Materials list - Painting Alla Prima Still Life
If you’re a beginner, knowing what materials to buy can be daunting. If you have no supplies at all, or aren’t sure what to bring, then we recommend you buy the following.
Note that this list should be seen as a good starting point rather than precise requirements. Due to the nature of still life painting, we can't predict which colours you will use (for example, a blue set up will need more blue pigments, and so on). If you are completely new to oils, we can recommend both Daler&Rowney and Winsor&Newton as economical beginners brands. We’ve included links to Jackson’s Art Shop, but most of these supplies are available from other outlets too.
Getting started in oil paints can be expensive, but much of this equipment should last you for years. If you are an intermediate painter, then treat the following list as a guideline – feel free to bring along different brands or additional materials. The more we have to work with, the better!
- Please bring as many objects as you’d like to paint. Bear in mind that simple, organic shapes are easier to paint than complex, patterned or symmetrical objects. Take a look at Lizet's online alla prima classes if you are a Raw Umber subscriber and would like some inspiration!
- A few medium sized canvas boards of a reputable brand. For instance, try these.
- Alizarin Crimson (optional)
- 2 x Dipper
- A range of synthetic brushes with long handles, for instance, a brush set like this
- A few Long Flat Hog Brushes
- 2 x Size 0 Synthetic Filberts
- Alternatively, this starter brush set should have everything you need
- 2 x Jam jars for keeping brushes in
- Pen and paper to take notes
- Low-odour solvent (eg Sansodor). Note that turpentine is not permitted in the studio.
- Medium (linseed or walnut oil, optional)
- Kitchen roll
Some paints contain heavy metals and are potentially toxic if inhaled or ingested. In practice, good studio habits (such as not licking brush tips, and taking precautions when sanding used canvases) reduce the risks. If, however, you have a particular reason to be concerned (for example, if you may be pregnant) then e-mail us and we can recommend alternatives.
If you buy a handheld palette, make sure you buy the correct handed palette – a palette to hold in your left hand if you’re right-handed, and vice versa. If your budget permits it, we recommend you buy a New Wave palette – these are lightweight, balanced and come pre-varnished. If you buy an unvarnished palette then you’ll need to rub linseed oil on daily for a few days before you can use it. Alternatively, we have trolleys in the studio for those who prefer a glass palette or similar.