How to paint with real tree camo

Written by anne goetz Google
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How to paint with real tree camo
Mimic the colours of nature by combining various colours of paint manufactured specifically for camouflage applications. (baumrinde image by Peter Walenzyk from

Painting your boat, rifle or even your truck Real Tree Camo is easy and economical when you do it yourself. All you need is a few cans of camouflage-type paint in various colours, a base colour and some leaf stencils. You can even use real tree branches in place of stencils if you are trying to cut corners. Choose a leafy-type branch from a cedar hedge or pine tree to get the most realistic results.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • Dark green camouflage spray paint
  • Brown camouflage spray paint
  • Khaki camouflage spray paint
  • Matt black, white or khaki spray paint
  • Stencils

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  1. 1

    Apply an all-over coat of your base colour of matt black, matt khaki or matt white, depending upon which type of Real Tree effect you are going for, and allow it to dry.

    A black base works well for hunting in woods and is the form of camouflage painting done by most DIYers, however, a desert khaki or snow white base are also options.

  2. 2

    Hold your stencil up to the item you are painting and spray lightly in spots all over the stencil, using your lightest colour of spray paint.

  3. 3

    Move and overlap your stencil all over the item, spot-spraying with your lightest colour, until the entire item has received some coverage.

  4. 4

    Switch to your next lightest colour and repeat the process. You may use the same or different stencils throughout your work. The idea is to mimic nature, where nothing is perfectly shaped.

  5. 5

    Use your darkest colour last, repeating Step 2. At this point, the item you have painted should have a camouflage look.

Tips and warnings

  • Make sure the type of paints you use are manufactured specifically for camouflage applications. These types of paints do not reflect light or create glare.

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