Cleaning Artist Brushes • Beginners •

The word “clean your brushes” ,after painting or the whole cleanup process seems to get a bad name. In our minds from time to time. Should it be a chore? What I like to call it is therapy 🙂 it is as much a part of the painting process as putting the brush to the canvas, and one of the most important parts should I remind you.

Without good clean brushes, your brushes cannot do their jobs effectively, not to mention they do not last as long. If you are using expensive brushes you end up using them for odd jobs like scumbling. You want to clean them properly you get the idea.

Okay now that I got that out 🙂

Let’s move on if you google how to clean brushes or artist brushes you will get a blue million results on how. Let me say that this is not the only way to do this but it is the way I have learned and I encourage you to learn from this.

Let’s look at some safe keeping steps..

    1.  I use artist grade thinner to clean my brushes (Do Not Use Thinner From The hardware Store) it will say odorless but trust me it is not completely odorless, (been there tried it) Almost all thinners are vapor harmful there are some made today that are non toxic, and clean up with soap and water.
    2. They will have a seal like this on themap-non-toxic-seal. (manufacturers now a day are making their products safer.)  Check out these 2 products

Bristle Magic  or Turpenoid Natural.

  •  If you use a standard artist grade  thinner I recommend leaving the lid on the container until time to wash the brush to contain the vapors.
  • If you use a non toxic thinner and rinse the brush with soap and water on a natural hair brush,you will notice it will cause the brush hair to bush out and loose its form when it dries,you will want to use a brush conditioner while the brush is damp to form the brush hair before drying so it will keep its original shape. Synthetic brushes do not bush out, the bristles remain straight when cleaning with thinner or water. I am often asked  what brushes I use? Answer: I use both types  but mostly natural hair.

Steps To Clean Your Brushes

In the following steps I am going to explain how I take care of my brush after I am finished using it.

    1. Use a paper towel to wipe as much of the paint off the brush . (This helps keep the thinner relatively clean)
    2. Swish the brush around in the container so it can remove the pigment from the brush. ( a screen in the bottom of the container will help loosen the paint from the brush.)
    3. Make sure to dry the brush thoroughly after cleaning it with a paper towel or cloth. (Sometimes cleaning once is just not enough,to get the brush squeaky clean so repeat steps 2 and 3 as needed.)
    4. Wash hands with soap and water after finished.

I hope this enough to get you started ? If you have any questions or if I left something out that you feel should be added let me know 🙂 .

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