Midge, Can I ask you a few questions of how to keep them good as long as possible? Never owned a pair of high quality pencils before. Yes or no will suffice.. ;)
1. Mixing paint with it? Like x:y parts this and that....
2. Never let the bottom of the brush be covered by paint?
3. Use your saliva to maintain the tip after your done and cleaned them in water?
Sorry man, I missed this post somehow.
1) I never mix paint with the business end of the brush. all that twisting and swirling will bugger up your bristles and cause the brush to loose its shape much faster than usual. I have a crappy brush that I mix paint with, either that or I use the wooden end of the brush to mix the paint with.
2) This isn't a huge deal as long as you remove the dried paint after every session, not letting it really set up in the bottom of the bristle bunch.
3) Much to my wife's chagrin, as she thinks it is gross, I do use the saliva trick to make sure the brush is returned to its original shape after cleaning it with water.
Now that that is out of the way, new guy is looking good.