Best Brushes for Trendy Watercolor

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The brushes shown above are my most used watercolor brushes when working with the Just Add Watercolor and Creative Girl watercolor pre-resisted blocks.

Must have brushes:

  • 1" Filbert I like natural hair brushes, stay away from acrylic because they don't hold enough paint typically.

  • 1" Round bristle brush This is a cheap brush and you can see it gets abused. I use it for dropping color or water right onto the painting in splatters. I also use it to flick paint by running my thumbnail across the bristles. (Yep, that's what happened to those poor bristles!) And it makes awesome multi-color splotches. (See below.)

  • 1" Flat Look for a brush that gives you a nice chiseled edge when wet.

  • Waterbrush I think this makes painting so much easier for beginners. I particularly like them for brush lettering, and you’ll see me use them in all sorts of color mixing classes too. They are very versatile and the synthetic fibers have a lot of stiffness to them that makes it easy to work on the tip so stems, letters, etc are all easier with this brush.

 
 
 
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Don't be afraid of the big sizes, they will help you:

  • Load multiple colors to create ombrè effects

  • Get wide swipes of continuous color

  • Minimize visible brush strokes

  • Make artsy splatter droplets

 
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When I'm working on blank blocks or paper, I have a few other favorites you may want to consider. Neither of the above brushes are particularly good quality, but you can use that to your advantage. On the left, is a small round brush. Because of it's size, the petals on my flower had to be swiped in multiple passes creating pretty streaks. On the left, the worn, jagged edge of my old 1/2" filbert make nice petals in a single stroke.

A long thin lettering brush is what you want for long thin strokes, unless you are a beginner and/or have access to a waterbrush. However, with practice, this brush will get you great lines for decoration, flower stems, delicate branches, etc. You can even make lovely dots when using the tip.

Let me scroll all the tutorials!

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