A fast WWII painting guide
- Paul Scrivens-Smith email@example.com
As promised, here is my quick & effective painting guide.
Remember I use this method to create hundreds of presentable
troops, not to win any prizes. As an example of the speed that
can be acheived, I painted 12 Russian infantry on Sunday
evening whilst watching the South Bank Show on Jimmy Nail
between 22:30 and 23:30. OK so they were already sprayed
black., and I have not based them yet.
P.S. Don't usually watch the South Bank Show because its
usually about 'Luvvies' before you get any preconceptions about
Acrylic Matt Black plus A High Gloss Lacquer, from Motor
Factors, car repair shops, Halfords etc.
These are a must, I paint the figures in groups of 10 to 15, so
by the time I have applied green to ten, the green on figure
one is already dry. I will tell you in each case which paint I
use but use what you want. Abbreviations are HA=Humbrol
Acrylic, MP=Miniature Paints, CP=Colour Party.
I use Windsor and Newton Peat Brown artists ink, any other
shellac based ink is probably ok, WARNING, I have never had any
success with acrylic inks.
I now base my figures on thin plywood from model shops, and my
vehicles on irreglarly cut pieces of plasticard, both from
local model & hobby shops. Good lumpy builders sand dried out
in the oven (Vicky hates this bit) and "static grass" from
model railway shops. Plus a new scrubbing brush with natural
bristles (don't use an old one YEUCH).
Sorry again plasticophiles, but I only use white metal figures,
and pick figures with loads of raised detail on them (i.e. deep
folds in tunics etc.), FAA & Brittania are in Wargames Foundary
are out (crap figures anyway IMO).
I never used to spend less than four or five pounds on each
brush (sorry about the long hand, but the sign does not
always translate, SEE), but as a brush is knackered after about
50 figures I have started buying cheaper Humbrol brushes at
less than a pound each. I use a size 1, size 2 and a size 6.
Clean all the flash, rips and feeders off the figures, I find a
big 1" bastard file is great for removing the lump of metal
that is invariably on the bottom of the base. I then base my
figures onto the thin plywood using a hot melt glue gun.
When you have about 50 figures done, take them outside and
spray them matt black. Leave for a couple of hours to dry. When
dry, using the size 6 brush paint black any bits on the figures
that you missed with the spray.
Try to paint the figures in groups of about 12, doing each
colour on each figure, when you start on the next colour figure
one will already be dry. You may be inclined to think that I
have used the wrong colours in some places, if I have please
tell me so that I can get it right next time. I will discuss
each nationality/uniform type individually starting with my
These are incredibly simple, STAKVA even had the foresight to
issue equipment in the same shitty colour as the uniforms
(Stalin must have been a speed painter). I give each figure a
heavy dry-brushing with MP Earth Brown, I then paint the
Helmets with HA 5030 green, I paint the rifle butts,
entrenching tool & bayonet handles with MP Chestnut Brown. Then
I paint the faces,hands,boots & rifle barrels MP black. Next I
use MP Light Grey on the bayonets & any knifes (sorry, I don't
like metallic paint and it shines enough when varnished).Then
drybrush MP Leather brown onto exposed flesh, followed by a
lighter drybrushing of MP Tanned Flesh onto faces & hands.
Next I give the figure an all over light dry-brushing with MP
Sand (Note this is a very light yellowy sand colour). I then
varnish the figure with the high gloss lacquer. When the
varnish is dry give the figure a liberal coat of Windsor &
Newton Peat Brown ink and leave to dry overnight
(Note use the ink after varnishing it flows into the creases
much better, always allow the ink to dry naturally).
These are done the same as the Russians, except I use CP Green
No.49 for the tunics and trousers, and HA Sand for some of the
troops in the Blouson type jacket. I then paint all the
webbing & equipment in MP Earth Brown. Everything else,
including dry-brushing, varnishing & inking as for the
Germans in FeldGrau, British in Kakhi, Hungarians in Brown,etc.
As for the Americans & Russians, substitting the correct
uniform and equipment colours.
Heavy drybrush all over with HA Green 5030, followed by splodge
painting (old size 2 brush with bristles cut back to 5mm and
splayed out) first MP Chestnut Brown, then CP Green No.49.
Paint the helmets and rucksacks CP Green No.49, touch up the
trosers HA Green 5030 (these were not camo) to cover up any
splodges. Paint all the webbing and pouches with MP Sand. Paint
the rifles etc as for the Russians. Lightly dry-brush the
figure with MP Sand, followed by a dry-brushing of the webbing
and pouches with MP white. Varnish and ink as per the Russians.
Germans in Camo. Smocks,
Heavy drybrush all over with MP Earth Brown, followed by
splodge painting (old size 2 brush with bristles cut back to
5mm and splayed out) first HA Sand, MP Chestnut Brown, then CP
Green No.49. Touch up the trosers HA Field Grey (these were not
camo) to cover up any splodges. Paint all the webbing and
pouches with MP Black. Paint the rifles etc as for the
Russians. Lightly dry-brush the figure with MP Sand. Varnish
and ink as per the Russians.
Wait until the ink is totally dry (PROMISE you will regret it
if you don't.
Get the scrbbing brush and chop off a few bristles (15 to 20)
to lengths of between 5mm and 15mm, then using a hot melt glue
gun glue little clumps onto a few of the bases (it may look
good, but don't over do it). Coat the bases in a thin coating
of watered down (50:50) PVA glue and water and place into the
building sand. Leave overnight to dry. When dry paint the bases
all over with a muddy brown coloured paint, I use 40% CP Green
No.49 and 40% MP Chocolate Brown, 20% water (Don't get this all
over the tall grass, sorry, scrubbing brush;-). Leave to dry.
When completely dry, then drybrush with HA sand, then using
watered down PVA glue stick on small patches of static grass,
again don't over do this.
Hope the above is of help to you, and as I mentioned above I am
always willing to be corrected on any mistakes I have made. If
you have any tips that you use yourselves please email them to
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