So because my series 7 winsor & newton brushes had been letting me down, I recently purchased some rosemary & co brushes (upon the recommendation of bybystarlight). I received them today, and did a preliminary test in my sketchbook with them. Keeping in mind its rough, low-quality sketchbook paper and not bristol, here’s the result, and my thoughts (so far) on the brushes.
The two brushes I got were both #2 size, one in kolinsky sable the other in squirrel hair. I had never tried a squirrel brush before (it is the one with shorter bristles) and Im not sure I like it. It does not hold as fine of a point as the sable and does not hold as much ink either. It is also less springy and stiff and kind of spongey. (The chunkier areas in the scarf pattern were done with the squirrel hair, the finer areas were done with the sable). Still worth trying out though.
Also keeping in mind that my hands shake pretty bad at times, the kolinsky brush was very nice and pulled pretty even lines. It also drybrushed fairly well and I could get very fine details from it. There did seem to be some stray shorter bristles, but the brush still continued to keep a nice point (a problem I’ve been having with my w&n brushes recently) and had some nice spring. I do wish there was a thicker handle, as one of the reasons I will often default to my pentel pocket brush is because of the fat handle (again, because of my shaky hands its a little easier to hold … wow, should I be admitting health problems like this at 26?) but having the ability to control the amount of ink and the nicer bristles do make me want to use real brushes (there’s probably a grip I can put on brushes, I may go look for that tomorrow. Worst case I’ll just wrap tape around the handle.)
The biggest draw about these brushes was the price, though. I got both of these brushes AND shipping from the UK for less than it costs for a single series 7 brush (size 2). Because the winsor and newton brushes were being so inconsistent and having so many problems, I’d much rather pay a lot less to get a brush that is comparable (if not better) in quality, even if I have to wait a few weeks to get it.
My only thought … so when are they goign to make a cat-hair brush? I have plenty of fur lying around my house for one….