I try and look after my brushes, keep them pointed, neat. Then I came downstairs and found my hubby using one to clean his ears! NOOOO!
I’m going to a watercolour workshop soon. Its been years since I’ve used them. I don’t know what I will learn, but it’s going to be interesting. I will probably use the same brushes I use for acrylics. I tend to use artificial brushes rather than natural ones because they stay springier. I will post photos if they turn out OK.
Where do you store your brushes when you have been painting? Please don’t store them with the ends of the brushes facing downwards, in water or turps, its a bad habit and can ruin your brushes.
Brushes are not cheap. They come in various sizes, shapes, types of bristles and handles.
They range from the tiniest brush with a good point, to very large flat headed brushes which could almost be used by a painter and decorator.
Types of bristles can be made of sable, hog hair, squirrel and other animal hairs. If these sable is the softest and easiest to get good results with. A brush with strong hard bristles can be used to roughy cover large areas and block in colours.
For me a synthetic hair works best. It tends to be flexible yet durable. The cost is usually slightly less than sable.
Going back to storage.. Gently clean your brushes under luke warm running water if you can. Sometimes if the brush is still loaded with paint I will swirl the head of it round in the palm of my hand while rinsing it under the tap. This releases the paint. If I was using oil based paint I would use a little substitute turps and rinse the brush in a jar of the first, then to clean it thoroughly I would use a bit of washing up liquid in the palm of my hand and a tap running warm water and just rinse the brush till the water runs clear.
Once the brushes are clean dry them on a little kitchen towel. This also helps to assess if all the paint has gone.
Place your brushes with the brush heads facing upwards and all the bristles smoothed back into the correct shape of the brush head. You can use your mouth and lips to repoint delicate brushes. By storing them this way they will dry better, the brushes will not end up bent almost in half, and the bristles will not end up glued together with paint. Brushes are a valuable commodity and correct storage will save you money by not having to buy as many replacements.