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Plasticine Soldiers 1958

Discussion in 'General Figure Talk' started by Rich Sculpts, Dec 8, 2012.

  1. Ray Stout Active Member

    Hi John, it just goes to show how "Chinese Wispers" can distort and change the truth. I never saw the knight in question, but, I was told by a 3rd. party that you had painted it in a colour NOT used in Heraldry, i.e. Brown at that time. I apologise for making it sound that it was the reason for your departure from the hobby, but I never saw an entry from yourself AFTER that time, and I drew my own conclusions. As a past Supreme Trophy winner myself, I do understand that the North verses South situation then can be very trying at times, having been a victim to comments as you were subjected to at the time. I hope you are well, and I can assure you no slurr was intended. Your models were sorely missed at that time. best regards Ray Stout
    Nap likes this.
  2. Raider17 New Member

    Dear Mr Stout,
    Thank you for your gracious reply - I just want to say that I did`nt take your remarks as a slur so no apology necessary; I was just putting the record straight I suppose. No harm done.:)

    Interesting to hear about the `brown` colour in Heraldry - thats the first I`ve heard about that one, so I`ll add that mistake to the `missing buttons` (!)

    It was also interesting to hear that you yourself was a Supreme Champion winner - (what year did you win it?), but I am afraid your name is not familiar to me from those days, so I would appreciate it if you could perhaps bring me up to speed with your connection to the hobby and your achievements for its own sake (!?), starting with your `North versus South` comment....

    Which side are you from?:)

    To close, I am well ( thanks for asking) and I hope you are too.

    Best wishes

    John Curran
    MCPWilk and Nap like this.
  3. Ray Stout Active Member

    Hello John, I started in the hobby through M.A.W.S., and was a Steward at the first Northern Militaire, and then became a member of the North Cheshire Modelers. I won in the mid 70s with a sratchbuilt 30mm figure, and was a supporter every year of the show until it finally finished. I'm from Eccles, and now live in Leigh, and, if you read my posts in the Blasts from the past thread on here you'll understand my Southern prejudices. I'm now 72 and in reasonable health for my age. Ray

  4. Raider17 New Member

    Dear Mr Stout,
    Ah yes, I remember you now. As soon as I saw your photo a few things clicked into place; You being from Eccles explains how you knew about my shop - (I distinctly remember you came in one time and we discussed a model from the BMSS Annuals - a Vietnam model by Kevin Lyles - remember that?) ; North Cheshire Modellers (boo!) etc, etc.
    Had a brief look through on the Blasts from the past thread; it was interesting that you contributed to the `Campaigns` magazine at some point (?).
    I met the late Philip Stearns at the 1979 BMSS Annuals who took some photos of my Iwo Jima model which won the diorama class at that show, and he said that they would be printed in a US magazine (?) called Campaigns at some point - which was the first I`d heard about it.
    I don`t know if he was the Chief Editor of that publication or what, but he was a major driving force behind it apparently. In the ensuing months I received a
    nice certificate from Campaigns as a result of that meeting, but sadly I never saw the resulting photo/s of my model if it did end up in an edition of Campaigns even after all these years - 41 and counting.
    I have never even seen an edition of Campaigns when it was in publication so I don`t know if you, (or indeed anyone else reading this) can shed any light on that? I suppose we`re looking from April 1979 through to April the following year regarding that elusive Campaigns edition? (I don`t know, but I`ve sometimes wondered what happened!?).

    Philip Stearns and his pal Shep Paine; Distant friends and acquaintances sadly gone. Good people.


    John Curran
  5. Ray Stout Active Member

    John, I used to have all the Campaign Magazines, and I do recall a pic. of raising the flag at I.G. but it was a small pic on an arttcle of the competition, but a very complimentry write up.I was on a Business trip in 1980 and Mike Cobb invited me to meet in his Chicago home. He lived almost opposite Shep Paine and he introduced me to Shep and Phil Sterns, in fact we had dinner that night at a reconstruction of a W.W.1 US Airforce Base. We found these "Babycham" size bottles of Guiness, and had a really good night.
  6. arj A Fixture


    Your comment about your knight got my dim and distant memory cells going.
    I remembered something superb, and decided to have a search.
    I came up with this article, which is well worth a look for anyone. It certainly had me thinking 'WOW!' at the time:-

    Burgundy p1.jpg Burgundy p2.jpg Burgundy p3.jpg

    You're quite right; it did set off a couple of letters from the 'button counters', although I can't see any reference to brown being used in place of red.
    In fact, the reds look red to me.
    The comment regarding facing of heraldry is correct, but did not warrant the criticism of a model, built for the enjoyment, and which was not destined to be a 'museum piece'.
    Just for a smile, here's a copy of the three letters involved:-


    The last one also makes a reference to the hand position of a very nice model by Peter Twist (at the MFCA Show).


