Cleaning Up


1. If you have substantial un-used oil paint around the perimeter of your palette, you can cover it with a sheet of plastic wrap (if you’re going to use it up in the next couple days).  If your paints start to dry up, they tend to form a leathery skin on the surface, but will contain moist color underneath.  Just use your palette knife to peel away the skin.


2. If you are not going to use up your left-over paint in the next couple days, you can let the paint dry, and then use your razor to carefully scrape it off (always scrape away from your body/hands).  There will likely be traces of wet paint under thicker blobs.  You can use a rag dipped in your turpenoid to clean up any remaining wet paint.


3.  If you’re using wax palette sheets, you can simply tear off the used sheet when you’re done with the paint.


Tubes of Paint
1. Clean the label, so you always know what paint it is without having to open it.


2. Clean the neck of each tube and the inside of the caps so that they will easily screw open/closed without ripping the tube.


3.  Always roll the tube from the bottom to get the most paint out of it.


1. Rinse the brushes in your baby oil jar to remove all the paint you can from the bristles.


2. Remove the baby oil out of the brush using your rag, with a squeezing ferrule to tip pinching action. Repeat rinsing and pinching action, until brush no longer leaves paint residue and is wiping out clean.


3. The baby oil left in the synthetic and natural hair brushes prevents any residual oil paint left in the brushes from drying, no matter how long you leave it between paintings, and also conditions your brushes, your hands, etc.

4. Once a month or right after the baby oil cleaning, you can give them an additional cleaning with plain bar Curd Soap or Murphy’s Oil soap and water.  Lather some soap in your hand, and fully clean the brush in the palm of your hand to remove any remaining paint/oil. Use a very mild soap (like Murphy’s oil soap) and lukewarm (not hot) water.  The bristles may still look discolored, but if the soap suds are white, then you have gotten out all the color that will come out.  Make sure to rinse away all the soap.
The top and bottom surfaces of your palette knife should be wiped clean and shiny.  Use a rag.  Don’t overlook the edges and tips of the blades.  With repeated use, these edges tend to become sharper, so wipe them carefully.  If they get too sharp, you can blunt them with the same kind of abrasive stone that’s normally used for sharpening knives.


1. Clean any labels on your solvents/oils/mediums.


2. Clean the necks/caps on these fluids.


3. Screw on all caps very tightly so they will not evaporate and dry out.


Oily Rags/paper towels/etc
1.  Do not ever let these accumulate.

2.  Oily rags must be put into a sealed metal container to prevent them from gradually absorbing oxygen and igniting by spontaneous combustion.

3.  Paper towels can be thrown into a garbage can IF the garbage can is emptied on a daily basis (otherwise, they too need to go into the sealed metal container). This is why rags are preferable to paper towel (reduce waste).