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Friday, August 19, 2016

Highlights from HOOT

Earlier this month, some of the Dynasty staff, designers, and artists attended the Heart of Ohio Tole (or HOOT, for short) Convention at the Arena Hyatt Regency in Columbus, Ohio. It is a gathering of artists, educators and vendors who specialize in or are interested in decorative painting and tole art. You do not have to be a member of HOOT to attend--all are welcome! Classes are offered, demonstrations take place, vendors are selling Dynasty brushes, and from the looks of these photos, there is a lot of fun and friendship to be had. Take a look!

If you missed this year's HOOT Convention, fear not! Plans are already underway for next year's gathering which will take place August 14-19, 2017 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center. You have plenty of time to plan your trip!

A big thank you to Jill Fitzhenry for letting me share her photos on the blog and on the Dynasty Brush Facebook page.  It looks like everyone had a blast!

Friday, August 5, 2016

Back to School: Buying Art Supplies That Last

I am the mother of two young children ages seven and three. My son is entering second grade this fall and we have just embarked on our yearly school shopping quest. With supply list in hand, we make our pilgrimage to the "Back To School" section of a local big box store to select all of the items he needs for the upcoming year. It's pretty easy now--he just needs, pencils, a notebook, some folders--basic elementary school things. As far as art supplies goes, he just needed a box of crayons. Easy-peasy.

I know even though school shopping is a breeze now, as time goes on his teachers will require more things. When college arrives we will be shelling out major cash on textbooks and dorm furnishings. And if he goes into the arts, we will be investing in art supplies.

The art bin I bought for my freshman year of college, still filled with tools from 1996.
Yes, I did say investing. In 1996, I entered college as a freshman majoring in Fine Art. I was floored when I saw the list of supplies each student was required to buy. My parents were too. And I wasn't alone--it seemed that my classmates felt the same way. Because we were 18 year old kids, we complained to our professors about the expense and the sheer amount of stuff we needed to purchase. All of my instructors told us the same thing: those supplies are an investment in your education and your future. Take good care of them and they will last you well into your career.

I am happy to say that I still have a good deal of my art supplies from that list I bought in August of 1996. If you buy quality tools and take good care of them, they will last a good, long time.  

Dynasty makes a variety of brushes for expiring artists of all ages! Check out our Kid Dynasty collection for the littlest painters. 

Is there a young artist in your life getting ready to embark on making art his or her career? If so, check out these sets that are well-suited for a variety of applications and skills levels.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Choosing the Right Brush

Every artist chooses their tools based on personal preference. There are a lot of factors that go into how an artist decides what brushes to use for a particular project. Some of those factors are based on the need of the project and some are what the artist feels most comfortable using.

Overall size of brush: The size of the project can determine the size of the brush. As I have stated in a prior blog post, I worked large scale as a Scenic Artist for 15 years so I needed big brushes that held a lot of paint. If you are laying down a lot of color at once, you are going to want a tool that is big enough for the job. If you use something too small, your job will take much longer! And vice versa--if you are working small and use a brush that is too big, you will spend a lot of time cleaning up your work. Picking the right size brush for the task is important.

Length of handle: An artist's preference for handle length is influenced by a few things. If you are working on something large and need a big brush, you likely will need a big handle. Working large scale means you are probably standing up and using your whole arm to paint, so you will need a longer handle for control and reach over a big surface. If you work in a smaller scale, you likely will prefer a small handled brush--especially if you sit at a table while you paint. A longer handled brush may just get in your way! If you like working very close to your piece, painting small details, a small handled brush is the way to go. If you prefer to stand at an easel and be an arm's length away from your work, a long handled brush may be for you.

Shape of bristle: Flat, round, filbert, fan, oval, bright, angle, liner--all great shapes to choose from! Different shapes create different marks and different textures depending on how you use them. I like to experiment to see what different shaped bristles can do.

Type of bristle: The type of bristle you choose often depends upon what kind of paints you work with, what kind of surface you paint on, and how flexible you like your bristles to be. Hog hair, camel hair, sable, nylon, and synthetic are a just a few of the varieties of bristles Dynasty Brush uses in our brushes.

Comfort: Sometimes it is just about how a brush feels in your hand. Too heavy? Too light? Just right? Is the handle too thick or too thin? All of these seemingly little things are important. Being comfortable with your tools and in your work space leads to a better environment in which to create.

Price: We all want the best brushes, no matter what our budget. Dynasty Brush provides a wide range of fine quality artist brushes for fine art, craft, hobby, and decorative painting alike. Check out our website to see what brush is perfect for you and your art!