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Thursday, November 26, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, from all of us at FM Brush, Inc. and Dynasty Brush.  Spend the time enjoying your loved ones, eating and celebrating and maybe even painting!

We will be closed today and tomorrow for the holiday, to be with our families and friends.  We will be back in on Monday to answer voicemail, emails and your calls.  

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Artist Spotlight: Lisa Goesling

Group of Columbines
Chicago artist, Lisa Goesling works in the unusual media of scratch art.  It is subtractive drawing, where the artist removes ink from a soft, smooth surface to reveal the white underneath.  The scratching can be done with a variety of exacto knife blades or wire tools.  Once the image has been developed, the surface can be colored with inks, watercolors or acrylics.  Lisa found scratch art through a cancer diagnosis in 2006, where she needed the rest and had the space to work hours on end. She shares, "The idea that adversity teaches us to turn the negative into a positive is a great analogy for transforming these black boards into thriving works of art."

Lisa places color into her pieces thoughtfully, sometimes over the whole work and sometimes sparingly, to tell more of a story about the piece.  She uses a water-soluble ink and needs brushes that hold their shape for both mixing her color and applying it.  One of her favorite brushes is Black Gold, because it keeps it's integrity, and the hairs stay together when applying fluid to a smaller area.  Part of Lisa's exquisite work is the fine detail she is able to accomplish, and in that, the right tools make all the difference.

Lisa's work will be in several upcoming exhibits next year and she will be the artist in residence at the Studios of Key West in March 2016, teaching a workshop on scratch art using Scratchbord on March 14th.  You can keep up with Lisa's busy exhibition schedule on her website:

Keep Painting, 


For more brush information, check out the Dynasty Brush website.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Artist Resources: Watercolor Mediums

There are numerous mediums for each type of paint out there, too many to list in a single post combining them.  Each manufacturer of a paint also has their own versions of mediums, opening the door even wider to experimentation.  However, for the most part, paint is designed to work seamlessly with it's own brand's mediums.  Below, I've started the "Mediums" series with some popular watercolor mediums.  

Masking Fluid/Liquid Frisket -- There a variations on masking fluid, that are either colored or cloudy and even some that are not removable.  Masking fluid allows the painter to keep paint from covering an area of the paper, to either remain white or lighter.  It can be painted over and then removed with a rubber cement eraser to reveal the layers beneath.

Ox Gall -- There are plenty of synthetic Ox Gall Mediums on the market, but originally this was made from an Ox's gallbladder.  It is used as a wetting agent in watercolor; it increases the flow of watercolor helping create smoother washes.  

Gum Arabic or Gum Acacia -- This gum is from the Acacia tree, the sap is heated in boiling water and used as the binder for watercolor.  Gum Arabic adds transparency and gloss to watercolors.

Glycerin -- Glycerin is an alcohol of syrupy consistency that is used as a plasticizer to enhance the binder capabilities of watercolor and reduce brittleness.  It is not usually sold as a medium, but rather for those wanting to make their own watercolors.

Iridescent Medium -- This medium adds briliance and a pearlescent quality to the watercolor pigments.

Texture Medium -- Texture medium creates a textured finish, and can be painted directly on paper or added to the watercolors.

Lifting Aid -- Lifting aids are meant to be painted over plain paper or washes and create a surface where future layers can be removed more easily.

Granulation Medium -- This enhances the effects of granulating pigments and creates a mottled effect with pigments that are normally smooth.

These "Artist Resources" posts are designed to be thorough, although they are brief.  If there are notes missing, please let me know in the comments.  Or, feel free to let me know your preferred mediums and brands.

Keep Painting,

To learn more about Dynasty and FM Brush, Inc. products, check out our website.