LifeColor, a manufacturer from Italy of fine acrylic paints has released a set of six colors specifically for the painting of US Army WWII personal equipment. As modelers we are constantly searching for better paint. Paint that is less toxic, correct shades, and easy to work with. It must also be flexible, both being brushed and airbrushed, plus adaptable to our various painting techniques such as washes, filters, and glazes. LifeColor has been producing paint for a number of years now, all acrylic, and has recently added to its color set series a set specific to painting US Army WWII combat gear.
The set contains six plastic bottles, 22ml each, of six colors. In the set you get:
#UA425 Olive Drab Yellow tone
#UA426 Olive Drab Green tone
#UA427 Olive Drab Green tone (a little greener than #426)
#UA428 Russet Brown
#UA429 Olive Drab Red Tone
#UA430 HBT (Herring Bone Twill) Light Shade
The box all of this comes in is very attractive and opens to reveil the paints neatly set into the interior. The exterior is decorated with some full color graphics showing color chips of the paints included, a fully painted figure (I'm assuming was done with LifeColor), and also some previews of other sets in the series. The back of the box has some basic instructions in several languages.
For the review, I strictly brush painted these as they are meant for figures. First, I used a Q-tip and quickly swabbed out some paint onto a piece of white plastic (Pic 5). Coverage was decent, and it was obvious this paint (acrylics in general) are best done in multiple thin coats for best result.
In order to display the finished, dry color, I swabbed out some paint on a piece of paper and allowed it to dry. Here in picture 6 you can see the results with each paint number below it.
For some test subjects, I had some Taymia pre-painted infantry that I was wanting to detail a bit further and repaint to some more accurate colors. Picture 7 and 8 are these guys with two coats applied with a brush. The paint went on very easily, smooth, and dried to a very nice flat finish. Also it covered the older color very well. A quick “scratch test” with my finger nail had no effect, so the paint adhered very well.
I also had some US Army Airborne figures (Dragon) that I needed to paint at some point. I applied #430 onto the bare, unwashed plastic. Again, two coats covered very well, and the paint adhered very well and wont lift from a simple scratch from a finger nail. I then wanted to try the LifeColor thinned, so I mixed some of the #429 with filtered water, and applied to the left leg to tint the base coat. This dried very smooth and the result can be seen in Picture 9.
Being that these are my first acrylic paints in over 15 years, I did not have any other colors to work with in this range. So I quickly discovered that this set is meant to augment colors you already have in your collection as there is no darker or lighter colors to do shadows and highlights. If you purchase this set and are like me, diving into acrylics for the first time and have no others, be sure to pick up some other basic colors such as white, brown, black, etc with your order. You will also need to purchase the colors or sets that deal with the uniform itself, as this set is focused on the equipment and doesn’t provide much in uniform colors.
I will conclude that after being a strictly enamel guy, these paints have rekindled my interest in acrylics and I now find myself looking for more LifeColor and other brands to use on a more regular basis. The paints are excellent, and a far cry from where acrylic technology was even a decade ago. I highly recommend these paints to anybody looking for a less toxic alternative with a great range of colors.
For a review of Set 1 in this series, go Here