This past weekend was the 3rd annual Southern California Gundam Model Competition, held in Fullerton California. We drew a total of 171 attendees, of which 42 entered the competition with 76 models entered. Our attendance is up by at least 60 people, so we saw a decent jump in growth. Asking around, I believe that word about our event is starting to spread and folks are seeing the hard work we put into placing flyers all over Southern California. We’ve hammered down a good number of issues as lessons learned from the previous two years and from what I’ve heard and read so far from various sites, we did a fantastic job. Thanks to all the hard work and dedication from our loyal TGG Staff. We still have a few kinks that could use oiling and straightening out, but we’re definitely on the right track. There were some really amazing builds on the tables. Just below there is a 13 year old Shenlong, a completely revamped Taurus kit, a full scratch build for a 1/100 Xamel, and beautifully painted Patchwork Sazabi.

More after the jump!

One major improvement is that we moved our registration table outside the venue, separating our raffle ticket table and t-shirt sales table from the initial registration. Folks were able to fill out their forms and get things in order without crowding the entry way and the raffle table. The raffle table was piled high with all sorts of goodies from around the world. Resin kits from Hong Kong, a special Acguy from the Gundam Front store in Tokyo, a signed MG by Mr Kawaguchi, Mr MG himself; two beginner level dual action airbrushes, more stuff from the Gundam Front store. I’m glad the raffle prizes attracted so many folks. Robot4Less at the end of the second raffle donated a PG Zaku II to the raffle – of course, they as a shop picked up something around 6 raffle prizes themselves. Even the vendors want to pick up the cool items displayed for raffle.

We didn’t have as many anime figures as we did in the past, but the quality of the kits were amazing. Hopefully, the folks see this and build more anime kits next year.

Below are a group of models built by one family, a father, mother and son. They came to SCGMC for the first time last year and were inspired to get into the hobby, these were the first Zaku’s for the parents, and after looking at the quality, and urging them to move from the Beginner level to the advanced level, they where shy since these were their first kits, the stayed. And then they took first and third in that category. Hopefully they continue to build, get even better, and challenge themselves in the advanced category next year.

This year’s theme was Gundam Wing, we even had a limited edition T-shirt designed expecially for this year’s event. Out of 30 shirts, we ended up with 3 left over. Now these three are going to be considered vintage as we put them away and may sell them at next year’s event. Wing kits came out in droves, Heavyarms, Sandrocks, Wings, Shenlongs, Deathscyths, Leos, Taurus, etc. Very cool to see how some folks modded old kits or just built the wonderful MG kits right out of the box. Damn cool!

This year, the diorama category had me and Angel, and our pieces were display only, and there was one other SD diorama. The diorama category was then renamed the SD category since there was a bunch of SD kits built from the SF Bay Area Gundam Club Good job guys, hope to see you guys next year.

Here are some other noteworthy kits. All in all it was a fantastic showing of models. I don’t think there is a bigger gathering of gunpla kits this side of the Pacific ocean, and we’re growing. This is a good thing!

Aside from the model competition, we had vendors, a TV showing a few episodes of Gunpla Build Fighters, and then an old Wing Street Fighter style game that folks really enjoyed. On the other side of the competition tables, we held some live demos and tutorial sessions. Dan (Funakatown) presented two demos, one discussing how to enter contests of various styles with input from Sean of the IPMS OC chapter, Xavier from Bluefin giving input about GWBC, and me with my input on how the TGG Judging staff collectively rate and judge each competition piece. Dan also gave a tutorial on how to do line art and maybe touched on some decal design using Photoshop Elements.

The TGG staff brought their airbrushes, compressors, and cleaning stations so we ended up setting up 6-7 airbrush stations for folks to get some hands on airbrush experience. You can read tutorials, watch youtube tutorials all day long, but until you actually grab hold of an airbrush and have someone there guiding you through the steps and helping you learn the finer techniques of the tool; folks realize that it is much less intimidating that imagined. One of the guys from the previous year’s SCGMC got his first hands on airbrush experience at SCGMC, and this year, he won the best Expert category with his beautifully painted Patchwork Sazabi. All it takes is that first guided step and some practice.

Below is a compiled video from the airbrush teaching session starting off in the middle of the thinning discussion.

Below is a video of some of the SCGMC action, the contest entries, the raffles, the awards ceremony; done by Meadeslemicah – fair warning, this is about an hour long.·

And for more pictures, go to the gallery here:

SCGMC 2013 Gallery

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