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In Praise of Mediocrity

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  • Member since
    September, 2018
  • From: Vancouver, Washington USA
In Praise of Mediocrity
Posted by Sergeant on Monday, October 01, 2018 3:04 AM

Can you remember when you first started building models? How excited you were to see the finished product, or how perfection seemed so important? Like many FSM members I started at age twelve and in my case that was over 60-years ago. But the excitement of this hobby has never been replaced in my life by outdoor activities, team sports, woodworking over even fly tying. As the years pass the hobby of scale modeling has changed and become very scientific with diorama research, detailed interiors, weathering, accurate paint and decals and so much more.

But with every attempt to reach perfection don't loose that child-like enthusiasm for the process and the joy it brings you in seeing the results. We are never to old to have fun with this hobby.

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/29/opinion/sunday/in-praise-of-mediocrity.html

 

  • Member since
    June, 2018
  • From: Ohio (USA)
Posted by DRUMS01 on Monday, October 01, 2018 4:32 AM

Well said brother....

At one point (years ago) I was caught up in trying to build that perfect IPMS contest model. It soon reached a point of financial, political, and effort that almost ruined the hobby for me. I have since taken a few steps back to renew my interest and enjoyment in the hobby at a much less serious level.

Now I model for me and choose my level of detail or model kit for the "fun" factor. I have returned to find a new level of enjoyment and satisfaction that I thought was lost. While I still really like to watch our professional builders who strive for ultra levels of realism, I also like to find solidarity watching many of us who simply build for the joy of it while still achieving respectible results.

And lets not forget that forums like this have given us new opportunities to establish relationships to share our modeling passion and gain new friends along the way. 

I am a military veteran and am proud to call other veterans, regardless of military branch, brothers and sisters; God bless you all and thank you for your service. I hope you have found peace, enjoyment, and success after your tour of duty as you have earned it...

 

  • Member since
    July, 2014
  • From: Currently in the Dallas area
Posted by modelcrazy on Monday, October 01, 2018 8:15 AM

I have often thought why I do this? Why do I spend money and time on something that when finished just sits on the shelf, does nothing, takes up room, no one sees, and eventually goes into a box for storage? This last weekend our oldest grandson (11), who really hasn't shown much intrest in my hobby, came by for an overnight visit. He went into my hobby room and asked me to tell him about some of my models on the shelf. We went through each one of my builds including the ones I took the time to clean up and put into storage. I didn't go through the history of each subject but I did tell him the era and and country. He handled each one, and yes broke a piece off here and there (so do I) and found out that he wanted to join the military and become a helo pilot. I also found out the he was really intrested in my armor. He ended up taking 4 of my armor builds home with him.
I still wonder why I do this and the only answer I ever come up with is, it's fun and I enjoy it. That's enough.

Steve

ON THE BENCH

1/48 Tamiya Mk.1 Swordfish
1/350 Tamiya Prince of Wales
1/200 AMT Saturn V

In Que

Secret Santa gifts will move to the top after Christmas.

  • Member since
    November, 2009
  • From: Twin Cities of Minnesota
Posted by Don Stauffer on Monday, October 01, 2018 8:32 AM

To me, the joy is in the building of the model.  When finished, they go on a shelf among many others, and are soon forgotten.  Only have a couple of models I prominently display for viewing.

 

Don Stauffer in Minnesota

  • Member since
    July, 2014
Posted by Bakster on Monday, October 01, 2018 10:17 AM

Z

 

  • Member since
    September, 2018
  • From: Vancouver, Washington USA
Posted by Sergeant on Monday, October 01, 2018 10:20 AM

I’m pleased to know that others feel the same way I do about the joy this hobby brings you. I have a suggestion about what to do with builds you have sitting around or in storage. There are children and seniors who would love to have your models sitting on their shelves to show their friends. I Intend to put some of mine on display at the local veterans organizations like the American Legion and VFW. As well as the Veterans Hospital in Vancouver and Portland. Not because my models are so perfect, but many of our veterans can’t begin to do what we do. The pride in their faces of having a ship, plane or armor vehicle that reminds them of a time in their life when they were young is so valuable you can’t even begin to put a price on their joy.

  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Monday, October 01, 2018 10:32 AM

AHA !

 Now , there is someone who knows why I did volunteer Rec Therapy classes at  the Martinez , Ca. V.A. facility . The incredulous feeling of overwhelming joy seeing those Kids succeed . And the looks of Thank You on their faces when they saw there wasn't any hurdle they couldn't beat . That's why I build these things . It also it what saved my sanity and mobility as well .

 After having a building dropped on me by a drunk I thought I would NEVER use my left side ever again . Lots of crushed models later , and a determined Wife , I made it back to the top . Models Rule ! 

  • Member since
    July, 2013
Posted by modelmaker66 on Monday, October 01, 2018 1:52 PM

Tanker - Builder

AHA !

 Now , there is someone who knows why I did volunteer Rec Therapy classes at  the Martinez , Ca. V.A. facility . The incredulous feeling of overwhelming joy seeing those Kids succeed . And the looks of Thank You on their faces when they saw there wasn't any hurdle they couldn't beat . That's why I build these things . It also it what saved my sanity and mobility as well .

 After having a building dropped on me by a drunk I thought I would NEVER use my left side ever again . Lots of crushed models later , and a determined Wife , I made it back to the top . Models Rule ! 

