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PSA: I thought I just sucked at fine details

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Then I realised yesterday that my 3/0 brush just sucked when I got a better one and could suddenly do it.

 

Been painting close to a decade now, you'd think that would have occurred to me earlier.

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Yep, a nice 0 to 000 will change the way you see (and paint) things.  As will learning to mix/thin your paints to make washes, inks, glazes, etc...

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Yep, a nice 0 to 000 will change the way you see (and paint) things.  As will learning to mix/thin your paints to make washes, inks, glazes, etc...

Truth.  Though since purchasing my Raphs and WNs brushes and a bit more practice I haven't used anything below a 0 in the past year.

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Yep, a nice 0 to 000 will change the way you see (and paint) things.  As will learning to mix/thin your paints to make washes, inks, glazes, etc...

Truth.  Though since purchasing my Raphs and WNs brushes and a bit more practice I haven't used anything below a 0 in the past year.Y

Yeah, the final tip size doesn't change much, so it really comes to having a sharp point and enough of a belly to hold paint.  Almost have to use a wet palette and humidifier to keep paint from drying on a 000 before reaching the model.

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Yep, a nice 0 to 000 will change the way you see (and paint) things.  As will learning to mix/thin your paints to make washes, inks, glazes, etc...

Truth.  Though since purchasing my Raphs and WNs brushes and a bit more practice I haven't used anything below a 0 in the past year.Y

Yeah, the final tip size doesn't change much, so it really comes to having a sharp point and enough of a belly to hold paint.  Almost have to use a wet palette and humidifier to keep paint from drying on a 000 before reaching the model.

 

Yeah, that was my tipping point to try using a 0 with painting eyes.  It worked and I haven't looked back, accept to wonder why I never believed people who were able to do it.

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The only guy I know who uses a tiny brush regularly is Bohun, who uses a 000 for his insane detail freehand. But Bohun is insane.

 

Most painters use larger brushes as they hold more paint, which means less messing around with the palette and more painting. I paint mostly with a W&N size 1, though mine's ready to retire and when I tried a Rosemary & Co size 0 and 1 I've kind of switched over to them. Both are close to the same size, I often mix them up in my rack. Nice sharp point, a bit less belly than the W&N 1 but the belly on that is pretty massive.

 

Most important thing is a sharp tip. A good brush of any size should have a nice sharp tip that is able to paint pretty fine detail.

 

For anything more than base coating/washing armies, get a good brush. They're not really all that expensive (compared to buying 20 minis) and with good care they last a long time. My W&N size 1 lasted me 2 years and dozens of minis.

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Then I realised yesterday that my 3/0 brush just sucked when I got a better one and could suddenly do it.

 

Been painting close to a decade now, you'd think that would have occurred to me earlier.

By chance have you read this thread?.

 

Bought 2 Raphaels and 2 Da Vinci Maestros, a 0 & 1 each. Don't use the 10/0 W&N anymore except for eyes....

 

George

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I do 99% of my painting with a W&N S7 size 1. (Though as I've moved to larger busts, I've started incorporating some slightly larger ones for more than the base coating they were previously relegated to.) Frankly, stuff like eyes is actually much easier with a mid-sized brush, since the larger belly means you have a lot longer to line it up and get it exactly right before the paint dries on the brush, which was what I always struggled with back when I used those little tiny "detail" brushes. The tip is the same, and that's the only part you're using when doing details. I know some people swear by them (Buglips goes through them like candy, apparently) but for me personally, I have no reason to use anything smaller than a 1.

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Slim has the right of it. In general, most people will find a larger brush with robust belly more useful. My method, such as it is, is a peculiar adaptation. It's like touch typing. When I did TT I'd been using a keyboard for years. I did the exercises, and got up to a respectable high 90s wpm. And then I immediately reverted to typing my old way, with 4 fingers, because I can get 140 wpm. Could anyone learn touch typing? Yes. Can I teach anyone how to type quickly with 4 fingers? Absolutely not. It's just a weird adaptation I have to the tool I want to use.

 

So I can use the small brushes and do okay, and have a niche where I paint large pieces swiftly using absurdly tiny brushes. It's fun, it's weird. But normal people are much better off learning how to use better tools and methods than what I do. More gain for less pain.

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I have a 1 and a 0 I quite like. They're probably due for a replacement though. I get sentimental about my favourite brushes and don't realise when they're losing their pizazz.

 

I'm big on my wet pallete and haven't noticed the paint drying too fast on my 3/0, but I'll keep an eye on that. Might be time to replace my favourites if they should be closer on the tip...

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 Well, 3/0's have their place - sometimes you really just need that smaller body on the brush to successfully reach the hard-to-get-at place on the mini you're trying to paint. Anything smaller than that, though, and you're basically kinda shooting yourself in the foot.

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Harbor Freight (hardware store) has a "helping hands" with a magnifier and lighting I find useful. Also, their jeweler's engraving pen is useful for removing mold lines. Both are under $10. Well worth it!

 

I picked up a W&N 00 for about ten bucks on Amazon and use it for eyes, so, sure, why not.

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I have one of those magnifiers (sans light) but never got the hang of it. I can't figure out how you're supposed to get any depth perception through the thing! I can't tell where I'm sticking my brush!

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I have one of those magnifiers (sans light) but never got the hang of it. I can't figure out how you're supposed to get any depth perception through the thing! I can't tell where I'm sticking my brush!

I have a Tensor with a magnifying disc, same thing. It feels like how fish would paint. Also I keep whacking the brush handle off the lens.

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