What I use

I’ve been painting for a fair while now, and I’ve used almost every brush, paint and paper on the market. I’ve built my collection up over the last twenty years, and these my tested, tried and true favourites. I update this list as new additions and replacements happen. If you’re a beginner, I recommend starting with this list, and if you’re shopping on a budget, I’ve got you covered here.

Disclosure: Some of the links I share are affiliate links. This means if you follow the link and purchase an item, it won’t cost you more, but I may receive a commission for sharing it with you. I never recommend products I haven’t tried and loved, so if you enjoy my content and recommendations, choosing to purchase an item through one of these links can help support me in making more content. It’s a win-win!

Paint & Palettes

I use a range of paints from different manufacturers, including (but not limited to!) Daniel Smith, Winsor & Newton, Sennelier, Schmincke, Holbein Watercolours and Paul Ruben. It’s difficult for me to list every paint I own, as my collection has been slowly cobbled together over years.

Whilst I use tubes more than pans, I have listed some sets that I use and really recommend. The Daniel Smith Ultimate Mixing Palette is still my travel palette of choice, and I use the colours in their split primary palette on a near-daily basis. I teach using Paul Ruben and Holbein Watercolours (and I learned with Holbein’s colours as well!).

Daniel Smith Ultimate Mixing Palette
Paul Ruben 24 Colour Watercolour Set
Holbein Watercolours, Tube Paint Set
Daniel Smith Split Primary Palette
Plastic Palette with 33 wells, Belle Vous
6 well Stacking Palette,
Outus

Paper

Arches, hot-pressed paper, 300lbs pad
Arches, cold-pressed paper, 300lbs pad
Bockingford, cold-pressed paper, 140lbs

Paper Stretching

Jackson’s Art, Wooden Drawing Board
X-acto Crafting Knife with replaceable blades
Handover Gummed
Paper Painter’s Tape

Brushes

Natural Hair

Winsor & Newton,
Series 7
Escoda Reserva,
Series 1212
Silver Brush, Black Velvet, Series 3000s6

Synthetic Hair

Jackson’s Art, Studio
Synthetic Brush
Escoda Versatil,
Series 1548
DaVinci Casaneo Mop,
Series 498

Drawing

Staedtler 100, Mars Lumograph Pencils
Jackson’s Art, Soft White Putty Eraser
Brass Hovel Pencil Plane,
Makers Cabinet

Masking Fluid

Jackson’s Art, Liquid Masking Fluid in White
Blue Aqua watercolour Masking Fluid, Schmincke
Masking Fluid Applicator, Royal Soverign

Daylight Lamps

I live in the UK; which means daylight is a scarce resource, especially as the days get longer and darker in winter. I use daylight lamps to help prolong my painting hours. Daylight lamps are crucial, as traditional lamps have a yellow colour cast that can trick you into picking warmer colours than you intended.

Daylight Lamp: Smart Go Tabletop Lamp
Adjustable Daylight Lamp by the Daylight Company

Scanner & Wacom Tablet

Digitising your artwork is an important step if you want to be able to sell your artwork commercially. I have two Wacom tablets; a large Wacom Intuos Pro, and a Wacom Cintiq. These allow me to do essential touch ups, and to cut my artwork away from the background to make them ready for print. You don’t need both (I bought the Cintiq as part of my photography business years ago), and when treated well they last a lifetime. My Wacom tablet is almost eleven years old, and I use it daily in place of a computer mouse.

The quality of your scanner also makes a massive difference. In 2020, I upgraded my scanner to the Epson Perfection V600. It’s massively helped speed up my editing process, as it’s much more faithful to my original painting, which saves me time correcting colours in photoshop later.

Epson Perfection V600, Standalone Home Photo Scanner
Wacom Intuos Pro Graphic Tablet (Size: Small)

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