Model Art Modeling Magazine is an excellent periodical from Japan providing an abundance of modeling subjects in each issue. It doesn’t matter what your modeling focus is, each issue will provide something of interest for you, and more than likely, you’ll find something interesting that you didn’t know you would.
Although the magazine is published entirely in Japanese, the quality of the photos in each issue is really amazing, and goes a long way in telling the story. There are plenty of “work in progress” and “how it was built” photos highlighting the tools, materials, and techniques used by the master builders. These photo guides go a long way in explaining the builds visually, although I’m sure some details are missed without a proper translation. In fact, the photography is so good, even the advertisements were interesting. I found myself perusing the advertisements almost as much as the work in progress photos.
The main article in this issue includes a build of Tamiya’s 1/12 Honda RC213V (version 2014) motorcycle. This is the famous bike ridden by Marc Márquez during his championship winning season in 2014. The finished model looks absolutely beautiful, and when compared with pictures of the actual motorcycle, it is nearly impossible to tell which one is the model, and which is the real thing. The article also includes some discussion about designing the kit.
There is also a nicely detailed article covering the build of the Tamiya’s 1/35 M1A1 with mine plow. The article includes work in progress photos, and a number of photos of the finished model. There is also a short section covering the other Tamiya M1A1 kits available.
Each issue has a few “New Kit Reviews”. These reviews include complete builds of each kit, with plenty of photos. The new kits reviewed in this issue include the Airfix 1/72 Avro Shakleton MR2, the AFV Club 1/35 Husky Mk III, the Hasegawa 1/24 Honda N360(NII), and an especially interesting review of the Pit Road 1/700 BB-43 USS Tennessee 1941. Each new kit build is detailed with full color photos, reference photos, and various photos of different options.
In addition to kit reviews, this issue provides an exhaustive comparison of various clear coat options from three separate companies: Tamiya, Mr. Hobby, and a company I haven’t heard of before, Good Smile Racing. The article compares the finish of over 25 different types of clear coat options. Who knew there were that many options? Mr. Hobby alone had 19 different options, with 9 liquid options and 10 aerosol options. This article is followed by a comparison of using a semi-gloss coat versus a matte coat to finish a model. The article uses two identical builds of Tamiya’s 1/48 F-16CN in aggressor schemes, and even without being able to read Japanese, the article is so well documented in the photos, the reader can clearly see the results.
A section of the magazine provides a short archive of photos of JADSF F-15DJ in aggressor markings. These detailed photos show a number of different planes with a call out of each for the modeler who is interested in building one. Again, the photos really make the article stand out.
Each issue of Model Art includes numerous pages featuring images of newly released items, and as I mentioned earlier about the advertisements, I found myself spending as much time looking through these photos as I did the main articles. One of the more interesting items I noticed was a 1/12 bonsai tree, but there are plenty of other choices throughout the magazine for interesting photos and modeling subjects.
The diversity of subjects and the quality of the photography easily make this publication a highly recommended item.
Thanks to Model Art for making this publication available to IPMS for review.