The Lazy Painter Guide to Winter Weathering

By Ben

The Lazy Painter Guide to Winter Weathering

I love this kind of job. It’s very effective but so easy. It’s just washing, dry brushing and picking out the detail.

Here is the example I’m going to use:

imageI always wash, clean and assemble all of my work before painting it. This saves time, ensures that the miniature is firmly assembled and it means I don’t have to come back and clean up glue damage on the fully painted model afterwards.

So firstly get a white spray and undercoat the whole model. Don’t cover everything first time. Better to do three passes on it letting it dry before moving on. (I was playing Alien Isolation during making these. So I’d do a save point then a spray). Once the last coat is done let it dry, then attack it with white paint on a big brush to get into the little bits the spray can’t reach. This is important because this is not only your undercoat, but your main coat too. So now you have a solid white Kat.

The national colour now goes onto the mini. So if your doing Germans you use your flavour of Dunkel Yellow, if your U.S. use U.S. dark green followed by Brown Violet. If your painting British armour go brown Violet followed by Russian uniform. But for the Russians just use Russian Green.

Now imagine you are the loader/driver of the Katyusha. Any where your hand or foot touches the vehicle while you are loading it or driving it you dry brush. So the idea is your Katyusha crew are rubbing off the whitewash they put on top of the national colour. This is not the way we are doing it cos we want this mini done quickly so we can put it on the table ASAP. Some areas need more work than others like the running boards under the drivers door. I’ve made the level of rub different on each Katyusha and very heavy on the ammo truck. Brush in different directions. You get different results this way. But the major thing to remember is don’t brush in the direction the lines are going in. So on the truck I brushed up and down in between the wood panelling. See how the white stays in the join lines. This is what we are looking for. This is the right effect and we don’t need to black line here now. There is a white line left after the brush.

imageDon’t forget the miniature is going to look bad until it’s done. Don’t give up half way through!

Ok now to start with the easy part, the big base. Chocolate brown is my mud base coat of choice. Paint the whole base the tyres and the underside of the Katyusha . Use a big brush go quickly make lots of mistakes. This is mud. It gets everywhere. If you flick brown dots over the chassis even better. Do this on all of your vehicles and accompanying infantry before moving on. That was the longest and least fun thing you’ll do on this job.

Next coat is Beige brown dry brush this on all of your base and all of your tyres. Go over the mudguards and where you hit the miniature with your base coat. I’m going to say thing again, as I do each time I write one of these articles: Make sure the last coat of paint is completely dry. If it’s raining outside or cold use a hair dryer or leave your job in front of your heater. This technique will not work otherwise!

A quick word on dry brushing. I at first rub the paint off my brush on to dry white paper. Then onto the back of my hand. This way I can use two senses to tell if the brush is dry enough to use.

Once again we go lighter in colour and in amount of paint on your brush. We are now on Beige Brown. This is a great colour to use as a rust wash as it has an orange base. The last dry brush colour is Green Ochre or Desert yellow repeat the dry brush over the other mud. So once you have finished putting on your dry brush with the colour and the miniature is again bone dry, things get funky.

So now with water on a clean large brush wet the miniature around the mud guards, now mix the beige brown with too much water. It’s ok if you are too thin, you can examine your work and add another coat. If you’ve put on too much paint, come back straight away with a clean brush dipped in clean water and wash away the paint until you get the desired effect. Do you see now why your other coats of paint have to be bone dry? If your last coat is still wet you’ll destroy all your work up to this point. As before, dry this coat of paint completely.

imageOn the picture above check out the rust effect. This colour wash works nicely on holes, scratch damage and around welded joins. The deep cold does nasty things to metal. Also using this technique I’ve added dirty boot marks to the back of this trucks tray. Wet the inside of the tray and dab on your colours while you do your mud coats.

Ive added soot to the rocket rails with dry brushes from German grey up in shades using white to mix. I’ve added one or two black lines where the white was still heavy. Like around the radiator and inside the tray. Just add em where your eye tells you something is not realistic. The windows are a dark blue, then a sky blue in diagonal lines. This looks ok at a distance. I’m yet to discover a window method I’m 100% happy with. Perhaps you have a technique you use that I should try?

The other way of doing winter rub-o-flage is to undercoat the national colour then dry brush the white over the top. I’ve done both but I like the above method more because it requires less steps and less paint.

Hope you find something here useful.

Cheers, Ben.

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