The other day I shared a picture of what was on my desk on Facebook and Instagram. I have posted it above. I always think it is fun to see what other people are working on and what art supplies they like to use. What is on your desk? I’d love to see a picture if you can post a link! Also, what are some of your favorite art supplies?
My thoughts on art supplies (if you want to know my take on an art supply that I haven’t listed, please feel free to ask). You don’t have to agree with my opinions. My opinions are derived from actual use of the products I mention here. I am not getting paid by any of these companies to give my opinion.
Watercolor Paper: The Strathmore and Canson watercolor paper pads are okay for making ATCs (I use Canson 140lb Cold-Pressed for my ATCs). If you were making full-size paintings (especially if you plan to sell them), I would recommend the following papers: Arches, Kilimanjaro, and Fabriano Artistico in either 140 lb (300gms) or 300 lb.
Watercolor Paint: You truly get what you pay for! There is more pigment and less filler in professional grade watercolor paint vice student grade, which have more filler and less pigment. Any professional artist grade brand of watercolor paint should be fine. Here are some of my favorite brands: Daniel Smith, Holbein, Sennelier, Schminke, M. Graham & Co., Winsor & Newton (not Cottman-that is it’s student-grade line and contains more filler and less pigment), Grumbacher (not Academy-that is it’s student-grade line), and Lukas.
Acrylic Paint: I used to use craft paint and student grade paint until I tried professional grade. For Acrylics I typically use Golden and Liquitex (not Liquitex Basic as that is student-grade). I also use both Golden and Liquitex acrylic mediums.
Watercolor Paint Brushes: Escoda Prado Sintetico (any brush by this brand, but I exclusively use the No. 8 Round), Princeton Neptune (again any brush by this brand, but I use the No. 8 Round, No. 6 Quill, and ¾ Dagger), Simply Simmons (No.s 2, 4 and 6 Rounds, and ½” Flat), Grumbacher Goldenedge (1-1/2” Wash), Silver Black Velvet (1” Flat), Winsor & Newton California (3/4” No. 2 Ox Hair), Richeson Professional-Steve Quiller (No. 10 Round), Ebony Splendor Rigger Creative Mark (No.s 0 and 3), Cheap Joe’s Fritch Scrubber (No.s 4, 6, and 16), and a really old size 14-16 Round that I have no idea what brand it is because all of the paint has come off the handle and it is the wood underneath is exposed.
Acrylic Paint Brushes: These are not as important to me as my watercolor brushes. I mostly use flats and rounds. Some of the brands I have are: Simply Simmons, Royal Soft-Grip, Princeton Art & Brush Co., Loew-Cornell, Robert Simmons Sapphire, and Protégé.
Alcohol-Based Markers: I like Copic Sketch markers and Prismacolor Premier markers equally. I have and use both. I have also tried Spectrum Noir markers and the newer Touch markers by Shin Han Art, but I still prefer the Copics and Prismacolors.
Other Markers: I use the Stabilo Point 88 fine 0.4 markers; these are water-based and can be used to shade by putting a wet brush to your ink line. I also use the Faber-Castell Pitt Artist pens, which actually contain India Ink; they are permanent once dry. Another good choice is the Staedtler Triplus Fineliner pens.
Fine Lines Pen: I exclusively use the Rotring Rapidograph .10. It is not cheap, but also offers replacement ink cartridges and nibs. I especially like that the nib is metal and not a felt tip.
Outlining Pens: Copic Multiners, Copic Multiliner SPs (refillable and replacement nibs available), Pitt Artist Pens, Sakura Micron Pigma Pens, and Prismacolor Premier Illustration Markers, and Staedtler Pigment Liner Fineliner pens. The only problem is that all of these are felt tip and I have a heavy hand when it comes to drawing so none of them last me very long and the felt tips get destroyed quickly!
Calligraphy and Writing Pens: Tombow Calligraphy Pen (WS-BH), Brush Pen No. 22 (I don’t know the brand because it is written in Japanese (it resembles a water-brush except it is filled with black ink), Wink of Luna and Wink of Stella brush pens, Zig Art & Graphic Twin pen (brush tip end), Copic Sketch Markers (brush tip end), and Lamy Safari Fountain Pen.
Gel Pens: Sakura Gelly Roll (metallic-gold & silver, moonlight meteor-clear glitter, and white), Sakura Glaze, and Sakura Soufflé).
Paint Pens: Molotow One4All Acrylic Paint Pens and Sharpie Water-Based Paint Pens.
Fountain Pen Ink: Noodler’s Inks (favorite: Heart of Darkness-bulletproof black ink).
Dip Pen Ink: Dr. Ph. Marten’s Bombay India Inks and Higgin’s India Ink.
Mechanical Pencils: Staedtler (size 0.5 with H2 lead and 0.7 with HB lead), KOH-I-NOOR Rapidomatic (size 0.5 with H2 lead), and Artisto DK2 (size 0.5 with HB lead).
Wood Pencils: Staedtler Mars Lumograph (drawing set), Caran d’Ache Black Wood 499 HB (a big fat pencil great for transfering graphite lines onto paper and linoleum), Stabilo All Aquarellable (Black and White), Prismacolor Ebony, and water-soluble graphite (any brand).
Colored Pencils: Prismacolor Premier.
Watercolor Pencils: Prismacolor Premier, Derwent Inktense, and Derwent Graphitint.
Oil Pastels: Sennelier Artist Oil Pastels.
Water-Soluble Pastels: Caran d’ache Neocolor IIs (water-soluble wax pastels) and Portfolio by Crayola (water-soluble oil pastels).