With 960 models on show including several of the best Spanish modellers, there is no doubt that Torrent is the most important modelling contest in Spain and one of the top shows in the world
Last edition was held this weekend, from 5th to 7th of April, at Torrent, close to Valencia, and apart from the model contest itself, it also offered a trade fair and several conferences.
It was my first time on a "big one", so I will try to tell you my experience as an average modeller. Although it is open to any kind of modelling, I will focus on armour, which is my main interest.
While walking towards the Auditorium (nice directions on their site), you know when you have arrived because you can see a crowd. Yes, there was so many people that you could see it over a couple hundred meters away!
First thing you find once there is the trade fair. A square with over 20 booths where you can find kits, books, aftermarket items, figures, resin and even militaria stuff. In fact, there were several reenactors. Most of them wore German WWII uniforms, but there were also American, British and modern ones. Mixed among the public, they added a note of colour and variety.
And then, a dive into the main show. Inside the Auditorium, there were several tables for models and dioramas, and showcases for the figures. First floor for armour, dioramas, figures and ships, and second floor for aircraft.
The system was simply excellent. White surface, medium size, open top and transparent sides to protect the works. Also there were lamps installed on every desk providing more than enough light.
All in all, you were able to study the details of every model, take pics and, in a word, enjoy... It's hard to explain the feeling of having so many good models around, some of them seen before on magazines or internet. You could spend hours there (and I did!).
There was also a conference on Military Vehicles advanced Techniques by Miguel Jimenez. I bet it was great but I was late... I will never forgive myself. Sigh.
Other conferences scheduled were Airplane models techniques by Daniel Zamarbide and Tomas de la Fuente, Figures modeling by Thais Marinablanca, Figures painting by Jonatan Monerris and Imitation of water in dioramas, Flexible molds.
I had the chance to talk on Sunday to Mr. Ruben González, from AMT and part of the organization team, to get his impression of this edition. This is what he told me.
What would you highlight from Torrent 2013?
I would say that the participation, again around 1000 pieces. Everything has run as we planned. Also the space, we have had more room for the models and more tables so now they are easier to see and the flow around the tables is definitively better.
Can you comment the average quality of the models?
In my opinion it has not been up to the level of previous editions. There are good models and very good ones, but I have found a gap between them that was not there other years. In general, there were outstanding pieces like we had other years, but below them the difference is more noticeable. It can be due to the crisis, with less people building models, or maybe also they were not able to attend.
Have you noticed any trend over the years in modelling style?
Yes, trends are usually ruled by the market. New products appear and they quickly become adopted. The most recent ones tend to focus on weathering effects with dust, mud, dirt, like the products from AK Interactive... and it can be seen on models displayed here
What about international participation?
This year it has been much lower than previous ones. We use to have a very strong presence of international modellers, who attend every year. But part because of the crisis, which has prevented these modellers from other countries to come, and part because Euro Model Expo, at Germany,which was last weekend. For many modellers this is closer to them and therefore easier to travel to, so it has affected as well.
Finally, which plans do you have for the future?
Improving, there is always room to make it better and we will work hard for it. It would be good as well to increase the cooperation with other shows so we do not overlap. And we would like also to increase the base of young modellers, attract kids to the hobby. And this is an area where the clubs have a lot to do.
I was lucky then to talk to Ricardo Chust, member of the Jury board. He took me on a tour for a good part of the pieces, explaining how they were judged. It is amazing to see how thoroughly they check every detail, from accuracy to construction, painting, weathering... as it is the only way to separate the good from the best.
His notes where absolutely helpful and I can not thank him enough for his time, so as Ruben.
These are the winners for Military vehicles, class M1 is 1/35 and M2 1/48 and 1/72:
The organization did an excellent job, starting with their useful website and taking care of all details to offer the best experience. I had a great time at the show, and can definitively recommend it as more than worth to attend.
(C) 04/2013 Carlos Martin