Why Spencer Pollard Is One of My Favorite Taste-Making Elite Modelers

Spencer Pollard first inserted himself into my model making consciousness last year, when he guested on Plastic Posse Podcast. He’s a steadfast champion of modeling joy and fulfillment, and his latest post implores modelers to forego competition—particularly the kind found in social media—and build for the fun, not for others.

Spencer notes in his latest post that ‘competition’ in the model making hobby now encompasses more than just the quality of finished models, thanks to social media’s window into actual model making processes. Contest tables and publication in modeling magazines were once the crowning achievements of elite model making, with excellent finished models as the primary, or even sole, measure of success.

Now all aspects of the model making process are part of the new, expanded competition highlighted by Spencer. The implication is that every aspect of modeling is subjected to new measures of modeling seriousness, comparison—and doubt: Am I choosing the right things to build? Have I researched enough? Have I corrected seams, parting lines, and inaccuracies enough? Am I using the right paint? Am I using my paint correctly? Have I weathered enough, and using the most fashionable techniques and products?

What Spencer leaves unsaid is that the proliferation of ‘celebrity modelers’ is perhaps the most significant contributor to this new onslaught of modeling competitiveness. Another way to think of this is that our hobby now enjoys—or maybe has been cursed with—more taste-making elite modelers than ever before. YouTube Channels, Patreons, Facebook and Instagrams, podcasts, blogs (what!?!), even TikTok (for crying $%&ing out loud!)—seems everyone is an authoritative modeler with thoughts about what is ‘correct’ modeling.

Would that we had more taste-making elite modelers like Spencer, and fewer who are saying or implying that your modeling is wrong, or inadequate.

Read Spencer’s words for yourself, and enjoy…

If you are making modelling decisions based on your need for affirmation, you might not be alone…

STOP COMPETING WITH YOURSELF…

6 comments

  1. Fifty years ago, the Rolling Stones released their breakthrough single (I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction; it’s also relevant to Spencer’s blog.😉

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks so much for taking the time to write that and offering your thoughts on this – I think – thorny topic! You have certainly captured what I was trying to get across. With so much out there to sift through it really is difficult to work out what is useful and what not and then try and not fall into the trap of competing to be heard and seen. I’m not sure what the answer to that is, but hopefully this will go some way to helping others navigate such a difficult path. Thanks so much one again – your thoughts are very much appreciated!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As one of those “elites”, I actually started out just needing a place to write something, anything, since at the time my employment as a writer was “in flux” – a polite way of saying I was newly unemployed and only had the one skill, which I had to find another way to express it that paid the bills, which the “elite modeling” never did, but it contributed to sanity sufficient to find that alternative.

    So from my “elite” perspective and experience, let me say Spencer is entirely right. If you aren’t pleasing yourself first, you won’t be pleasing anyone else. Or, as a good friend who was a For-Real Legend In His Career once said to me, “If you don’t care about what you’re doing, why should anyone else?”

    I’m always amazed when the book I wrote or the model I built, which pleases me greatly, gets nice comments. But I can assure you, from having tried to do it the other way – figure out what others thought I should be doing and do that – it never ever really worked, at least not in a way that left me happy when “The End” arrived.

    As to competition improving one’s skills, an argument frequently put forth to defend all that, I can say that everything I know about modeling, I learned from other modelers – and not in competitions, but rather in LHS conversations, club meetings, and such.

    Liked by 1 person

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