Friday, September 11, 2015

palette knife vs. brush

  Which is better? Palette Knife or Brush?

 This is the block in of my newest painting 
for my November solo show at Sumner and Dene Gallery.
I am in the zone right now - 
once I start working on the big ones, I can't seem to stop!
I'm hoping to finish this one tomorrow.

I've been seeing a lot of palette knife paintings floating around lately.
I mean A LOT.
It seems like a lot of artists want  to try out the 
new and trendy style that has actually been around for a long, long time.
I know this because I was one of those people.

I have books on knife painting from way back that are printed in black and white. No color pictures at all.
That's how old they are.

They sat on my shelf for a really long time.
I would take them out every once in a while 
(usually when I was cleaning the studio)and look at them,
thinking that one day I would actually use them.

Fast forward to 2015.
I was rather depressed, stagnant, and unmotivated, for lots of reasons.
I left my very nice gallery, and decided to change my style.
To using a palette knife.

I didn't really experiment, I just jumped in.
And I loved it!
The feedback was great, and I thought, okay,
I'm onto something.

So I painted lots of palette knife paintings:

 And then,something happened.
I didn't like it so much anymore.
And I couldn't figure out why.

I mean, I thought they were decent paintings and I sold a lot of them.

And then, I figured it out.

I missed the feeling of being involved with the paint.
Of mixing it on the canvas.
And I know I can do this with a knife.
But it's not the same for me.

I missed the softness of my big brush.
I missed the blending on canvas, the big swirls and
not wondering if I was holding the stinking knife the right way!

So, I left the knife and went back to my brush.
And things started happening that I loved:

Softness reappeared.
I began having an intimate experience with my paint again.
I fell back in love with my brush.

So now, I use the knife sometimes at the end of a painting,
just for tiny little highlights if needed.

I have found my self again.

So, i guess my motto is this:

Don't be afraid to try new things.
They may lead you back to first loves.


  1. I find that some judicious use of a palette knife towards the end of the painting can enhance areas, however, for full pallet knife paintings, or even mostly palette knife paintings, there is a 'sameness' to the piece. Just my thoughts. I prefer the brush, myself, and your brushwork is lovely, Dee. I remember Jerry Fresia telling us (in a workshop) that we needed a palette knife to mix our paint with, and for nothing else!

  2. Keep in mind, ......they were made to LOOK like the genuine article, ......NOT WORK LIKE OR LAST LIKE the genuine name mark knife. click site

  3. The other argument that most knife experts make is that sets are loaded with "filler knives that you'll never use," or that "all you ever need is a chef knife." I'm going to say it once and for all. click this link here now

  4. I wanted to thank you for this excellent read!! I definitely loved every little bit of it. I have you bookmarked your site to check out the new stuff you post. Best Calphalon Knife Sets

  5. Yes i am totally agreed with this article and i just want say that this article is very nice and very informative article.I will make sure to be reading your blog more. You made a good point but I can't help but wonder, what about the other side? !!!!!!Thanks Best Calphalon Knife Sets in 2018

  6. Took me time to read all the comments, but I really enjoyed the article. It proved to be Very helpful to me and I am sure to all the commenters here! It’s always nice when you can not only be informed, but also entertained! heavy duty electric fillet knife