Accion Press starts a new series of four books devoted to Diorama building.
For that they have taken projects of six modellers, splitting their work in four parts.
This is the first volume and deals with building and painting armoured vehicles. Next ones will be about figures (vol. 2) and terrains (vol. 3 and 4).
The works featured in the series are:
- Sherman on an European Rural Enviroment, by Frederick Astier
- Sherman on a volcanic island of the Pacific front, by Fernando González
- M26 Super Pershing on a destroyed factory by Jari Hemila
- Konigstiger on a muddy road by Adam Wilder
- Tiger I on a muddy road by Fabrizio Pincelli
- Renault R35 knocked out and rusted by Shimpei Nohira
The book is a softcover in portrait A4 size, with 120 pages of satin, thick, good quality paper.
It starts with an introduction of 4 pages about the purpose and philosophy behind the book, with big photos of the scenes featured in the series.
After that comes the building section, with 30 pages. The biggest part follows next, about painting and weathering.
The system is step-by-step explanations, with lots of photos. There are no large blocks of text, but photos in order with detailed captions.
Photos are numbered for better reference with its text, and the design allows to easily follow the workflow.
The first part is about assembly of kits, showing what each modeller did to improve his model. There are also some tricks for texturing parts, damage vehicles, build sacks and more.
The typical advise for removing parts with sprue shears or working with photoetch is present as well, but it is all kept to a minimum, practical, level.
The part on abandoned vehicles is less common and has several interesting tips for recreating heavily damaged parts.
The painting part is much longer and detailed, and is clearly divided for each author, who explains how he got the particular result on his model.
Not only there are different styles depending on the modeller, but also the environment chosen affects the kit, with mud, dust or ashes:
- Frederick Astier's Sherman is predominantly dusted, with some mud on the undercarriage and stains, using mainly earth colours.
- The second Sherman by Fernando González, on the other hand, is located on a volcanic, Pacific Ocean, island and has been weathered with darker shades, almost black.
- Super Pershing is olive drab and grey, with rusted additional armour plates. As it is located on a destroyed factory, it is covered by light dust from concrete.
- Adam Wilder's Konigstiger has a lot of mud, splashes and rain marks, as it represents a vehicle in Europe, April 1945
- The Tiger I of Fabrizio Pincelli has a faded dark gray camo, dirty and old. There is also plenty of mud on it
- Finally, Shimpei Nohira's R-35 is quite different from the previous models as it represents a completely destroyed vehicle, absolutely rusted after years abandoned on open air. Colours in this case are in the range of browns and orange
With 120 pages for 6 models, the coverage of each one is quite extensive, specially considering that most of them are for the painting/weathering parts.
Models cover a wide range of environments and vehicles, all within the Second World War and 1/35 scale.
There are no revolutionary techniques here, but it is a good collection of different processes from several authors, presented with clear explanations and easy to follow together with a good number of clear photos.
The full potential of the book will be together with the rest of the volumes, however it is perfectly usable independently, allowing to build, paint and weather a vehicle from start to finish.