Saturday, January 25, 2014

Brushes - Giveaway

I've been asked frequently about the brushes I use.  So here is the scoop:  your choice of brushes is pretty much based on personal preference, so I'm not advocating a particular type of brush.  It depends on the type of work you are doing - your substrate, the scale, which paints you prefer, and so forth.  It also depends on how you treat them - do you take care of your brushes and wash them carefully at the end of each studio session?  Or do you leave them in a bucket of water until they disintegrate? How much spring do you like in the brush hair?  Do you like them soft, firm, or somewhere in between?  And then there is handle length and material...

But to answer the question, I use these Dynasty brushes from Blick Art Materials.  They're cheap, so I can abuse them; they have all the characteristics that feel comfortable to my hand (my hands are small) and the right amount of stiffness.

New Brushes
Used Brushes
 
Brush Care
If you would like to try these brushes, comment on this post, and I'll choose someone for a giveaway.  Just a couple of these brushes in two sizes, maybe something else thrown in for fun.  You must be in the USA to be eligible, and it's your responsibility to give me contact information.  I'll do the drawing on Monday, January 27th.

Brush Cleaning

If your brushes get too stiff from leaving them out too long with acrylic paint on them, leave them in a strong solution of Murphy's Oil Soap over night.

I did not come up with this brush cleaning technique.  Various people have told me about it, and I have discovered that it works.  YAY!

113 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for the tip about using murphy oil! Who would've known? And I'm hoping it's a good omen that I'm the first to comment in hopes of being the lucky one!!

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    1. I never knew about cleaning brushes with Murphy's, but if it's good enough for wooden pews at our church, then it's good enough for my brushes. Thanks for the tip.

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  2. I'm in !!! I never win anything.... hope springs eternal.

    I often use Murphy's to clean my brushes after a painting session, but I have not heard of.. nor tried.... the idea of leaving a gunky brush in Murphy's overnight. Thanks for the tip.

    Susan MJB

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  3. I'd love to try some new brushes, and maybe get some Murphy's for some of my old ones.

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  4. I've been wanting to try these brushes...it's on my list of things to order from Blick next. I have tried Murphy's in a brush that was "gunked" up...it does work!!!

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  5. It's always good to learn about new tools.

    Irene

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  6. AlwayS great to hear about a good cheap brush.....thanks for the link and info on the brush cleaning....... I stand my funky brushes on a jar of water with a bar of ivory soap ..... A couple of days and the are clean as a whistle.....

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  7. I didn't know about Murphy's as a brush cleaner. I use Master's Brush Cleaner.

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  8. Love the brush cleaning tip, will certainly try it. Could certainly use these brushes, might help me in your class?

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  9. Thanks for the Murphy's oil tip. I would really like to try those brushes.

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  10. Would love to try these brushes!

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  11. Thanks for the cleaning tip, I will give it a try.

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  12. Jane,
    you are so generous with your techniques, love your videos. and so generous with your giveaways! I use Murphys and wear rubber gloves when i take them out of the soap to wash them off. I am sensitive to smells and don't want it to linger on my hands for hours!

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  13. I am always trying new brushes, and I don't like them beaten up so your Murphy's Oil tip was invaluable. Am I just a fussy painter that I keep my brushes so clean? Or frugal? Or not courageous enough? Thoughts to ponder. Regardless I would love to try your set. : )

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  14. I haven't shopped at dick blick since the eighties, now that makes me feel old!! I'm always on the look out for brushes that fit my style of painting. I definitely appreciate the Murphy's oil soap tip. Ruined many brushes through the years! Thanks

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  15. I would love an opportunity to win some new brushes. After all you can never have enough can you? I keep all my old brushes. I am not sure why. Even when I can no longer use them. They are like old friends. I am weird.

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  16. thanks for the GREAT brush cleaning tip...I am a middle school art teacher and I am always finding brushes ruined that the students do not clean and hind so they don't have to clean them...I have a huge container for ruined brushes and now...I can hopefully revive them.thanks for the great tip...fingers crossed for some new brushes.........

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  17. The subject of brushes confuses me! I still have not found the perfect brush and spend way too much time changing them out in the middle of a painting. Thanks for the tip on Murphy's oil and for your continual sharing of information!

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  18. Yes, I use and abuse my paint brushes too! Can always use a fresh supply!
    Thanks for the Murphy's oil soap tip.

