Sunday, 16 February 2014

Dougie- Painting British Part 1- Figure Preparation and Basing

Dougie's back, and this time is starting his treatise (manifesto?) on how to paint a British Soldier.

Well folks looking to start the figures now, I’ve got a selection of Empress Brits and I’m initially going to work on a standard 4 man Para fireteam. I’ve picked a fireteam leader with SA80A2, and 3 toms with another SA80A2, an SA80A2/UGL and a Minimi. This is a good base to start with and it’ll let me use them for scenarios quicker.

The shot below shows 3 of the toms, the Empress Brit figures have separate heads so you can adjust them to taste, which is a nice touch. They’ve been cleaned up and fixed to pennys (I hope those Paras aren't stepping on Her Royal Highness!- Ed) as bases for some stability and clean edges.

The only addition to the figures I’ve made is to add Airborne DZ patches to the Velcro area on the right arm pocket, me being a bit anal! If you look carefully you can see it, I’ve used wine bottle foil.

I may add some additional patches, perhaps the round ISAF one on other figures as I progress. Airborne jump wings are commonly sewn onto this pocket flap but as they’re sewn on I’ll be painting them on to get a flusher look.

To illustrate my painting style, I’ll be using 1 of the fireteam as a model, that we’ll follow through to completion. I’ve picked the tom with the SA80A2/UGL.

The system I use is to paint the groundwork first so the first step is to blend in the base, I’ve used Vallejo Dark Earth acrylic paste, this gives a good starting point.

The base then gets a covering of Dark Brown grit, I use Woodland Scenics fine grade ballast. Its attached with PVA glue.

The base is then dry brushed up with 4 colours gradually lightening the ground work. I tend to use Vallejo solely and on my Brits for the Afghan dust I’ve used 843 Cork Brown, 912 Tan Yellow, 847 Dark Sand then 837 Pale Sand. I’ll be sorting the base edge later.

The figure is attached to a temporary base so I don’t touch him and he’s primed with a thin coat of Vallejo Black.

The next update will cover how I tackle the flesh.

Later, Dougie


  1. I've a load of Empress models which have just arrived from their kickstarter so I'll follow this with interest. Love your attention to detail (i.e. tin-foil patch) as I've just done something similar with a tiny bit of card because a rifle didn't have quite the right look :-)

  2. Very interesting. Are you going to paint them in Multicam uniforms?

    1. Yes Juan check out my research update earlier in the blog.

  3. I love what you are doing here. Not only this post, but the whole initiative. I have done a few ISAF Spaniards and, though I purchased the rulebook long time ago, I still have not played at all! I'm really eager to do so, I hope I can anytime soon.
    For sure I will keep on tracking your blog! :)

  4. Just what I was looking for Dougie. Great series and excellent guide for Brits. Can use this for multicam Rangers or SEALS too.