The BEST Brush For FINE DETAILS! (not a liner brush)



hey guys I hope you're having a fantastic day today so I wanted to talk to you about a new brush that I found I'm gonna talk all about liner brushes today and how to create the best fine line and what you know what is the best brush to create those fine lines of detail I get so many questions from all of you reaching out to me typically on social media when I post you know Instagram stories or Facebook stories that small videos like that and I'm doing some fine detail work so many of you are asking me what brush I'm using how do I achieve those small details you know hey Chuck this is Sally I can't figure out how you are creating those fine lines are you using a liner brush when I use a liner brush it doesn't seem to hold as much paint as yours does how come you can continue making those fine strokes of paint those fine lines without running out of paint my liner brush isn't cutting it for me I get that kind of question all the time and so recently I found a brush that I've like completely fallen in love with and I want to talk to you about that today as well as just kind of cover the other brushes that I've used in the past for fine detail work for fine lines and so I'm going to just kind of talk about all these brushes that I've used the advantages and disadvantages of those brushes and then this new brush that is now I think going to be my go-to brush for fine lines moving forward now really excited about this brush and excited to share this with you so let's just kind of run through some examples of different brushes and show you how to create those fine lines okay so we've got some canvas here mounted to my pallet for example and let's talk about some of these brushes so we've got some fan brushes we have a couple liner brushes and we also have some round brushes this is kind of an older got some round brushes so these are sort of the brushes that I've used in the past when it comes to anything like grass texture fine line texture anything that we want to emulate similar to that I've kind of use basically these three brushes fan brushes are good if you want to kind of lay down a lot at one time but they have some disadvantages when it comes to that as well liner brushes are really good for spotting on some very very tiny small details but you know they also have a disadvantage and so then that's why I also incorporate round brushes in my detail work and round brushes just have a little more hairs than the liner brushes they're a little bit fatter and so they'll hold more paint and that kind of allows me to work longer with one paint load on the brush so but that comes with disadvantages as well so they all sort of have their their use but a disadvantage which is why I have multiple types for this type of work now what you might not expect is using a dagger brush for fine line detail work well I never really thought about this until I found this brush which is by Princeton go figure they're doing a really good job apparently we have the Princeton select dagger striper brush now the difference between this dagger brush and some other dagger brushes that you might find and other ones that I've used in the past is that this one I believe it's probably meant for like watercolor so it's very very flexible it doesn't have much pull to the for the paint at all so if you're looking to push paint around some thick paint this is not going to be a good brush but if you're looking to create some very very very fine line detail work with a high pigment load in your brush so you can continue to work without having to reload the paint brush this thing is slowly well actually quickly replacing all of my favorite brushes so let's talk about why and just kind of run through the brushes here and then why this new dagger brush is the king for me anyways of all detail work so I'm gonna use some golden fluid acrylic paint here and I'm gonna use black because it's easy to see so let's start with these three fan brushes just talk about each one so I just got three different brands here three different types let's just load that up with paint we've got some fat lines they're not really good for detail work but nonetheless it creates some pretty neat texture so if this is what you're after that's great but it's really hard to get those fine lines but it can also just lay down some texture like this pretty quickly so that's cool but again we're lacking those fine lines if we really need them we're lacking control of those fine lines so let's take this next one which is a little bit more worn down you can see that the bristles are much more spaced out in between each other and so this should give us some finer lines yeah just some more random texture so we don't run into that lack of control with this one where we produce some really fat looking lines so that's cool as well you know that's some good texture but again look at a couple of those are showing up so you know the lack of control with a fan brush is really kind of what hinders it from being the ultimate detail brush now again I use fan brushes from time to time they have their uses and you can lay down a lot of texture very quick let's just try this last fan brush so a little bit different texture than both of those above can lay down some neat texture quick you know then of course also with a fan brush we can spot-on texture maybe for tree foliage or something like that fairly quick as well so they have their advantages and they have their uses but we're talking about fine lines here and you know grasses and stuff like that and it's hard to achieve some certain results when you're talking about a fan brush here so it's got its use but not my favorite so let's move on to the liner brushes we got two liner brushes here let's take our watered-down paint let's just add some lines here I'm gonna use grass for example it's kind of the best example for fine lines okay I'm doing my best here we're creating some cool lines it's looking good but you notice some some problems here see a couple these imperfections right there right there right there a little bit of a thick line right there we're starting to run out of paint and then all of a sudden yeah so I'm doing my best here but I've got some imperfections here and so that's not that's not ideal we can create some great lines but you have to load the pigment very often you have to be very careful not to push too hard because if you push too hard you get a nice fat line like that and that's not what we're after so liner brushes Oh see it right there again liner brushes can be very good I use them all the time I will always use them if we have got tiny little detail work and you need to just be very controlled with what you're adding you know little things like this this guy's hard to beat so liner brush I've always loved I always will love here's the other one just kind of do the same thing but there's disadvantages to them they're not like the perfect brush again see these thick spots down at the bottom that's just not we're not getting the perfect line every time again it happened right there again you got to be very good with your hand work to get perfect lines with the liner brush and then I'm losing my my pigments oh that's not gonna suffice we're looking for those nice crisp lines and I lost my pigment pretty quick so it becomes painstaking to work with a liner brush but you can get some nice lines you know I'm not gonna knock a liner brush too bad you can get some cool lines out of that and it looks good and so then that's why I started using the round brush here and so the round brush is just a little bit better with holding paint so let's just go ahead and go over to the right here if you can see this so a little bit this is a little bit larger round brush but okay at least we're creating consistent lines so say we have a larger painting and these lines are about the right size at least you know we can kind of create some consistent lines and it's got more pigment in the brush and with that fatter brush you can see as we get down into these lines they don't start to get choppy you see how these lines in with these liner brush start to get real choppy and you know that it it's more spotty it's not a consistent line versus this round brush look how nice and consistent those lines are although they're thicker that a round brush they're very consistent and that's what I love about the round brush is just more consistent than a liner brush but it's hard it is hard to get a perfect thin line with one here's a small just a size smaller the same round brush let's just try that right underneath here there look at that look at those nice thin lines so we can get a little bit thinner lines very nice so I've been using this round brush quite a bit in my detail work so we know a long ways just keep going with this thing see how long it will go oh we've got a couple thick spots though so again you know you're always gonna run into that problem if you hit it too hard you're gonna have a thick thick line but when you start looking at this just kind of keeps on going and going and you can go a lot further with this round brush because there are more hairs than the brush so that kind of covers what I've done in the past just really simple when it comes to thin lines or detail work you know we can do all we can do all of these textures with each individual brush we can use the the side you know we can use just the side of it the corner we can create some thin lines we can spot with all the brushes you know we can spot it on create some random texture so they all sort of do a similar thing in you know sort of their own way but you always run into that problem of control how can I get the perfect line every single time is there a way to do it is there a brush that gives you the perfect thin detail line every single time well I didn't really think there was until I came across this dagger striper brush by Princeton I'll have a link to this and all these brushes that I you know my go-to brushes for these three four types of brushes in the description below so check that out if you're interested in one of these but this thing I'm just super impressed with let's just go through it and just show you what it does just cleaning it off here okay so let's grab some pigment kind of show you as we mix this okay so it's very wide brush so it's gonna hold a lot of paint but if you turn it sideways we've got a very very thin line that almost looks like a liner brush and so that's where the magic is holds a lot of paint creates a very thin line now the one thing you'll watch you'll notice with this is that when I do this I'm not going to create any imperfections of these lines it creates pretty much the perfect line every single time and there was an imperfection right there so I pushed a little too hard right there and I don't even know if you can notice that but it's a little bit thicker at the bottom that's much better than say this big spot right there so that's about the worst that I get out of this brush which is amazing look at that with no effort bloom it's quite amazing I never thought you could get lines like this perfect beautiful lines watch this I mean if you want to create just some really really consistent lines it's get a little more paint I mean that's almost like a pen right there and that's really really tough to do with the other brushes we get a round brush a lot thicker it's about the best I can do get that other round brush we're running out of paint it's it's it's more choppy through here it's not a nice smooth line liner brush probably gonna be even worse yeah we just run out of paint completely yeah so anyways these brushes are just fantastic and the cool thing about these dagger brushes is that you know of course we can create nice wide lines if we need to get some more paint on there you know we can do a nice thin line rotate it come down super thin again look at that it's just incredible what you can do with this brush but when I in doing grass and detail work now this is pretty much all I will use so I'm just really pushing it thick right now so another cool thing with this brush it you can't do with those other brushes is if we go up with it and then curve it to the side it creates like a a piece of grass with a top to it automatically so you can just you can curve it like this look it's almost like little fox tail grasses so you got some cool little grasses with you know some heads on them and then you can go in between and you can add some straight grasses you can even go the other way down with it and it'll create some nice lines as well and I mean this thing goes on and on and on and on and on oh no no no no no no no no no no none I will always love the round brushes the liner brushes the fan brushes and they all have a purpose they all have a use but so many of you have asked like I said about these thin lines how am i doing this grass detail it's this new brush that I'm using so the Princeton Select dagger striper brush it's I mean this is not a sponsored video but I got to hand it to Princeton because I keep stumbling across brushes that I'm really impressed with all right guys well I hope that helped clarify a few more things for you about liner brushes detail brushes when it comes to doing something like grass in the foreground I hope this kind of helps out anybody who is confused about which brush to use how some people might get some of those fine line details when it comes to liner brushes there are a few things if you're searching for a liner brush like I said I'll have the links of the favorite ones that I like of all these different style brushes in the description below but when it comes to something like liner brushes just remember that the longer the bristle is the longer though those hairs are in the brush sometimes can be the harder they are to work with because when they become long like that they because it's start to become really flimsy and it's hard to control that sometimes and if you're really looking for a nice smooth consistent line it's sometimes good to find a happy medium something that's not quite as long but not too short as well there's there's a mid ground there that you want to look for so just keep that in mind you know if you're if you're searching for a liner brush those long ones I kind of stay away from because they just become too flimsy yeah I think that's that's pretty much all I got for you fairly simple when it comes to liner and detail brushes if you guys have questions always leave them in the comments below I know sometimes I'm a little slow at getting to some of those questions but I promise to get to as many as I can so if you guys have a question just let me know in the comments below and if you guys got any tips for other artists out there about liner brushes things like that I think that's a great place to leave it as well so I'd love to start a conversation around detail and liner brushes I'm sure there's some brushes out there that you know I haven't explored yet I think that's all I got I'm working on a new painting back here which I will share the long tutorial version for you guys soon I was hoping to have it done this week but it's not looking like I'm going to I've got a few more things on the way but until then you'll hear me you'll hear from me very soon thanks guys so much for watching be sure to LIKE and subscribe if you love this video and please share with an artist friend of yours that you think it'll help them that's it thanks

49 Replies to “The BEST Brush For FINE DETAILS! (not a liner brush)”

  1. Thank you for the suggestion – your video's have been a tremendous help. I purchased the dagger brush and love it. A question about the Princeton Select brushes (flat in particular) – do the ends of the flat brushes splay after use/cleaning? I am looking for one that will hold its shape and not splay so lines made with the flat brush have no bristles splaying and give a nice clean line?

  2. This dagger brush looks like it may be good for long hair. Some single hairs and bands that kinda look like the line at 15:40. I wonder if you can dip the front of the brush in a brighter and the back in a darker color

  3. Hi Chuck, I've really been enjoying watching your videos; thanks for making them.

    I'm a bit of an art nerd, and I remember reading about some stuff called "Amber varnish" or "Amber medium" that old painters would add to their paint for doing fine detail work. It would thin it out without making it drippy and stop it from "sinking" into the lower layers. I think it's made from boiling Amber into oil. Anyway, I thought it might be something you could use.

  4. The best brush for making fine lines is a 'rigger' brush which gets its name from its use in painting rigging on old sailing ships. The bundle of hairs is an inch long and only a sixteenth wide. Another name for essentially the same brush is 'script liner'. It will probably be labeled as a watercolor brush but works well for acrylic or oil. Be sure to thin the paint down so that it flows easily.

  5. Actually I’m having a shitty day, thanks…..Ever go shopping and at the till they ask you how you are, and you tell them the truth? They gasp! Then I have a great laugh 😂. Am I being a jerk? No, sometime you just need to laugh. Every get on an elevator and face everyone? Freaks everyone out. Every ask your friend if they farted? Lol. Okay, I’m in a mood. Have a great day.

  6. I got a set called microliners and was unhappy trying to do branches. I chopped brushes to reduce the hairs and still hated it. This was a GREAT video! The right tools help reduce the stress. Now to practice putting a consistent amount of pressure on the brush. Thanks Chuck, you always deliver quality content.

  7. I found detail rubber brushes to be very useful for me, especially with distant details like mountains and trees. It operates like a palette knife, but they’re shaped like normal detail brushes, so you have more control.

  8. HI, Chuck ; the best brush for fine details ; thank you for this superb explanation ,for the demonstration step-by-step ; cheers from one of your Fan Guy from st-hubert P, Q,

  9. Hey Chuck (and everyone). I just bought one of these dagger brushes, and they are indeed GREAT!! I highly recommend you get one if you like painting wildlife, for sure

  10. Very informative. I have a couple of the Dagger brushes, and sometimes use them for details. The one I use for very tiny details is a 20/0 round by Master's Touch. It has short bristles, and with it being a 20/0, you can imagine there's not that many bristles in it. Using it is basically like painting with real egg tempera – one dip, one stroke. It does make an extremely fine line though – like painting eyelashes on an ant. I don't thin my paints, so the 20/0 works great for me
    Another thing the Dagger will do is calligraphy. The way it can be turned, to create thicker and thinner lines, in the same stroke, works great for calligraphy.
    Great video, Chuck!!! Keep'em coming!!!

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