The quality, availability, and variety of modern-day art supplies are like nothing the old masters imagined.
Unfortunately, there are so many choices, and sorting through it all can make one’s head spin.
But you don’t need every fancy color or gizmo the art suppliers come up with so they can grab your money. A limited selection of tools and materials and you’re set.
My recommendation is to experiment and narrow it down. Simplify your process, and remember, the real work is done by the artist, not the tools.
Old Holland, Gamblin, Williamsburg, Vasari
(Avoid student-grade oils…I beg you)
Holland Mixed White # 2,
Titanium White (other brands)
Yellow Ochre Light
Raw Sienna Deep
Cadmium Red Light
Prussian Blue (optional)
Blockx Brand Naples Yellow (recommended as it’s a little stronger than other brands of Naples Yellow)
Canvas or Wood Panels
Stretched Linen Canvas or Wood Panel
Size–as Large as You’re Comfortable With
Toning (Grounding) the Painting Surface
-Dampen surface with Gamsol
-Mix equal parts of Ivory Black and Raw Sienna
-Spread small amount of paint mixture around the canvas
-Dampen a cotton cloth with Gamsol
-Rub the paint into the weave of the canvas with the dampened cloth.
-Use bold strokes and let the color be uneven & transparent. Tone should be a warm, medium-light grey
-Let dry for at least 48 hrs.
Metal Medium Cups
Small Plastic Bag for Trash
Gamsol + Stand Oil
-Start with pure Gamsol for the first painting session
-Gradually increase the amount of stand oil in subsequent sessions. A.K.A., Fat Over Lean-first 10% stand oil, then 20%, etc.
Robert Simmons Bristle Filberts:
# 2, 6, 8, 10,12 (at least two of each, the more the better and the bigger is better)
Palette Knife, Triangular-Shaped
Wood Palette, Oil out with Linseed Oil (if new)
Sketch Paper (any kind, for quick sketches)
For Finished Drawings: Strathmore 400, or Arches Watercolor Paper (Hot Press)
Clipboard-to Mount Paper
Soft Vine Charcoal: Windsor Newton or Grumbacher
General’s Charcoal Pencils-2B & 4b
Graphite Pencils-2H H, HB, 2B
Single-Edge Razor Blades for Sharpening