When this magazine first appeared, I admit to having doubts of its viability. This was particularly due to seeing a market which was already, if not saturated, at least pretty full of established modeling magazines. So, five years later, the magazine is still with us and is still showcasing some excellent work.
So, for those unfamiliar with the format of Xtreme Modelling, how does it compare to the more 'conventional' publications? Firstly, it functions very closely to the style of AFV Modeller. The magazine is more than simply a 'coffee-table' type publication, although the featured models are of an extraordinarily high-quality, they also include a lot of text about the modifications and finishing techniques used. In summary, a good mixture of the 'Graphic' and the 'Practical'.
Xtreme Modelling Issue # 28 is published by the Spanish publishing house of the same name. This issue consists of 68 pages and is printed in a landscape format which signifies horizontal, rather than the usual vertical. There are a total of SEVEN build articles which cover a wide variety of vehicles with four of them being shown as part of a full diorama.
There are a total nine articles in this issue. These are: 10.5 Sturmhaubitze - Joaquín García Gázquez
Te-Ke - Abilio Piñeiro
Norwegian 1940 - Per Olav Lund
T-29 - Chema Cabrero
Training Day - Javier Franco
Sd.Kfz. 11 Late - Mario Eens
Brückenleger - Domingo Hernández
ACME Almería 2007 (Show report)
In Detail - a case study
Rather than going through each of the articles in detail, as usual with this kind of review, i'll choose one of the aricles and look at it in detail. In this case, i've chosen Norwegian 1940 by Per Olav Lund. The reason i've chosen this particular article, is due to Lund's ability to weave certain elements together and the sense of 'narrative' which it evokes.
The author begins by setting the scene - a simple idea of a Pz I stopped beside a Norwegian garage in 1940 with the employees looking on in fascination at a vehicle they're unlikely ever to have seen before... There are five principal elements in this diorama - the AFV, the building, the (muddy) groundwork, the figures and the smaller elements such as the bicycle leaning against the wall.
I found this particularly interesting, due in no small part to the techniques demonstrated by the author on the construction of the building and in particular his 'treatment' of the basswood used in its construction and the weathering tips which were both useful and practical.
It's a diorama which is precisely the type I prefer - a few elements, but coming together perfectly and with lots of helpful tips!
I tend to buy magazines according to how 'practical' they are. This is also the criteria I apply when i'm reviewing them. If something in an article is not something you're going to rush out and copy BUT it has elements or techniques you can apply to other projects, then for me that's practicality. At first glance, it may seem that Xtreme Modelling is pretty glossy and good to look at but the reality is that it's a VERY practical publication indeed. Some magazines, IMO, suffer from a small 'stable' of authors whose work, although impeccable, does make one want to look at how other modelers approach the same area. This is one of the real strengths of Xtreme Modelling - a wide range of modelers all of whom have developed their own techniques.
Although this a relatively expensive magazine, it does have a very varied content. Within this issue, putting aside the vehicles for a moment, only looking at the terrain types covered, there are articles dealing with sand, mud and urban landscapes. In respect to the vehicles, there is more variation than earlier issues dealing with (amongst others) the Stuh 42, the Japanese Te-Ke, the T-29 and the Sd. Kfz II.
Graphically, good to look at, but with real applicability also - VERY Highly Recommended.
This Review marks a bit of a return for me. Back in 2003, I reviewed issues number 2 & 3 of this magazine. Now, nearly 170+ reviews later, i'm returning to the theme...
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About Jim Rae (jimbrae) FROM: PROVINCIA DE LUGO, SPAIN / ESPAñA
Self-employed English teacher living in NW Spain. Been modelling off and on since the sixties. Came back into the hobby around ten years ago. First love is Soviet Armor with German subjects running a close second. Currently exploring ways of getting cloned to allow time for modelling, working and wr...