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Question asked 2019-07-07 20:15:27 ...
Most recent comment 2019-07-16 22:28:29
Studio Tools and Tips
As stated, I want to be able to wash brushes with soap and water, shape them with the help of some product, and use them in the morning without having to rinse them in sovent.
Candidate products so far are saliva, gum arabic, egg white, and maybe milk. I'm leaning toward gum arabic.
My question is, will any of these unduly affect the paint film if it is not washed out of the brush before using?
Answers and Comments
In theory, I would not use milk or egg white as they can
eventually become insoluble if you fail to wash them out. Gum Arabic will not
do this but again, in theory, the dry residue would likely become incorporated
into the paint. I keep writing “in theory” because in practice, this is
unlikely to cause any real problem. The percentage left in the paint would be infinitesimal.
There is really no issue with saliva (HOWEVER make sure to
not put the brush into your mouth as there be some remaining pigment or metal
ions, also do not transfer the materials from the brush to your mouth).
On the other hand, I also knew a painter who would shape
their expensive kolinski brushes with the wash water and then reinforce the point
with a single ply of toilet paper. They would then remove that at the beginning
of the next painting session. It seemed to work well for her.
I think methyl cellulose would be worth considering for this application.
Methyl cellulose is generally a weaker, less brittle
adhesive than gum Arabic and may be a better solution. It should still be a
very weak solution. It would function the same in that it could be manipulated
our by hand if of the proper weak solution (you would need to do experiments to
find this out yourself). Like gum, this means that a tiny amount of it will get
incorporated into the oil paint but at that level I cannot see it causing future
Hair conditioner contains a vast number of components
including non-drying oils/fats, emulsifiers, and a wide array of materials that
would certainly condition the hairs of your brush but could really compromise
any paint that it is contaminated with. It may be all right if one rinses the
brush in water and then an organic solvent before using with oil paint. I would
caution against this practice unless one is willing to be scrupulous in the
above practice. This reminds me of the practice of sign painters keeping their
sign painting quills in lard or mineral oil to keep them conditioned. These
needed to be scrupulously washed in organic solvents before use or the sign
paint would not “dry”.
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