Thursday, December 18, 2014

Brush Buying Guide: The Artist's Wish List

For those of you artists that keep wish lists handy, here are some of our most popular and most versatile brushes and where to buy them.  Pass this list along to your loved ones or "Pin" it for them to find.  

Black Gold
Black Gold -- Our highest quality brush, versatile for almost every medium and available in a large range of sizes and shapes.  This brush is a smooth synthetic with the spring for acrylics and the softness for watercolor.  It comes in both long and short handles, in rounds, flats, brights and our unique wave, whale's tail and dagger shapes -- among others.  It is a favorite among decorative artists and fine artists alike.  You can find these at several online retailers including

Faux Squirrel -- A very soft and springy synthetic, short-handled brush ideal for watercolor, fluid acrylic and gouache.  This line has a beautifully sized 2" flat which is great for large washes or glazing work.  Or, you can find a range of rounds, filberts, waves, fans and liners in this brush series.  Utrecht is one of our online retailers carrying this line: 

Urban FX -- One of our newer brush lines, created specifically for the muralist or street artist.  There are two different hair types in the brush line, one being the natural bristle and the other a synthetic - both stand up well to rougher surfaces and heavy bodied paint.  The series has a range of shapes both traditional and FM Brush patented.  You can find this full line of brushes online through Hyatt's:
Orange Ice brush from Dynasty
Orange Ice -- An incredibly soft, full bodied synthetic brush in large round sizes.  This brush was a recent hit with the Philadelphia Watercolor Society's workshop with Sarah Yeoman.  One of the most affordable large size rounds that a watermedia artist can buy, these are a must have.  You can find the full line through DickBlick online:

Enjoy your holiday season and make time to paint!

Keep Painting, 

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

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Winner of the Art Lesson Plan Drawing: Mindy Dember

dynasty brush canister
Back in September, I announced that we would be giving away free brush canisters to art educators from a drawing of lesson plans sent our way.  

Our winner is Mindy Dember from Plano, Texas!!

Mindy Dember is an ART Specialist at Daffron Elementary in Plano, Texas.  She has shared this wonderful lesson plan with us and given us permission to reprint.  

Cubism Warm/Cool Still Life

Working in a group, the student will identify with an ARTIST and recognize the subject matter and style of their work.  They will draw a still life in the style of their artist, filling their paper to create a balanced composition.  Next, by cutting and trading, they will paint 4 pieces; two pieces warm and two cool.  They will then tape their original drawing back together to create a cubist style warm/cool still life.

Grades 5-8

  • Warm colors
  • Cool colors
  • Styles;  Realism, Stylized, Abstract, Impressionism, surrealism and Nonrepresentational 
  • Subject matter;  Still Life, Portrait and Landscape
  • Balance
  • ART Everywhere books – all grades
  • Postcards of ART work from your own collections
  • Large Color Wheel – to point out warm/cool colors
  • Books or postcards to look for ARTISTs
  • #2 pencil ,  large eraser
  • Artist worksheet
  • 12” x 18” white paper to paint on
  • Objects in a box for students to choose from to set up a still life
  • Newspaper
  • Watercolor paints
  • Brushes
  • Sponges for texture
  • Water
  • Sharpies
  • Masking tape
  • Puzzle template example
  • Divide students into groups of 4, if possible.  Three if you have an uneven amount of kids.
  • Assign each student an ARTIST to look at, either using post cards or letting them use an ART EVERYWHERE book.  You could put ARTIST’s names in a bucket for them to choose (each name can be chosen 4 times).  This will determine who they will paint with.  Or just let them choose their own from a list you give them.
  • Pass out the ARTIST worksheet for them to answer together. (turn this in for a grade)
  • After they decide on one ARTIST, they are to draw a still life with their ARTIST as inspiration.
  • Pass out a 12” x  18” sheet of white watercolor or construction paper.
  • They will each do a drawing and get a grade for composition.
  • As a group, they will set up a still life at their table together to draw.
  • Each student will sharpie their pencil lines and then erase any pencil lines showing.
  • Fold and cut the drawing into equal parts (or cut on paper cutter) so each student gets one part of the other students’ drawing to paint.  They may use a puzzle template that each one will use, instead of cutting straight lines.  (Show example of puzzle templete)
  • Each student should end up with 4 pieces to paint.  Tell them to paint 2 with warm colors and 2 will with cool colors.
  • After they finish painting their parts, return the pieces to the original artist  and match the pieces like a puzzle, and then tape them together on the back.
Name of ART work
1. What do you see?
2. Can you name elements or principles of ART that are the same?
3. Can you name elements or principles of ART that are different?
4. What style did the ARTIST paint in?
5. What techniques does the ARTIST use?
6. What other information did you learn about your ARTIST?

Keep Painting, 

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