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Fine Art – Art Materials Guide

Artist oil paints contain a full pigment load, suspended in a binder, generally linseed oil or another drying oil such as safflower oil, poppyseed oil, or walnut oil. Use them on stretched canvas or boards that have been primed to accept oil paints. Clean-up with turpentine or mineral spirits.

Student grade oil paints have working characteristics similar to professional artist oils, but with lower pigment concentrations, less expensive formulas, and a smaller range of colors. More expensive pigments are generally replicated by hues. Colours are designed to be mixed, although color strength is lower. Hues may not have the same mixing characteristics as regular full-strength colours.

Paintbrushes are used for applying ink or paint. These are usually made by clamping the bristles to a handle with a ferrule.

Short handled brushes are for watercolour or ink painting while the long handled brushes are for oil or acrylic paint. The styles of brush tip seen most commonly are:

  • Round: Long closely arranged bristles for detail
  • Flat: For spreading paint quickly and evenly over a surface. They will have longer hairs than their Bright counterpart.
  • Bright: Flat brushes with short stiff bristles, good for driving paint into the weave of a canvas in thinner paint applications, as well as thicker painting styles like impasto work.
  • Filbert: Flat brushes with domed ends. They allow good coverage and the ability to perform some detail work.
  • Fan: For blending broad areas of paint.
  • Angle: Like the Filbert, these are versatile and can be applied in both general painting application as well as some detail work.
  • Mop: A larger format brush with a rounded edge for broad soft paint application as well as for getting thinner glazes over existing drying layers of paint without damaging lower layers.
  • Rigger: Round brushes with longish hairs, traditionally used for painting the rigging in pictures of ships. They are useful for fine lines and are versatile for both oils and watercolours.

Art Paper Sizes

‘A’ size — size in millimeters — approx inches

2A0 — 1,189 x 1,682 mm — 46.8 x 66.2 in
A0 — 841 x 1,189 mm — 33.1 x 46.8 in
A1 — 594 x 841 mm — 23.4 x 33.1 in
A2 — 420 x 594 mm — 16.5 x 23.4 in
A3 — 297 x 420 mm — 11.7 x 16.5 in
A4 — 210 x 297 mm — 8.3 x 11.7 in
A5 — 148 x 210 mm — 5.8 x 8.3 in
A6 — 105 x 148 mm — 4.1 x 5.8 in
A7 — 74 x 105 mm — 2.9 x 4.1 in