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Art Encyclopedia - Airbrush

Art information > Art Encyclopedia > A > Airbrush

An airbrush is an air-operated tool that sprays various media including ink, dye and paint by a process called atomization. The first airbrush was invented by American Abner Peeler in 1879.

The first airbrush by Peeler was rather crude and based on a number of spare parts in a jeweler's workshop and it used a hand operated compressor. After four years of further development a more practical device was developed and in 1893 the first modern type airbrush was introduced. The airbrush looked like a pen and was essentially the same as the modern day airbrush.

An airbrush works by passing a stream of fast moving (compressed) air through a venturi, which creates a local reduction in air pressure that allows paint to be pulled up from an interconnected reservoir at normal atmospheric pressure. The high velocity of the air atomizes the paint into very tiny droplets as it blows past a very fine paint-metering component. The paint is carried onto paper or other surface. The operator controls the amount of paint using a variable trigger which opens more or less a very fine tapered needle that is the control element of the paint-metering component. An extremely fine degree of atomization is what allows an artist to create such smooth blending effects using the airbrush. | Contact Us | List Your Art | List Your Art Gallery | Site Map

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