180 x 240 mm
A photo book, that tells the story of Tilmann, who has a passion for tin soldiers. With a main focus on the history behind the different troops and the uniforms, he is building and painting his own figures since he was about ten years old. The book also deals with the subject of tin soldiers at large through texts.
Just before seven in the morning. A small village in the north-eastern Lower Saxony, Germany. Tilmann goes to work. Five minutes by bike in the morning and in the evening — the small laboratory in which he works as a dental technician is not far away from his home. After work, his time belongs to his wife Dannie, their three children, Smilla the family cat, music and his special hobby of which this book is about: the casting and painting of soldier miniatures. Deep in thought, he regularly is taking out tin, paint and a brush. Since his childhood he has been dealing with soldiers from different historic periods. The little men, who are only a few centimeters tall, need patience, fine motor skills and detailed work in the production process. The background knowledge of historical events is just as important to Tilmann as the authenticity of the imperfect. The metal he gets mostly from friends and relatives in the form of sorted out everyday objects. The tin that once gave shape to an organ pipe is melted down and reborn as a miniature soldier. A failed casting is simply remelted and so the loss of material is kept to a minimum. The colors he uses he bought around 40 years ago and he has been using them ever since. I accompanied him with my camera and was allowed to dive into the world of the soldiers of Tilmann.