-A Painting Tutorial and Resource for A&A Global-


  • Customizer

    That’s what I hate about acrylics. You end up wasting a lot that doesn’t reconstitute like enamels. It does have a much better flatness for a surface.
    The advantage of blending with enamels can also be it’s downfall when you need color separation. Each coat has to dry enough so I would do large batches
    so that by the time I came back around to the first figure, the coat is pretty much dry. The other advantage though with acrylics is you don’t need to worry about the fumes from the thinner. I’ve heard so many airbrush problems and the PITA setup cleanup process that I’ve only gotten the spray can type
    airbrush and have not even used them after 2 years. Model masters spray cans and Krylon Camo sprays have been pretty good for me. I’ve not yet used
    Krylon camo on such small pieces as A&A game pieces though. Paint and brushes are a whole investment in themselves.


  • Customizer

    Yeah… ok, I’m convinced, I’ll give enamels another go. Though - I’m going to have to make a trip to the Hobby store because some of my primaries have dried up it looks…  😮


  • 2016 Customizer

    Well, the last post was about a month ago, but I’ll jump in on the conversation. I haven’t ever used enamels, but I like the sound of paints that you can reconstitute. I often end up wasting paint (granted, I’ve learned to conserve, so it’s not large quantities) if I need to get a color right and end up mixing a batch too large. However, I really like the quick dry of acrylics. Perhaps if I ever stumble on a large sum of money I’ll get me some enamels  :lol:

    In other news, I have some more pieces painted that I’ll post pics of. I have been absent from A&A.org for quite a long time for various reasons, but I’d like to get back to posting tutorials/sharing ideas and work! I’ll post my US Navy warships (I haven’t finished CVs, trannies, or subs), and my Russian inf, which I’m quite proud of. Also, I have some HBG Axis supplements (Hummels, trucks, arty, StuGs, etc) that are in a dark grey/black scheme, and a woodland camo, as well as 6 FW-190s. So, I’ll try to get pics up of those ASAP.

    Anyone have any tips for taking photos? I can’t seem to get lighting or angles that make them look right; perhaps I need to use more natural light or a different camera.


  • Customizer

    Hey Spitfire - let’s see those pics!

    Ok, so I tried enamels… nope.  I’m sticking to acrylics.  They just don’t dry fast enough for me, and despite the shiny coat that blends better with the decals, I prefer the acrylics.  To each their own obviously, as I’ve seen some awesome enamel pieces on here.


  • 2016 Customizer


    Here is the entire Russian infantry army. Well, just for the Europe1940, as I’m trying to finish that one first. (I’m pretty darn close too; well, relatively close  :-D)

    Forest Scheme

    Drab Scheme

    Here are what I call the “Nationalist Troops.” For each faction I try to paint a few inf with the roundels on the base, just for flair, maybe to put in the capitols or for house rules. And they’re fun to paint.

    And every once in a while you have to let loose. The Russian jacket has two lines on it that make for a perfect tuxedo, and so I decided to make James Bond/Hitman/Spy, whoever you want him to be.

    Enjoy! I’ll put more pics up when I get the chance.


  • Customizer

    Fantastico!  Those are awesome - those Soviets and ‘back’sacks’.  eh eh eh - wonderful shading Spit.  And ‘letting loose’ - love it! I have a few of those I’ve been meaning to post.  Hey - are these coated yet?  What do you use to coat em?  I go for the basic clear coat - but notice I lose a little detail sometimes.


  • '12

    Awesome work Spitfire. Great color selection


  • 2016 Customizer

    Thanks guys!

    No, they’re not coated yet, unfortunately. They lose the rustic look when you spray them, so I always am hesitant to do so, but I’d like them to last. I recently moved overseas, so I’m not sure exactly where I’ll find the spray. I used to use a matte varnish from a spray can, just from Home Depot or Lowes. However, I think I will have to spend a bit more $$$ and go with the Warhammer varnish spray instead, since I can’t find the equivalent of what I used to use. I have heard that there are varnishes you can brush on, but I’m not that interested, although I would love to hear any advantages to using those.


