Let's talk about the Best Water Brush / Aqua - Watercolor Brushes out there. I am sharing with you some from my collection, as well as, which ones are my favorites and why. If you have a set of aqua brushes that you use and love, please share with us in the comments- I am always looking for new products to try out!
What is a Water Brush // Aqua Brush?
Just so we are all on the same page, when I say water brush or aqua brush I am talking about the paint brushes that have a water reservoir in the handle of the brush. I honestly first discovered my love for these brushes when I was teaching elementary school art. They we’re really great for the younger kiddos learning watercolor but also just real fun and easy to use! (and great for traveling).
What do you use Aqua Brushes for? And what kind of paints can you use them with?
I use Aqua Brushes for watercolor painting, of course, but they are also great for brush lettering or anytime you need to keep your brush continually wet and flowing. I use them with watercolor paints, gouache, inks and acrylic paints. AND- you can actually put liquid watercolors and inks directly into the handle, this is perfect for brush lettering!
First up is actually the same brand I used in my classroom, not the same exact brushes- but the ones I use myself.
I found these Aqua-Flo Brushes at my local Hobby Lobby. They come in a pack of 3 which is nice. These have a pretty wide brush tip, so I use them more filling in large spaces with color or if I want to get a big area of my page wet, etc.
Sakura Large Long Tank #8 Water Brush
Sakura makes great water brushes. I like them because they are small in size and come apart making it easy for travel. There is a insert for you to use so you can keep the water in the handle, but still screw apart for compact traveling.
I got this Aqua Brush from Hobby Lobby.
Pentel Assorted Aquash Water Brush
I love this set of Aqua Brushes and you can pick these up at Walmart! (I've had folks tell me they don't have art stores near by, and it maybe because I live in the city- but my local Walmart has a pretty decent arts and craft aisle. That with Home Depot and you got it all! And at a much better price than the fancy art stores!)
I love the variety in the brush tips (the middle -messed up looking- long one is my fav) and the wider shape handle.
I have used these a lot for brush lettering. They still are a wider tip, but I like fat fonts. :D
Arteza Water Brush Set of 6
Okay, so this set of water brushes and the ones below we're both impulse buys on Amazon Prime....BUT err muhh gosh! Totally worth it!
I LOVE these. I have used them non-stop since they arrived in the mail. They work awesome, never get clogged and have the BEST variety of brushes (tip sizes and shape).
You can order this water brush set here.
Water Brush Pen Set
Lastly, these cute and awesome and PINK Aqua Brushes. Also, ordered on Amazon Prime :D And also, another great buy.
I keep these in my little travel art supply kit that I keep in my purse. I love these because- pink, but also the brush tips on these are really smooth to paint with and I like how small the smallest one is. Perfect for tiny little details and skinny brush lettering.
DIY Luggage Makeover with Old Samsonite SuitCases featuring NEW DecoArt Premium Acrylic Paints from Micheals
Below I share with you how to paint the perfect fern, and mix up the perfect burnt orange and muted pink colors. Oh, and of course- how to makeover a suitcase!
Step 1: Prime
If you're aren't lazy (I was lazy), you are going to tape off any of the hardware that you don't want to paint. (The silver parts, buckles, handle, etc.)
Just to be safe, I did two layers of gesso on the suitcases
Step 2: color
I wanted to keep with the vintage/retro vibe of the suitcases so I leaned into the muted shades of these colors.
To mix a muted/burnt orange : I mixed a golden yellow + orange + teal (just a dab)
To mix a muted soft pink : I mixed white + fuchsia + sap green (just a dab)
Step 3: Design - How to Paint a Fern
When painting the ferns onto the surface of the suitcase I made sure I faced them different directions and let the branches flow every which way. This will keep the design cohesive and make it flow! I went for it, brush and paint straight to the suitcase, but do not hesitate to use a pencil to sketch out your design (lightly) first. The paint will cover it right up.
To fill the fern in with color you are going to want to mix up a few different shades of the muted orange. A dark, medium and very light (almost white) orange. The light shade is the highlights, and the dark the shadows. Add a stroke of each shade to every leaf to bring dimension to your design.
Like myself, please practice on paper until you feel confident with your design. It will make your life easier, I promise!
Step 4: Paint Suit case
For the smaller green + mint suitcase, I painted the fern first, and then the background. And boy, that I was A LOT more work. #LessonLearned
Step 5: Final Touches
Step 6 : Seal it!
I used DecoArt's Premium Gloss Medium, and just like with the gesso, applied two coats of it- just incase!
I've actually shot these for this blog before, in 2014- but what feels like a lifetime ago . Chris and I did a little weekend shoot with our friend Lori at a studio he use to work for. You can see that old post, here. Before, I styled the Floral Palazzo Pants for the beach, today, they are styled for the beach to the street! ;) WAAAYYY different! hehe
OH, and this restaurant (the pretty mint wall), Gaja is REALLY good. It's a hip little Korean BBQ bar that doesn't look like much from the outside, but is always bumpkin' on the inside and has really yummy food! It's a hidden gem for sure!
Leaving a career in teaching, where I had to dress professionally 5 days a week, to being able to wear whatever I want has been awesome! But also filled with a lot of yoga pants, lets be real.
My style is still a lot the same, but I have incorporated more basics, tee shirts particularly and less structure = lots of flowly things. This outfit is a perfect example. I also think it looks like I should live in Palm Springs! (I wish!)
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