Painting recipe USMC Pacific infantry 28mm

With the release of Battlegroup’s latest book bringing the fight to the pacific islands, my good friend Andy and I thought we’d jump into the salty shores of the Pacific WW2 conflict. Before I can get the miniatures to the table, I need to come up with a super-simple painting recipe for USMC Pacific infantry, and then get that paint scheme onto the minis!

The Pacific theatre of War – a new type of hell (Photo)

I haven’t painted much US stuff for WW2, let alone any of the infamous United States Marine Corp, involved in the Pacific theatre of war. Most of my miniatures I’ve painted for WW2 have been Soviet infantrymen; the same situation is true for armour and vehicles models, entirely Soviet in the making (e.g. paint recipe for the Soviet SU76m).

The miniatures I’ve used for this painting recipe were Bolt Actions US Marine plastic kit, which is incredible detailed, if somewhat lacking in clear instructions. Multiple pose arms are great, if you know exact what they’re meant to be holding and at what angle.

This painting recipe was for 28mm miniatures, however you’d easily be able to use it on Battlegroups more common scale, 20mm.

Painting recipe

From a few feet away I feel my painting recipe for USMC Pacific infantry is adequate. Hopefully from the pictures you’d agree. I can’t say if any of it is historically accurate, I know the Marine’s gear faded massively in the heat and sunshine of the Pacific islands, so who knows.

So my easy painting recipe for USMC Pacific infantry is as follows:

  • Based the whole miniature in Halfords grey primer,
  • Uniform; Citadel Loren Forest, washed with Army Painter Military Shader,
  • Skin; I now use Citadel Kislev Flesh, however originally I used Citadel Contrast Darkoath Flesh,
  • Boots and helmet strap; layer of Vallejo 70.826,
  • Rim of the base, also done using the Vallejo 70.826 paint,
  • Helmet, gators and webbing; painted with Vallejo 70.880,
  • Wood of the rifle / SMG; Vallejo 70.984,
  • Metal on the gun; Citadel Contrast Black Templar,
  • Knife handle; Vallejo Air 71.017. Brushed on despite being an airbrush paint,
  • Patches/dots on the helmet were also painted using Vallejo 70.826. A wash of 76.514 was then applied the whole helmet,
  • The whole miniature, minus parts already given a wash, were then given a wash of Citadel Agrax Earthshade,

That is basically the whole painting recipe. A nice simple scheme. I’d guess, probably 95% of the miniature is painted using just three paints; Citadel Loren Forest, Vallejo 70.826 and Vallejo 70.880 (Ad links). If you’re looking for the actual Vallejo paint names or codes, I’ve put together a rather extensive paint list of Vallejo paints and their correct codes.

Basing miniatures for Pacific wargames

I recently read about the importance of basing miniatures. The article, that sadly I can no longer find, points out that when miniatures are viewed on the table (or from a few feet away), the most visual component is nearly always the base. For this reason, it was saying about focusing on improving the base, a lot more than most people usually do.

I tried that approach with these Pacific Marines, mixing several different basing components together. It could perhaps do with even more coverage, especially larger-leaf plants, but I only had access to what I already had. The two photographs below show off the bases a bit more…

Basing USMC miniatures for the Pacific theatre
Basing USMC miniatures for the Pacific theatre

I used a mix of Woodlands scenic clump foliage, some unbranded flock, Javis No.1 Hedge Foliage Light Green , sand and some static grass tufts. As mentioned above in the main paint recipe, the rim of the base was painted with Vallejo 70.826 paint, to help tie them together.

Not a complex paint recipe, but the scheme really works for me (as long as you don’t look too closer haha)

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