  • Customizer

    I tried the brush on varnish once - bad experience, took out more detail than the spray.

    You moved overseas?  You didn’t by chance end up in the UK?  Always looking for players…


  • Customizer

    Spitfire38,

    ––I really like your Russian Infantry. Nice shading and excellent color separation!
    Well done! 😄
    ----And you’ve hit a home run with the ‘Combat Tuxedo’ on the “From Russia with Love” character. 8-) You have to “let Loose” every once in awhile.

    “Tall Paul”


  • 2016 Customizer

    @Viracocha:

    You moved overseas?  You didn’t by chance end up in the UK?  Always looking for players…

    Unfortunately not the UK. 😕 I mean, I’m very happy in the Netherlands, but we can’t play a game hahaha!

    @Tall:

    ––And you’ve hit a home run with the ‘Combat Tuxedo’ on the “From Russia with Love” character. 8-) You have to “let Loose” every once in awhile.

    “Combat Tuxedo”. I like it; I think that will now be his name!


  • 2016 Customizer

    Here is half of the US Navy.

    If you look closely on the right side, you can see some US destroyers from A&A 1941 that I threw in as a light cruiser/destroyer. “One of these things is not like the others…”

    Spitfire’s tip: When painting, “washes” and a subsequent drybrush with a lighter shade of the original will really make your pieces pop, as the shadows will be emphasized and the raised parts/corners will be highlighted. This is most effective on ships and infantry, although you can get some really cool “battle scarred” or “rusted metal” or “dirty tracks” looks on your ground vehicles as well!


  • 2018 2017 2016 2015 Customizer

    Question:

    How do you normally approach washes? I do a bit of dry brushing but have struggled with washes, especially on something so small as A&A pieces, in the past. I have used some black ink, watered down, on occasion, but it does not seem to seep well enough; if you know what I mean.


  • '13

    Wow, that Navy looks amazing. I haven’t started on my American fleet yet, so I may try your color scheme with a wash and see how it turns out.


  • 2016 Customizer

    @LHoffman:

    Question:

    How do you normally approach washes? I do a bit of dry brushing but have struggled with washes, especially on something so small as A&A pieces, in the past. I have used some black ink, watered down, on occasion, but it does not seem to seep well enough; if you know what I mean.

    Well, I used to use black acrylic paint mixed with water, but that just wasn’t dark enough and it didn’t hold. So don’t try that. Then, I decided that I would go ahead and try actual washes, so I went to the local hobby store and got a “Citadel Shade” wash, one in brown (Agrax Earthsahde) and one in black (Nuln Oil), which appears to be some sort of ink wash. They were each 6 euros/7.50 dollars, and they should last me the rest of my Global set. I would say you could paint one entire Global set, all 800 or whatever amount of pieces they are with just 2 bottles. I have never gotten into Warhammer or Flames of War, so I was new to washes, but I didn’t find them difficult after my 2nd or 3rd use. Here’s the wash I use. (Webcam photo, excuse the crappy quality)

    Basically you paint your piece, preferably in a slightly lighter shade than you want the end product to be (but not 100% necessary), then wait for it to dry, and get a largish brush and apply wash liberally. Suck up any pools of wash that collect in the elbows of infantry, the conning towers of ships, tracks of tanks, etc, but only until it’s not a giant pool. You still want it to collect in the recesses. Then just wait for it to dry, and drybrush it with the original shade, or lighter if you really want it to pop. I’ll post a tutorial next time I get around to painting, and hopefully that will help a bit more. It’s personal preference and practice, but it’s not too difficult to get good at IMO.

    @jluna1273:

    Wow, that Navy looks amazing. I haven’t started on my American fleet yet, so I may try your color scheme with a wash and see how it turns out.

    Thanks!! I based the colors on a scheme called Measure 22 that they used in WWII. Here’s the link I used; scroll down to the “Late 1943 to late 1945” portion of the description to see what it says. And it has color palettes so that you can see what to mix. (I’m warning you now… I find waterlines/stripes are hard to paint on ships! Expect some frustration :D) http://abbot.us/DD629/fletcher/camouflage.shtml


  • 2016 Customizer

    All right, here are the new pictures for my German units. These are from the HBG Axis Supplement Set, but I just use them as Germans.
    But first, some French infantry.

