The Few Don’ts and A Big Do

These few household management rules will help you along the way.

Rule No.1  If you get acrylic paint on your clothing, or you drop a paintbrush onto the carpet, wash it off immediately with water the fabric, preferably warm and perhaps a drop of washing up liquid. If you let the paint dry it will never come out.

Rule No.2  Likewise with brushes. Never let paint dry on your brush. When you’ve finished using one, rinse it off in cold water immediately, Once acrylic dries on a paintbrush, you’ll never get it off and your brush will be ruined – which is why I recommended 3 water pots. One for using with the paint. One to rinse the colour off your brush — important if you are going to use the same brush with another colour. And one to finally clean rinse and lay them down flat. After your painting session, you may want to give your brushes another quick wash before putting them away.  If so, swill them in warm water with a little drop of washing up liquid added. Ensure you thoroughly rinse them in clean water. Shake/pat dry to remove excess water and tease back into shape and leave to dry. When dry, store your brushes either upright by their handles in a pot, kept flat or stored in a paintbrush wallet.

Rule No.3. Never leave any brushes standing in water. Left like this will bend the bristles and ruin them and can cause the ferral to rust and loosen bristles. Once bent, a the bristles will never return to shape. This is also true for watercolour brushes.

Rule No.4. Should you have a misshapen or bent or flared out bristles, or one where the paint has dried and ruined it, do not throw it away. These can be very useful tools in painting. I have several with flared out bristles that are perfect for detail painting, for example little flowers, leaves on trees.

Rule No.5.  Take your time when painting. There’s no need to rush just because the paint dries quickly. Remember, there is no hurry, there is no time pressure. Don’t try to complete a painting in one sitting. Walk away from it. Often. Go have a cup of tea or something and let what you’ve done dry before you come back to it.

And the the most important rule of all:

Rule No.6.  Do have fun and enjoy what you are doing, even if it isn’t going as well as you’d hoped. Painting should be relaxing. Have fun experimenting and playing with colours and blending and mixing.