I was delighted and honored to be part of the Austin workshop. It was very exciting to be around so many gifted, enthusiastic, highly motivated artists. For all I know, perhaps that notorious Austin heat was generated by the energy given off by that mass of talent.
I told some of you that I would post some of my materials.
There is a small brush company outside of Reno, Nevada, that makes some of the best sable brushes in the world. http://www.trekell.com Those of you who’ve purchased fine Kolinsky sable brushes before will see that their prices are unbelievably low! I buy most of my brushes here.
If you paint with gouache acrylic or oil, your brushes will wear out on you much too fast. I have two tips for increasing their lifespan many times. 1.) After washing them out in soap and water at the end of the day, I will dip them in HAIR CONDITIONER and point them up and let the conditioner dry in the brush. The next session, I can either rinse the conditioner out, or not. It doesn’t seem to matter. 2.) After cleaning my oil brushes in odorless paint thinner at the end of a session, I sometimes dip the brush in a little WALNUT OIL I purchased at a health food store, work the oil into the hair, and point the brushes. I rinse the oil out of the brush at the beginning of the next painting session. Either (or both) ways are very effective in keeping the brushes alive. Since I’m only painting with oils now, I tend to use the walnut oil method with brushes I’m currently using. If I’m not going to use a brush for any length of time, I will do the hair conditioner treatment on them. There is no particular magic in walnut oil. I’m sure other non-drying oils will do just fine. Just make sure you rinse the non-drying oil out of your brush before you paint with it!
Last edited by Sepulverture; November 25th, 2009 at 01:48 AM.
I painted my small workshop demonstration of Misty on FROSTED MYLAR. This is a wonderful surface for pencil and oil sketches. You don’t have to prepare the surface for oil painting, the material is archival, and once the work is dry, it’s easy to stack and store. You can buy it from stores which sell architectural drafting supplies. I get mine from our local university bookstore.
I paint many of my smaller works on white 1/8” ABS plastic sheet which I laminate to plywood using countertop cement and sand very smooth using my Makita rotary palm sander. The surface is then ready to paint on – no acrylic primer necessary. If my painting is a disaster, and many of them are, I can sand it off and use the panel again.
For the last six months or so, I’ve been buying all my canvas supports from NEW TRADITIONS ART PANELS http://www.newtraditionsartpanels.com/ Which are very high quality linens dry mounted on Gatorfoam board. They are lightweight, strong, and look and feel as good as stretched canvases, unlike all other canvas panels I know of, which don’t measure up. The folks at New Traditions will make custom orders too. Lately, they’ve been making ABS on Gatorfoam panels for me.
In my next post, I’ll write about oil painting in general with information on paint brands, palettes, mediums and a couple of very good web forums loaded with practical, useful, information.
Amazing! There always seemed to be people crowded around you (for good reason) so I did not get a good view either. Thank you for posting this! It was a pleasure watching you paint and hearing you talk in Austin.
ill be sure to try out that tip on brush longevity.. my oil brushes go to waste pretty easily.. due in no small part to my lack of care for them, as well, but hey i can fix that.. thanks for the tips.. great head study..