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PAINTING LEATHER & UNIFORMS

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Painting Leather How To Guide
Here’s an easy way to paint leather on your model figures using Vallejo acrylics – illustrated on our French Tanker figure.

Looking in our display cabinet at a completed British figure in a jerkin, we were inspired to finish the French Tanker we started in our painting figures’ faces video tutorial.

So we took some photos of how the “Tankiste” progressed to create a new tutorial to help depict leather – as well as showing the rest of the uniform.

Here’s how we did it.

Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics

Step 1 – With the figure’s face already done, we blocked out the leather jacket using what has to be one of our all–time favourite Vallejo shades, German Camouflage Black Brown (Ref: 70.822). The belt was base-painted in a lighter mix of Panzer Aces Leather Belt (Ref: 70.312) & New Wood (Ref: 70.211), while the trousers got a mix of Camouflage Pale Violet Brown (Ref: 70.144) & USA Tan Earth (Ref: 70.874).

Step 2 – a slightly lightened version of the trousers mix was used to pick out creases whilst the leather belt & leather jacket got washes of Vallejo Game Color Sepia Shade (Ref: 73.200) & Umber Shade (Ref: 43.203). Then we applied some Black Shade (Ref: 73.201) wash to the shadows. This increases the warmth & richness of the leather shade. A coat of Satin Varnish (Ref: 70.522) added a slight sheen to the leather.

Step 3 – Other details like the scarf, helmet & goggles were then picked out.

Step 4 – areas of wear were carefully added to the leather belt & the jacket. We used New Wood (Ref: 70.211) from Vallejo’s Panzer Aces to add tiny chips & marks in areas of heavy wear. You could also add scratches using this mix. For a bit of variety, we added some Desert Sand (Ref: 70.847) to the worn leather shade. The tanker’s boots got a similar treatment, as did the edges of the belt & holster.

Step 5 – The trousers received starker highlights by adding some Desert Sand (Ref: 70.847) to the mix & painting any creases in the highlight mix. Keep the highlight mix very watery indeed. At this stage it looked pretty artificial. It’s important not to be put off – just overspray the trousers with a very thin airbrushed mix of the trouser shade. That softens everything down nicely.

Step 6 – We added a little Desert Sand (Ref: 70.847) to the leather jacket shade, German Camouflage Black Brown (Ref: 70.822). Use a very watered-down amount to add highlights to the jacket on creases & upper highlights.

Step 7 – Using the Game Color washes, we picked out any areas that need more shadow & added the insignia details with a fine brush. We toned the insignia down, again using the Game Color wash shades.

Step 8 – Finally, we misted Matt Varnish (Ref: 70.520) over the trousers & very gently allowed it to creep up over the jacket – not so much that it covered it & lost the satin effect, but enough to leave slightly dulled areas in parts. A mud mix airbrushed over the shoes & trousers completed the figure.

Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
Painting Leather & Uniforms With Acrylics
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