Friday, April 16, 2010

My favorites-easel, palettes, brushes, and storage

I thought you might like to see how I modified a very inexpensive small table easel to fit my needs for painting my miniatures and some of my favorite studio items as well.

This first photo is my easel as it looks when I'm painting- you really can't see much. Beneath it you can see my "treat" to myself for losing 18 lbs.- my New Years resolution which I started Jan. 2 and completed a week ago. I am wearing a big grin as I type this! :-D They are a small set of new acrylic paints called "Interactive". They are supposed to act more like oils and be able to be re-worked for several hours. I hope I like them!

These next 3 photos are the easel as it looked (more or less) when it arrived. I did remove the little bottom shelf thingy to fit my homemade tabletop over the easel. I added a little handle (a portion of framing material) to the front of the drawer for easier opening and I also chiseled 2 extra notches so I can lower my top nearly flat as you can see in the last photo. You can see the 2 notches I added by the different color (no finish on them).

This is the tabletop underneath (not very pretty, but you really don't see it) made of 1/4" masonite covered with non-skid material you can get in $ stores or Walmarts, etc. I hot-glued that in place. Then I glued on the little wooden strips to hold the top in place, but it can easily lift off when needed. You can see how it fits over the original top.

These are a few of my many, many brushes (some women like clothes- I happen to have a "thing" for all things "paint"!) My favorites are Qualita brand, (very inexpensive, but they seem to do the trick for me), Loew-Cornelle series 7020, and my absolute very favs are Beste brand. They are sooo fine and hold such a nice point. I do have some larger brushes and even on my minis I do use them occasionally, but mainly I use the small filberts and the liners and script liners from #2- 18/0. I prefer longer bristles (such as the scripts) to shorter ones on the very tiny brushes- they will hold more paint and really aren't difficult to make them do what you want with practice.

These last photos are of a couple of my palettes and some of my storage units. I have some larger palettes but for the miniatures I just don't like a large palette. I love the wet palette styles, but the newer one I am liking fairly well too- you don't need palette paper, the paint comes off when dried fairly easily and the top is air tight so the paint keeps for the days I am painting. I've found the inexpensive little storage units you can buy at Walmart, Target, etc. on rolly wheels work great for me. I store them under my countertop painting area, I can roll them easily around where I need them, use them to hold my palettes, etc.
I hope you find this to be an interesting post and perhaps it will give you simple ideas on how to make your own studio work more easily for you. If you are not an artist you can get a feel for how my studio works for me.


Mona said...

Carol, thanks so much for going over all of this and including these pictures of your set-up and materials.

I want to try a wet palette, but haven't had one for either water-based or oil paints so far. Which kind is the one that you are showing, here, and what kind of paint is on it? You mentioned it can go paperless, but is there plastic on there (can you describe how it works?).

Barbara A. Freeman said...

Thanks for sharing Carol. So many goodies you have. You'll have to let us know how you like your acrylic paints. I like Golden open and am slowly replacing my reg. acrylics with them. But I don't mind the acrylic drying rather quickly. I guess it's what you get used to.