Today Austin and I packed up our entries and headed down to Moscow for the 2009 "Show Off the Good Stuff" IPMS show. In between setting up our entries, acting as judges, and playing a rousing game of Fire and Fury, we were able to get some photos of the many entries. Because I had so much to do, I wasn't able to get as many pictures as I would have liked. I missed out on getting shots of the best tank, best car, best aircraft, best figure, and best diorama, which is really a shame. They were all very nice. The diorama, which was of a Panzer II Luchs, was in the running for best of show.
The Palouse Area Modelers are a pretty active hobby group. We have monthly meetings in Moscow, but the showpiece event each year is the annual model show. We have more than 100 entries each year, taking up the entire floor of the Moose Lodge. In addition to the awards in each category, individual members sponsor special awards. Scott R. sponsors the "singing aircraft" award, which goes to the model which is not necessarily the best, but which provides a visual thrill. Don sponsors the "singing tank award." Jack sponsors the "best figure under 60mm" award. This year I sponsored the "best gaming miniatures" award. We all exempt ourselves from consideration, of course.
We practice open scoring. Within each category, multiple entries may win a gold, silver, bronze, or highly commendable ribbon. I brought two entries, my 1/35 King Tiger and my 28mm WAB Macedonian army. Austin brought two units of 18mm AB 1805 Napoleonic Russians, his cuirassiers and jäger.
My King Tiger, which is the first serious tank model I've ever built, earned a bronze ribbon. I thought that was about right. My build had some serious flaws, including a noticeable seam on the barrel, another on the front hull join, and some glossy areas showing through the dullcote. I didn't even try to make screens for the engine deck.
Don's version of the same tank deservedly earned a gold ribbon. The ambush camouflage pattern was especially nice.
It was a good day for King Tigers. This late war tank sported an overall olive green paint job with panzer yellow camo pattern.
This German SP gun had an interesting zimmerit pattern. The modeler used the wheel of a cigarette lighter to make the pattern.
Long time club member Will really stepped it up this year. He entered about a dozen models, earning several plaques, including best car. This is his outstanding Messerschmidt 109.
Scott R. always enters great looking aircraft. This George was in the running for best aircraft. I don't know planes that well, but I thought it was the best in the show.
Will's TIE Advanced won the plaque for best science fiction / space flight model. After the show, Will popped the hatch to show me the pilot, an apple box!
Ships are always a strong category. Rodney, who won best in show last year, entered this Baltimore class cruiser.
Roger comes over from the Olympic Peninsula each year with at least one outstanding ship. This early US aircraft carrier won best ship and best in show. I wish I had more good close-ups of this model. The level of detail was just outstanding.
Jack usually owns the figures category. He displayed a formidable collection of 120mm Napoleonics, but asked that they not be judged. As always, I was blown away by his use of vibrant colors and natural skin tones.
We get some really impressive figure modelers every year. This 200mm bust of a Luftwaffe pilot gives you some idea of the level of talent on display at our little show.
In addition to being one of the best armor modelers I know, Don can really paint a figure! This 120mm US Marine took a silver ribbon. The lighting in the Moose Lodge isn't very good for photographs, but this figure really popped.
My second entry was my 28mm Macedonian army. Here's how I displayed it for the competition. I got a gold ribbon for this entry.
Austin's Russian Jäger earned him a gold ribbon and two plaques: best wargaming miniatures and best figures under 60mm. For the second award Austin was competing with my Macedonians, and he won. These are really beautiful figures.
It's tough to make US army uniforms pop, but Scott R. pulled it off. These were excellent looking figures.
Of the four members of my gaming group at the show, Austin was the big winner. Don didn't win any plaques. Scott R. didn't win and plaques. I didn't win any plaques. But Austin won two of them.
Usually Austin doesn't enjoy these shows as much as the rest of us, but I think he was pretty pleased with the results of today's judging.
So it was a fun day. I got to catch up with a number of good friends, including Dale, who introduced me to wargaming. I got to see over a hundred excellent models. I bought a couple of new kits and stocked up with modeling supplies. I got to play a game of Fire and Fury and sweep poor Dale's rebels right off the map. And I got to vicariously enjoy Austin's triumph.