Being an artist is no easy task and, quite frankly, things can sometimes get messy. While mess is part of the process for many artists, you still need to take proper care of your supplies by keeping them clean. Keep reading to learn how to properly clean your brushes and to receive tips for keeping your studio clean and tidy.
How to Properly Clean Your Brushes
Cleaning your brushes is not a task you should put off – if you don’t clean them right after using them, they could become stained or stiff. It doesn’t take long to give your brushes a good cleaning, but you do need certain supplies. Here’s how to clean your brushes:
- Squeeze out the excess paint on a paper towel or rag.
- Swirl the brush in a cup of water (for acrylic paint) or mineral spirits (oil paint) to release any paint stuck to the bristles.
- Gently shake off the water then press the brush into paper towels again.
- Run the brush under lukewarm water, squeezing the bristles gently with your hand to dislodge leftover paint.
- Using mild dish soap, swirl the brush in the soap in your palm then rinse it thoroughly.
- Look for any leftover paint and repeat these steps, if needed.
- Shake the brush to remove moisture then squeeze out the extra in a paper towel.
- Place the brush on a horizontal surface and let it air dry.
The more thoroughly you clean your brushes between uses, the longer they are going to last. A high-quality paintbrush doesn’t come cheap, so do yourself a favor and take care of your brushes from the very beginning. In addition to following these steps, make sure you have the right soap – a mild dish soap like Dawn works well or you can buy special brush-cleaning soap.
Simple Tips for Keeping Your Studio Clean
Keeping your studio clean can be difficult but having some kind of organizational system in place will make a big difference. Start by investing in some quality storage containers for your paint and other supplies. Divide everything up in a way that makes sense to use and label each container so you can find things quickly and easily. Place the storage containers on a shelf or stack them somewhere accessible – again, choose a system that works for you.
In addition to investing in storage containers, you should also work on some simple habits to keep your studio clean and organized. Take the time to clean up and put things away after each session. It doesn’t take long for things to become messy, so taking a few extra minutes to put things back will make a big difference. If you’re still going to use the same palette, you can keep it out but always clean your brushes well after each session and tidy things up as much as you can.
By following the tips above, you can not only keep your art supplies but also your art studio clean. Having a clean and tidy space in which to work can prevent that mental clutter that hinders your creativity. So, do yourself a favor and spend some time getting things cleaned up before you start your next project!