Over on my recent Inflection Points video, Kyle Keller dropped a comment that I wanted to respond to:
Just remember friends it is a hobby that is supposed to be fun. I forget that from time to time, all the weather tricks are neat but very few actual aircraft ever had the type of weathering that is the norm these days does it look good sure is it accurate no so keep that in mind when you compare yourself to what people think something should look like.
Thing is, a proper response needs pictures. And YouTube’s comment system isn’t very good at that (given the nature of many YT comments, that’s probably a blessing). So I figured I’d take my response over here.
Supposed to be fun
First, sure, yes, the hobby’s supposed to be fun. But “fun” is a very nebulous term that means many different things to many different people. I mean, just consider the variety of kinks and fetishes that people have. Fun takes many shapes.
With modeling – or at least modeling as I approach it – I’m kinda reminded of the movie Pleasantville. And how the static, shallow pleasantness of black and white gives way to the full spectrum of human emotion. There’s passion and rage and regret and joy and introspection and it leads to growth and to change. To me, researching a subject is fun. Trying to do my best, and seeing that line move over time, is fun. Even the shitty parts give my mind something to engage with while it chews on bigger things in the background.
Fun is whatever it is to you. And that’s part of why this hobby is so engrossing, I think. There’s no pre-defined “fun”. It’s what each of us makes it.
Very few actual aircraft…
Now to this old saw that aircraft don’t actually have “the type of weathering that is the norm these days”.
In some cases, like highly stylistic takes on the Spanish school, or very aggressive panel line shading, sure. Absolutely. But the overwhelming majority of the aircraft I go after have their roots in real world references – and real world weathering. And I do my best to, if not replicate them, at least land in a representative ballpark. So I thought I’d do some side-bys of some of my various builds, and the references that inspired them.
In some cases I may exaggerate certain elements, or just fail to capture things the right way, but I think you’ll find that in a lot of cases I actually end up holding back compared to the real thing.