|A Windsor Newton series of brushes.|
However, no matter how nice something is it wont last long without proper care and treatment. This blog post is a quick discussion on brush soap or solvents/cleaners/restorers. They go by many names but in the end they are all the same thing for our purposes. They are a cleaning chemical designed to help your brush last longer and stay in shape. Shape is very important to a brush, but we'll get to that in a bit.
First let's take a look at the humble paintbrush:
|Note the 4 portions of a brush.|
Here's the main point of this conversation. We've all used paintbrushes, and we've used them until their dead. Usually this results in a pretty nice brush eventually getting trimmed into a drybrush or a stipling brush later in life. Usually around the time that its looking like this:
|This brush has definitely seen better days.|
Eventually this paint dries inside of it and that dried paint is what eventually causes your bristles to splay out from their original shape. Now the brush above has obviously had worse done to it than that. Clearly the bristles are bent signaling that it has had rough treatment such as being left sitting in a water pot on its tip thus bending them (which I'm sure NONE of you do, right?). Still when that paint dries it essentially ruins the brushes. Or so one might think.
There are a number of different products out there made by many different companies that are designed to help thoroughly clean your brushes and retain their shape longer by getting that paint out of the ferrule for you. Tonight I'll be looking at one of these products.
|Windsor Newton Brush Cleaner & Restorer|
The best thing to do is be kind to your brushes. I suggest getting some brush soap or cleaner and using it after every time you paint. An step of prevention saves a mile of repair or replacement. No matter how cheap your brushes are or are not, its worth the extra 10 spot to make them last just that much longer. Hopefully you found this discussion useful. You should be able to pick up any of these type of products in the art/paint section of any hobby shop although (shockingly I might add) GW doesn't make their own. Of course they want you to continually buy there brushes at their exorbitant prices so yeah...
I've used one other brush cleaner product as well and that is The Master Painter Brush Soap: