photo copyright Katherine Tyrrell
|Product: Pentel Aquash Water Brush |
|Manufacturer / Distributor: Pentel / Derwent & various online suppliers - see below |
|Technical Details: |
|Summary: This is a very popular and effective waterbrush. It's made by Pentel but is now also available via Derwent and Derwent retailers. It's repackaged with the Derwent name on the packaging. |
|Who should buy this?: |
|Who should not buy this? |
|Think Again? |
|Suppliers: Available from: |
Derwent now have a small Waterbrush. When I was sent a sample to try I looked at it and was very puzzled. I had to go and get my existing waterbrush to check it out - you can see the photo above. They were exactly the same! I asked Derwent about this and it turns out that Derwent is now repackaging the very popular and very efficient Aquabrush/waterbrush made by Pentel - which isn't always very easy to find in art materials shops.
Derwent have sold the medium size waterbrush for some time but are now also selling the small/fin waterbrush which is suitable for more detailed work as well. So that's good news!
Basically this is a tool which has a nylon brush on one end (with a cover) and a transparent plastic barrel sitting behind it. It works very like a conventional pen - hence the name brush pen. There's a one-way valve which allows water through to thr brush when there is pressure on the end of the brush. Squeezing the flexible barrel increases the flow - and you can squeeze out drops if you try hard!
You need to give the brush a good 'wash' in warm water before using it for the first time. I'd also be very wary of using it with inks which you shouldn't put in conventional pens - like Indian ink. Essentially you don't want to use it with anything which when dry will stop the valve from working or refuse to budge from the inside of the barrel!
This is a tool which is very useful for those who sketch and those who use watercolour pencils. I was sat on a tube when I dried my waterbrush out for the first time! This is a page of my Talens watercolour pencils on a sheet of Winsor & Newton heavy weight (80lb) sketchbook.
I think I probably need to do a review at some point of all the different brands of watercolour pencils when used with this brush!
Tim Fisher has produced a very helpful video about watercolour pencil techniques in which this brush features which has been posted on YouTube by Jacksonstops (who I think might be Tim - it's not obvious from YouTube). See this post on Making A Mark - Watercolour pencil techniques.
The differences in cost between different suppliers are not very significant. For most people it's going to boil down to whether you prefer to buy your supplies at your local art shop or online and which retailer you usually use!
I can confidently state that if this is a product which you like, you'll find yourself using it a lot and will probably want more than one - especially you want dilute solutions of water-based medium in the barrel - and that's when cost will be of more relevance.
- Russ Stutler who provides a review of waterbrushes that he uses on his sketchbook site. It's very detailed and it's by somebody who has been using watbrushes for years.
- Roz Stendhal of Rozworks who is also a long time user of waterbrushes and provides a very useful review of Pentel Brush Pens: The Pocket Brush and the Color Brush on her blog (but bear in mind she's also talking about two products which are something slightly different)
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