Just got some new brushes, they usually cost a lot, but these were not expensive. They are value brushes, £3.99 each pack. I bought one lot of smallish round headed brushes and one pack of flat ones. That’s eight brushes (nylon) at about £1 each.
Apart from these I must have about twenty or thirty old brushes. I must go through them, maybe throw a few away. But they are like old friends, I use them till all of the bristles have worn away!
Using different shapes gives you different mark making. Round, pointed ones can describe the shapes of petals or leaves. Flat, chisel shaped ones can be used for painting things like bricks, or to fill in larger areas.
These brushes are ‘golden taklon’ by Royal Langnickel. I like them because they are nylon so the bristles last longer and don’t tend to snap or fall out. Also they have rubber grips so they are non slip and easier to handle. They can be used for acrylics, watercolours, oils, temperas and glazes.
I got these from a craft shop in a local garden centre.
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.