Simple Tips for Beginner Watercolourists
Using white in a
The best way is simply leave an area unpainted, allowing the
paper to show through.
Sheilding areas of
A temporary masking liquid, such as Miskit Liquid Frisket can be
painted on before an overlaid wash is applied.
Try painting on wet or dry paper, or, using a wet or dry brush.
Combining these in one painting can produce great effects.
Partially lift areas by blotting up wet colour with a dry brush
or soft cloth.
Create a resist
Lay down an area of oil pastel or crayon. A watercolour wash
applied over this will bead up, producing a stippled look.
Create a starburst
Sprinkle salt sparingly onto an area of wet paint and it will
'run' into a starburst pattern. Please be cautious as too much salt can be detrimental to
Create a mosaic
Leave a thin unpainted line around each area of colour. This are
can be left as a highlight, or given a light wash to blend tones.
Brush Care &
While all brushes have a
limited lifespan, with proper care artists can maintain their beauty and usefulness for
Store your brushes upright in a jar, vase, or container
to maintain their shape. Never store or stand your brushes on their hair or bristles.
Long term storage
Store brushes horizontally and protect them with moth
balls or moth flakes to prevent insect damage.
Carrying your brushes
Placing them loose in a paint box may easily damage the
bristles. We recommend rolling them in a piece of stiff drawing paper for protection,
making sure the brush heads are covered. Secure the roll with elastics.
Sable hair brushes
May tend to lose their shape and even clog up when using
acrylics. Using a synthetic or bristle hair brush with acrylic paint permits better flow
and they will maintain their shape unless abused.
When using acrylics
Be careful not to let the paint dry on your brush, as
they will become very difficult to clean. Cleaning immediately after use will help save
the bristles and you money.
Strong solvents and
chemical paint removers
May ruin artists' brushes if used in excess. Please use them
Clean brushes Immediately after use, especially at the ferrule, as a
deposit of hardened colour at this point will cause the brush head to lose it's shape. Do
not allow colour to dry on the brush.
Use a mild cleanser
Work a cleanser, such as dish soap, hand soap or special
brush soap into the interior of the brush.
Rinse the brush free
Under lukewarm running water. Do not soak brushes in water or
solvent for long periods of time.
Repeat the process
Until there is no colour in the soap suds. Shake the
excess water from the brush and shape the hair into place with your fingers.
Stand the brush
upright or lay flat to dry.