Tag Archives: studio

Eeeeeeek…….

Eeeeeeekkkk, I accidentally left my brushes soaking in my brush basin overnight.  I was really tired when I finished for the night, had a million more things to do, so I stuck my brushes in my basin………to clean after I did all that other stuff.

This afternoon when I went to my studio to paint, my poor pathetic brushes were looking up at me with soggy faces!  OMG, I couldn’t believe I left them in that condition.  Not only were they waterlogged, but the bristles had a nice, gentle curl on the tips (thanks to the bottom of the basin).  Not only was I aggravated that I had forgotten, but also that it would require considerable work to get them back into shape.

Never fear, I am not the only one that has faced this issue (thank goodness).  I have my backup team ready and waiting for such an emergency.  Enter in the qualified members of my Brush Crisis Team:

  • DS3-9-8ozDecoMagic_1024x1024.jpgFirst and foremost, DecoMagic  Brush and Stencil Cleaner.  This amazing product has many outstanding qualities.  It is gentle enough to use every day, but packs a big punch in removing paint (even dried paint) from brushes, hands, stencils, and fabrics. It leaves brushes soft and pliable!  BONUS:  I can also be used as an jewelry cleaner.  I often scrub up my rings while doing my brushes.  Nice to have sparkling clean brushes, but sparkling rings will catch everyone’s eye!
  • 29-60017-2__29288_1024x1024.jpgI love using my Brush Cleaning Tank.  It is large enough to hold an entire bottle of DecoMagic and has a dome wire brush cleaner positioned about an inch from the bottom.  The screen loosens paint while keeping bristles out of the bottom sediment.  I rarely clean my tank, simply refill with DecoMagic to keep the fluid above the screen.  Not only is it ecconomical, but the tank can be easily transported to any classroom.  I always come home from travel teaching with clean brushes!  One bottle of cleaner usually lasts about 6 months.
  • 29-01200.jpgThe Brush Scrubby Grooming Pad is priceless.  This little gem is probably the best bang for your buck in the entire industry.  Did I say buck?…its only 88¢ (SCORE)!  No matter how well brushes are cleaned, I am always astonished at how much paint comes out when using the scrubby.  After I clean my brushes in the tank, I pick up the scrubby and run my brushes across the pointed nibs.  This is a great way to get paint build up at the ferrule.  The heart shape is adorable, however, fits nicely in the palm of your hand.

05717-1002-1-2ww-m_1024x1024.jpgAnd lastly, if the tips have that stubborn curl, simply use Brush Shaper to restore the shape.  Basically this is a stiffener (sizing) that will return your brushes to their pristine shape.  Apply the shaper to the bristles, then form to desired shape.  They will dry rather stiff, but a quick swim in the brush basin will remove the sizing, resulting in nice chisel edges and pointed tips!  Keeps your brushes looking like new!

Now that I have restored my brushes, I have renewed my resolution to NEVER leave them in water again.  I have promised them that I will take better care of them in the future and reassured them that I will ALWAYS love them.

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What a Mess!!! by Chris Haughey

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Messy Studio!

This summer has been a whirlwind!  I just arrived home from a travel teaching job in Rapid City, South Dakota and the Raindrop Convention in Portland, Oregon.  My house and studio were spotless when I left…and look at it now (and this is just a portion of it)!  I have just a week until I am off again, this time to Marlborough, Mass for the New England Convention.  My studio table is stacked from unpacking my travel tote, with new product from DecoArt (aren’t they the greatest?!),  surfaces to prep for NET, class pieces from Portland & Rapid City, brushes, sponges, sample demo pieces, class pieces, patterns, etc…YIKES…I have EIGHT projects to design and paint BEFORE I leave in just 8 days!

However, there is no way I can be productive in this chaos!  I will work my magic and get everything in its place.  It always looks worse than it is.  Abracadabra…look at it now!

Ready to Work!

Ready to Work!

It really didn’t take much time and now everything is in it’s place.  I can relax, design, paint like a white tornado!  I know for a fact that a tidy work space is much more conducive to productive painting time.  This blog is short, but to the point…Take time to clean after each project!  There is nothing more deterring to painting than a messy area!  So, if nothing else, tidy up and when the opportunity arises, the paint and brushes will welcome you with open arms!