I've been painting a lot of German tanks recently.


A lot.  

For me anyway.   Either way, much like a 3RTR British tankee in 1945, I'm sick to death of seeing Dunkelgelb (German - dark yellow; the camo colour used to paint German armour from 1943 onwards).

So, it's time for a break.

Last salute I picked up some Deadman's Hand stuff.  Deadman's hand is a Cowboy skirmish game that has a pretty neat card based activation system and a suitably "beer and pretzels" mentality to make it a fun secondary game.  Great Escape Games had a starter deal on of the rulebook, a gang and some templates so I decided to invest the small amount of money required.  

I opted for the Pinkertons.

The Pinkertons, or Pinkerton Detective Agency, were the Cowboy equivalent of Blackwater ( a Private Military Contactor that became infamous in Iraq post 2003).  The agency provided private detectives, guards, bounty hunters, labour dispute infiltrators ('strike breakers') and even soldiers.  It even rivalled the US Army at the time for man power!

The Pinkertons get reflected as both hero and villains, mostly the latter, in popular culture.  The Sherlock Holmes series, contemporary with their height, has one story with a Pinkerton as the hero.  By contrast, the TV show "Penny Dreadful" has them as bad guys (at least, opposed to one of the main characters) and the video game "Bioshock Infinite" has the main character be a former Pinkerton largely hiding from his violent past.

But perhaps their most significant appearance is the film Pale Rider.  This Clint Eastwood flick has him play a 'Preacher with a past' helping a settlement fight back against a mining operation.  The antagonist calls for the help of a Marshall who will uphold the law of whom ever is paying him.

Pinkertons from Pale Rider

Whilst never explicity called "Pinkertons", I've always assumed that they were, and the guys at Great Escape Games seem to agree!  

Just look at that boss!
Just look at the boss!

Onto the painting. I pretty much just use Vallejo Model Colour but I’ll note any non-Vallejo paints.

First, I prepped the models and applied Vallejo Coarse Pumice to add some texture to the base.  I'm a recent convert to this stuff, having been more of a ready mix polyfiller kind of guy, but this stuff is so easy to use in comparison and gives a much better result.  Plus that big tub goes along way.

Tough and gritty.  Just like my boys!

Next, I got the airbrush out and gave each model a good coat of Black Vallejo Surface Primer.  This is an airbrushable self-levelling polyurethane primer.  It gives a very good undercoat, even with my poor airbrushing skills.  It’s also available in different shades and I use the German Dark Yellow one to simultaneously prime and base my German armour.  Here the black one gives a good undercoat that I can build up from.

From here on out its brush work.  I use a three colour layering technique to build up from a shade colour to a mid-tone to a highlight, with an intermediate 50:50 mix between pure colours.

With 28mm figures I tend to work my way out with areas of skin the deepest part of the model, then the main layer of clothes, then webbing, etc.  This minimises the risk of accidentally covering a previously painted region.

The skin areas are painted using a base coat of Beige Brown, followed by Beige Red then Basic Skin-tone.  This gives a good general purpose Caucasian flesh tone.

When Ninjas and Cowboys meet...

Next, I worked on the exposed trousers, neckerchiefs and waist coats. Three figures have their coats fully buttoned which cuts down on the painting time!  I used colour combinations form my WWII painting to achieve the following effects:
Red – Leather Brown base, Flat Brown mid tone, Cavalry Red highlight. (taken from US Para boots)

Blue – German Grey base, Luftwaffe Blue mid tone, Pale Grey Blue highlight. (taken from Luftwaffe uniforms)

Green Grey – German Field Grey base, Green Grey mid tone, Stone Grey highlight (taken from German webbing)

The boss’s pinstripes were achieved by thinning down London Grey and painting fine lines, stopping in the deepest shadows to try and create some definition.

The boss clearly has a scotchguarded jacket.

Next was the trenchcoats.  I decided to copy a colour combination advised for WWII US Army trousers and I think it works well.  I went with a base of German Camo Medium Brown, a mid-tone of US Field Drab and then a highlight of Khaki

Finally, the hats. 

Grey hats were London Grey, followed by Sky Grey, finishing with Pale Grey Blue.

Brown Hats were Medium Camo Brown, English Uniform and then Green Brown (taken from painting British battledress).

Beige Hates were Green Brown, followed by Middlestone followed by German Cam Beige.  Ironically considering I was escaping from German armour, this is what I use to paint them!

After that, it’s just a case of getting the airbrush back out and applying two coast of Klear floor polish to seal and then a coat of matt varnish to take the shine off.

I don't think your just getting a ticket this time...

Bounty Hunter always gets his man, or women in these more gender enlightened times...

Almost certainly not reaching for his TicTacs...

Everyone loves a redhead

This guy sure does enjoy stroking his holster.
There is no euphemism here

Long arms of the law


Job done!

So, 28mm itch scratched, its time to go back to 15mm and I’m pondering what to paint next.  German Volksgrenadiers or Caunter scheme Honey Stuarts.  Decisions, decisions…