art is knowing ~ art is healing ~ art is playful FUN!

art supplies
a few of my favourite things

art supplies

a few of my favourite things

As an expressive arts educator/facilitator, I’ve collected a wide assortment of art supplies and tools over the years – from paper, paints, and canvas, to musical instruments, found objects, colourful fabrics, beads, yarns, and more. Almost everything and anything can become part of an expressive art piece or installation!

Though I have a large variety of art materials to choose from, it’s taken a few years of playful exploration to discover the things I just can’t do without – a journal, lots of images, scissors and glue. My own creative practice includes making my own books, playing with paper, collage and art journaling. 

Perhaps you’re drawn to paints, sketching, clay, sculpture, textiles, photography…there are so many creative outlets available! Many of these have their own unique supplies and ways in which to artistically express yourself. Approach them with curiosity and explore what feels right for you. 

Leaf divider

the journal & my fave 5

  • size
  • paper
  • binding
  • DIY

Journals come in many sizes and varieties, specific to what you’re using them for. I prefer 6x9, 7x10, no larger than 8x10 in size. Smaller than that is limiting, too big can feel like a lot of space to fill. Personally, I like to make and bind my own journals/books.

There are endless paper choices, each specific to what you're using them for. For art journaling, you'll want paper that will withstand whatever you put on it (water, paint, glue, etc) without falling apart. Look for 98 lb. Mixed Media paper.

Journal bindings range from spiral, glued, or sewn. Each have their pros and cons, again, depending on their purpose. Spiral journals are flexible; pages are often perforated and can be removed, but sometimes the spirals get in my way.

I love making my own books (in fact I'm somewhat addicted ;). The binding can be simple or ornate, again, depending on what the book or journal will be used for. DIY Bonus -  you form a relationship with your book/journal when you make it from start to finish - it truly becomes your creative companion!

images

2. images

scissors

3. scissors

rulers

4. ruler

glue and paste

5. glue

brushes

brushes

brushes

just a few brushes in various sizes - fingers work great too!
brayer

brayer

brayer

to roll out paint and air bubbles
gel medium

gel medium

gel medium

can be used as a sealer and as an adhesive
white gesso

gesso

gesso

provides background cover and grit for paint; also comes in black and clear but white is used most often
acrylic paints

acrylic paints

acrylic paints

inexpensive craft paint is fine to use. For starters, get a white, a cream, a dark grey, and several of your favourite colours.
markers

markers

markers

wide range of price and colours
white pens

white pens

white pens

• several fine and medium tip
• correction pen from office supply store (my fave white!)
black markers

black pens

black pens

• a few fine and medium tip
• Uni-ball micro-point roller pen
cart

make it mobile

make it mobile

A handled tote or a diaper bag work great as portable art supply bags (think about all those pockets!), and a wheeled cart makes for a great mobile studio so that you can create from anywhere in your home.
spray inks

spray inks

spray inks

fun for adding drips, drizzles and spritzes, but watered down paint works too.

Tip

Start collecting images and words to include in your journal and art. These can come from many sources – old books & magazines, music and dictionary pages, and so on. Particularly watch for those that you’re drawn to, as well as those that repulse you. You can organize and store your words & images in clear bags or an accordian file folder.

Additional Supplies

Add additional art supplies as your interest, curiosity and budget allows. Stencils, stamp pads, pan pastels, etc…the list goes on!

Play and experiment – see what you like and remember, there are no rules!

Check around home for:

  • a plastic tablecloth or old towel to protect the surface you’re working on;
  • a water bowl and plastic lids you can use as palette trays;
  • old credit/gift cards to spread paint around;
  • bull-dog clips to hold pages down;
  • rags, paper towels and wet wipes;
  • parchment or wax paper to protect journal pages;
  • an apron or old shirt to protect your clothes;
  • a heat gun or blow dryer to speed up the drying process;
  • a spray bottle filled with water.

note

The art supplies I’ve listed are ones I use most often in my journals and art making. Unless indicated, I don’t favour one brand over another. There’s something available for every budget. Experiment to find what you prefer.

journal hero

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thank you!

Rosann