Stupid thing is still like brand new
A little history on this whole thing first. Some time ago (3 months), I posted an article on paintbrushes. I set out to show what kind of brushes I use to paint my models so that others could see that you don't need anything fancy or expensive to get good results. The original post is right here.
That quickly turned into a 2 part series on why my brushes are junk written by misterjustin.
Part 1 and Part 2 can be found here for those looking to see how wrong I was in my thinking. But what did I know at the time?
John from Santa Cruz Warhammer took pity on me and sent me a "high quality" brush to try. Something about coming into this century and getting with the times. Post here.
Then I managed to get my hands on what I was told to be a "high quality" paintbrush. I folded and bought a Raphael 8404 Kolinsky Sable Brush - Size 0 from misterjustin.
You can find them here on his site. I tried looking around online and the prices are close enough that it's not worth me going elsewhere when I know I can order from him and if something goes wrong, he'll fix it. It's about customer service for me these days. And I'm lazy, once you get my business, I don't usually stray.
Three months later and I can still paint super fine details.
And that brings us to today. Three months have passed and I'm still using the same brush.
The same brush that looks like brand new. And it's not because I've been delicate with it either. For the first week or so, I was careful with it... but after that, I got mad at the thing and decided I was going to prove everyone wrong and wreck the thing by painting how I normally do. Mind you, I didn't go out of my way to ruin the brush, but I didn't treat it any different than my other brushes.
When that wasn't working, I decided to start using it for everything (minus base work since that really does destroy paintbrushes). Three months of commission painting and the thing is still like brand new. I've got other brushes that are already trashed and I haven't used anywhere near as much as my fancy Raphael brush.
My Wife agreed to pick some up from a craft store nearby and one night last week, I gave my fancy brush a good "cleaning" according to the instructions. I was actually surprised to see a little bit of paint and built up scum come out of the brush when I was cleaning it. I change my paint water regularly and figured the brush would be clean enough already. Then I let my brush sit to dry. I cleaned it on a Wednesday and hadn't planned on painting until Friday or Saturday.
And wouldn't you know it, when I started using it again, the stupid thing was like brand new. Like I just bought the thing.
I give up.
I thought I was using good brushes at first, but I was wrong.
I thought I could break my fancy brush, but I was wrong again.
I thought cleaning it wouldn't do much good... wrong once again.
What have I learned?
Easy. If you enjoy painting and you've taken the time to learn how to do it well, then you owe it to yourself to get a fancy brush and take care of it. I can tell you that they will last and you'll not only paint a little better, but you'll enjoy it much more too.
NEXT: Check out the nine month review where my brush dies... sort of.
Additional related links:
Brush types by The Madhouse Workshop
Brush comparison by Secret Weapon Minis