All About Brushes

Brush Anatomy


Can you Handle it? 

Handles are commonly comprised of various hard woods depending on where they are manufactured and are proportioned to balance in your hand, offering greater control. Layers of varnish and paint are applied to protect the wood from swelling. Hair is positioned within the ferrule to offer the desired responsiveness without going limp. As much as twenty-five percent of the hair falls within the ferrule or is trimmed at the back end to allow secure fastening of the handle. The hair is thoroughly glued to the ferrule which seals the brush and ferrule to avoid shedding of the hair and prevent the seepage of water or medium into the brush. In addition, the ferrule is often crimped to ensure its hold on the handle. This connects the brush head to the handle. Most ferrules are nickel plated brass to ensure they resist corrosion and splitting. 

Short vs Long Handle: 

Generally the long handle, about 9” in length, is for easel work/traditional oil and acrylic painting. A short handle, 5” to 6” in length, is for watercolor, mixed media and other painting done at a table.

It's Getting Hairy Now!


  • Like Sable, fine tapered point and a belly which allows the brush to hold more water and paint and spread color evenly
  • Ideal for thin applications of paint, detailed work


  • Stiffer, coarse, natural hair often with flagged tips/split ends to hold more color
  • Ideal for base coats, heavy-body paints like oils and acrylics, texture work


  • Made from man-made fibers such as PBT resin and often referred to as Taklon or Syn-Sable
  • The diameter of the synthetic filament and blend of different filaments affects how soft or stiff a brush is and how it affects various media

Tangled in Angles

  • Angled: For painting edges, bristle length viewed from the wide face of the brush uniformly decrease from one end of the brush to the other
  • Flat: For painting flat surfaces, bristle length viewed from the wide face of the brush does not change
  • Tapered: Improves control, the bristle length viewed from the narrow face of the brush is longer in the centre and tapers toward the edges
  • Striker: Large round (cylindrical) brush for exterior painting difficult areas

Shape Up

These are some commonly used shapes for brushes.

These are some commonly used shapes for brushes.

Ready to choose your Princeton Brushes? Are you...

A beginner?  

-Real value brush packs

An Oil Painter? 

-Redline, Catalyst, Imperial

Using Acrylics? 

-Redline, Catalyst, Imperial, Velvetouch, Miniature

Dabbling with Mixed Media?

-Velvetouch, Miniature

A Watercolorist?

-Neptune, Velvetouch, Elite, Miniature




Jake Parker started the INKtober initiative in 2009 as a challenge to improve his inking skills and develop positive drawing habits. It has since grown into a worldwide endeavor with thousands of artists taking on the challenge every year.

The Rules are as follows: 

1) Make a drawing in ink (you can do a pencil under-drawing if you want).

2) Post it online

3) Hashtag it with #inktober and #inktober2016

4) Repeat

Note: you can do it daily, or go the half-marathon route and post every other day, or just do the 5K and post once a week. What ever you decide, just be consistent with it. INKtober is about growing and improving and forming positive habits, so the more you’re consistent the better.

Check out his INKtober page here !

Looking to start your own? Start with products from Art Lounge! 

Snowman Pens

Winsor & Newton Promarkers

Manuscript Pens

Canson Polypacks

Canson Art Books

Now launching: Mabef Easels from Italy


Since 1948, MABEF has been making wooden painters’ easels with creativity, expertise and care exhibited by the company’s founder, Mariotto Albino Bruno e Figli, whose initials form the company name. By the 1970's, the company had become the symbol of high-quality Italian easels throughout the world, an undisputed presence in France, Belgium, Germany, Great Britain and United States; in 1981 the company also landed in Japan and South Africa. Today, the easels produced by MABEF are a symbol of the MADE in ITALY.

The brand’s guarantee derives from a constant and passionate work, which draws strength from the artisan experience and takes advantage of new technological know-how, design and constant focus on quality in order to guarantee a unique product intended to last a lifetime. The ingenious technical solutions and accurately selected raw materials ensure sturdiness in time. In fact, MABEF uses only high-quality solid beechwood that comes from controlled areas where prompt reforestation is ensured (in 2004 MABEF obtained the FSC certification, This type of wood is extremely resistant and its beauty increases in time, also thanks to a finish with natural oils, which keep the raw material “alive”. MABEF easels are simple to use, and they allow the artistic work to be set up quickly and easily. They are easy to assemble because they are designed as a kit, and they are also sturdy and reliable, equipped with an international lifetime guarantee.

In recent years, MABEF has paid special attention to ecological and environmental problems, and it has decided to reconvert all its production scrap by recycling it 100%. As a matter of fact, through a complex crushing procedure, wood shavings are turned into pellets, an environmentally friendly fuel which is used to heat the entire company.

Art Lounge is proud to associate with a brand like MABEF that continues to satisfy the most demanding artists, museums, restorers, auction houses and painting aficionados. 

We will have: 

•Studio Easels for various media with inclinations

•Field Easels at a great value

•Lyre Easels 

•Easel Sketchboxes

•Table Easels

•MABEF articles like stools, palettes, clipboards and more!