When did you start modelling?
I started at a young age, around 10. My first model ever was a Hawker Harrier from Airfix in 1:72, I eventually ended up making afv models at the age of 13. I loved the 1:72 Esci range but then switched to 1:35. Until the age of 17 I worked my way through the Tamiya catalogue, at that time heavily inspired by the works of Francois Verlinden. I then developed other interests and sold my collection of models to a WWII veteran. In 2004 I returned to the hobby and was so amazed by the available kits and aftermarket products, also by the new elaborate weathering techniques which took the hobby into totally new spheres for me.
What is your favourite modelling subject?
German WWII armour models are my favourite subjects. Maybe it’s because both of my Grandfathers served in the Panzerwaffe during WWII. There is the wide variety of types used at the time, as well as the various styles of camouflages which I always found very appealing. For the most part I build standalone models, but there is also the occasional diorama.
There are always some exceptions, such as models from the Vietnam era or even a real modern subject like a Leopard 2A6, on which I am working at the moment.
When it comes to painting and weather- ing , which paints do you prefer: acrylics, oils or enamels?
My base coats and camouflages always consist of acrylic paint. For the weathering I prefer enamel-based products or oils because of their better blending ability and the longer drying time. However, nowadays it is very important to know the different mediums and their specific use very well. This allows us to work faster and we know which medium will help us the most to obtain the desired effects on our models.
What is your favourite technique?
I like all weathering techniques. The most striking is arguably the hair spray technique, invented by Phil Stutcinskas, which can lead to very impressive results. Also Adam Wilder’s speckling technique is very effective and fun to do. My favourite is the good old ‘outlining’, more often referred to as ‘washing’, because it is easily the most important technique. It gives our model a sense of depth and transfers something rather toy-like looking into a realistic replica in scale.
When finishing a model, does it have to be ultra realistic or can you appreciate some artistic freedom?
For the most part I always try to achieve a more or less moderate level of realism and historical correctness. Without it, it doesn’t work for me. Sometimes I literally stick to photographs to the smallest detail. However I’ve gotten a little lazy lately and I am not concerned about the smallest details as much anymore.
Besides, making good use of artistic freedom can be fun and relaxing too.