Greetings one and all,
Recently I purchased a set of Artis Opus Series S brushes. And I have to say, I’m impressed. (Yeah so that might be a spoiler… Oops…)
So what has impressed me, a lifelong Citadel brush user? Keep reading and find out.
So, let's start with what you get from the Artis Opus Series S brush set. To start with, it comes in a beautiful wooden presentation box, etched with the Series S logo. Opening the box, you get a set of four and each brush is nestled neatly and securely in foam. They range from a size 000 brush, size 00 brush, size 0 brush, and size 1 brush, and to ensure you can keep these brushes in tip-top condition you even get a 3ml pot of brush soap, complete with a brush care leaflet.
The brushes themselves are made of kolinsky sable hair (which is a species of weasel), which is well known for making brushes of exceptional quality. These brushes hold a good amount of paint and smoothly apply it to my models, and even after a month of rather heavy use, they have all so far kept their points with no fraying hairs. Which is refreshing, as many of my other brushes of different brands would have likely nearly fallen apart by now.
Though, something I hadn’t considered when first starting to use them was their handles. They’re thicker than the Citadel brushes I was used to, but once I’d gotten used to this, I found that I preferred it as it allowed me a much better grip, and ergo, more control. (Which is really important for a clutz like me.)
The inclusion of the brush soap and care leaflet in this kit really shows an expectation that these brushes, if taken care of, will last through years of use, which to my mind is refreshing in our increasingly disposable world. The brush care leaflet gives a lot of information as to the best way to treat and clean your brushes, though most of this information is obvious (such as avoiding getting paint up to and into the ferrule, for example). But there are a few little gems from the makers, such as the correct use of brush soap and using the cleaner to condition and moisturise the bristles that I think shows good attention to detail. And with the care leaflet itself being hand-signed and stamped by the makers, it really tells you that the quality of these brushes has been properly considered, checked, and accepted by them before it’s been allowed to be sold.
I’ve kept my brushes in the wooden box that they came in and while you don’t have to do this, I like the presentation and the knowledge that my brushes are safe in their box when not in use.
Now we get down to cost. This brush set isn’t cheap. At £56.99 it's a fair chunk of change, and the question you should be asking yourself is “is it appropriate for me and my budget?” If, like me, you get through dozens of brushes a year, then you will save money in the long run by investing in a high-quality set of brushes that, if taken care of, will last you years.
I would say that the Artis Opus Series S brush set is well worth its price and these brushes will not disappoint you. I do honestly think that my painting has improved through using these. If nothing else, the fact they’ve kept their points so well has greatly helped me with detail work. Suffice to say I will be investing in more Artis Opus products in the future.