19 Feb 2020Mont Marte

Sometimes the simplest things can make a huge difference. That’s why we’ve collected our favourite art hacks and tips just for you. Check them out below and try a few for yourself!

1. Recycle plastic bottles as water jarsYellow, green, blue and red paints on a wooden table next to a cup of green water and paint brushes.

Next time you’re about to throw out an empty milk or drink bottle, wash it up and give it a second life. They make a great water jar or organiser for your desk.

2. Re-use dried watercolour and gouache paints

Blue, purple, pink, red and white galaxy painting on a table with a filled colour pallet, brushes and purple water filled jar.

Did you know that watercolour and gouache paints can be reactivated with water? If you’ve got a dried up palette, simply dip your brush in water a couple of times and bring your paints back to life.

3. Turn old jars into desk organisers

Jar of brushes.

Old jars make a great desk organiser. Fill them with markers, brushes or pencils to keep your tools at your fingertips.

4. Use a hair dryer to help remove tape

Pink flower image open on a laptop sitting next to a range of watercolour paints, pencils, brushes and colour palette on a table next to a cork board with a matching pink flower painting being creating.

If you use masking tape to hold your paper in place, this tip is going to come in very handy. Get out your hair dryer on put it on low heat to help loosen up the tape and gently peel it off.

5. Remove dried oil paint from brushes using apple cider vinegar

Yellow paint blob on paint brush.

If you’ve forgotten to wash oil paint off your brushes and it’s dried, don’t panic. You might be able to remove it with this little trick.


1. Put some apple cider vinegar into a jar and soak your brushes in it for 24 hours.


2. Use a paper towel or a cloth to remove paint from the bristles (your fingernail can help scrape off stubborn areas of paint).


3. Keep dipping your paint brush into the apple cider vinegar and wiping it until all the paint is removed.


4. Use a clay spooling brush or comb to help clean the brushes.


Check out our oil paint brush cleaning video for more tips and tricks.

6. Wash acrylic brushes before they dry

Two paint brushes in clear water jar.

Make life easier for yourself and wash your brushes as you go (especially if you’re using acrylic paint)! Once the paint dries it’s going to be a nightmare to remove, so do yourself a favour and keep some water handy.

7. Use old pens to create texture in paintings

Close up of blue, red, orange and yellow painting.

Do you have some pens lying around that are fresh out of ink? Get creative and use them to write, draw or create patterns in wet paint.

8. Paint over unwanted artworks

Pale orange, dark and light grey painting on square canvas next to a grey and white sphere vase of yellow marigold flowers.

If you’ve got an old artwork lying around that you don’t want, paint over it. It’s as simple as that! Trust us; painters have done it for centuries.

9. Keep a brush washer on your desk

Divided blue tub with half green water and half orange water with paint crushes sticking out.

An easy way to keep your brushes clean and dry is to use a brush washer while you’re working. It’s always better to clean up as you go and you’ll thank yourself for it later.

10. Add dividers to drawers

Open desk draw divided in 4 sections with pencils in each part.

Take your organisation to the next level by putting in some draw dividers or a cutlery tray.

11. Recycle old sauce bottles

Pink and red bottles of paint, jars of paint brushes and tools, bottles lined up on a table.

Empty sauce containers make great paint bottles! These are especially handy if you buy paints that aren’t already in easy-squeeze bottles.

12. Use a sink strainer for pour art

Hand tipping jug of pink and blue pouring paint onto wood block next to plant.

Image credit: Mezza Luna Art


We love pouring art because the possibilities are endless. One technique we’ve recently been having a lot of fun with is using a sink strainer with pouring paints to create interesting patterns and effects.


We’d love to see what you’re creating so don’t forget to tag us on Instagram or Facebook using @montmarteart so that we can check it out.