December 05, 2015

BEST OF 2015! AK Interactive's F.A.Q. 2 "Frequently Asked Questions of AFV Painting Techniques" 3rd Edition

The new third edition of the best-seller F.A.Q. 2- Frequently Asked Questions of AFV Painting Techniques, first published by AK four years ago. Considered as the modeling bible for military vehicles, containing all the modern techniques that you need, to raise your modelling to the very highest level. This title is suited for beginners and the advanced modeller alike. The book has 320 pages, more than 1500 color photographs

Although, many modeling books have been printed so far, there is not a single one isn’t dedicated to weathering and finishing models in this size like FAQ2. The book has some gorgeous photos, and comprises a series of step-by-step articles on painting and weathering techniques. Maybe some would expect a chapter about modeling tools or construction of the kits? Not in this book. The aim is on painting and weathering techniques and using of materials starting with the basic introduction of paints (various types of paints from the various producers), this prologue reflects the development in the modelng community that have taken place in recent years  – specialized weathering materials and products such as filters, washes and pigments and the last part some basic facts about  brushes and air-brushes.

By his own admission, when Miguel Jiménez set out to write F.A.Q. in 2007, he had no idea that it would become one of the most sought after books in the hobby. Within the first year of release, F.A.Q. had already sold out. Spin the clock forward eight years and there has been a dramatic evolution in the hobby. Some “tried and true” techniques have been rendered obsolete, while other new techniques, such as the “hairspray technique” and “color modulation” are coming into their own. FAQ2 is not so much as a second book in a series, but more as an updated, modernized, and more in depth look at the new techniques in AFV model building.

Mig says it best on page 19 of the book in that he states, "The present book is not exactly the second part of the book I published over 5 years ago,  as much as an update of that book. It is possible to say that FAQ1 is now obsolete, because things have changed so much. This book is like a technical manual used by a car mechanic. You take for granted that the mechanic already has the skills to do the job, the manual only helps to solve more difficult technical problems. However, the manual on its own will not turn you into a mechanic. If on the other hand, you are an experienced modeler, with plenty of finished models under your belt or have even won some contests, then you have found the perfect book that will help you take the next step on your journey.”

Overview of the major sections
▪ Prologue
Starting with the basic introduction of paints (various types of paints from the various producers), this prologue reflects the development in the modelling community that have taken place in recent years  – specialized weathering materials and products such as filters, washes and pigments and the last part some basic facts about  brushes and air-brushes. Very informative chapter, dedicated not only to someone who just starts with this wonderful hobby, but equal for more advanced modelers.
▪ Priming: Advice and discussion of various types of primer and application methods.
▪ Base Color: more options and recommendations explored, but relatively brief.
Color Modulation: I think this is certainly the best explanation I have seen of this, and it is comprehensive indeed, offering several examples with differing degrees and purposes of modulation.
▪ Panelling: Two step-by-step examples on two pages briefly explain techniques of outlining with masks and using modulation type methods.
▪ Washes and Filters: Divided in two sections: general washes and pin washes. Two ways of washing using different products. Mig explains this briefly and clear. Not a new techniques but very important in painting process.
▪ Streaking Effects: Covers streaking grime and rust strikes, one of the most recent techniques, started to be the most important part of weathering process. Now, with the specialized AK-Interactive products and with help of White Spirits, this part of painting give us more fun… and realism.
▪ Rain Marks: Relatively new technique introduced by AK-Interactive. Rain marks and streaking water using enamel. Essentially more streaks but watery and subtle.
▪ Hairspray: aka Chipping Fluid. One of the happening techniques of the moment, and it gets over twenty pages with detailed techniques and variations explained. No-one will be able to resist trying it out after reading this section. Chapter contents: Techniques secrets, The differences between hairspray and acrylic chipping fluid, Chipping for a complex camouflage, Winter chipping, Complete chipping effects and Chipping effects for an engine.
▪ Chipping: lots here too - principles; with a brush; sponge; more hairspray; salt.
▪ Rust: Basic of rusting techniques, using modern materials and techniques, explain the colors of rust, streaking rust, accumulated rust and large areas of rust.
▪ Dust Effects: Some basic principles of dust, treatment of vertical and horizontal surfaces, desert dust – on 9 pages and numerous examples.
▪ Mud: Newer materials and more theory in expanded section. For those who don’t have idea what to do… this is the right chapter for you. Dry mud, wet mud or splashed mud, materials and techniques, advices and suggestions.
▪ Oil and Fuel: Theory of Oil” is the beginning of this chapter with nice reference images, continues to how, where and how to apply oil and split fuel.
▪ Tracks: Eight pages of a few different techniques on this subject, from painting finishes with acrylics, mixed method, using “Black n’ It” and on the end how to paint spare links and give them more realistic look. Brief text and many step-by-step tutorials in this section.
Special effects: Mixed section, with good advices on how to give more realism to your model. Nothing that’ revolutionary new here, with short descriptions and good images will explain you how to make metal finish using graphite or pigments, where to add leaves, how to place dry transfers, headlights, PE license plates and painting wheels using Quick Wheel masks.
▪ Painting Accessories: Big step by step photos with less text, but very useful. Four pages on oil drums alone, three on jerry cans, then ammo boxes, helmets, buckets, guns, sacks etc. Very informative and inspirational chapter.
▪ Simple Dioramas: 45 pages starts off with some quick techniques using DAS clay and then goes into really quite a lot of theory about the composition of elements within a diorama, using lots of arrows and circles. There are then some more complex scenes with multiple elements, guidance on painting buildings, and detailed (and very nice) techniques for ground effects.
▪Gallery: 45 pages of high quality models to admire and be inspired by.

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