What is a Blending Tool?

There is often a bit of confusion around the blending tool.  Many beginners don’t understand what they are or what they are for.  It is also confusing because blending tools are called many different things, they can be known as stumps, tortillons as well as blenders.  

Blending Tools
Blending Tools

What do Blending Tools Do?

They are made of paper rolled up into a tube or paper pulp and they can be used to move pigment around and blend pigment together for a ‘blended’ look.  They can be used with graphite, pastel and paints.  They are mostly used with pencil and pastel but I  have seen them used with oil painting.  You don’t use blenders with watercolour and less so with acrylic paint because it dries very quickly which can make blending difficult.

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4 Painting Techniques for Beginners

First of all you might be wondering what is a painting technique?  I  thought I would explain as many of my learners get confused about what they are and what media they can be used in.

A painting technique means a way of using the paint – applying it or removing it, to create a desired visual effect.  There are lots of painting techniques you can use, some are general techniques that you might use with any paint media (watercolour, acrylics or oils) and some are designed to be used with one type of media (or are more effective with this type of media).

It can be really confusing when you hear names of techniques and have no idea that they are.  With this in mind I will go through the most basic ones that you might try as a beginner:

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