Canfora Publishing came into the modelling light a couple of years ago with the release of their book The Nordic Edge. This was released to highlight some of the modelling talent from the Scandinavian countries, a lot of which you will have seen on the net due to the quality of the work. The Nordic Edge took it one stage further by gathering this quality of work into one place with the addition of how they were built and painted.
I was lucky enough to pick up both volumes last year to add to my book collection, whereas a lot of modellers grab reference books as soon as they become available, I find I also like to have books that contain pictures and articles on top quality modelling work as I find these are just as much an inspiration to build models as good reference material. On top of that you will also get the chance to read how they were actually created and learn some new techniques that can only help in your own builds.
If you already own The Nordic Edge you will have a good idea of what to expect, for those who don't (shame on you) I will explain what you actually get for your money. The book is 98 pages long and is presented in a soft back format in not quite A4 size. It is high quality printed full colour from cover to cover with a small advert at the back for Canfora Publishing that advertises their other products and web address. The book starts with a small message from the publisher laying out what they tried to achieve within the pages of this book. The book covers the building of nine separate modern armour subjects and dioramas. I will only gloss over the contents to give you a small taste of what is available inside the covers, and having now read it cover to cover a couple of times would suggest that you add it to your wish list, or even leave small hints to your other half around the house. Contents M1A1 Abrams
The M1a1 Abrams build is a small diorama based around the now infamous pictures of a burnt out M1a1 that was knocked out during the rush into Baghdad. A good step by step tutorial is included for those looking to create a burnt out look to a vehicle, and the quality of the finish needs to be seen to be believed. I would really love to see this one in the flesh as it is the first time I have seen this one, even on the web. Stryker ICV
The Stryker build is a straight forward build story showing how to get the best from the recent AFV club kit, a few after markets sets also get a run out, as well as a generalized look at how to paint and weather a basic model. Leopard 2A5
Another straight modelling build this time off Tamiya's Leopard 2A5, a big model again covering most of the basics and some history, a good inclusion of how the ground work was done is also included which will benefit anybody looking to create a muddy base for their model. T-72
The T-72 is a diorama based around some film footage watched by the author of an Iraq T-72 during the Iran-Iraq war under attack from suicide bombers, The article highlights the additions required to the model to re-create one from this period, as well as an excellent piece on how to paint and weather a vehicle out in the harsh desert. The final part of the article deals with the creation of the figures and the base. Merkava 4
This is one of my favourite pieces in the book, using Legends Merkava 4 it shows off the real aggressive look of this vehicle, as well as highlighting how to build a resin model and work past some of the problems encountered with this modelling medium. It goes on to show how to paint a model in basically a single colour and still make it interesting using some subtle weathering techniques. TPz1 A6 Fuchs
Taking the basic Revell Fuchs the article takes you through the stages of how to update the basic model into a more up to date version, anybody who has built one of these will know that is no light undertaking. Add in the addition of how to create your own markings using tamiya tape, there is a plethora of highly useful information contained within its pages. M51 ARV
You can't release a modern armour book without having some form of Vietnam based model with in the pages, I am sure it is written down in law somewhere. So in the case of this book it falls to a diorama based around the M51 ARV. The building and painting continues in a similar vein as the others in the book, but the addition of scratch building some of the figures makes it stand out for me, hopefully a volume later in the series will pick up on this interesting side of the hobby. FV432 Bulldog MK3s
Cromwell models release of the updated FV432 this year was heralded as a new beginning for the company which had been at the forefront of the resin manufactures for many years but had seemed to disappear of late, not even attending that many shows. Their releases are again beginning to appear in the modelling news so hopefully they are here to stay. The article covers the full build of this futuristic looking model, again explaining how to work with resin including the painting and weathering and finally finishing up with the basic base and figures. PT 76
The final Chapter in the book deals with another small diorama this time of a PT-76 in Chechnya during the Russian campaign there. The Trumpeter kit is the base for this build and the author again takes us through the steps of how to get the best out of the kit using some of the available after market parts. Finally a section on painting the tank riders and creating the base finish off the article.
I will say right off that I am as taken back with this book as I was when I first read through the pages of The Nordic Edge. The quality of the publication hits you in the face as soon as you open the book. The pictures are crisp and cover all the angles of the finished model as well as the progress shots during the build. Now being based on modern subjects it may well lose some of the purists who only feel that building WW2 models count, but I feel there is plenty of information held with in the pages to help progress any level of modeller. This is not a "how to book" and will technically be deemed as a coffee table edition or even an extended glossy magazine, but I would recommend this book to anybody as I feel it contains enough within its pages to please the most cynical among us, and it was a brave move by the publisher to go Modern rather than take the easy route. If this is the standard they have set themselves I look forward to seeing the future volumes, the next of which I believe is due early 2009.
Highs: A full colour quality publication, with plenty of insight and tips on how the models were created. A must for anybody with a modern modelling interest. Jam packed with Inspiration.Lows: Being based on modern armour, it may not appeal to all.Verdict: A worthy addition to anybodies book shelf, the quality of the content will have you pouring over it time and again. if you enjoyed the Nordic Edge series then you will enjoy this one.
Our Thanks to Canfora Design & Publishing! This item was provided by them for the purpose of having it reviewed on this KitMaker Network site. If you would like your kit, book, or product reviewed, please contact us.
About Keith Forsyth (docdios) FROM: ENGLAND - WEST MIDLANDS, UNITED KINGDOM
Keith Forsyth (docdios) comes from the small town of Stafford in the United Kingdom. He began his interest in modeling at an early age with armor being the main focus. It was not until finding himself between jobs in 1995 that he really got hooked. It was during a shopping visit to another town when...