Simon Barnes
As a newcomer to Dougs team, I thought that I would introduce myself.
About Me
My name is Simon Barnes, I am 47 years young! . I sometimes forget how many children I have, but I have 3 at home with me aged 10, 6 and 4, two girls and one boy, he being the 6 year old and of course the youngest is the light of my life at the moment, she follows me everywhere and is nearly always with me, except when she is at school or bed as can be seen below !!

I am currently a man of leisure, doing bits and bobs to fill my time, but in a previous life, I served for 12 years in the British Army, 6 years with the Parachute Regiment and after an unfortunate accident 6 years with the Royal Signals. After I left the Army I stayed in germany for another 5 years, which helped enormously to me becoming fluent in German. I first learnt to speak the language in the army, along with the help of a lot of German girls. Being able to speak with the locals, certainly helped me to get some of the best jobs there were. In the army I also became a Soviet recognition Instructor, hence my love of Modern Russian vehicles as subjects for modelling.

Surprisingly Doug and myself have a lot in common, not least the deep interest in Japanese history and culture, with the Samurai being my main interest after Armour but my interest is not just the warrior side of things, but also the way of life, traditions and religions of the time. For this reason Steven Turnbull is one of my favourite authours, with the amount of books by him in my library coming a close second behind Steven Zaloga.

I like all kinds of music, but not all music!, my favourite films are the lord of the rings trilogy,Harry Potter films and star wars. Favourite books, Lord of the rings, the Hobbit, The Ninja and the Miko, Shogun, and Harry Potter, which although written for children are very entertaining.

Like most people I started modelling at a young age, I never finished to a high standard as most of them got destroyed in a week anyway. at the age of 12/13 I discovered girls and modelling got put on hold for the next 16 years, in fact I had never had the intention of picking it up again. It was only when I giving instruction on Soviet recognition when I found that a lot of Nato vehicles came ready made by Roco in 1/87 scale and a 3D model is a lot better than pictures when teaching someone how to recognise a tank. A few Russian vehicles were also available, from companies like Trident and ITA, but there were a lot still missing, so armed with plans and plastic sheet and profile I set about modifying existing kits or using existing tracks and and scratch building complete tanks. Not having any access to a Model club or anything else other than a few magazines (the internet wasn't invented them) I became self taught in everything from building, painting, weathering, finishing, which I think wasn't a bad thing, as I had nobody telling me how it should be done, and that you can only do such and such this way or that way, because of this I was doing things that may be frowned upon but it gave me the confidence to do things that a lot of people think that they can not do because the technique is too difficult. My advise would be do not stick rigidly to how other people tell you how to do something, because everybody is different, two people will not paint the same subject the same way, and yet they will follow rigidly the rules when they do a wash (something I never use) and end up with two completely different finishes because the starting points are different. The same goes for building you own parts or even complete vehicles, don't think that you can't do it, give it a go , of course you will make mistakes, but you will learn from them, the more you do the easier it becomes as you find easier ways to do things.


The morale is "Just do it"

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