This is not a sponsored post. (As far as I know I don’t have any sponsors.) I just really want to share with ya’ll about my recent purchase from Dickblick.com because I am a nerd and love talking about art supplies. And because people seem to respond well to photos that are square shaped (I’m looking at you Instagram) I hopped on the bandwagon for this post and used exclusively square shaped pictures.
Now, I don’t normally buy so many supplies at one time. In this instance though, I wanted to get a shipping discount so I bought in bulk. I am set on supplies now for a long time! Plus it shipped to me much faster than they said it would take so I’m a big fan of this website now.
I don’t have a zoomed in picture for the brush cleaner I bought, but the circle thing in the photo above is “The Master’s Brush Cleaner and Preserver”. It’s basically a circular block of soap inside a plastic jar. It’s simple, cheap and lasts for a looong time. The last block I bought was probably 3 years ago and I still haven’t used it all yet.
This is Liquitex glazing medium. I talk about it more at length in a previous post. Basically it makes your paints more fluid. It also makes them much more transparent which makes it optimal for glazing (painting a thin transparent layer of paint ontop of another layer of paint, usually multiple times.) It’s only good for acrylics though, because this is essentially clear liquid plastic product. Also don’t throw a large quantity of this stuff down your sink for any reason unless you are flushing it down with copious amounts of water. It is, like acrylic paint, going to dry to your pipes over time and create a film. If you don’t feel comfortable disposing of your acrylic products or your dirty paint water in your sink, do what a German artist, Georg Schell, does in his studio and throw it into a giant bucket to let it evaporate. It’s probably much better for the environment. Maybe I need to start doing this…
Simply Simmons brushes will change your life! Or at least your studio. They’re a synthetic-haired, short-handled paint brush line and listen to this. Each brush is only $2.98 regardless of size. Again I’m only referring to the short handled brushes for this price. They’re really durable though and great for acrylic artists who want a smooth finish. Also they don’t shed which is a blessing. I got a 1 inch and 1/2 inch flat brush and a #8 filbert. My old art teacher Arthur Evans used to refer to filbert brushes as workhorses, but I personally prefer a simple flat brush.
I decided to try out three new colors from Sennelier Acrylic, a french brand that is based out of Paris. I purchased bright-yellow green, flesh ochre, and cerulean blue hue. Hue for paint just means that the pigment in the tube is a non-toxic substitute for a pigment that is brighter but also more toxic and often potentially cancerous. Examples of such toxic pigments include cadmium, cobalt, cerulean, chrome, and lead (which very few companies still manufacture for obvious reasons).
Also when I say non-toxic, I don’t mean that you can eat the stuff or that you should let a whole lot of it sit on your fingers on a regular basis like finger paints, (which I hope is obvious). I just mean that non-toxic labeled artist paint is considered safe for artist use and the fumes produced from the paint evaporating are not likely to cause you to become ill or build up heavy metals in your body.
Some artists don’t really worry about toxicity, especially most oil painters I know. Arthur Evans always used to tell his students that he didn’t feel like he’d die from using cadmium because he didn’t plan on spreading it on toast and eating it. I don’t think it’s worth using the toxic pigments because the substitutes usually look the same. You just need to use more paint to get the same effects. Back on the subject of Sennelier acrylic paints. They have the capability to be used with medium-thick applications, but they also thin out quite well and can cover a large area of space with little paint. The quality is great.
I almost exclusively purchase Sennelier paint these days because it’s suitable to my style of work, but I purchase some colors in Liquitex’s heavy body line because the colors are closer to the ones I need most often. I buy Liquitex titanium white paint often because they sell it in huge tubes and I like to use thick white paint sometimes for things like snow. This time I also bought pthalo green(blue shade) and light blue permanent, because I don’t really think there’s an exact equivalent to these shades in Sennelier’s line. I wasn’t a fan of Sennelier’s pthalo green. It was too strong. Granted pthalo pigments are supposed to be strong and synthetic looking, but long story short Liquitex does it better.
Other good Liquitex colors are alizarin crimson (which I am just now learning is moderately toxic…good that I don’t really use that color anymore), bright aqua green, brilliant purple, and brilliant yellow-green. Read the toxicity labels on your paint tubes guys! It’s not always obviously marked when you’re working with toxic pigments. In any case a good substitute for alizarin crimson is the hue version of alizarin, quinacridone red and napthol red, (which is a great color to use for mixing peach tones).
I hope this information is useful for my fellow artists or people looking to try their hand at acrylic painting.