I can’t build a model with pristine paint job. Ever since I read the one of the Verlinden way book I have gravitated to a burnt umber highlight and wash for almost all of the lits I build.
I have a tube of the color in oil that has lasted me countless weathering sessions. Sometime I’ll use oil dot filters but that’s another post.
The technique is to make a wash of burnt oil and odorless turpenoid, run it pretty thin around the aircraft, mostly along the panel lines and details, let it dry and then wipe it off with a paper towel soaked in a little more turpenoid. You then wipe off the model of mostly ALL of the wash and stroke it in the direction of the airflow. Not only does this get in the cracks and highlight them but it also put think brown filer across the paint job.
You can’t really see the filter but it’s subtle enough to slightly change the surface reflectivity and make the model monotone color break up. It also makes the model look a bit more “grubbed” up, not brand spanking new.
Here are a couple of in process shots.