My name is Haris Ali and model making has been an important part of my life since mum put an Airfix E Type Jaguar together for me in the early sixties. A gull-winged Corsair followed that, the glue stained dark blue plastic etching a permanent image in my memory. Visits to our local Woolies with its made up painted models fixed to the perforated hardboard walls made me realise that there was a more adventurous side to this hobby. It wasn’t until we moved house a few blocks away that the bug really bit. Next door to my new school a model shop (remember them?) displayed new arrivals in its window, and every single pocket money penny went towards a new addition to my growing collection. The bug bit deep. When I grew up I wanted to be the person who designed the kits. This started a fascination (and a career) in drawing and design.
Growing up, college, work, family, are all stages of my life that have been marked with varying degrees of involvement in a hobby that has waxed and waned over the years. After a long break in the eighties I was amazed at how the hobby had changed. Airfix had virtually gone to the wall and every kitchen table in Eastern Europe appeared to have been used to spawn a manufacturer of resin and vacuum formed kits. This was now a complicated hobby, and quite specialised. Kids were no longer spending time and money on this as electronic interests began to take over.
I’ve dipped in and out whenever I’ve had the time but the habit hasn’t gone away and I doubt if it ever will. The loft heaves with unmade kits and I take pleasure in lifting the lids and putting them back. It’s a pity that it seems to be a hobby dominated by ‘blokes of a certain age’, though it’s never ceased to amaze me how, when faced with the challenge of making a model, children – boys and girls – show the same level of involvement and fascination that hooked me many years ago.
So this site is dedicated mainly to my interest, but other things get in the way too and quite rightly so. You may find the odd reference to art, design, cycling, football, and anything else that occupies my mind. I’ve never kept a diary and I suppose my blog is the nearest thing to producing the one I should have written when I was a teen, but hopefully less embarrassing.