    I managed to position my hand relatively easily. I leave you to try your own contortions.

    kevininpdx and blaster like this.
  7. Ray Stout Active Member

    Finally I get to see the offending item. I have a "Beef" about knights who, as if by magic, have been dropped by Helecopter on a Battlefield without a speck of dirt, or groundwork on them!! I was told by the "Experts" this was Poetic License. Sorry, it's as much an error as the "Rivet Counter" WHO wrote that about your knight. Both critics failed to note that this is a Hobby. We do it for fun, and the celibration of our skills. Research IS important, if you're making something for a Museum, but how do you research a Fantasy figure?? and some of the knights I've seen are truly fantasies. 3 dimentional illustrations on 13-14th century Knights. It's beautiful, but they're fantasies. Take a look at contempary illustrations of the time. John, you must have been one of the first to encounter this type of criticsm, and you won't be the last . Ray
  8. Raider17 New Member

    To `Arj` aka Andrew,
    Thank you so much for posting that article, that is the first time I have seen that model in years. I`d even forgotten that I did a construction article about it:) .

    The letters though, I distinctly remember - particularly the first and the third, and even though I have not been involved in modelling for a very long time now, have opened up old wounds about the topic of `accuracy`. Even as I am writing this reply, somehow I feel like weighing in again and defending MY approach to modelling from those days.

    But whats the point? Life is too short (so I have been told) but god, do I want to weigh in this very moment:mad: .

    Instead I will bite my lip and just throw in a famous phrase from a modeller regarded as one of the best, my distant acquaintance, the late Shep Paine; and which everyone will find in one of his many books on modelling.

    `CREATIVE GIZMOLOGY` ! and I will leave it there.

    To close,

    To Andrew, thanks again for posting that article, and all the very best to you - it was lovely to see that model again after such a long time. The last time I saw it was 1989 when I first visited the U.S, and took it over to enter one of the big competitions whilst I was over there. For one reason or another sadly that did`nt happen, but Shep managed to sell it to somebody for $200 (!), so for all I know it is currently in somebody`s collection somewhere in America, goodness knows where. I sometimes wonder where it ended up.

    To Mr Stout (Ray) thanks for your input

    Best wishes

    John Curran
  9. arj A Fixture

    I was looking through an MM today and I came across a photo of John's 'The Last Gun at Nery':-

    Lute and Nery.jpg

    It also shows David Whitbread's scratchbuilt 'Loot', which supplements the two articles by David for MM, copies of which I posted HERE.

    Nap likes this.
  10. blaster Well-Known Member


    Thanks for these marvelous articles which I have never seen and thoroughly enjoyed!


    You are a terrifically talented modeller.

    Great Nostalgia!!!

    Rgds Victor
    Nap likes this.
  11. Mirofsoft A Fixture

    I feel like siting on the balcony in the old Kermit Show . I'm 72 too . And sometime I crumble when hearing, seing, reading youngers telling that we pour dinosaurs had not the chance to have access to the great sculpts and fabulous moulds makers of today .
    The above comments and pictures show how wrong they are .
    I love lot of new figurines appearing today on the market but still loves "old" sculpture form Phoenix, Poste Militaire, Vaillant, Labayen
    And by the way acrylic painting is not the great discovevry of the last 20 years, they were already using the most basic one; water based,Plaka at Labayen Studio 60 years ago .
    The big difference is that you had almost no chance to see the great work of somebody living 100 miles distant from you . Today you see the work of a guy living 15.000 miles from you via internet .
    They were works that amazed me . They are still works that amaze me .

    Best to all including the brillant John(s) . Keep Walking .
  12. Raider17 New Member

    To `Blaster` and `Mirofsoft`,
    Thank you for the kind words. Much appreciated.
    Thank you both.

    Best wishes

    John Curran
  13. arj A Fixture

    I was searching for something completely different when I came across this article titled:-
    'The Models of John Cuiffo' by Cesare Milani

    MM Dec 1974.jpg

    Another interesting addition to this thread.

  14. peter green New Member

    I have sadly just put 15 of Johns models in Vectis Auctions (UK) in early November 2020. These date from 1975 / 1976
    What with my late fathers, I have no room left.
    Hope they find a great new owner.
    Peter Green
  15. Nap A Fixture


    Have you any pictures Peter ?

  16. peter green New Member

    I do but I am a real luddite with technology, I will try

    That's as good as it gets for my computer skills.
    The last 2 are made by Brian Thomas( featured in the modelmakers handbook)

    Pete john 1.jpg john 2.jpg john 3.jpg john 4.jpg john 6 (1).jpg john 6 (2).jpg john 6 (1).jpg john 12.jpg john 13.jpg john 14.jpg john9 (2).jpg john 11.jpg Brian Thomas ! (1).jpg Brian Thomas 2.jpg
    MCPWilk and Nap like this.
  17. Nap A Fixture

    Hi Pete

    Thanks so much for the pictures hope they sell week at Auction sone nice pieces there

    peter green likes this.
  18. MCPWilk A Fixture

    A great and unusual collection. The seaman on the icy bridge and the POWs do it for me.

    Nap likes this.
  19. peter green New Member

    I must admit, They are really great considering they are made out of plasterscene.
    Nap likes this.
  20. kevininpdx Active Member

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