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  19. Jane, Thanks for your videos and sharing of techniques. Your blog is a visual treat. Many times watching you brush paint I've wondered about your brushes. They seem to behave so well for you. Now we know! Thanks for the opportunity to win a couple.

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  20. Thanks, Jane. Still trying out different brushes & yet to buy some Murphy's oil soap. I'm going to get on that :)

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  21. I use Murphy's Oil Soap for many things and now I can include my paint brushes in the mix.
    This is a great give-a-way.

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  22. I do tend to gravitate to the same brushes time after time. I haven't tried these though.

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  23. The Murphy's Oil Soap is a great tip...one I could have used for a long time. Thanks. Don't we always need to try new brushes?

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  24. Thanks for the tip and the give away.

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  25. I sadly admit I am a brush abuser - Thanks for the cleaning tip! I would love a few new brushes! xx Christine

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  26. i am always on the search for some good "cheap" brushes. i really abuse them and end up throwing away a lot of them. seems like i might have heard the murphy's oil soap trick but had forgotten it, will have to give that a try. thanks for the opportunity to win a couple of new brushes to try out.

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  27. Sometimes stores do not announce their sales on brushes. Whenever you're in an art supply store, wander around the store and you may find a sale on brushes (and other art supplies on sale). I found a good acrylic brush for a buck.

    When it comes to watercolor sable brushes, you may find it cheaper to pick up a nice brush and take care of it, so that the brush will retain its shape for a while to come.

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  28. I never intend to abuse my brushes, but that is the way it ends up! Thanks for the tip on cleaning them! I would love to try a Dick Blick brush!

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  29. Just an FYI for regular cleaning of brushes (i.e. after each painting session) with Murphy's Oil Soap - which I have used for years.

    You don't need much. Just put one drop on each side of the brush..... gently rub it into the bristles (particularly at the metal ferrule end) with your thumb on one side of the brush and your index finger on the other side ... then rinse really well. Lay the brushes flat while they dry. Store them flat or brush side up after they are completely dry.

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  30. How fun! I'd love to try out some new brushes and the soap technique- never knew. :)

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  31. Look at all these people who will now be rushing out to buy Murphys! Including me! I've actually thrown away a few brushes after leaving them out overnight with paint on them and I just couldn't get them flexible again. This is an exciting tip! And - a new brushes offer to boot.....fingers crossed!

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  32. oh wow..i would love to try those brushes. i'm always looking for just the right one!

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  33. This look interesting would love to give them a try. Thanks for the giveaway...

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  35. Thanks for the post, Jane! I see I'm not the only one who's been curious about what you use.

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  36. Thanks for the post! I am looking forward to class with you in March @ AVA! Bought some brushes for class, but would love to learn with one of your old ones in hand...

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  37. Great info on Murphy's oil soap. Would love to try those brushes.

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  38. Would love to try these brushes. Thanks for the opportunity.
    Lesley LAFS

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  39. I'd love to try these brushes! And thanks for the tip on using Murphy's, it's great!!!

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  40. Well I don't live in the US, but I do have a US post box we rent. Murphy has saved a lot of my brushes :-)

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  41. Thank you for the tip on using Murphy's and the great giveaway! I'd love to try these brushes--you can never have enough good brushes!

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  42. would love to win -- thanks for the chance

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  43. Love that Murphy's tip, Jane! I only have a very few 'new' brushes, but all are welcome. A friend send me a handful of lovely old what I called "ratty old brushes" which I seem to use a lot for my work! But new lovely ones are always welcome! I really enjoy your site and your work!

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  44. Hi Jane,
    I love following your blog, and would enjoy taking a class from you one day.
    I tried painting on 8x8's after reading your post on 4x4's. It was my first time painting on cradled wood, and I loved it.
    These brushes would be fun to try, thanks for the chance!

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  45. Thanks so much for the information. I treat my brushes about like you do, but had not heard about soaking them in Murphy's Oil Soap overnight. I have several I need to try that with.

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  46. I would love to try these brushes! Always wishing I had brushes for acrylics!

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  47. Murphy's Oil Soap? Cool! Thanks for sharing!

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  48. Thanks so much for this post! I was wondering the same thing, especially after you mentioned your favorite brush is held together by duct tape:) Is that one a Dynasty too? Great tip about the Murphy's Oil Soap, hadn't heard that before.

