors. I then weathered it with some enamel washes, added some over sized paint chippings, weathered with some Mungyo pastels and voila! total crap! Actually the final photos does not show the look of the first couple of attempts and the last painting attempt came out okay.

I treasure the experience very much as I learned the basics of using spray cans with one kit. It was trial and error but I enjoyed it a lot and painted  a handful more kits before trying out modifications. So nope I did not modify my first handful of kits and just enjoyed spray painting and covering the basics back then.

After a series of spray painted kits back in 2008, I then eventually did my first ever modified kit and my first ever diorama on the same year. I am still not comfortable with my airbrush now and I am still learning a lot from friends here in the Philippines and overseas. But I think my first kit could be an inspiration to some. I then eventually joined my first Gunpla forums in January 2009 and enjoyed the hobby a lot more with friends from overseas.

SO, just find friends with the same culture, continue to learn from trials and mistakes, and to just keep the passion and enjoy the hobby as it has so much to offer. Do not be a " donkey " but instead be an inspiration to others. Til' next post guys! Just enjoy the hobby! ;)

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