'I like' Friday, Creativity, Uncategorized
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‘I Like’ Friday -the art supplies edition

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Art supplies how I love them! This week I have been using all kinds of things and I thought I would share my favorites with you.  Hopefully you can share some of your favorites or coveted supplies (I have plenty of ‘wish list’ stuff myself).

Paints – I often start with a background using acrylic paints in my art journal which is a good and a bad thing. Good because I don’t have a scary white page glaring at me, and I have something to work with and on. Bad because if I want to sketch something on the page, there is no erasing, no going back.  Of course there is more paint to go over a mistake if necessary!

I bought a set of pearlescent watercolors this week and I like the subdued colours and the gentle sparkle. Kind of what I aim for in life – subdued colours and a gentle sparkle!  Now I am after some metallic watercolors which look fabulous.

Journals – I always have more than one sketchbook on the go, one to work in, another to work in while the first page/background dries, a small one for toting around for sketching on the go and big ones for lots of splashing about and getting messy. My favorites at the moment are Dylusions Creative Journal in big, small and square and Moleskine Art Plus small sketchbook which has nice thick paper. The Dylusions journal has super thick and smooth paper and a handy dandy envelope inside the front cover to store those important collage papers and ephemra.

I recently made a couple of sketchbooks which are super fun to use as well as to make in the first place as you chose what paper goes into them.

Pens – I never draw in pencil first because I don’t like the look of the pencil as a main drawing tool or under paint. So I dive in with a pen or paint.  This sounds like a foolish method, but it certainly makes me think about what I am drawing and where the next line or brushstroke is going. It usually works for me, if I make a mistake I can always turn the page and go again.

Sometimes I will outline with pen and fill in with a brush pen like a Koi Brush Marker or a Tombow brush pen. Sometimes I will use paint first or brush marker first to get the shape, then I will draw in a fine pen to add detail.  For the outline I will usually use Micron pens because they are waterproof and won’t run or smudge when I add wet paint or a brush marker for colour.

Index cards – Index cards come in a variety of sizes and they are so easy to work on with almost no pressure.  They are very satisfying to draw onto because you get a big pile of finished cards in no time, especially if you are using them to develop pattern or doodle ideas.  They can also be all laid out together so that you can see where you are heading and pick out some favorites to work on further. Also, they are cheap as chips!

Books – As well as all of the supplies, I really like a good art technique/idea book. I love books which have lots of inspiration and ideas, almost more than the ‘how-to’ aspect. A couple of the best books I have seen lately are –  Brave, Intuitive Painting by Flora Bowley, 20 Ways to Draw Everything by Lisa Congdon, Julia Kuo and Eloise Renouf.

‘Brave, Intuitive Painting’ just makes you want to grab colours and canvases and paint and paint and paint! I must admit that I really only paint in my sketchbooks and journals, maybe I should have a go on a canvas. Would the pressure be too much? Maybe I should try and see…. Watch this space.

’20 Ways to Draw Everything’ makes you want to fill sketchbooks and really examine the natural world around us. It is not strictly ‘draw everything’, just everything nature. No cars, trucks, household objects or people in here, you just have to figure them out for yourself!!

Go to your library and see what ace books you can find!

Happy Happy Friday x


  1. Lovely insight into your process Clare. I feel like trying some index cards now!

    I’ve been doing lots more drawing of late and really enjoyed it. Need to get it in my journal though…

    • Yes, have a go with index cards, no pressure because they are small and they always seem to look good, like a mini canvas! I have become a lot less precious with my journals and sketchbooks, I just open them up and slap down some color or a sketch!

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