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  49. And Murphy's is great for oil brushes too...and smells so good! I'd love to try the dynasty brushes. Pick me Pick Me :)

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  50. Thanks for the tip on choosing and cleaning your brushes. In your video tutorials, it looks like your brushes apply the paint so easily and smoothly.

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  51. I have often wondered what brushes you use. The paint seems to go on so fluidly in your videos. That's probably more your skill in knowing how much paint to use, etc. than the brushes. But I would love to try a Dynasty brush. Thanks for giving so freely in your videos and your blog. I look forward to every post.

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  52. I have one brush. I could use a couple more. Thanks for the chance.

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  53. I purchased your scribble collage with hand painted paper and just love it! I enjoy any of your videos and get great inspiration from you! Thank you for sharing...

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  54. Well, I will join the hordes in entering the brush giveaway, always looking for brushes that work well. Thanks for the opportunity and for the reminder about the Murphy's Soap. I do have some brushes that could use it!

    marilyn (marimuseinpt@gmail.com)

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  55. I would love to try these. I'm just getting into mixed media art after a loooong absence from art.

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  56. Would love to win your give a way.

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  57. I would love these brushes -- mine are in a pot of Murphy's Oil right now!

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  58. Thanks for the tip using Murphy's oil soap. I never heard of it. What a great treat, a chance to win brushes.Thanks.

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  59. I would love to win these! Thanks for the giveaway

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  60. I live in Canada so can't win but soooooo appreciate this confession of 'brush-abuse'. You are in such good company! :)

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  61. I'm terrible on my brushes, so I'd love to see how these hold up

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  62. Thank you so much for the brush cleaning tip ... Going to try it on my poor ready to go out the door brushes, and, I would love to give these brushes you're offering as a give-away a try. The sound great.

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  63. my water cup looks like yours. I like flat brushes wir\th a little spring in them. l\i really like the way you use the brush to move paint and medium.

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  64. Would love to win a set of brushes. Thanks for the Murphy's tip - it's good for many other things, too!

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  65. Thanks for the tip on the brushes using Murphys Oil Soap...never knew about that. I would love t try the brushes you use...always looking for something different than what I use.

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  66. I love and use the same brushes. Did not know about the Murphy's soap thanks SO much for that tip!

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  67. I'm out, Im in australia, but I have found that a little soak in alcohol does wonders too, as well as cleaning surfaces that have spatter on them

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  68. I always like trying new brushes.

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  69. Murphy's oil soap is a lifesaver for me, as I am a brush abuser. Thus, I could use some new ones!

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  70. I wish I had heard of using Murphy's before today to clean my brushes. I recently purchased a giant bottle of Winsor Newton brush cleaner and it worked great. I was actually able to get acrylic paint out of a shirt with that. I'm pretty hard on my brushes like many of you are here.

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  71. I would love to try these brushes. I have heard about Murphy's oil soap - just never tried it.

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  72. I hadn't heard about using Murphy's oil soap. I just made a trip to Dick Blicks store today for the first time, be still my heart. I would love to try those brushes. I'm not very gentle with mine, although don't always leave them in water for a bit. Just sometimes. :)

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  73. WOW! I already feel like a winner, learning about Murphy's Oil is great tip!

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  74. Oh I looks of those short but beefy handles. Would love to win some. Thanks for the tip about cleaning.

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  75. Recently I have been painting on fabrics. Today I brushed on some color to an almost finished art quilt (scary) and it worked perfectly to add depth to some thread painted trees. I am always looking for good, fairly stiff brushes so I can get an accurate line. These sound great!

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  76. Yeah I have a Dick Blick's within 25 miles and get their coupons regularly. I will have to check out the brushes. Great tip about the Murphy's, I will give it a try.
    Hayler5@aol.com

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  77. my comment went into outer space, so I'll try again. I use Murphy's also and another tip for scungy brushes is to soak them in a strong solution of fabric softener, then rinse. I got this tip from s "faux" decorating book. I also use gel alcohol hand sanitizer to get acrylics off my hands, the counter, the floor, etc. Just use it by itself FIRST, wipe off, then rinse with water. Thanks for your good ideas.

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  78. Thanks for the info on the brushes and the oil soap. I had heard about it but have not tried it yet. I have a lot of grungy brushes so need to get on it.

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  79. Good to know about the Murphy's oil soap, I actually have a bottle under my kitchen sink right now!

