WTP Logo
HTO Banner

Your Watercolor Brushes Guide

What makes good watercolor brushes? It depends on what you want to use it for. Most art supply dealers carry many brands of brushes, and some of them have brushes made under private label by the best manufacturers. Sable is used less and less in brushes due to the high cost. The word Kolinsky tells you nothing about the quality of the brush. Many manufacturers are mixing sable and synthetic and coming up with decent brushes that hold a shape and hold enough paint and water for the application.

In your quest for watercolor brushes, I have done a little research on many of the brands on the market. I use many of these and want to share them with you. There are synthetics, sables, squirrels and synthetic mixes. There are also rounds, flats, specialty brushes and travel brushes. I hope you find these pages helpful.

Your choice of watercolor brushes is extensive. There are many companies out there competing for your business and they all have very good products. It is almost a personal decision. Remember that you cannot paint a sky with a "0" brush, so don't be afraid to purchase large brushes. I tell my students to use the largest brush they can; until they can't!

When purchasing your watercolor brushes at an art supply store, remember that the clerk may not know much about watercolor brushes; or watercolor paper for that matter. I have had many students come to class with a brush that was recommended by the clerk when they couldn’t find what I had recommended. It was always the wrong kind; and that goes for paper also. Make sure they know something about watercolor brushes. Ask if they paint in watercolor for starters!

The one thing you need to know if you are going to paint…..Craft brushes that you buy for a dollar will NOT do! Frankly, they aren't much good for crafts either!  However, you don't need to spend a fortune for good brushes.

For beginners, I recommend that you have only three of four brushes. One round brush, size 8 or 10; one flat brush, size 1/2 or 3/4 inch, and a good large wash brush (either a squirrel mop, or a Hake). The size will eventually determine just how large or small you can work, and you may expand your supply of brushes as you become more familiar with painting.

Below is a list of brush types and my recommendations for their use.  Also remember, when you purchase your brushes, mark them in such a way that you will know that they are yours.  I have lost many brushes by laying them down away from me desk and not being able to identify them, or losing them outside and not being able to find them.  I recommend a vibrant color nail polish on the end of the brush.

Have A Great Story About This Topic?

Do you have a great story about this? Share it!

[ ? ]

Upload 1-4 Pictures or Graphics (optional)[ ? ]


Click here to upload more images (optional)

Author Information (optional)

To receive credit as the author, enter your information below.

(first or full name)

(e.g., City, State, Country)

Submit Your Contribution

 submission guidelines.

(You can preview and edit on the next page)

What Other Visitors Have Said

Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...

Chinese Red Bean Brush 
I read a few books on chinese watercolour techniques, and decided to apply them to my work. The brushstrokes used to paint bamboo leaves were so beautiful, …

Brush Peculiarity 
Once, I left a brush dipped in water for a night. Next day it was cracked. Because the fine strands of hairs combined together make capillaries and …

Painting trees 
Hi, I'm new to watercolor and our instructor is showing us how to use a small piece of sea sponge to paint trees. I've read on your website that you …

Click here to write your own.

Return to Watercolor Painting Tips from Watercolor Brushes

Watercolor Painting Tips

Interact with this Page

Contribute To This Page

Read Contributions

Related Articles

Watercolor Brush Types

Using Watercolor Brushes

Using Large Brushes To Create Proper Detail

My E-Books

Learning the Basics of Watercolor
Learning the Basics of Watercolor

Painting Flowers in Watercolor
Painting Flowers in Watercolor

Painting on Watercolor Canvas

Painting on Watercolor Canvas


[?] Subscribe To
This Site

Add to Google
Add to My Yahoo!
Add to My MSN
Add to Newsgator
Subscribe with Bloglines

Website Updates via Email!

GGR Logo
Subscribe to Watercolor Painting Tips Blog by Email

Get My Newsletter!




Don't worry -- your e-mail address is totally secure.
I promise to use it only to send you Watercolor Painting Tips.
Painting Tips Back Issues

Copyright © 2008-2016 watercolor-painting-tips.com All rights reserved.
A subsidiary of M.A. Boysen Enterprises, Inc.
Privacy Policy | Return To Top

Site Built It