Tuesday, April 21, 2015

MITEAM: Becky Law

* MITEAM: A short form of the phrase " Modeler IThe Eyes of A Modeler". This is just a simple blog based on my personal view to pay tribute and respect to fellow modelers who i know as personal friend.

Name: Becky

Pseudonum / Nickname: Beckylaw / Becky Customizer

Usual Genre: Gunpla, Sci-fi, Toys repaint, a lot of mixed genre

Description: This is [probably the rare breed in my group of modeler friends. Ok, is a rare breed  generally in static model hobby community. I am not being sexist, i just state the truth.

Yes, Becky, as the name, is a female modeler.

In terms of being active in the hobby's community, she is also a senior to me. When i first knew her, she mainly did Gunpla, and Japanese sci-fi. An experience modeler, but too, was kinda infamous of having half build projects. Hahahahah! Despite being famous among the community for her knowledge n experience, she is also kinda infamous for being the FFK Queen for GBs n such. XD

Things got changed when the second rendition of Micheal Bay's Transformer hit box office n the merchandise was selling like hot cakes. There was this market for Transformer toys repaint. Becky started of as TF customizer and her career and reputation as a commissioner for toys n model kits painting started from there n then.

Now, she is probably the one who builds the most kits among our modeler friends. Besides that, I think she has the skill all of us do not have: while we r all so proud of our skill and AMS attitude n stupidly feel happy whenever others commission us to paint, which probably ends up in losing money because the excessive time n effort we put in; Becky has the skill, speed, and consistancy in quality to become a professional commission painter.

Besides that, due to her work, she has more chance in dealing with different genre n model kits, something we might have bought (as backlog) but havent got the chance or gut to build, she has basically done it all. In short, I would say she is the most experienced in the context of difference company's kits, different genre, different style etc etc.

She is definitely the Queen now; not anymore in FFK, but experience in building various kits.
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Yes, Becky is a professional/commercial modeler amongst the hobbyist us. In terms of achievement or recognition, she is definitely way ahead of the whole bunch of us. However, knowing her since the time we were both hobbyist, and standing in the position as a hobbyist, I would like to see the whole in this perspective: the question of hobbyist vs professional.

Look at what Becky is doing now, the works are good; no doubt about it. When see it in a hobbyist perspective, those are good, but not great. It's, and it stays in a level that is good, good enough for the client; but is it great? especially in the eyes of hobbyist, is it something hobbyist will adore n admire?

What i have seen are, the kits are well build, beautiful, a standard market kind of good; it's nice, proper, beautiful, free of mistakes, but that's pretty much it is: Not enough to wow a purist hobbyist eyes; in the case if Becky is seeking for that.

I do not know Becky's direction in this hobby. As i said, in terms of commercial build; in speed, finishing, n consistency, she is definitely the King in the group. However, if she still wants to achieve something in the eyes of a hobbyist, i think that would be a decision to at least, temporary, put away the commercial part of the hobby.

Again, this depends on Becky's decision. Anyway I am always proud to have her as a friend; especially sometimes seeing her 100 over likes Facebook post, I have the urge to say "Hey, I know her in person when you guys havent even heard of her, not even say connected to her in social media."

Hahah, is good to know a famous modeler, n yes, i am thick skin! XD

Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/BeckyCustomizer
Website - www.beckycustomizer.com
Blog - http://becky-customizer.blogspot.com/ (this seems like not so active..)

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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

MITEAM : Ronnie Phoon

* MITEAM: A short form of the phrase " Modeler In The Eyes of A Modeler". This is just a simple blog based on my personal view to pay tribute and respect to fellow modelers who i know as personal friend.

Name: Ronnie Phoon

Pseudonym / Nickname: Phoon

Usual Genre: Gunpla, Ma.K, Tank, Sci-fi

Description: This is definitely one of the powerhouse builder in the recent years of Gunpla community. With 2 Malaysia Champions and a World's 1st Runner-up in the official Gunpla competition organized by Bandai, he has won quite a reputation among modelers in Gunpla genre.

From a tank model background, Phoon's utilized one of main tank model technique in the world of Gunpla, which in the beginning, was quite a weird thing to many Gunpla veteran modelers. His style of spraying everything black, dont really care much about the tidiness of the fundamental like nub mark, seamline, surface smoothness; did stir some cultural shock to traditional gunpla scene where everyone was working hard for those to create the 'perfect' finishing, CG inspired Gundam kits.

However, that changes where Bandai has overall change their direction from the more traditional way of judging to stress more on creativity and fun.

Technically, Phoon's work isn't so much of a technical advance space shutter; if one wants to just copy and follow whatever he has done in a built, in d context of techniques, that wouldn't be a very difficult process. However, his work reminds me of another modeler who has thousands of followers, and inspired thousands of newcomer modelers: DC23.

What both have in common is: their works attract people! While veteran modelers who tried to analyse it from a technical perspective which it doesn't conclude anything, but one cannot denies that  these works are attractive to so many people, and they inspire people too. I have put some thoughts into this and i realize something:


Phoon's work, no matter one might say how lack of technical difficulties it has, there is one thing that he has that is a lot harder for other modelers to learn and to master. Yes, I am talking about his art sense!
One might see his neglects in taking care of the fundamental, worse, seeing him as just rushing, then screw up, then keep correcting his mistake; but in all these, one shall not oversee the sense of art he is putting into his built. This is not something like the technical side where u look at a step-to-step wip/tutorial and u can reproduce one out. Yes art sense, that is what i m talking about, which is a lot more difficult to copy and learn!

