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PostPosted: Thu 01 Mar 2007 22:33 pm 
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Again, at the risk of sounding a numpty; Pre-Shading. What is it, how is it done, why is it done, is it a dark art, does it need special equipment etc etc.
I need the knowledge, so I too can become great (and justify to the wife exactly why I have a large pile of models in the garage!)

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 00:22 am 
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Hi Shuck,
Pre-shading is the pre painting over recessed/raised panel lines to give an impression of build up around various areas on a kit. It's used as an effect that can been found on various items in reality that aren't always clean. An example - If you look at a faded concrete wall and want to replicate it on plastic - a dark colour (black/dark gray) is applied unevenly first - this is then painted or brushed over with a lighter gray colour to give a shaded effect consistant to what is found in reality. Another use is to break up a normally monotone (bland) colour, such as an all black nightfighter or gray modern day jet.

A 'live' example here is of an aircraft with typical wear:
http://gallery.myff.org/gallery/_52102/BF170%5B1%5D.jpg
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Last edited by Hangartime on Fri 02 Mar 2007 01:56 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 01:37 am 
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Before you preshade, make sure the real thing looks preshaded. I've seen many an aircraft model spoilt by preshading, when the real thing does not look at all preshaded. Here's what the real thing looks like where I can't see any preshading, with most panel lines barely visible. An example of aircraft that are supposed to look preshaded are modern US fighters. This example of a fairly dirty F/A-18, does not look preshaded to me though. The more photos I see of real aircraft, the more I think that pre-shading is a bunch of balony! :-)

[By Dave, sentence removed as it was making an adverse comment about a model elsewhere]

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 11:10 am 
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It's a matter of taste and the effect you're after. Real aircraft don't have trenches an inch wide between the panels, or 1/2 inch holes where there are rivets. But that's what you'd get if you scaled up a model to full size. Equally, if you magically reduced the real thing to 1/72 or 1/48th of full size, it'd be smooth, evenly painted, and look like a toy. All the techniques like weathering, preshading, washing etc. are a compromise with reality. But somehow, you have to deal with the fact that lighting "looks" different in scale, and the fact that your brain "knows" that aircraft are complicated, detailed structures, and doesn't follow strict rules of scale visibility - i.e. only expecting to see from a foot what you'd see 72 feet from the real thing.

I agree absolutely with Steven that, overdone, these techniques look dreadful, and unrealistic. However, they're all valid if used carefully. It's also the case that you should really only judge by looking at a real model in normal light - flash photos exaggerate these things, and it's a brain you're trying to fool, not a camera...

Anyway, to answer your question, preshading is spraying dark (grey or brown) paint along panel lines, and maybe light (white or yellow) paint in the middles of panels before applying the main colours. It gives a little bit of "texture" to the overal surface. It really needs to be don with an airbrush, because that softens the edges so you can't see them too clearly, and allows you to control the final coats of camo paint so that the preshading is only barely visible.

It's one of the few techniques where the more you paint (the final coats) the LESS the effect is visible, so that tendency to do "just one more..." makes the effect more subtle, not less.

Personally, I much prefer subtle preshading to panel line washes, so it's the only "detailing" (rather than weathering) technique that I use.

It doesn't work on metallic finishes (the metallic paint isn't semi-transparent like colours).

And you can do a super-subtle version on modern grey jets, just by using the colour of the original plastic. If it's darker than the final Camo Grey, then paint the middle of the panels with more coates than the lines; if it's lighter, then paint the final colour thicker over the panel lines than the centres...

bestest,
M.


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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 11:28 am 
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Interesting discussion. It seems to me that we are making artists impressions not authentic models.

Sean

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 11:36 am 
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I think that the opinion as to whether they are impressions or authentic reproductions is one that will always be a point of discussion.

As long as the person doing the building is happy with what they are doing, then where's the harm in doing it either way? I think there is much more trouble caused by the (often heated) debate over whether certain techniques are 'right' or not - it's a hobby, and what is right is whatever the builder wants to do.

I think the best thing is to look at examples using pre-shading and decide whether you like the end result. If you do, give it a go and if you don't, don't!

For the record, I'm on the side of the artistic impressions. I don't give a hoot whether what I end up with is exactly to scale or contains exactly the right number of rivets. I quite like some of the builds I've seen using pre-shading, but I also like those I've seen without so as far as that technique is concerned I am completely ambivalent.

