Saturday, May 26, 2012

Basic Art Supplies

Time to clean the 'ole Palette

I'm not sure if I'm breaking a cardinal sin by not washing my palette every time I use it, but I feel a little guilty. It's one of those things they tried to hammer into my head back in College.

Unlike "Keep your pencil sharp", which I totally understand, cleaning the palette and using "new" paint every time feels like a waste to me. Maybe they were just making sure our paint wasn't getting "muddy", which does happen. The pigment does lose some of its sharpness, but, as I tend to use a lot of earth tones, it usually doesn't hurt my work too much.

I'm due for a trip to an art supply store. Unfortunately, the closest "affordable" shop (and I say that loosely, because I only go, coupon in-hand) is Michaels, which is really a craft store.

Not looking too bad in the paint department 
Are you ever looking for a pencil and all you find are the little 'nubs?
I need some new pencils. I have no idea where they wander off to, because I swear I just purchased a bunch not long ago. Also, HB? This must be an old guy, because as of late it's been H all the way!

A major pet peeve of mine is sharpening a pencil and the "lead" breaks. 
Sharpen, break. Sharpen, break. Just when I think I've got a great, sharp tip - - it falls out or breaks off, and then all of a sudden a perfectly new pencil is more than halfway gone and I haven't even used it yet! 

Have any of you returned a pencil for this reason? I'm thinking the next time it happens I'll bring the little 'nub back and complain. 
Can you imagine? LOL.

My fave three, getting a bit scruffy
Speaking of sharp tips...My fave three paintbrushes are starting to lose their tight, smooth bristles. They're getting a little scruffy. 

Heaven knows, you can't get sharp details with a scruffy brush. So, I will have to retire these guys to my brush box. 
I'm accumulating old brushes that are slightly worn, but I don't have the heart to let my kids use them, because I don't want them to be totally demolished.  I keep thinking, I'll use them again, but unless I get more painterly and less "tight" with my work, they'll have to stay in hibernation for a while. 

One of many vases of found feathers

As for tonight, I'm going to try to get some more feather studies done!

What basic supplies do you use for your work?


  1. I'm with you, Jody. Can't imagine washing my palette each time. It would seem extraordinarily wasteful and pointless. I do swab the surface of my colours every now and then with a clean, wet brush if they seem to have picked up too much other colour. Curry's Art Store (in Toronto) is lovely to deal with online. They often have sales and pack so carefully. Your vase of feathers is so beautiful.

  2. Kathleen,
    I love Curry's! We sometimes stop by the Oakville location on our way back from visiting my parents. You're the second person to mention they have great shipping. Will check it out!! :)

  3. Curry's had a store near here for a short while. The big art store chain here is Omer deSerres which is fine but Curry's always seems less fancy but more serious(if you know what I mean). I always went to Curry's when I lived in Toronto so it was nice when they opened here, but online is the next best thing!


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