    Here are the German woodland camo troops, my favorites.

    Here are all the German “support” units. If you notice there are 3 schemes. Desert, Woodland, and standard black/grey, although it turned out a bit dark.

    And now all the armor.

    And the entire set.

    The woodland camo is a 3 step process. First of all, I painted a dark khaki color, based off of a photograph or drawing. Then I painted a burnt sienna brown in stripes and an occasional “splotch”, to simulate the camo. Then I painted a dark forest green overlapping the brown, making sure to cover most of the piece. There are many different kinds of camo, but as a general rule, it looks better when it overlaps, when it’s not a predictable pattern (you don’t want parallel stripes running along the length of the piece  :-)), and when you cover the entire piece, then paint details over it. This makes it look more authentic in my opinion. For example, here is a Panther, picture taken from the most amazing WWII reference site for painting. (http://ww2drawings.jexiste.fr/) If you have any problems accessing it, let me know, because they underwent a site change and now it sometimes reroutes you to a different site.

    Happy painting! Please chip in with tips for painting camouflage, and if you have any questions, let me know!


  • 2018 2017 2016 2015 Customizer

    I am curious as to your method for the panzer gray painted vehicles…

    It looks extremely good. It is not flat, nor are the highlights overstated. It almost looks like you applied a light wash over the base gray.

    Can you elaborate a little on your process for these? I am currently making some panzer gray tanks for Tall Paul and might like to incorporate some of your methods.

    Thanks! And very nice work.


  • 2016 Customizer

    I’ll try to elaborate on those tanks. I’m not sure exactly what to tell you, but I’ll give you my best thoughts.

    All right, so I started with a coat of spray can primer, just a standard light gray primer from the hardware store. Then, I painted a base coat of dark gray on it. However, the base coat needs to be lighter than you intend the final product to be because of the wash. If I had gone with a near black gray from the start, the tanks would just be black and you wouldn’t see any detail and it would be nasty looking. The base coat was something like “Value 2” from this color swatch.

    That’s the best estimate I can give you, since I didn’t take a picture of my paint when I was painting. I can tell you it was one of my dark gray paints with a bit of black mixed in to make it a bit darker. After that, I did a wash with black. (I have black and brown; I just used the straight black wash. There’s a picture of it a few posts up.) This was liberally applied, then I sucked up any thick pools of it with my brush until it was a decent amount left, mostly from the tracks and the hatch/MG at the top of the StuGs. If you want the wash to really do it’s job, you should apply the wash one side at a time, setting the piece on it’s side to dry. That way it seeps into the tracks and the lines in between the side skirt panels or under the turret, depending on what you’re painting. After the wash was completely done drying (20 mins?), I went back over and did a drybrush with a light gray. Something like “Value 4” or “5” from the image. This was applied pretty liberally, because I felt that I had gone overboard with the darkness and that the piece was too dark for what I wanted. But it’s all personal preference, so if you like the color you bave, don’t worry about making the streaks and highlights show up everywhere. So it was applied liberally, and I really made sure to get the ridges on the Hummel and the skirts and turrets of the StuGs and Panzers, since these are the really defining parts of the piece, and the parts that have really defined edges and make for a great drybrush. This all gives it the “scratched paint” look, and since I did it enough, it sort of looks like there is a light gray base coat that I somehow covered up with gray, while it was actually the other way around. Here’s an example with the Hummel.

    You can see it on the desert scheme Hummel as well. After the drybrush, I did a light drybrush with brown on the turret and MG, and the back a bit, just to simulate dirt and stuff like that. Very light drybrush though. Then it was divisional markings and identification stuff, and Then I was done. Oh, the tracks. The tracks are done by dragging a brush with just a bit of paint across the tracks, and since they are raised (both the tracks themselves and the mechanisms), it makes your job really easy.

