Watercolor Supplies for Beginners




For everyone who starts painting with watercolors, there are a lot of questions that come into mind. I have talked about them in my previous post. If you haven't read the post , you can click here to read about the doubts a beginner can have and how to overcome them.


In this post I will cover one Big Question among those and that is SUPPLIES. Yes spending on watercolor paints, brushes and paper is intimidating especially when you are just starting out. So I thought of listing out the supplies which I have personally used and would recommend for any beginner. I hope it will help you in some way in starting your watercolor journey with a relief.


What Supplies Do I need to Start ?


To start painting, you need:

  1. Watercolor Paper (recommended Cold Pressed at least 300 GSM)

  2. A Brush ( A round brush is perfect to start)

  3. Watercolor Paints(You can start with 3 primary colors)

  4. One or two jars of water

  5. A cotton rag or paper towel

  6. A palette

  7. A pencil and eraser( optional)


Now I am going to list out the supplies which are not rich in quality but decent enough that will not make you feel frustrated. Please remember, there is a huge difference between cheap and expensive materials. Basically, you will find two types of supplies in the market:


  1. Student Grade: Student grade watercolor supplies are inexpensive and a bit low in quality(of course each brand is different). They are absolutely fine to start with but eventually you will likely be more interested in investing in professional grade supplies.

  2. Artist / Professional Grade: Professional grade supplies compared to student grade are high in quality, last long and result in really good results.



In this post I am providing you with a list of Student grade supplies that I recommend if you don't want to jump right into high quality and expensive tools initially.


1. Paper: As a beginner I will recommend to use Cold Pressed paper rather than Hot pressed as it may tricky to control water on a hot pressed paper initially. I will explain in detail about the paper types in my upcoming post.

  • CANSON XL: There are many brands but my most used and reliable is Canson XL Cold pressed Paper. This paper is not too toothy, has a nice texture and can hold enough water. I use it all the time. And it is the most inexpensive paper I have seen so far. You can buy it on Amazon, Blick Art Stores and even at Walmart.

  • Strathmore 400 Series: This paper has a more prominent texture than Canson XL. This is also a good option for beginners. You can buy it at Blick Stores, Amazon and other art supply stores.

2. Paints: Student grade paints are perfect for a start but just keep in mind they have less pigment and more fillers as compared to artist quality paints. Here are some of my recommendations:

  1. Winsor and Newton Cotman Tubes

  2. Winsor and Newton Cotman Pan set

  3. Van Gogh Watercolors

  4. Koi watercolors tubes

  5. Sakura Koi Pan set

  6. Reeves watercolor tubes


3. Brushes : Brush is one such supply that becomes your best friend and it doesn't need replacement for years if taken care of properly. To start with you can just go for 1-2 brushes. Round brushes size 6 and 8 are the most versatile and are perfect to start with. For large washes like in landscapes, you can buy large quill or flat brushes. If you invest in a good brush initially, you will definitely excel in your craft.


But if you are still not sure whether you want to invest in expensive brushes, I am just listing some of the decent brushes here. Here is a list of brands which many artists love to use:

  1. Winsor and Newton Cotman Brushes

  2. Simply Simmons

  3. Raphael Soft Aqua

  4. Princeton Velvetouch Series


3. Palette : Palette is completely a personal choice. I use a variety of palettes from plastic to ceramic ones. I am listing some of the decent quality palettes :


  1. Darice Art Pallete

  2. 18 Wells Foldable Palette

  3. Yasutomo Folding Watercolor Palette

  4. 7-Well Flower palette


This was a short intro to the basic supplies which anyone can just start with the painting. If you would like to know more in detail about supplies, papers, paints and have any questions, you can simply SEND ME A MESSAGE.


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