Paintbrushes + Palette Knives

Good morning! Today I will be recommending the best materials to use for oil painting. There are all kinds of packs that include paintbrushes, easels, canvases, and small sets of oil paint. For beginners, these packs are excellent as they include the basic necessities of painting. However, these packs may have a limited set of paintbrushes and/or oil paints, so I purchased myself a set of paintbrushes which are also a better quality. The worst is when you begin to paint and all the hairs start fraying and the whole thing begins to fall apart, so buying yourself an extra set of good quality paintbrushes is beneficial if you wish to paint at least more than one painting. A lot of people assume that you just need one big, medium, and small paintbrush, right? Wrong. The more variety of paintbrushes you have, the better your details and overall your painting will come out. Paintbrushes differ in how many hairs are in one brush, affecting the amount of pressure applied to the canvas. Therefore, affecting how much paint is applied to the surface of the white canvas.


Many people mix paints with their paintbrushes, but because of the thick consistency of oil paint, your paintbrush begins to collect the paint at the tip into a glob and it really is quite frustrating to take out. In come palette knives! These little knives are wonderful and make the whole mixing process all the more fun. Coming in different shapes and sizes, you can easily mix a small or larger puddle of paint. Following these simple four steps will truly mix your colors together:


  1. Pick your desired colors to mix and scoop them up with the palette knife.
  2. Place them near the edge of the palette by wiping them off the knife.
  3. Do not stir the two colors together in a circular motion. Gently apply pressure by patting the colors together with the back of the knife.
  4. Gradually transition the pat into a gently scrape on the palette, as if you’re spreading butter on toast, but in a faster pace (but please don’t spread the color across your whole palette, which essentially is wasting space).


Canvases come in all sizes, or they may come in sheets. If you wish to hang your art piece, I recommend to buy a canvas with panels inside. Also, it is best to purchase an easel instead of choosing to paint on a desk or table. The angle your painting is at is very important, otherwise your painting may turn out distorted. And quite frankly you’re probably going to develop back problems.

Lastly, no you can not wash your paintbrushes with water. Remember, oil and water don’t mix. A lot of artists use a substance called turpentine, which removes all the oil paint off of your paintbrush. However, it smells disgusting. So I use a brush cleaner which also preserves your paintbrushes by conditioning them. All you have to do is:

  1. Wipe as much paint you can off with a paper towel.
  2. Rinse it with some water and then stir your paintbrush in the waxy substance.
  3. Rinse it off with more water and BAM your paintbrush is as good as new (maybe even better).

Here is a list of what products I use and where I got them from (mostly from Amazon because Amazon is amazing… I have a pretty unhealthy relationship with online shopping):

Easel Set


Palette Knives

The Amazing Paintbrush Cleanser (this stuff is awesome)

16×20 Canvas

11×14 Canvas

Keep updated on my blog for more on the basics of oil paint!

One thought on “Paintbrushes + Palette Knives

  1. Very nice post. It’s short and too the point. Good use of examples for your actual art supplies. I would just include some pictures of your paintings. Very good job!


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