USARF Foxtrot – Painting Camouflage

I managed to win a recent event, much to my surprise, held at a local gaming store (Harlequins). There was a nice little stash of prize support, I picked up a Foxtrot. I really fancied painting something in a camouflage pattern.

This post is about how I painted up the Foxtrot with boarding shotgun.

Spray Undercoat

Once the model was cleaned up and assembled, I attached the model to a standard plastic base and glued some sand to it for some texture. Once the glue dried I undercoated the model with Army Painter Black Spray (Goblin link, or EG link). After that had dried (I think it actually got two separate coats of black) I hit the model with a light spray of AP Leather Brown Spray (Goblin or EG link).

Why two spray colours? Well not many of my paints will cover straight black easily, and I’m too lazy/impatient to do lots of layers just to cover black. The brown helps a lot with that problem, and ultimately the brown makes a sensible base colour for the colours I am about to use. The brown also helps pick out the details of the model, which the above picture shows really well – if that was just black you’d never see any of the model’s details in the picture. Yet the black underneath the brown helps with the shading, I suppose this is very much like a poor man’s zenithal undercoat.

Base Coat

As mentioned at the start I wanted to paint some camouflage, there are lots of different ways and colours for camouflage. For this model I just wanted to stick with a ‘traditional’ green brown woodland scheme. I’m not trying to replicate a real military uniform, just give the impression of one. The other thing I wanted to know was how long this would take to paint; painted started at 22:00 hrs.

The first colour I painted was Vallejo Game Colour Cayman Green (GG & EG links). I painted this on all the areas I wanted to be camouflaged clothing.

Next up was to highlight this with Vallejo Model Air Camouflage Light Green (GG & EG links). Maybe I should have done a little more highlighting at this stage looking back now, to pick out the edges of the clothing.

With the green base complete, I started on the pattern. I painted random looking splodges of brown onto the green uniform. The brown used two colours, the first colour was VMA Camouflage Medium Brown (GG & EG) and then VMA Golden Brown (GG & EG) was painted on top of the darker brown. I did this because the light brown wasn’t showing up very well on the green just by itself.


The next stage was to paint even smaller splodges of black paint, it wasnt actually pure black though. I tried pure black but it was way too stark. I mixed a tiny bit of the original Cayman Green into the black to soften the black slightly. This almost black green mix was splodged on in small areas, mostly next to the brown so the two colours touched, although this was not always the case.

After that small splodges of an off white were added, Vallejo Game Air Bonewhite (GG & EG link). For the same reason as the black splodges, a tiny amount of Cayman Green was mixed into the Bonewhite. These small off white splodges were then placed touching at least one of the other colour splodges, brown and/or black. I also made sure that these off white splodges were kept really small.

That was camouflage pattern painted.

Webbing And Other Details

To make sure that the model’s details didn’t all get lost in the camouflage I chose to do the webbing, rucksack, holster, and straps all a plain green colour. This green also had to be different enough from the base green to stand out. I chose to paint these parts VMA Gunship Green (GG & EG).

I start to get to the more detailed parts of the model now. Her skin was given a base coat of P3 Khardic Flesh (EG). Her hair was painted P3 Moldy Ochre (EG). The knee pads, trim on the hat (this was Gunship Green but I didn’t like it), tube detail thingy (I think its a mic lead for her radio – and I’ve only just worked that out typing this article), t-shirt/vest, and gloves were painted Foundry Drab B (Foundry link).

More work on the skin using P3 Midlund Flesh (EG) and a final highlight of P3 Ryn Flesh (EG). The details painted Drab B, got a highlight of Drab C (Foundry link) . Finally I mixed a little Bonewhite into the Gunship Green to highlight all the webbing/belts, rucksack etc. I added a touch of more Bonewhite to the mix for a final highlight on some choice edges – the hard sharp edges on the holster, radio etc.

Gun Metals

All the following parts, the boarding shotgun, the dog tags, the torch (I think that is what it is on her right shoulder), and the pistol, were painted using pretty much the same recipe. The parts were base coated VMA German Grey (GG & EG). This was followed by a wash of thinned black paint. The edges were highlighted with  VMA Light Grey (GG & EG). Followed again by a wash of thinned black paint, except the dog tags as i wanted them to appear brighter.

With that done the model was started to look great, well in my opinion it was 🙂

Tired Eyes

It was getting late by this stage, but I decided to paint as much as I could before my eyes got too tired.

The wood on the shotgun was painted VMA Camouflage Black Brown (GG & EG), highlighted with VMA Golden Brown.

The boots were painted Camo Black Brown, then the laces were quickly painted Bonewhite, while the boots themselves were highlighted Camo Medium Brown.

The sand on the base was drybrushed (badly) Camo Medium Brown and then Bonewhite.

The gloves and knee pads still looked a bit flat so they got a final Bonewhite highlight too.

Her lips were painted P3 Sanguine Base (EG) with the lower lip getting a P3 Skorne Red (EG) highlight.

The last thing was to wash all the model, except the skin and guns with AP Strong Tone.

By this point I was tired and struggling to focus, it wasn’t that late at 00:30, but I couldn’t paint anymore. So 2 1/2 hours painting to get to this point. I am very happy with that!

The Following Day

I knew I still had some work to do, but the only real painting was the base rim. The sunglasses were actually coloured in with a sharpened B6 pencil (a soft lead pencil). I glued down some Javis light green fine turf (link) to the base and attached AP Lowland Shrubs (GG & EG) and AP Mountain Tufts (GG & EG).

The base rim was painted black, the 180 deg line of sight lines were painted white. I then decided to add some free hand to the front of the base. I decided to attempt to paint the USARF logo. This was done in 5 steps.

  1. Paint background of the logo white.
  2. Paint P3 Skorne Red vertical stripes.
  3. Using a dark grey paint the 5 pointed star – I used VMA Dark Sea Grey as it was close to hand.
  4. Fill in the star, leaving a small grey border, with P3 Arcane Blue (EG).
  5. Paint a black circle around the logo. I messed up here, I couldn’t find my pot of black paint, so I used an old nearly dried up black paint and it has left a poor surface finish.

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Finished Foxtrot

Sure there are a couple of issues that bug me, but for a little over 3hrs start to finish I’m  really impressed with how this experiment turned out. So much so I am tempted to paint up an Ariadna or Haqqislam force in a camo pattern. It would probably take half the time for twice as many models as my Pano.

A gaming buddy of mine plays USARF, he has had a string of bad luck over the course of his last few games. So I’m going to give Steve the Foxtrot and hope she brings him some good luck.


Throughout this article I’ve linked to the various products I have used. If you would like to support this blog then please buy your hobby stuff via either the GoblinGaming or ElementGames links. I’ll earn a small percentage in commission from your purchase, thanks.

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