There are just a few supplies you need when using acrylics for your next painting. You can use modest supplies to the most expensive and obscure painting supplies any artist can devour. Whichever way you decide to go you must have the basics. So, let’s start with the first need, the paint.
- Acrylic Paint
I know this is captain obvious, but when painting with acrylic paint, make sure you get the best paint. No cheap thin paint from Walmart, please! You would be surprised how many people come to my workshops with cheap paint that they buy from Walmart. I just want to scream!!!
One of the best places to get acrylic paint is from your local art supply store. If you don’t have a local art supply store you can always begin online. One of the most popular supply stores online is Blick Art Supply. I have been buying from them ever since grade school when my mom had to buy supplies for me while I attended a Fine Arts school. If you are considering buying online the best places to purchase acrylic paint are Amazon, Blick Art Supply, Jerry Artarama and Mister Art. I have purchased supplies from most of these companies. What I like most about Amazon is that I can read the reviews on different paints to see what other artists are saying about the different acrylic paints sets.
2. Brush or Palette Knife
Finding the best paint brush for acrylics can be a little bit overwhelming but if you know the basics you will do just fine. There are so many types of brushes made by different brands out there that the novice painter can easily get frustrated. I would suggest that you purchase brushes that have either a natural or synthetic bristle with a good handle. I prefer long handle brushes for most of my paintings. The only time I paint with a smaller handle brush is when I paint small tight areas within a painting. There are eight types of brushes you can use with acrylic paint and each one is for a particular use.
There are several mediums out there for artist to use. Now I am not going to go into any of them but you have large amount of flexibility with the different types of mediums out there. There are mediums that will thicken your acrylic paint, mat your acrylic paint, gloss your acrylic paint and even give your acrylic paint more texture and consistency. Some of the best mediums for acrylic paints can be found here.
4. Jug of water
Always, I mean always, have water when you are using acrylics. You will need it when you are mixing colors, rinsing a brush or thinning paint. Now you can put water in cups or jars, but just be aware that sometimes they may spill when you are dipping your brush in the water. I like to use water basins because they are sturdy, wide and square. They’re not as high as a tall glass or cup, so tipping the basin over won’t ever happen.
- Paper towels
Last but not least, paper towels can be used to dry your brush off, wipe spills and even wet paint from your arm when painting. This may sound intuitive, but you would not believe how many artists forget this simple supply. I recommend getting a heavy duty towel that you find at your local hardware store. They cost about five bucks, but it is well worth it. These paper towels are heavy and made for projects such as painting.
There could be more added to this list but these are the main supplies I recommend. Please don’t be offended if the list that I mentioned seem trite. My goal was to provide information for the absolute beginner.
Over the years I evolved from painting with a brush to a palette knife. If you look at most of my works, they are all mostly done with a palette knife. I love how the palette knife allows you to create interesting textures that’s difficult to do with the brush. Now, don’t let me mislead you, I do still love painting with brush. I love how the paint brush feels and how my paint moves across my surface using the brush. I suggest trying different tools, brushes and palette knives and see which one you like. The cool thing about the palette knife is that if you are not trying to learn how to paint very detail painting and just want to paint free and very subjective the palette knife is a great start. Since you are painting with a blade it is impossible to paint a detailed painting, ultimately meaning that you are only going to paint a very subjective painting.