    I’ll try to specifically answer your points. @LHoffman:

    It is not flat

    I think this is directly due to the wash. I can’t state it enough; a wash really makes the model look more 3D, and the shadows/highlighting give it more of a sense of color and realism IMO. Here, on the StuGs. The gun is really separate from the rest of the piece from the wash, which is retained even after the drybrush.

    @LHoffman:

    nor are the highlights overstated

    I think I just got lucky on this one 😄 Apply the drybrush in layers. You can always add more, but you can’t really take it off once it’s done. Make sure you really go for the sharp edges on the piece.

    I hope this helps, and if there’s anything I missed or something extra you’d like to know, just ask!


  • 2018 2017 2016 2015 Customizer

    Excellent! Thank you for the tips.


  • Customizer

    Great Job!
    You got just the look I was going to do on my own pieces.
    I use the same techniques as you do for painting.
    Looking more closely on some of my old pieces, I see that I might need to add more pin washes to accentuate deep recesses and leave most
    of the raised details alone to make them pop out.
    Love the armor schemes.


  • Customizer

    Spitfire,

    @Spitfire38:

    @Tall:

    ––And you’ve hit a home run with the ‘Combat Tuxedo’ on the “From Russia with Love” character. 8-) You have to “let Loose” every once in awhile.

    “Combat Tuxedo”. I like it; I think that will now be his name!

    ––Please do! As a matter of fact,…I think you might paint one of each nations’s units in a “Combat Tuxedo” scheme for formal occasions,….like surrender ceremonies, haha.
    ----On a related note,…when Wil Tan and I were talking about taking the lifeboats off of some FMG Italian ships to use in making some U.S. Navy APD attack destroyers said,…"It seems you have a regular war machine going on there. I liked it and now our ‘gang’ is called the “WarMachine Team”.
    ––You gotta have FUN, man. especially when you have such a large project underway.  😄

    “Tall Paul”



  • If the “combat tuxedo” is for surrender, you should give tuxedos to the entire French army.  😄


  • 2016 Customizer

    @Makoshark13:

    If the “combat tuxedo” is for surrender, you should give tuxedos to the entire French army.  😄

    Haha nice one!!!  😄 That reminds me…

    “Why do French tanks have rear view mirrors?”
    – “So they can see the enemy as they’re running away!”

    Poor French… they got the bad end of the deal. In '39, the U.S. military was ranked 17th in the world, right behind Romania. The French may have had the troops, but nobody was prepared for Blitzkreig.

    For anyone reading this, I will be posting more tutorials (or at least pictures) in the near future… there have been many developments lately. I was away for travel, but I’ve recently purchased some HBG units, as well as toured Bastogne. I have some inspiration! Right now I’m finishing up some British infantry, and then I’ll move on to a tutorial.

    Thanks for the views- hopefully it’s a good resource that can stick around.


  • 2018 2017 2016 2015 Customizer

    @Spitfire38:

    For anyone reading this, I will be posting more tutorials (or at least pictures) in the near future… there have been many developments lately. I was away for travel, but I’ve recently purchased some HBG units, as well as toured Bastogne. I have some inspiration! Right now I’m finishing up some British infantry, and then I’ll move on to a tutorial.

    Excellent! Looking forward to it!


  • Customizer

    Guys,

    @LHoffman:

    @Spitfire38:

    For anyone reading this, I will be posting more tutorials (or at least pictures) in the near future… there have been many developments lately. I was away for travel, but I’ve recently purchased some HBG units, as well as toured Bastogne. I have some inspiration! Right now I’m finishing up some British infantry, and then I’ll move on to a tutorial.

    Excellent! Looking forward to it!

    ––Me, too! I enjoy seeing your excellent work and I’m sure it inspires all of us. BTW, my Dad who’s still “alive and kicking” was “involved” in the Battle of the Bulge". If I get the financing to open my Railroad & Military Museum I’ll hopefully be able to publish his book of WW2 experiences. Anyway, I’m looking forward to some more pics of your excellent work.

    “Tall Paul”


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