|AK INTERACTIVE - The Weathering Magazine|
The first in a new quarterly series of magazines from AK Interactive...
The Weathering Magazine
Publisher: AK Interactive
Edited by: John Murphy
Softcover; A4, 78 pages
AK Interactive, a new company begun by Fernando Vallejo in Spain has released a slew of weathering products, including paints, washes, DVD's and books. This is the first issue of a new quarterly title on weathering, called appropriately enough 'Weathering'.
At 78 pages long and printed on high quality paper, the title would have more of a book feel about if it had been perfect bound rather than saddle stitched, but as pointed out in the foreword, this first issue is larger than future issues are intended to be.
The Chief Editor of the magazine is given on the masthead as John Murphy, who many of you will know from ADH Publishing, and later MMiR. Weirdly though, the introduction is written by Miguel Jimenez, who is listed as art director, and poorly translated at that, the syntax coming across as odd and stilted. The main aim of the title, as stated in the foreword, is to showcase and explain different weathering techniques, using the AK Interactive and Vallejo product lines. Although concentrating primarily on armour, other genres are to be included, and indeed in this first issue in addition to armour there is a large article consisting of a civilian Volkswagen Beetle, circa. 1950, another featuring some type of science fiction robot fighting machine, and two on a large ship and a railway carriage!
The layout is much what you would have seen from any of the main modelling magazines, i.e. photographs of the finished model, interspersed with text detailing what products were used to achieve the finished appearance of the model, and step-by-steps. There are thirteen articles, listed below:
Rusting a Paper Panzer
Raw Steel Plate
Bare Metal Armour
Weathering a Box Car
Rust on the High Sea
Creating Textured & Dimensional Rust Chipping
Old Metal Fixtures & Fittings
Weathering White Metal Tracks
Small Chips & Rust Stains
M60A1 Less is More
Sand Blown Old Rusty Steel
It does make you wonder what types of rust are going to be covered the next issue. Each of the articles taken on their own, provides a helpful and useful illustration of how to achieve the various looks, using the various products, even if the over-weathered, decrepit look achieved is not to your taste. It can always be used 'less'. I do have serious mis-giving's about the longevity of a title of this sort, given the narrowly confined area of interest. Remember, no construction is shown, just weathering.
In addition to the articles listed, there are smaller sections offering for example, a series of photographs of erm...rusted metal. In fairness it is different types of rust. Well ok, it's not. It's just rust on different things. But it's handy...ish. As reference. Sort of. Three colour profiles are included. One image each, of a bulldozer, a ship and a tank. Towards the rear of the magazine there's a fairly lenghty section on 'Choosing the right product'. Given the origins of the magazine, they have tried to be commendably egalitarian and display products from other manufacturers. Finally, we're offered a short section displaying photographs of models at the Shizuoka Hobby Show earlier this year, and pics of lots of erm...people?
The other thing that slightly concerns me is the inclusion of AK Interactive's version of the 'Office Assistant'. Or Akatsiya to give her proper name. Seriously? Why?
The content is mostly useful. As a long running title, it's difficult to see where it will be in two or even three years, given that it has to concentrate on weathering. There's not much to work with given the title. The step-by-steps are clear, the quality good. The Office Assistant is pointless and tawdry. It's well worth buying, but also well worth considering each future issue on merit.
My thanks to Justin at Bookworld for the review sample.