Palette knife

A palette knife is a blunt tool used for mixing or applying paint, with a flexible steel blade. It is primarily used for mixing paint colors, paste, etc., or for marbling, decorative endpapers, etc. The "palette" in the name is a reference to an artist's palette which is used for mixing oil paint and acrylic paints. Art knives come primarily in two types: palette knife resembling a putty knife with a rounded tip, suited for mixing paints on the palette; painting knife with a pointed tip, lowered or "cranked" like a trowel, suited for painting on canvas. While palette knives are manufactured without sharpened cutting edges, with prolonged use they may become "sharpened" by the action of abrasive pigments such as earth colors. Palette knives are also used in cooking, where their flexibility allows them to easily slide underneath pastries or other items. See frosting spatula. A palette (pron.: /?p?l?t/), in the original sense of the word, is a rigid, flat surface on which a painter arranges and mixes paints. A palette is usually made of wood, plastic, ceramic, or other hard, inert, nonporous material, and can vary greatly in size and shape. The most commonly known type of painter's palette is made of a thin wood board designed to be held in the artist's hand and rest on the artist's arm. Watercolor palettes are generally made of plastic or porcelain with rectangular or wheel format with built in wells and mixing areas for colors. From the original, literal sense above came a figurative sense by extension, referring to a selection of colors, as used in a specific art object or in a group of works comprising a visual style. This second, figurative sense is the one extended in the digital era to the computing senses of "palette". [edit]Wet palette A wet palette is a sealable container with a layer of absorbent material (such as tissue paper or sponge) that can be soaked with water and a semi-permeable membrane (such as parchment, greaseproof paper or baking paper (silicone paper)) over that. The paint sits on the membrane and is kept wet by osmosis. Wet palettes can be bought, but are easily made. Paper marbling is a method of aqueous surface design, which can produce patterns similar to smooth marble or other stone. The patterns are the result of color floated on either plain water or a viscous solution known as size, and then carefully transferred to an absorbent surface, such as paper or fabric. Through several centuries, people have applied marbled materials to a variety of surfaces. It is often employed as a writing surface for calligraphy, and especially book covers and endpapers in bookbinding and stationery. Part of its appeal is that each print is a unique monotype.