Shopping for art supplies and books is one of the best things about being an artist but it can also be overwhelming if you haven't figured out your favorites yet. Below is a list of supplies that I recommend for young artists. If you feel that the supplies listed here are not advanced enough for your young artist, then check out the supplies I have listed for adults on my website. You can click on any item listed to go to a link on Amazon.com.
Acrylic Paint Set
Nice set of paints to get started.
Brushes for acrylics
Set of brushes
I have really fallen in love with the Stillman & Birn sketchbooks. For your young artist, I recommend the:
I like the medium size of 8.25 x 11.75 but you can give your artist any sketchbook and any size he or she prefers.
Waterproof ink pens in black ink, in various sizes. Many brands claim to be waterproof but end up smearing and ghosting ink when we paint over them so I prefer the Black, Pigma Micron Pens which are truly waterproof. It's good to have a variety of pen sizes for various weights of line. I like the:
For younger artists (under 13), I recommend having an extra fine point Sharpie instead of the more expensive Micron pens.
There are a lot of options out there. For the teen artist, I recommend:
I recommend Winsor & Newton Cotman Sketchers' Pocket Box 12-color Half Pan especially for sketching. If you are not sure how much you will enjoy sketch booking and don't want to spend much, this set is one of the best for a student level watercolor set.
Watercolor Brushes *
I recommend having at least three brushes of various sizes. For sketch booking it’s important that they are travel brushes (they will have caps on them so that they don’t get ruined when you put them in your bag).
A affordable and convenient option is the Pentel Arts Aquash Water Brush Assorted Tips, Pack of 3. These brushes can be filled with water and are quite convenient.
For painting in the studio, I recommend:
* A word about brushes. Simply Simmons is a great brand and the price can't be beat. Be sure you buy the watercolor brushes and not "all media" or oil/acrylic brushes. Please do not buy Artist's Loft brushes. I know these are easy to find and inexpensive but they lose hair immediately and are very frustrating to use.
I love the sketchbooks I listed at the top of this list but it would be good for your young artists to also have watercolor paper for paintings since the pages in the sketchbook are not meant to be torn out. I recommend watercolor paper 8 x 10 or bigger, 140 lbs, cold press. Avoid the 90 lbs. paper as it is too thin and is frustrating to use for watercolor painting. This is a good choice:
Other incidentals for a good set up for your young artist include:
A water container (like an empty yogurt container)
Mechanical pencil (so you don't have to worry about a sharpener)
A ruler (preferably clear)
A little bag to keep all your pens, pencil, erasers and ruler in. I love these little beauties because you can open them and stand up the bag like a cup to hold everything upright while you sketch.
And that makes for a wonderful art studio for both at home and in art classes!
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