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Art Supplies for the Budding Artist

Still looking for holiday presents for your favorite budding artist? These are the essential drawing art supplies I can’t live without! Many of these are on my newly updated Recommended Supplies list, however, some of these are not because they go beyond my basic supplies for drawing lessons. Nothing beats the gift of art supplies, because it is the gift of an experience- something that will reward the receiver for much longer than just the holiday season, and will give your favorite person a learned skill that lasts. Here are my most coveted tools, with links to easy online suppliers.

Laurie’s Favorite Art Tools

For the iPad Artist:

Adonit Jot Pro Fine Point Stylus: iPad stylus that has a very fine tip that simulates a pen/pencil, so no more clumsy fingers or foam tip stylus problems! About $25-30.

Sketches iPad app: A great FREE app that has pens/paintbrushes/colors included. Free.

Paper 53 iPad app: A popular drawing app that has a great following and gallery online. App is free, but you have to buy more tools/colors, etc.

 

For the Pencil Artist:

Stonehenge Paper: Buy it in all sizes of drawing pads or by the sheet and tear it down to the right size. This is a luscious cotton printmaker’s paper that is great for wet and dry mediums. It is my go to paper for all of my own artwork. Various prices. Worth the extra expense for purposeful projects.

X-Acto Suction Pencil Sharpener: This is the only pencil sharpener I use when making my own drawings. It is superior to any other sharpener I’ve ever used! The blades stay sharp and create the finest point on a pencil I’ve ever seen. Unlike electric pencil sharpeners you have more control, can see the point while you are sharpening the pencil and can open the device to remove broken leads that get jammed in the sharpener- which is common when using soft artist pencils. I love you, X-Acto, for making this sharpener! About $12. Worth every penny!

Refills for your Tuff Stuff Eraser Stick: Everyone who works with me knows the joy of this eraser! But they also know the dismay when they run out of the erasers. Refills are always always always needed!

Caran d’Ache Colored Pencils and Watercolor Pencils: The tip top of the line colored pencils. Soft and creamy, and high quality. They will set you back, and maybe aren’t recommended for kids because of that. But if you’re getting serious about color work, treat yo-self! These pencils run about $3-5 per pencil, but you can often get sales from online suppliers which are worth seeking out in this case/

Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils: These are a great quality for the price, and I’d recommend them for both kids and adults who aren’t certain they want to pursue work in color. The problem with the low quality colored pencil sets you can buy at the grocery store and the ones marketed for kids at craft stores is the colors are hard and don’t layer well, and the wood and colored center will often break when sharpening. You really do get what you pay for in a pencil. Spend a little extra and save yourself a lot of irritation! I advise that you buy the Premier or Softcore Prismacolors which are soft and easy to layer, instead of the Verithin Prismacolors which are hard and as the name states, very thin. Prismacolors run about $1 per pencil.

Prismacolor Colorless Blenders: Go ahead and buy a couple of these while you’re buying colored pencils. Colorless blenders have the wax and binders of colored pencils without the pigment. They help to blend colors and burnish your colors when drawing. They are sometimes hard to find in town, so if you’re already paying for shipping for a bigger purchase, add a few of these to your order. About $1 per pencil.