See How to Transform a Paintbrush into a Work of Art

by Renee Zarate

See How to Transform the Paintbrush into a Work of Art

It’s fun to alter things like mirrors and cigar boxes but have you ever tried to alter a paintbrush? It’s quite possible to do with just a few supplies from Imagine and metal ephemera from a craft store. This paintbrush started out as just a plain inexpensive 2” wooden brush that cost about a dollar. The metal piece in the center is actually a bird mask like the ones doctors wore during the Black Plague many centuries ago. When completed it makes a unique wall hanging or paperweight to lay on a desk or a stack of books. It’s quite a conversation piece!

Skill: Advanced
Time: 3 hours + dry time

Directions


 plain inexpensive 2” wooden brush
Step 1

Have all materials ready for placement along with gesso, gel mediums, inks, spray bottles and tiny paint brushes. Begin by applying a base coat of gesso and then a coat of Creative Medium Bronze Metallic paste. The depth of color can be adjusted with a baby wipe. When dry the metal ephemera can be attached using a clear gel, like Creative Medium, or even one of the Iridescent Creative Mediums. Dry with a heat tool to speed up the process or allow it to dry overnight. Add as much ephemera as desired while Creative Medium is wet.


paint brush decorated with gesso, gel mediums, inks, spray bottles and ink
Step 2

Apply a thin coat of gesso over the entire project, including the metal pieces. Apply small amounts of Delicata ink onto a craft mat. For this project Emerald Green, Sapphire Blue and Golden Glitz Delicata inks were watered down and applied to the brush with a small Sponge Dauber. Spritz the project with water and allow the inks to run together and blend. Allow ink to run off of the project onto the craft mat. Keep applying ink until the desired look is established.

djust the colors using Delicata inks in Golden Glitz, Dark Brown Shimmer, Rose Gold, Black Shimmer and Bronze Burst.
Step 3

Continue to adjust the colors using Delicata inks in Golden Glitz, Dark Brown Shimmer, Rose Gold, Black Shimmer and Bronze Burst. To add to the rusted patina effect, drops of StazOn Emerald City from an inker bottle can be dropped behind the bird mask area and blotted off. To achieve lots of texture a small amount of Finnabair’s Rust Effect Paste can be applied with a tiny paintbrush randomly to background areas and on the wings. A strip of rhinestones can line the bottle edge of the brush and an itty-bitty rhinestone crown can be placed on the bird’s head. Apply both of those items with a strong adhesive. This was not sealed but a spray sealant could be applied. The back of the brush can also be finished and made to look beautiful if desired.

If you enjoyed this tutorial then please share or leave a comment below!

Supplies

Imagine
Other
  • Heat tool
  • 2” Wooden paint brush
  • Baby wipes
  • Testors adhesive
  • Prima – Finnabair Mechanicals, Metal Wings, rhinestone chain, rhinestone crown
  • Finnabair Rust Effect Paste – Red Rust
  • Island Beads – Bird head
  • White heavy gesso
  • Water spray bottle
  • Paper towels
  • Q-tip swabs
  • Paint brushes

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