Handmade brushes can be quite expensive. I saw them at a booth at NCECA and they ranged in price from $22.00-$80.00. So I reckon that I can make some myself for much less!
While in Texas I took advantage of the vast quantity of roadkill along the roads, and gathered some nice fur to make brushes for use on my pottery.
I keep a MURDER KIT in my car (very CSI) for just such occassions.
I’m not alone. Here is a really (funny)/(horrible) video called CSI: Roadkill. It’s a thing. Don’t be mad at me!
In the MURDER KIT, I have disposable gloves, heavy duty scissors, tape, and ziploc bags.
Fortunately, I had my MURDER TEAM with me: Ronnie, my husband, was the driver (pulling off the road quickly when I screamed at him) and Liz (my daughter) who accompanied me to the MURDER sites and did the Photography to document the event.
I was really lucky and got wild boar hair, fox (the whole tail!), and racoon. Here are some pics of that harrowing process! Dodging cars, facing creepy dead animals, and the ridicule of one’s family and friends are all part of the risks you take when you take on this challenge.
I first learned how to make my own brushes from a video by Lisa LaPella – she is the ultimate pottery teacher by the way! Here is a link to that video and a link to my previous blog post on that effort.
I brought bamboo (dried) from Australia as we have heaps of it on our property. Dried bamboo worked great, but as Lisa LaPella says in her how-to video, if the bamboo is green, then as it dries, it will shrink and the fit will become even tighter.
The equipment required to make these brushes is bamboo (or wood which has a drilled hole), scissors, dental floss, glue (I used super glue) and fur or hair.
Here is a step-by-step visual tutorial on making the brushes:
Here is my most recent video on how to make these brushes.
Here is an example of a bowl that I recently made using a handmade brush.
It is quite easy, fun and the results are awesome! So get out there, be brave, clip some roadkill fur and make some brushes. OR….you can get some hair from your kids ponytail…just sayin’!