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  80. I know Murphy´s Laws but not Murphy´s soap.

    I´d participate but I don´t live in the USA.
    Luck!

    Regards.

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  81. Thanks for the tip and the chance to win.

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  82. Have had great success restoring neglected brushes with the Murphy's technique. Would love to have some fresh brushes though!

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  83. Thanks for the cleaning tip; I am always destroying brushes so invaluable for me.

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  84. I really need some new brushes, so I am in! Good advice about Murphys, I also had somebody tell me to use vinegar to clean them.

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  85. Dear Jane,
    So glad hear about the brushes. Had been having a frustrated time and wondered what you used.
    And the cleaning tip is very helpful too. But best of all are the videos and descriptions of your masking technique. Have tried it and it produces a beautiful soft texture that I cant get with anything else. Thanks for your generous blog. Hope to get to a class some time. Happy New Year. Beverly

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  86. Hello Jane... I just found your blog a few days ago and have been enjoying your artwork and videos!! You are a very inspiring artist and teacher! I'm excited to try some new mixed media techniques.. and could always use a new brush or two! Thanks for the chance to win some :)

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  87. Such great info. Thanks for sharing.

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  88. I've never tried these brushes. I usually work with the white synthetic brushes and love them. They take a beating from me. Would love to compare the difference. It is so great to see your process and supplies and get ideas for trying some new. Thanks for sharing.

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  89. New tools are always appreciated. Thank you for the opportunity and the tips!

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  90. Oh, I love giveaways and I love hearing what brushes you use. Fun!

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  91. Thanks, for the opportunity to win some brushes and the tip on the Murphy's Oil...never knew such a thing would work for cleaning brushes. You are too kind.

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  92. Got one of the brushes for a trail, and it is a great one. Also very affordable.
    Thanks !!

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  93. Woo Hoo a giveaway.....Put my name in. thanks!

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  94. I am always looking for a good cheap brush to use with acrylics.

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  95. Yup. Murphy's has saved me many a brush. After so many years with watercolor I find it impossible to remember to deal with the acrylics asap. I'm making a note of these brushes. Thanks for sharing, Jane.

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  96. I'll have to try Murphy's oil soap on my brushes. I'd love a chance to try these brushes.

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  97. Thanks for the helpful hint for cleaning gunked up brushes. Who doesn't have Murphy's oil soap hanging around?! I wonder if it'll work for glue-y brushes too. I'll be trying it out tonight. Thanks for the chance to win some good brushes!

    Peace,
    Donna

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  98. I wondered what brushes you use. I like that they are shorter, seem pretty stiff, seem to hold a lot of paint or medium and best of all that they are cheap!!!

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  99. I came across a FB post and so glad I clicked on the link! I'm going through your videos and posts on your website and learning a lot. Thank you for sharing your talent with us and giving us the opportunity to win a product that you love to use.

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  100. I always love trying a new brush, I will have to order some. Murphy's Oil soap is a treasure. When I taught school it was a life saver to send some on a piece of damp sponge in a Ziploc bag so a student could keep dabbing on clothing that came in contact with paint or oil pastels. The paint and stain always came out in the wash.

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  101. I sure could use some new brushes

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  102. I am needing some new brushes, would love to try these out!

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  103. Thanks for the tip, will check these out. Maybe I"ll even win.

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  104. Wow!! How generous! Thanks for sharing the information and for the chance to win.

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  105. I really enjoy your blog and NEEDED the tip about the oil soap for crusty ol' brushes!! I'm buying some Murphy's tonight! I keep all my brushes, even the disposables. I just keep cleaning them until they fall apart. I'm Cheap! I leared to always wash your brushes in college when I worked in the scene shop.

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  106. I would love to try some of these brushes!! I have used Murphy's Oil soap on clothes and it works great (if it doesn't get too dry: ). Leaving brushes to soak with the brush pointing down is very hard on them though. If there's a way to put your brushes in a plastic bag with the MOS and lay them flat it would do less damage. Even so, the least amount of time left soaking is best. Let them dry flat too. It keeps the ferrules (the place where the brush meets the handle) from getting soggy and loose. Just my two cents worth. : )

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  107. It is certainly helpful to hear about inexpensive brushes that can still take some abuse. Its a costly endeavor to find something inexpensive enough for this budget that doesn't shed all over the art.

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  108. Sounds worth a try (the brushes, that is)!

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