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I've recently started painting again after a number of years.
When I used to do it I had no idea about brush care and ruined them in short order. Now I'm taking a lot more care. Never letting the paint dry on the brush, never letting the paint get more than halfway up the brush etc.
On a recommendation I recently bought a couple of Windsor and Newton series 7 brushes. After about 5 hours total use from one of them it has started to fork.
What am I doing wrong?
Last edited by CunningStunt; March 9th, 2010 at 09:56. Reason: Spelling
I'm fairly sure I'm doing all of those things. I even have proper brush soap to clean it with.
Sounds like you are doing all the clean up and shaping correctly. I know that you aren't using the paint more than halfway up the brush..
Now we look at the angle of your strokes. With a low angle, I go against the grain myself. Perpindicular to the model. With high angles I go with the grain.
This prevents undue pressure near the bristle binding, which would cuase a forking.
Also, when I clean my brushes off, I dip the brush into the cleaning water, and twist the brush along the side wall. I then wipe the brush off on a clean piece of paper or soft fabric. Then I use the mouth method to shape it.. Placing the bristles of the brush in my mouth betwen my tongue and upper lip, and slowly twist hte brush as I pul the bristles out past the tongue and lip.
I know, this sounds wierd, but it really helps.
I then also store my bushes upright (bristles up) With the bristle protector on... Alsways wet shape the bristles before storing, and always use the bristle protector when you can.. Especially if you are transporting them.
Imagine the paint brush being a pencil... If you pull the brush along it's line from "pencil tip" to "eraser", you are going with the grain. Basically you are pulling it in with the lines of the bristles.
So conversely, going against the grain would be the equivalent of pressing down with any amount of pressure at the tip, and going sideways. This will cause the bristles to bend left or right rather than just up or down.
Without a video, I really can't explain it better.. With the grain means that the bristles will provide the least amount of resistance, and against, you will be forcing the bristles to move in a direction other than where they are already trying to face.
I admit I can't really help you more then the others. Does it still fork when it is wet? What size were you using mainly (the one that fork)?