 

Amen and God bless you TB!

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: NYC, USA
Posted by waikong on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 5:10 PM
all the power to you Tanker!
  • Member since
    May, 2011
  • From: Honolulu, Hawaii
Posted by Real G on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 5:57 PM

Yep, I also learned that the harder you aim for perfection, the less enjoyable the build.  My first serious contest entry took me into unknown territory:  PE parts, detailed exposed engines, first time attempting brake lines, etc.  I worked at it with everything I had for three months.  I ended up missing the entry deadline.  But my disappointment was not failing to get into the contest; I was so burned out that I decided that I needed to dial things back to enjoy the hobby.  I don't learn lessons very quickly, but I'm getting there.

I have noticed the happiest modelers I know just build and don't obsess over every little detail.  Some of them are excellent modelers, others are beginners.  One likes to stick Gatling guns on everything!  Surprise  But they are all smiles while building, and they get stuff finished.  The guys I know who are super concerned with getting things 100% correct get few or no models across the finish line.

I believe, for me at least, perfection is not a destination.  It is a road that can be taken, or not.

  • Member since
    July, 2014
Posted by Bakster on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 6:24 PM

Well said. Now, how to get there. 

Yes

 

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • From: Crest Hill, Il. U.S.A.
Posted by masonme2 on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 8:24 PM
Very well said, I need to make this my mantra so when I run into a problem I'll be able to follow through to the end! I always say the only person you need to please with the build you're working on is yourself.If you're happy with it all is well.

"Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock"   Will Rogers

  • Member since
    July, 2014
Posted by Bakster on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 8:42 PM

Hey Ransome2, I noticed that from your bio you had worked for caterpillar for 35 years. My Dad worked for caterpillar in Milwaukee for about the same amount of time. He was a tool and die maker. The Milwaukee plant closed in the 80s. Small world.

 

  • Member since
    March, 2007
  • From: Northeast WA State
Posted by armornut on Wednesday, October 03, 2018 9:43 PM

    Like all here before me I also just really enjoy the hobby. I would LOVE to win a special award at a contest.....first I gotta finish one to get there. I would LOVE to finish a model that I feel is "show quality".....gotta make time to finish one. I DO now build for ME, and not the folks close to me who while NEVER critizise my work often point out manufactures lack of certian detail or how well they scratch build missing or understated details, No I do what I do kinda how I wanna do it when I'm ready to do it.

     I also like these forums where I have interacted with many amazing modelers who indluge my occasional long posts.

      Give me Mediocrity ANY DAY.Cool

we're modelers it's what we do

  • Member since
    October, 2003
  • From: Crest Hill, Il. U.S.A.
Posted by masonme2 on Thursday, October 04, 2018 1:31 PM

I retired from the Joliet plant after 36+ yrs. in 2009. I was in Quality when I retired.

 

"Diplomacy is the art of saying 'Nice doggie' until you can find a rock"   Will Rogers

  • Member since
    December, 2002
  • From: Fort Knox
Posted by Rob Gronovius on Thursday, October 11, 2018 10:56 AM

Real G

Yep, I also learned that the harder you aim for perfection, the less enjoyable the build.  My first serious contest entry took me into unknown territory:  PE parts, detailed exposed engines, first time attempting brake lines, etc.  I worked at it with everything I had for three months.  I ended up missing the entry deadline.  But my disappointment was not failing to get into the contest; I was so burned out that I decided that I needed to dial things back to enjoy the hobby.  I don't learn lessons very quickly, but I'm getting there.

That depends on the subject. When I was building my old M60A3TTS, I had a great time trying to replicate my tank with the old Tamiya M60A1 kit and Verlinden's M48-M60 conversion/update set.

Likewise with my M998 HMMWV I used as a staff officer. Even wrestling with the old Esci M1 Abrams kit turning it into an M1A1 with AEF Designs conversion was a lot of fun.

Back then (late 80s-early 90s), I had fun striving to get the kits as close to perfect as I could. In the early 2000s, I did an article about accurizing a 1/72 scale M1 Abrams. It was a lot of fun.

Right now, I'm trying to back date Tamiya's 1/48 scale M1A2 into an M1A1. It won't be as super accurate as I know I could do, but I will still have fun building it.

If I'm building a German tank kit, I'm just as happy slapping parts together with glue and building it straight out of box.

  • Member since
    September, 2004
  • From: Denver
Posted by tankboy51 on Thursday, October 11, 2018 4:42 PM

Same here.  I am now just building the kits OTB.  Like others, I used to go nuts on detail and accurasing.  I have noticed that nobody that I know notices or gives a darn.  I have won enough and developed enough skill that what I do makes me very happy.  I still really enjoy the hobby.  (Of the 4 that I was working on, it's now down to 2, with a Tamiya M577 next, followed by a Monogram B 25H (75mm gun nose, mold made in 1977)).  Just working on the pile of kits.

  • Member since
    June, 2014
  • From: New Braunfels , Texas
Posted by Tanker - Builder on Friday, October 12, 2018 11:57 AM

You Know;

 OTB works for me now too . Especially in Armor , Planes and Cars .Yes , I still can't bring myself to do it to a ship though .AAAAGH , to much salt water in my veins !

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