My New Rosemary brush: DI DOMIZIO “DAB AND SMEAR”

I would like to thank Rosemary Brush Company who has designed an outstanding brush with my name!


The question is why this brush?
“DAB AND SMEAR” that’s why! The best way to soften an edge is to use a fan brush (see future blog on “Sargent and the Fan Brush”). The DI DOMIZIO “DAB AND SMEAR” brush is made specifically for an artist to leave the perfect amount of paint on medium/coarse linen. Too little paint does not allow blending and too much paint smears into each color into each other therefore destroying intensity and beauty of the color.

I first heard this art term while researching my favorite portrait artist…John S. Sargent and his academic studies in Paris. The term refers to a brush technique taught at Ecole des Beaux-Arts during that time in the nineteenth century.

This technique is when you place a “DAB” of paint placed next to another ”DAB” of paint while taking the brush to “SMEAR” the two edges of adjacent colors together. Hence the term “DAB AND SMEAR”.

Bouguereau_William color extra

I remember a day I had enlarged an image by Willam Bouguereau and noticed the “DAB AND SMEAR” technique.

From a distance, His paintings have the appearance of over blended color.

But upon careful examination, I noticed the “DAB AND SMEAR” application from one of the leaders of the Ecole des Beau Arts. Read my next blog called “DAB AND SMEAR and Translucent Color” for more on this topic.

Bouguereau_William color extra-3

In today’s art, I believe the “DAB AND SMEAR” technique is best used for blending DABS of color also known as “broken color”.

_DSC0914This“broken color technique” is great for impressionism, but how does the artist who is trying to paint realistically achieve the high degree of blending and yet the actual perception of color?

I believe it takes careful precision to get this effect. For example, what I believe creates beautiful flesh tones is to use broken color. The difficulty is maintaining the identity of the one local color while dabbing around it with many other colors yet without Dabbing additional colors there is no local flesh tone achieved. While knowing if you over blend you may lose the luminosity and richness of the color

_DSC0914-2The new “DAB AND SMEAR” brush allows me to load the perfect amount of paint on my brush to keep the separation of colors and over blending from happening. Yet it allows me to blend for the representational art which is the direction I have always leaned toward ( though my wife has been nudging me toward a more contemporary painting techniques).

Its funny but I do not paint to be a famous artist. I paint to have a voice in the art community. I believe I have a calling to help people/artist step into their desire by equipping them with art tools for success.

This brush excels on Fredrick’s Oil Primed Linen Panels.
If the painting surface is too smooth than the bristle brush will not lay paint down. In that case, I love Rosemary Brush Co’s Eclipse brushes and her Sables.

Keep an eye out for the following blog on where broken color and DAB AND SMEAR started for me.