Savvy Studio

New Year…New Products!

As mixed media continues to dominate the creative world, I think that this is a perfect time to cover a variety of products that you can use alone or incorporate in your mixed-media art. Because many of us need to purchase additional types of brushes for mixed-media art, I am excited to tell you about three new brush lines that you might wish to add to your paintbox. These brushes are unique, perform great, and are priced right for someone experimenting in a new medium. Also, each of the Daniel Smith watercolor lines discussed in this article produce color effects unique to that line and are a wonderful addition to your traditional watercolors.

Getting Started with Mary’s Oil Rouging Kit (#4102)
Martin/F. Weber

Mary Owens has been creating beautiful decorative art for over 25 years. She is the creator of the popular “oil rouging technique” and teamed up with Martin/F. Weber to develop Oil Paint Transparentizing Medium, which is perfect to use with her technique. Mary is known for her beautifully executed pen-and-ink designs. The soft color washes that you see in her work are the result of her rouging technique. It is a wonderful, controlled way to add soft, subtle color washes onto a pen-and-ink design. Everything you need to create her “antique tinotype effects” is inside this kit. You get six 37ml tubes of Professional Permalba Oil Colors in primary and earth tones (Cadmium Yellow Medium, Alizarin Crimson, French Ultramarine Blue, Paynes Gray, Burnt Sienna, and Burnt Umber) and a 37 ml tube of Transparentizing Medium. Mary’s choice of colors for this set was well thought out. These six artist-grade tube colors are capable of creating a wide range of additional colors that are fresh, clean, and rich. When combined with her Transparentizing Medium, primary color mixes are soft and fresh, and earth tone combinations create glowing antique colors. Mary’s oil-rouging technique can be created on most surfaces; you will run out of paint before you run out of ideas.

Global Art Canvas Pencil Case
Available at

Janelle Johnson is known for her beautiful colored pencil art. Her website features a variety of her pattern packets as well as wonderful pencil-related art supplies. One such item is the Global Art Canvas Pencil Case that is perfect for organizing, storing, and transporting colored pencils. This pencil case features 12 loops that can accommodate up to 48 pencils and is available in five colors (Rose, Sage, Black Denim, Steel Blue, and Wheat). I personally have one of each color, so at a glance I can grab the case that houses my charcoal, pastel, graphite, watercolor, or colored pencils.

SableTek Brushes
Royal Brush Manufacturing, Inc.

Royal Brush recently introduced a new synthetic short-handle brush line called SableTek that was created with the oil and acrylic painter in mind. This new brush replicates all the characteristics of Royal’s “original” Royal Sable Brush (a natural-hair alternative to pure red sable), but because SableTek is a synthetic alternative, it offers even more strength, snap, and durability during use. It is made from a proprietary blend of the finest-quality synthetic multidiameter hairs, which are housed in a nickel-plated brass ferrule on a handle that is kiln-dried hardwood that feels like silk. These new brushes hold vast amounts of color for filling in areas quickly without reloads and brushstrokes are concise. SableTek brushes are available in a vast range of sizes in traditional shapes.

Palmer Brushes
Dynasty Brushes by FM Brush Company, Inc.

I fell in love with a new brush called The Palmer by Dynasty. The handle on this brush is so unique, yet practical. It is not your typical long, thin handle, but a short, wide, flat handle that you hold in the palm of your hand. The handle shape makes it easy to grip and maneuver the brush, and allows you great “pressure” control when filling in areas with paint. The Palmer series brushes come in three different styles (flat, filbert, and Wave), and all three styles are available in one- and two-inch sizes. (Note: For those of you who are not familiar with Wave brushes, they are great for creating fur, foliage, texture, hair, and abstract stroke designs.) All styles are available with two types of brush-head hair—synthetic filament or firm bristle. Firm bristle hair is wonderful for applying paint to a rough surface (like canvas). The firmer hairs effortlessly deposit paint into crevices within the rough surface. They are also great brushes for creating textured areas because they can handle a lot of paint and mediums. Soft synthetic hairs were designed to be used with lightweight paints, and work excellently for applying thin glazes or washes of color on a surface. If you like to paint large wall art or create interior and exterior faux finishes, the two-inch Palmer brushes just might become your new best friends!

Crystal Golden Taklon Brushes
Silver Brush Limited

Are you looking for a brush that performs great and doesn’t drain your pocketbook? Silver Brush Limited recently introduced a high-quality, extremely affordable synthetic brush series called Crystal to the art world. These new brushes are constructed with Silver Brush Limited’s exclusive, durable, brown-tip golden filaments, which are set into a nickel-plated, double-crimped brass ferrule on a matte teal handle. (Note: Double crimped is a very good thing!) These unique brush hairs release color easily and evenly as you stroke, and there are ten different brush shapes in thirty different sizes to meet the needs of all artists (available individually or in six convenient assortment sets). These brushes were created for artists who work in watercolor, liquid acrylic, ink, acrylic, gouache, and all waterbased mixed-media art. A very close artist friend of mine, Earlene Padgett, recently worked extensively with this new brush line and she told me that these new brushes performed wonderfully in her mediums of choice, which are light-consistency paints (water-colors, liquid acrylics, inks, and silk dyes). She found that the angles and flats have excellent chisel edges and that the rounds come to a fine point and hold an ample load of paint (due to the shape) for a synthetic brush.

Iridescent Antique Set & Duochrome Colors
Daniel Smith

Daniel Smith is known for their “unique formula” watercolor paints. They make traditional watercolors plus a variety of Luminescent formulas that contain miniscule particles of titanium-coated mica. The size of the mica particle within the watercolor paint is what creates the different effects in each type of Luminescent product. Their iridescent colors reflect light directly and provide a fascinating sense of depth along with intense color and sheen.
If you like the look of aged metals, definitely try the Iridescent Antique Set (#285-260-004). It contains four 15ml tubes (Antique Bronze, Antique Copper, Antique Gold, and Antique Silver). You can use these colors by themselves or mix them with your regular watercolor paints to create unique-color hues.
Duochrome Colors bounce between two distinctive colors depending on the reflective light, and each color is a visual delight. You can purchase Duochrome Colors individually or in a set (#285-250-120). You can also mix them with your regular watercolor paints.
Can’t decide which one to try? Problem solved—get the combo set that contains both Iridescent and Duochrome colors. It is called Iridescent & Duochrome Southwest set (#285-250-084). It contains four 15 ml tubes of Duochrome (Adobe, Saguaro Green, Dessert Bronze, and Cactus Flower) and three 15 ml tubes of Iridescent (Moonstone, Sapphire, and Ruby).

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