Sunday, March 31, 2013

Easter and the scale modeler

This post could be considered borderline sacrilegious, but bear with me as I try to draw a tenuous link between Christianity and scale modeling. Jesus what a carpenter, so I’d like to think he has some affinity for the craftsmanship inherent to plastic models. With Christians around the world experiencing the holiest times of year this weekend, I thought it might be interesting to find ways to bring the Easter spirit into the hobby, and I think I’ve found three themes worthy of discussion.

First is sacrifice. Even people who are not Christians are familiar with the sacrifice made by Jesus of Nazareth, so I won’t repeat the story here. Suffice to say, He knew when to offer himself for the greater good of mankind. As modelers we should do the same with our models. I frequently read stories on the forums from guys who are struggling through builds where everything seems to be going wrong. You can hear the frustration in their words and their search for that magical bit of advice that will save their project. My five cent advice to you is to know when to sacrifice a model for the greater good of your hobby. Life is too short to struggle with an assemblage of plastic parts that is clearly on a path to disappointment. Be willing to sacrifice those projects. Toss them into the trash can and spend your time on something more enjoyable.

Easter is also about renewal. As a modeler one of the best ways to do that is to clean your workbench. Remove everything, even if you’re in the middle of several projects, and thoroughly clean the surface, removing paint, glue, whatever unknown substances you uncover amid the jars of paint, glue, parts, bits of sprue, and other detritus. Organize your tools and paints. Then put everything back in its place. You may be surprised at the newfound gusto you feel the next time you sit down to work.

Finally, even if you choose to struggle with those projects-gone-bad or to work on a cluttered and filthy workbench, the last theme you should recognize is rejoicing. Yes, rejoice! You are a scale modeler, and you enjoy what you do! Maybe you’re not winning trophies. Maybe no one outside your family sees your masterpieces, but you’re involved in a hobby that enriches your life and renews your spirit. And that is worth celebrating!

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