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 12:09 pm 
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When I look at my models (for what they are worth) on my bookshelf, I imagine what the real thing would look like. For example, my 1/72 Marauder is three feet away. If I looked at the real thing from 216 feet away (3x72), would I see much in the way of panel detail? Don't think so. Of course if you took a picture of a model from 6 inches away and then took one of a real Marauder from 36 feet away then you would see some detail but not perhaps, as much as is sometimes seen on models.

Anyway, I've seen more infantile squabbling on this subject than anything else (not on ATF of course) - apart from religion, football and Big Brother! I'm not for or against it pre-shading. If it floats somebody's boat then fine. If not, then that is okay too.

Dave

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 13:18 pm 
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I'm just happy if I can assemble the thing with the bits in the right places and not end up with a 1/1 scale thumbprint on the cockpit.
At the end of the day it's whatever floats your boat. After all, we do this to relax right!
Best
Rich - who's off to try to remove his FR47 props he put on the wrong way :roll:

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 14:45 pm 
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Can we not point at other people's models like you have done Adrian? It is something that I am not comfortable with, especially as the people who made the models cannot defend themselves. And then there is the matter of some who may not offer constructive criticism but just extract the urine!

So, please remove the post or rephrase it as a general comment. Alternatively, you could always point at one of my models! My models on my forum are fair game for constructive criticism - but just try it though!

Dave

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 14:51 pm 
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Sorry Dave - post removed.

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 14:51 pm 
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Thanks, mate!

Dave

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 15:09 pm 
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Steven Pietrobon wrote:
Here's an example of a <link removed> along with overly done panel lines.


To be fair Steven, first off, this is POST-, not pre-shading, which does tend to look harsher, and secondly, they guy does say "maybe I overdid the effect in the excitement, but who cares?"

bestest,
M.

[By Farmroad38, link removed, as Dave had already removed it above]


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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 15:17 pm 
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mattbacon wrote:
Steven Pietrobon wrote:
Here's an example of a badly preshaded Spitfire along with overly done panel lines.


To be fair Steven, first off, this is POST-, not pre-shading, which does tend to look harsher, and secondly, they guy does say "maybe I overdid the effect in the excitement, but who cares?"

bestest,
M.

I removed the sentence and link from Steven's post as it comments adversely on a non-member's model on another site. Adrian amended your post too, Matt, by removing the quoted link.

Dave

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 15:19 pm 
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I suppose it might have been expected, but this thread is starting to turn towards the dark side. I've fallen foul of it myself and rightly been reprimanded for it - can we make sure that we don't start pointing fingers at people who can't defend themselves please?

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 15:40 pm 
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I think the answer is to have somebody do a demo of pre- and post-shading, perhaps with different areas of the same model done both ways with shading that is just right and some that is just plain OTT! Then all the different ways can be pointed at and commented on without any chance of causing offence.

Any volunteers?........

Dave

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 15:51 pm 
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Both the offenders are mods! :P

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 16:01 pm 
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Pre-shading seems to be a fashionable finish which some people get carried away with :roll: When it is done in a subtle manner it can look excellent but too many end up looking like a patchwork quilt :x I tried it on my Victor :arrow:
Image
I painted a wash of Dark Admiralty Grey on the panel lines and wiped off the excess with a rag. Then it had several airbrushings of white on a very tight pattern avoiding the panel lines as much as possible. It was my first attempt at pre-shading and is not an ideal example, but I'm prepared for others to rip it to shreds :twisted:
To my mind - done badly it sticks out a mile and looks really overdone, but if its done well you will hardly notice it, but it will make a difference :wink:

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 16:02 pm 
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frogman wrote:
Both the offenders are mods! :P

Sean

Yes, but it wasn't against the rules when they made their posts as it never seemed necessary. It is in the rules now though, so watch it! :wink:

Dave

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 Post subject: Examples...
PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 16:53 pm 
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These three are all pre-shaded... it's most effective on the Corsair and Hurri, which need some texture in that single-colour finish. Bear in mind that the flash emphasises the effect...

Image

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PostPosted: Fri 02 Mar 2007 17:30 pm 
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Sorry folks, I didn't mean to stir up a nest of hornets! It was a phrase I had heard mentioned and wondered what it was.
Cheers for the help and advice. I shall try and see what happens, and if I don't like the result, I shall dump the idea.

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