HomeArt ArticlesSkills and TechniquesPaint Brush Resource Guide for Artists

Paint Brush Resource Guide for Artists

Artists use paintbrushes to apply ink or paint to canvas to create colorful decorations. Paintbrushes have an attached handle with bristles that stick out from the end. An artist grows to cherish the various kinds of paintbrushes the more he or she uses them. In fact, an artist will become increasingly familiar with the way each paintbrush functions to create delicate designs. However, beginning artists may become overwhelmed when peering down the acrylics aisle at their local arts and crafts store. The expansive selection of acrylic paints and their corresponding brushes will even leave an advanced artist's head spinning at times. Do not get discouraged by the complexity of these materials, though! Take the time to review this guide to fully understand the different shapes, sizes, and functionality of each paintbrush available for all artists.

The Anatomy of the Paintbrush

A paintbrush has four main parts that consist of its “anatomy” of sorts, including the bristles, ferrule, crime, and handle. The bristles, also known as the hairs of the paintbrush, may be synthetic, natural, or a combination. The ferrule is the silver bit that connects the bristles of the paintbrush to its handle. The crimp secures the ferrule to the handle of the paintbrush. The majority of paintbrushes has a handle made of wood or acrylic.

The Sizes of Paintbrushes

Before deciding to paint on a canvas, artists must choose between a series of paintbrushes that come in a variety of sizes. The majority of paintbrushes used for painting or decorating come in measurement increments of millimeters or inches, usually spanning between 1/8-inch to 4 inches in width of the brushes head. Artists use short-handle paintbrushes for decorating watercolor or ink-based paintings. Conversely, artists use long-handle paintbrushes to create oil and acrylic-based paintings.

The Types of Paintbrushes

Paintbrushes come in an array of shapes, which may be used for a variety of purposes. For instance, a round paintbrush comes with a pointed tip with long and tightly arrange bristles to create intricate detail. An artist may use a flat paintbrush, usually identified by their longer hairs, to quickly spread paint evenly over a surface. A bright paintbrush has a shorter length than its flat counterpart; however, artists can use them to drive paint into the wave of a canvas for thinner applications. A filbert paintbrush looks similar to flat brushes, except with domed-shaped ends.

Filbert brushes allow artists to cover the entire canvas and touch up on the finer details of the creation. A fan paintbrush allows artists to blend broader areas of paint across the surface of a canvas. An angled paintbrush looks similar to filbert, except that they provide more versatility in its general application of paint in detail work. As the name implies, a mop paintbrush covers a broader application of soft paint or glazes over existing dry layers. A rigger paintbrush has a round end with long hairs, often used for painting the rigging of ships. Artists use riggers to paint the fine lines on a canvas. A stippler has short, stubby rounds. A liner has elongated round ends. Scripts have highly elongated round ends.

About the Author:
Clare Tames is a self-employed freelance graphic designer, formidable cook, and avid reader. She written on contemporary and classical art in various print publications, and is just now beginning a writing career online. She works out of her home office in California, where her two children attend high school.

Customer Testimonials

  5 stars rating

  5 stars rating

Read more Customer Testimonials ...