The Snowball Effect Of Art Supplies

I wouldn't want this guy at my house. Leprechaun, 1993.

I bought more art supplies. I know, I know, if you were running my budget–which you should since, clearly, I cannot be trusted–you would severely and rightly admonish me for spending more money on art supplies when I really have more pressing financial matters to attend to, but you have to spend to make. That’s definitely the truth with art, since it’s hard to art without supplies. This post is going to sound like a justification for my new purchases, which I assure you, it totally is.

That said, my last art supply order, while exciting and full of excellent acrylic, graphite, charcoal and carbon-based stuff, was mildly lacking. First, I didn’t get any drawing accoutrements like erasers, tortillons and stumps, or a pencil sharpener.

Both used for blending and shading unlike tortillas and stamps, but what you do with your tortillas is your business.
Tortillons and stumps are used for blending graphite and charcoal, unlike tortillas and stamps, but what you do with your tortillas is your business.
Image from

I didn’t get any, because I knew I had all of that stuff, but I forgot that most of my stuff is mysteriously missing and didn’t check to be sure. My drawing condiments seem to have disappeared along with the meat of my art supplies. Seriously, where did all my most treasured art supplies go? This is annoying. Where is my stuff, dammit? It’s like I’m starting over from scratch here and I can’t afford to start over from scratch.

The second part of my first art supply order deficiency is that I didn’t get anything to paint or draw on, which even as a novice, you might recognize as an important step in the creative process. It’s awfully hard to paint on air. It tends to fall right to the ground.

In my defense, I already had surfaces to put arty things on. At least, I used to. I had a fine Strathmore sketch book and a few canvas panels.

Strathmore. Period. There is no substitute.
Strathmore paper. There is no substitute.

But, like everything else, I can’t find the sketchbook or the canvas panels. What the eff? So, I bought these fine specimens made of Baltic birch:

Birch of the Baltic.

I’ve never painted on wood before. I usually paint on canvas, but honestly, I’m never happy with the smoothness of canvas, in that, it’s not very. Smooth, that is. So, I thought I’d try wood. They were on sale.

What I mean by smoothness is not this:


But this:
Decidedly unsmooth.

While the wood looks like this:

Potentially smooth, but I won’t be able to verify said smoothness until second order of art supplies is in my graspiness.

It should be better for detail work. Since the wood is unprimed, this, of course, meant that I had to buy gesso, which is a sort of primer for canvas and wood.


That’s all I bought besides some gouache in primary colors:

00821-single-3ww-lCyan, yellow, magenta, white, since I already had black. But really, that’s it. Oh, and a few more Loew-Cornell brushes since I seem to be missing half of my set:

06982-1509-3ww-lBut, those brushes are good for acrylic and gouache, my two favorite paint mediums!! And since I bought new brushes, I had to buy something to dilute and wash them in:

06934-1009-3ww-lOh, and I bought some pastel pencils for my sister since my arty leanings of late have made her want to be arty again. Knowing her, she wouldn’t buy them herself because it seems frivolous. She’s probably already forgotten about our conversation. It’s an early Christmas gift for her. Aren’t I unbelievably nice? I bought art supplies for someone else as a gift. Goddamn, if that don’t warm your cockles, whatever those are.


But, those pencils don’t count since they’re not for me. That’s all I bought. I swear, I think. Plus, I got 20% off everything and free shipping. So, when that stuff gets here, I shouldn’t have to spend another dime on art supplies until I run out again.

That is, unless the art supply leprechauns come visit me and steal all of my most used art supplies again. Say a little chant to keep the leprechauns away from my new art supplies, please.

I wouldn't want this guy at my house. Leprechaun, 1993.
Leprechaun, 1993.

Damn leprechauns.

All images in this post from the most honorable and venerated purveyor of arty supplies, Mr. Dick Blick, unless otherwise noted.