Perfection‘the action or process of improving something until it is faultless’

When I was quite a bit younger my parents would occasionally  buy me the odd Airfix, Revell or Matchbox kit for Christmas and I would sit watching whilst my Dad stuck it all together probably with an ample amount of glue squeezed freshly from the tube, waiting impatiently on the sidelines for it to be dry so I could lay my hands on it and rush off to hasten the models  premature demise. No waiting around for it to be painted or for the paint to dry it was off to wherever to ‘play’ until it was beyond repair. The old brain is not what it used to be however I do remember a few of the kits, there was a dark blue Corsair, a grey Sepecat Jaguar (still a favourite of mine) a helicopter in blue plastic (cannot remember what it was for the life of me) a red and white Alpha Jet, a Gloster Gladiator that had flimsy wing struts that would not hold the second set of wings no matter how much glue was applied, and a Westland Lysander, now the Lysander was a wonderful model, looked majestic when it was finished and it flew wonderfully up and down the stairs and round and round the garden, looking so perfect unpainted sitting on the makeshift coffee table runway with the little clear lights on the front wheel housings covered in glue, great memories of great models, I’m not sure what happened to it, I  guess it went the way of all the other kits my Dad built, to the big plastic home in the sky…. skip ahead 30 odd years and those old models and how they were built stay in the back of my mind, a permanent reminder of the need to be better, do better, and to try harder. Of all the projects that I have built or started to build perfection is something I have strived for, my Dad although never a seasoned or frequent modeller was a precision engineer and a perfectionist in his work, I am a perfectionist in all my projects whether I am modelling, at work or attempting DIY which I undoubtedly get from him. Perfection is the pinnacle, perfection is the ultimate, I want to see perfection when I look at my own work the way I see it when I look at somebody else’s, whether it be on Facebook, the various Internet forums I frequent, in magazines, books, on a club stand or in the competition at a show, a piece of work that takes your breath away, that makes you go wow that is amazing, that is incredible, that is perfect, a masterpiece. My mind then turns to the build itself and it makes we wonder about the modeller and their skills, the amount of work that has gone into it, the careful planning, the locating of all the necessary parts, the pitfalls, the difficulties overcome, the triumphs and perhaps the many oh! My god I have cocked that up only to drag the triumph from a near disaster. I know from experience that feeling when you sit at the workbench deflated after cocking up the project you have spent hours on, your heard earned cash on and have put your heart and soul into, when the realisation hits you that the blob of badly glued together and painted plastic is only heading for the bin and not pride of place in your ‘I have finally finished the bloody thing’ collection, another project that started out so well and with such promise only to go the same way as all the others, well nearly all the others, you know that one project that goes together near seamlessly, when the paint goes on virtually without a hitch and you weather it like a pro, that rare project that makes you feel like you have finally arrived and a best in show and gold medals are just around the corner only for that optimism to disappear as quickly as it arrived when you start your next project only to cock it up from the beginning gluing parts A1 and A5 in the wrong places and you sit there saying to yourself how I am gonna sort this one out. Now I know making a complete cock up is not exclusive to rank amateurs like myself and can happen to the best of us, I put mine down to a lack of concentration, a short concentration span or thinking I know what goes where only to look at the instructions and realise I haven’t got a clue what I am doing and the 20 odd years I have been modelling means nothing if you can’t follow simple instructions…. Which leads me back to striving for that elusive and exclusive form of modelling……. perfection, I will hopefully one day build paint and finish something that I deem close enough to perfection however until I do it will just be a case of blundering along adding to the ‘that is not good enough’ pile until I find that magic formula…………

The Average Modeller





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