Studio Tip – Keeping Brushes Clean With Oil

Clean Brushes

Clean Brushes

How do you keep your brushes clean when working oil paints? Oil! Make no sense? Well read on.

I have ruined many many brushes, because I was distracted, and forgot to clean up properly afterwards, especially after a late night in the studio. OK, ok, yes, bad habits and a lack of discipline.

Then a friend gave me a tip. Let the brushes lie in cooking oil and it will stop the oil paint setting on the brush. Of course you have to clean and wash the brush off properly before working with it again, because the cooking oil will retard the drying of the oil paint on the canvas.

Another alternative is to use linseed oil. This option will allow you to simply wipe the brush off and skip the washing step and proceed directly to painting. However of course, the linseed over time when exposed to air will start to set. So you wouldn’t want to leave your brushes lying around too long.

So if I am not using a brush for a few minutes, I lay the hairs in oil. Now my brushes stay supple and I spend less money on replacing ruined brushes.

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