My Favorite Thing – Thomas Jefferson Kitts

The Ubiquitous All-purpose Palette Knife

unknownWhen I first saw this palette knife in the hands of Richard Schmid a lightbulb went off. Years later, I have found this knife to be the most useful tool ever. I can rapidly mix my colors and paint with it, and it is substantial enough to scrape a wet or dry passage of paint down to the underlying ground. I prefer this knife because the blade is metal, wedge-shaped, and has an ‘off-set’ handle. The blade itself is about 1 inch wide at the base and about 3 inches in length. The width allows me to mix a lot of color quickly and the tip makes short work of applying a highlight. The length allows me to laid down an incredibly sharp line or crisp edge on the rare occasion I need one, far thinner than any rigger can create. I use this knife to mix my neutral light tints, such as flesh and snow, which keeps those delicate colors clean, and I use it to scrape off the inevitable failure when they occur. And yes, I abuse this knife constantly. I drop it often and clean my palette with it at the end of the day. (Or a week later, to admit the truth…ha!) And yes, the offset handle keeps my knuckles out of the paint – a constant hazard for me. These knives are so cheap I give them away in my workshops.

I have even sharpened the edge of the blade like a chisel, to give it the ability to cut through a crusty paint film without digging into the ground below. You can read about it here

Upcoming OPA Events

30th Annual National Juried Exhibition 30th Annual National Juried Exhibition
The Thirtieth National Exhibition and Convention will be hosted by the California Center for the Arts, Escondido Museum, located in Escondido, California, from April 9 through May 16, 2021. Learn More!
First Annual Student Art Competition First Annual Student Art Competition
The First Annual Student Art Competition is from January 15 - February 15, 2021 and will be open to Student between the ages of 14 to 22 only. Learn More!
OPA Spring 2021 Online Showcase OPA Spring 2021 Online Showcase
The Spring 2021 Online Showcase is from March 1 - May 15, 2021 and will be open to Associate members only. Learn More!