So yes I am part of the iron blooded orphans craze too. I loved the first season, but somehow I can’t seem to proceed through the second season as quickly. It seems less engaging and somehow more confusing. So I for now only bought Season one kits. I have a Graze I love and am currently painting. But I also bought myself a Barbatos. Which I liked more then I thought I would. 

my wife doesn’t like to go shopping with me

One sunny afternoon I ended up in a park snapping away at my Barbatos. At that time I noticed the great detail and awesome inner frame. It really is an amazing kit to build. I choose to first build the inner frame and leave the outer armor of. Firstly because I wanted to detail the inner frame and secondly because I thought the inner frame just looked awesome on itself. While building I felt the urge to paint the pistons and tubings so as to make this suit look amazing. 

I am Naked, Help!
Say NO to stickers kids.
that red is sexy

The actual armor though is kinda minimal, but even so it looks amazing as well. Nice crisp white pieces on that gray background. Too bad though I planned to dirty it up and make it a weathered kit. The only problem I had while building it OOB was that somehow my gundam markers didn’t want to stick on the white plastic. They would smudge and droop or just come off fully. I guess the white plastic was just to glossy or something. Maybe I should invest in some topcoat to make it stick better. 

Dancing Queen

As you can see I also prepared some cork to build a small base for my Barbatos. I felt it needed an environment so the weathering would make some sense. so I opted to make my first diorama ever. It would be a small rocklike base. I cut some basic shapes out of cork (I couldn’t find any styrofoam). And then I cut extra grooves and nudges to make it look like an actual rocky surface. Even though I wasn’t fully satisfied. but for a first attempt it looked reasonable. 

sand and paint combo
Look at this nice mud color
Black? why? how? it was mud before?
drybrushing is amazing.
Mars lander to base. This looks amazing.
nice texture

So I had my base. Now I only needed to paint it. I bought some cheap paints and started painting a nice brown color. though I never expected that to turn black. Be careful kids paint can change color. I have no clue why it did. But the difference between wet and dry paint is enormous. Still, after noticing that. I made the second layer of paint a little lighter. First I brushed some glue and sand mixture onto my black hilltop and then I drybrushed the diorama with the lighter color paint I prepared. The result at first seemed a bit too much, but after a few coats in different shades of brown the diorama turned out amazing. It really does look like a rock from Mars. Red brown, sandy and dusty. So now having finished the diorama it was time to weather my Barbatos. 

I feel like I battled too much.
Line up!

I wanted to create a sort of oil battered look by adding black streaks and sootlike dust onto the suit. For that reason I bought a charcoal pencil. I previously saw on the people who used pencils to weather their kits and it seemed like a cheap way to weather my first kit. From a distance it looks nice. But up close it looks like a toddler drew lines on my Gundam. Next time I really should use paint instead. It will give the weathering a more subtle look. What I wanted was to have nice subtle streaks and blended splashes. bot in varying shades of black and grey. Instead though I ended up with hard lines and big shiny white spaces. Still for a first try the result is kinda interesting. The soot/oil stained look fits Gundams well and as such I will definitely try it again in the future. If giant robots would start bashing one another I would expect them to be all black and dusty at the end. Another mistake I feel like I made was that I forgot to think about the diorama. My base is a sandy rock and thus I should have used some brown weathering at the feet and ankles to replicate that sand and those rocks splashing onto my Gundam. 

Dare to put me in that box again.
battle stance 1

fashion show

look at that beautiful inner frame
I think my 2 year old did this part
War is over

So for a nice quick and cheap experiment it was a succes. But overal I feel I might have rushed it a bit too much. I should have taken my time to find out how to make convincing streaks. Weathering is a lot of fun. But it takes some thought and planning to make it look right. Just slapping on some paint or pigment will end up looking  ridiculous. Think about your scene your mobile suit and the battle it was or is in is the most important lesson. Still this kit was a great kit on my way to becoming a master modeler. 

Matamune Gundam 

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