Phoon is definitely not a planning guy, just like different style of artist: some plan on their work before they lay their first stroke onto the canvas, he is the type with a vision, he just put in the first color, and from there, another color after another, fixing what he thinks is not nice n adding stuff he thinks is suitable, and slowly,a masterpiece is born.

In short, a technical powerhouse kit, one should be able to to copy, with patience and step-by-step guidance. However, for a art direction driven project, it is so much harder to achieve the same level as what Phoon did.

Maybe one may say his work is full of modeling mistakes and imperfection, but to me, as long as first, he is happy, second, it attracts the interest in people to admire the work, what more u can ask for?
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I used to be confused with the same thing too, but now, i know his work is more like an expression of his thoughts n vision. Modeling is basically not fine art. It's more like a fine craftsmanship work. It's like buying a coloring book from a shop n color the content inside. However, a true artist may still able to make it to fine art level, if he is doing it not bounded by the law of coloring book, but to his own style of artist expression. 

As a modeler, if  my works are crafts-work, Phoon's are a step closer to art than mine.

Website: I don't think he has a blog or a website, only that i know he does has a Facebook Page specially dedicated for his work. For more viewing of his work, please do visit:

Facebook Phoon's Workshop (https://www.facebook.com/RonniePhoon)
or forum:
Pla-zone Forum (www.pla-zone.com)

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Wednesday, April 8, 2015

MITEAM: Zero1st

* MITEAM: A short form of the phrase " Modeler IThe Eyes of A Modeler". This is just a simple blog based on my personal view to pay tribute and respect to fellow modelers who i know as personal friend.

Name: Shermen Lim

Pseudonym / Nickname: Zero1st

Usual Genre: Gunpla, Sci-fi, Resin Figurine

Description: No doubt, this is, if not the best, is one of the highest technical advance modeler in my regular ring of modelers friends. In Gunpla modeling and community, he is my senior.

When you look at his photo album, either in his photo hosting site, or social media, you will notice he has so much more of his wip photos than his completed built ones. This clearly shows that he is definitely a technical guy. The one thing that impress ( and shock) me most is his ability to modify to join parts so seamlessly that those parts are just tight enough to hold themselves yet can be seperated out again anytime; meaning, he assemble his work without glue: merely by the clever calculation n building of perfect joining. With this, one will have no doubt, he is too, i would consider the best articulation modifying modelers among our group of
friends (just look at how he'd made an SD pose so handsomely). That actually blew my mind!

Zero1st is a veteran is ACG, especially in mecha anime/manga, with great interest in, which help him develop really good design sense in mechanical design. As a result, with his great design and his modification skill, he has never failed to create something stunning , and can be considered as classic for those designs would still be referenced, copied, after many years.

In terms of fundamental works, he, too, produce top notch finishing kits: his clean build often considered as almost perfect kinda finishing. For weathering, maybe it looks a little weaker, only when compared hand in hand, with his own clean build work; but my opinion, is already somewhere top in Gunpla genre.

As for consistency, patience, and ability & willingness to push ownself further, Zero1st is also one of the modelers who i have met is so, so dedicated to this hobby. No doubt about it. He has always shown that he is ready to get outta his comfort zone and push himself even further.
Zero1st has been in Bandai's official competition many times, and won numerous prizes. For a modeler with such technical skill, redesigning ability and dedication in the hobby, I think it is a pity he hasn't gone to the top spot on the podium yet. For me, he has so much potential n he deserves to be there. I used to ponder over this matter and there are a few things I realized I couldn't ignore about it.

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Besides that, probably I ll add, the urge in winning!  Ok, i am not saying Zero1st is a saint, well, looking at his nickname as Tissue man, yeah he is no saint.  XD

Zero is a person with taste n art sense very much shaped by Japanese ACG. Although Bandai's BAKUC or GBWC, is an event closely linked to ACG culture, we can't deny that everything Bandai, as a business entity, does, is not very ACG. In fact, everything is just commercialized, business that is.
So when come to judging, whether the odl judges apponted by Bandai, an local or Bandai's SEA staff, non actually put too much emphasis in how it suits well in ACG culture. In fact, they r more concern about how the competition piece, which they have dumped in substantial amount of money, do attract the general public; in all irony, non ACG people.

So working on a scene in a Gundam anime? No. Doing modification that requires no explanation to veteran anime kaki but general public has no idea WTH is that? Big no no.

Does Zero actually knows about this? I would say being an intelligent young man, I have no doubt he does. However, often, his love about presenting something he wants to express, exceed the commercial or purpose-driven consideration that he would have to do in order to gain him more
advantage in competition. In short, he choose to build and present something he wants the world to see more than standing on the podium; if there r the only two choices he had.

During wip phase for year end compy project, there were quite a few times i asked myself why this f*cker is so f*cking stubborn? (Hahah, i used such words to express my frustration at that moment :p) However, after knowing him for longer time, that actually earns my respect, so much of them! True, as a friend, we wish to help our friends to achieve something "we believe is best" for them, but we often forget to realize what is the thing they really want.

So,i expect to see this most-technically-skillful friend of mine, to continue push himself and blow my mind!

Just a side note though: If one day he decides to go with the flow, and make the best out of the judging limitation, my advice to him will be: Look at the design Bandai does "IN" the anime vs the design Bandai does "FOR" ( to promote) the anime. The direction for your built should be as what Bandai does "FOR" (promoting) the anime.

Website: Do check out his Facebook Page of Zero!st FB page (https://www.facebook.com/Zero1st.ver) There are so many WIP photos adn one can really learn some tips n tricks in modification!!!! Serious solid skill!

Or Forum: www.pla-zone.com

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