Supplies: time, money, and a big smile
- 1.1.A1 Make a Storage Portfolio
- 1.1.R3 Examining Graphite and Grades
- 1.1.R4 Seeing Grades in Drawings
- 1.1.R5 Picking out Graphite Pencils
- 1.1.R6 Sketchbooks and Drawing Papers
- 1.1.R7 Check Up on the Tooth of Papers
- 1.1.R8 Tools for Sharpening and Erasing
- 1.1.R9 Checking Out Charcoal
Choose the best quality supplies that you can comfortably afford.
As with most activities, the better your tools are, the happier you are with the outcome. Check out art supply stores in your community and online and compare products and prices before you buy anything.
Sketchbook and/or Drawing Paper (Figure 1)
Hard cover sketchbooks are much more durable than soft cover sketchbooks, although they tend to be costlier. In addition, they can act as a solid surface to draw on when you're away from a table. Choose a size that is easy to transport when you travel. Avoid sketchbooks that are very small, however; as they limit your drawing options. Also, select paper that's acid-free or your drawings will deteriorate quickly.
Portfolio Case (Figure 2)
You can choose from many different sizes and types of portfolio cases; ranging from simple, inexpensive cardboard to high-quality, expensive leather.
Professional Quality Graphite Pencils (Figure 3)
Pencils are your most important drawing tools, so you should purchase the best quality you can afford.
Choose a selection of both H and B grades of pencils, including 2H, HB, 2B, 4B, and 6B. With this combination of pencils, you can create a broad range of values in your drawings.
Two Types of Art Erasers (Figure 4)
A vinyl eraser is gentle on the surface of your paper and effective for erasing sections of drawings.
A kneaded eraser can be molded to a point or wedge and is effective for erasing or lightening sections of drawings.
Pencil Sharpener and Sandpaper Block (Figure 5)
Choose a hand-held metal pencil sharpener that's simple, inexpensive, sturdy, and ideally, has two openings (for both regular and oversized pencils). Pick up a few sandpaper blocks with tear-off sheets designed to sharpen just the pencil points so that the wooden sections of your pencils won't wear down as quickly.
Consider adding an art manikin to your shopping list (Figure 102). Then you'll also have your first drawing subject!
Pencil Case and/or Storage Container (Figure 6)
A large zippered pencil case is portable and can keep track of small drawing supplies such as pencils, erasers, and sharpeners. A plastic or wooden container or a desk drawer is another option when you only draw in one location.
Ruler (Figure 6)
A ruler comes in handy for drawing grids and outlining drawing spaces.
Metal rulers with a beveled edge may be a little more expensive than other rulers, but they last longer, are easier to clean, and are less likely to smudge your drawing as you work.
Have fun wandering through art supply stores and websites and check out the different drawing materials and products currently available.
Eventually, you may want to purchase additional supplies, such as mechanical pencils and a drawing board, and charcoal sticks. Keep in mind, however, that you don't need to spend a lot of money on supplies to learn how to draw well.
Charcoal Pencils and Sticks (Figure 7)
Charcoal is an amazing medium for sketching from life and creating drawings in which you draw with erasers.
Select both charcoal pencils and sticks. Oh - and a few extra erasers may come in handy!