Painting British DPM

British DPM is an awkward camouflage pattern to paint, but hopefully here I will show you some simple steps to help paint it successfully.
The figure in this example is painted using Humbrol enamels, other paint could be used but the technique may change slightly due to the medium being used.
The figure is from the Warriors range of figures and has been undercoated with a grey auto primer spray paint to give a good base for the rest of the painting. The flesh areas have also been painted in oils prior to painting the rest of the figure, allow a good period of time for the oils to dry before beginning to paint the rest of the figure.

stage 1 - The base colour
All camouflage schemes have a base colour,with the rest of the pattern being layered over the top for DPM we start with a Dark green in this case Humbrol 117 Dark green with a touch of black added to darken it.
The base colour is left to dry over night, then a mix of base colour with more black added is then used as a shadow colour and is painted into all the crevices and folds on the figure, it is also used to out line the join between all the various parts of the figure.
Then using just Humbrol 117 dark green, dry brush all the tops, and edges of the green areas. This will do two things;-
First - it will high light all the raised areas of the figure
Second - it will blend the base coat/shadows and highlights together creating a natural look to the figure.
Then allow the figure to dry over night.
stage 2 - Creating the pattern
Once the base colour has dried over night, the next stage is to start creating the camouflage pattern. Start with the bottom half of the figure.
The first colour we use is a yellow, for this I use Humbrol 83 Ochre. This is painted on using a size 000 brush in a rough kind of star pattern. You don't need to be to accurate but a general shape will do.
Allow the yellow ochre to dry then use Brown in the same rough star pattern as the yellow, I used Humbrol 170 Brown Bess, allow this pattern to run across the yellow. Again allow to dry before adding the black star pattern using Humbrol 33 matt black. Allow this to dry overnight.
Then repeat the process until all required areas have the DPM pattern on them.
step 3 - adding the detail
when these are all dry, mix a thin wash using sepia oil paint, you are looking for tinted thinner and not thinned paint. with a fine 000 brush dip into the thinner, and wipe some away on a paper towel. Now run the tip of the brush along the bottom folds and creases, and the line between all the equipment on the figure. This will add shadow and blend the camouflage into the figure creating depth. allow this to dry before continuing.
Next add some Humbrol matt white to the 117 Dark green used for the base, this colour is then dry brushed over the belts and webbing gear this will bring out all the detail. Allow to dry then add more white and dry brush the very edges. Allow this to dry over night.
The boots and weapon are painted using Humbrol 33 matt black,and when they are dry, using Humbrol 187 matt stone, give the boots a light dry brush. The weapon is then dry brushed using citadel bolt gun metal on the areas that would normally have wear and tear on them.The weapon strap is painted using Humbrol 72 matt khaki with a touch of matt black as is the shirt and helmet strap, a slight dry brushing with straight Humbrol 72 again creates the feeling of depth.

That in a nut shell is a basic guide to creating British DPM, the technique can be adjusted to suit your own painting method or the type of paint you use, but the basic principle stays the same.
Check your reference material and be prepared to practise. As you can see if you break the figure down into simple steps the painting complicated camouflage patterns is not as hard as you thought.
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About the Author

About Keith Forsyth (docdios)

Keith Forsyth (docdios) comes from the small town of Stafford in the United Kingdom. He began his interest in modeling at an early age with armor being the main focus. It was not until finding himself between jobs in 1995 that he really got hooked. It was during a shopping visit to another town when...


I'm getting the following error when I try to read the article You are not authorised to view that article Cheers Ray
AUG 28, 2007 - 04:15 AM
Yup Iam getting the same response not authorised to view tried logging in and out . Cheers Phil
AUG 28, 2007 - 04:25 AM
you should be able to see it now cheers keith forsyth
AUG 28, 2007 - 04:34 AM
Hi Chaps, Went to Modelcraft in Nottingham today, They are selling DPM material by the yard for 3.50 (or half a yard for 1.30) It looks right and is a bit cheaper than buying a jacket/trousers. HTH Craig
SEP 28, 2007 - 04:03 AM
Brilliant article with first-rate how-to information. Many thanks!
MAR 15, 2012 - 07:58 AM
Cheers Keith, A great "How To" Nice and clear, easy to follow Thanks
MAR 15, 2012 - 11:22 AM