Book Review
Video Review included
Airbrush Painting Techniques
Airbrush Painting Techniques with Geoff Illsley
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by: Darren Baker [ CMOT ]

Applying paint to your built model is the make or break area of any build, get it wrong and the best model with all the after market products in the world will look average or worse, get it right and an average model will shine out. Airbrush Painting Techniques with Geoff Illsley leading you through some of the basic and advanced areas of getting the most from your airbrush is well worth buying.

The number of DVD products aimed at the model market is increasing every day, with this DVD being a must covering every facet of this hobby when it comes to applying paint with an airbrush, as even the best step by step book cannot compete with being able watch a task being completed in real time.

Geoff Illsley is recognised as one of the worlds leading air brush painters, and in this DVD he walks you through some of the techniques that gained him this title, and while all of the subjects seen being painted in this DVD are aircraft or figures the skills demonstrated are applicable to all genres.

Navigating through the DVD is extremely easy, menu screens will bring you to the area of interest and the main chapters are further broken down into sub-chapters. An index is also included to speed you to a specific section for a quick refresher lesson.

Priming and undercoating is the first area covered in this DVD, it explains clearly and precisely the importance of this stage. This area is broken down into a couple of subsections, and covers its use on various Medias.

Artistsí oil paints and flesh tones is covered in reasonable depth and is the section I found the most interesting in terms of what I could learn. Covering the mixing and the application of oil paint to figures it is a must that justifies buying this DVD in itself as far as I am concerned.

Metallics and Gunmetal is an area that will be of major interest to all of us who build armour models, it covers very well and in depth the art of making gun barrels look fired and realistic.

Spray painting feathers covers a skill I didnít even think about, covering overcoming the problems feathers present in terms of applying paint to them, a must for any figure modeller who wishes to depict Native American Indian figures.

Aircraft Camouflage is an area that applies equally to any type of model that requires a set camouflage pattern to be applied, this is another area that is very well explained from preparation, application, to finishing.

Wood and surface textures is a must for all the diorama builders in the hobby, the skill of transforming a simple flat piece of plasticard into a realistic slated fence is exceptional, and my words could never do it justice or clearly explain the many skills or steps taken.

The extras section on this DVD covers some really useful areas and answers questions many people new and old to airbrushing ask judging from the questions that appear here on Armorama.

Choosing and maintaining an airbrush is a godsend to people like me who ask themselves how do I clean this, what does this part do, how do I take this apart, or more importantly put it back together.

Choosing Paints and Mixing Paints for Airbrushing is self explanatory, covering the thinning agents was the area I found most helpful.

Correcting Common Mistakes gives the two most important pieces of information any modeller can have, Donítí Panic. And you correct it via this method.

Geoff Illsley Profile gives anyone interested a brief history into the man behind the airbrush, and while not of any use as regards airbrushing it is a nice inclusion.

Model Panorama is a view of close-ups and overall shots of various models, no music or narration in this section.

Sources and Reference while not giving you any direct information, it does demonstrate the benefits and importance of a good reference library when trying to achieve the perfect model.

Recommended Products is a list of the various products and manufacturers that were used throughout the video.

I found this DVD gave me insights into aspects of spray painting that I had never considered before, having watched it more times than I care to mention while preparing this review I always found an aspect that I had missed or not fully understood making more sense to me

The methods explained are I am sure not the only way to achieve the end product but they will give the required finished result. I did find myself thinking about who would find this DVD the most useful or helpful and it is my honest opinion that while it covers areas of interest to anyone in our hobby it is most applicable to the intermediate airbrush user.

My thanks to Casemate Publishing for giving me the opportunity to review this for Armorama and the Kitmaker Network members.
Highs: Very useful to intermediate airbrush user empowering them to get the most from their airbrush, while the advanced airbrush users will find ways to enhance their skills.
Lows: Beginners will find themselves a little out of their depth with some aspects of this title.
Verdict: Very highly recommended to intermediate airbrush users, new users can gain knowledge and methods, and the advanced can fine tune their skills.
Percentage Rating
  Scale: Other
  Mfg. ID: ISBN 978-1-905573-68-4
  Suggested Retail: $24.95
  PUBLISHED: May 16, 2008

Our Thanks to Casemate 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.

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About Darren Baker (CMOT)

I have been building model kits since the early 70ís starting with Airfix kits of mostly aircraft, then progressing to the point I am at now building predominantly armour kits from all countries and time periods. Living in the middle of Salisbury plain since the 70ís, I have had lots of opportunitie...

Copyright ©2021 text by Darren Baker [ CMOT ]. All rights reserved.


Hi Darren, nice to see a review of the Airbrush Painting Techniques. Ive got to say though if I was reviewing the DVD I couldnt give it more than 50%. Firstly, I thought its production quality was very poor (even after taking into account the limited budget that would have been available for a product made for a niche market). Secondly, and perhaps even more importantly, I felt that it ignores basic and fundamental techniques in favour of obscure ones which at best I feel should have only made the extras.
MAY 27, 2008 - 02:38 AM
To some extent I guess you are right in so much as it was not aimed at a specific area of the hobby, and the obscure methods that are covered are of use to a limited number of people, I also accept the appeal of this DVD could have been much higher if more of the basics were covered. That is why I stated it is not really of use to the beginner and aimed more at the intermediate and well versed airbrush user. I donít agree that the quality of the production was an issue but that is just my opinion.
MAY 27, 2008 - 03:26 AM

Video Review

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