How To Choose Your Fan Brush?

How To Choose Your Fan Brush?

A different tip, several effects, a brush that is talked about, and that’s good!

How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

When I was a student in Plastic Arts, I wondered a lot about the use of fan brush. Its shape and outline literally brushed back the hairs on my arms.

Brrrr, what is this funny beast?

This one is not convenient, it lacks precision.

And then one day, while watching a video of the famous painter Bob Ross, I discover with what dexterity, he handles the fan brush. His totally expressive brushstroke makes me suddenly want to use the brush in the same way to create superb effects and multiple flowing strands in a single stroke. I wrote this article to share you the same desire. I hope the latter will help you mend with the fan brushes. And why not, become a huge FAN * of this brush over time. #

How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

GOOD TO KNOW: After cleaning the hair and to prevent it from sticking up when drying, let the tip dry between two pressed rags to restore it to its initial shape. Do not hesitate after multiple uses to lubricate the hair a little with vegetable oil for better preservation.


Used on dry or wet technique (oil, acrylic, watercolour, gouache, ink), the fan brush exists in different quality of tips:

  • Sable, pig’s bristle or badger colouring
  • Regular tip,
  • Toothed point,
  • Synthetic hair,
  • Natural hair,
  • Flexible fibre,
  • Nerve fibre
  • Smooth fibre,
  • Slightly rough fibre (good colour catching for impasto).

These products are currently available at GreatArt Online or in the art supply shop in London Shoreditch...

How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

Personally, I choose my fan brush with touch. I appreciate that he has a rough enough, firm, and springy coat.

How to choose your fan brush by Amylee


Its imprecise layout is very random. Depending on the use, the brushstrokes can quickly make think of fluffy clouds if the colour is drawn or of branches if the colour is applied in small touches.

We generally use the fan brush to achieve:

  • Foliage, branches, trees
  • Fur, thinning hair, feathering colours
  • Bushy grasses
  • Details, Jagged edges
  • Fluid movements, Waterfalls
  • Special effects, series of marks
  • Multiple lines or multicolour application
How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

GOOD TO KNOW: The less pressure there is on the tip of the brush, the less visible the line will be. The important thing is to know how to dose the pressure to create hair with a natural look.

During the creative process, the fan brush can assist another brush (often the flat brush).

After juxtaposing several colours on paper or canvas, you can use the fan to:

  • Smooth (fades, gradients)
  • Mix
  • Blur
  • Blende
  • Shade
  • Glaze
  • Deposit pigments, or coloured dust (with dry pastel for example)
How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

GOOD TO KNOW: Fan point brushes (pig bristle or badger brush) are perfect for obtaining pretty gradations and homogeneous blends. The sinewy hair keeps its place throughout use unlike the flexible hair which tends to turn the fan into a rake.


How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

GOOD TO KNOW: The quality fan brush generally has a good reserve when in use.

How to choose your fan brush by Amylee
How to choose your fan brush by Amylee

Content provided by Amylee Paris


The passion of Amylee Paris, painter, consultant and author is to share her paintings between galleries, art collectors and her community. Beyond her pictorial skills and her several eBooks available online, Amylee is also recognized as one of the most influential francophone artist-entrepreneurs. She helps beginners or professional artists to optimize their artistic activity.

You can visit her colourful portfolio,follow her on Facebook and Instagram, or find all Amylee’s posts published in GreatArt online Magazineby clicking here!

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