Learning Bench 2017-10-09


  • Some interesting online shops for accessories for your miniatures such as decals, led lights and stencils on fallout hobbies.
  • Decals and stencils for airbrush work available (some for free) on AirSick.
  • I received my 3M 6002 mask for my airbrush painting sessions. Happy about it, it’s comfortable on the head, and I can wear it without problem together with my glasses.

  • I also bought a second compressor with a 3L tank and 2 low quality airbrushes from as ABEST backup to my main material. I got issues with my Evolution who was clogged during my last course with Dr Faust – thus wasting precious minutes to entirely clean it. Would like to avoid this from happening again.



I was going over the elements of a brush and found this article on ThoughtCo who’s explaining well the purpose of different parts:

  • The handle of a brush is most often made from wood that’s painted and/or varnished, but it can also be made from plastic or bamboo. The length is variable, from really short (such as those in a travel paint boxes) to really long (ideal for big canvases). What’s more important than length is that the brush feels balanced in your hand. You’re going to be using it a lot, so it needs to be comfortable to hold.
  • The bristles or hairs are in a brush is also variable, depending on what the brush is intended for (see: Painting Brush Hairs and Bristles). What’s important is that they’re firmly held and aren’t going to fall out constantly as you paint.
  • The ferrule is the part that holds the handle and hairs together, and in shape. It’s usually made from metal, but not exclusively. Mop brushes, for instance, can have a ferrule made from plastic and wire. A decent-quality ferrule won’t rust or come loose.
  • The toe of a brush is the very end of the bristles, while the heel is where the bristles go into the ferrule at the end the handle (not that you can usually see this without taking a brush apart). The belly is, as the name would suggest, the fattest part of a brush. (It’s most obvious on a round brush, rather than a flat one.) A substantial belly on a round watercolor brush enables you to pick up a large quantity of paint at a time.


This leads to an understanding of what type of natural hair are used on brushes. Read on:

  • Sable: The ultimate soft brush is made from the hairs on the tail of a sable marten; these taper naturally, so when they’re put into a brush they form a point. Sable brushes are expensive, but are renowned for their softness, flexibility, and fine point. Kolinsky sable from Siberia has traditionally been considered the best hair for watercolor brushes. They are good for painting fine details and very thin paint.
  • Squirrel: Cheaper than sable, squirrel is a soft hair with little spring. Larger squirrel brushes work better than smaller ones because the mass of hairs together gives them support.
  • Hog/bristle: These brushes are the workhorse of the oil painter. The ultimate hard brush is made from the hairs on the back of a pig (hog), which are strong yet springy. The bristles have natural split-ends, which increases the amount of paint they hold. They are good for loading with a lot of paint and painting impasto style and are used for both oils and acrylics. They age well, becoming softer and more responsive with use.
  • Camel: Brushes labeled ‘camel’ hair are really made from other types of soft hair. Camel hair is unsuitable for brushes because it is too woolly.
  • Ox: Long, strong and springy hair. It is most often used in flat shaped brushes.
  • Pony: Coarse hair that doesn’t form a good point. Often used in cheaper watercolor brushes.
  • Goat: Lacks spring, but forms a good point. Used in calligraphy and Chinese Brush painting.


  • I went over the Youtube channel of Miniac and picked up some further videos that are worth watching; Top 5 manufacturers and Top 5 painting blog .
  • While we’re on his channel, you can also have a look at his tutorials about taking miniatures photos – part 1 and part 2.
  • While we talk about Miniac, here’s a cool article on his blog that dates from January 2016 but still of use today about experimenting with black/grey/white primers and 3 different base colors.


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