Art on the go.

Today I had an awesome experience. I painted this eye: eye

Normally I don't psych myself out about painting body parts, (especially eyes) but this eye felt like a culmination of a lot of hard work ("work" = ditzing around painting body parts). I looked at it and resolved an internal crisis: YES. THIS IS HOW A LOT OF THE WORK I LIKE IS SHADED. FINALLY!

Instead of wasting everyone's time congratulating myself, I thought I'd share how I 'art on the go'.


Here is all the stuff I normally carry with me when I want to paint in a place other than my house. My purse right now is a gutted clarinet case, so most of this stuff will fit in there without having to squish. It may be easier for you to have a designated bag to carry things around in, as necessary.

In terms of the specific things I have in my kit:

  • SKETCHBOOK: recently picked up a Strathmore Mixed Media Visual Journal. The paper is an awesome texture, perfect for paints AND pencil. It was just what I needed!
  • PENS AND PENCILS: I carry a .7 lead, .5 lead, and a blendy stick. Pen wise, a pilot fineliner (which is amazing and water soluble), a Pentel Fude Touch (MY FAVORITE THING EVER) , and a silver sharpie.
  • WATERCOLOR: I have a 12 color Yarka palette that I -love-. It's a perfect 'first watercolor' set because they lift like professional colors, but a palette won't murder you in the wallet area.
  • GOUACHE: I think I'm using windsor newtons, but I can't remember honestly. I squeezed a dab of black then a dab of white in my mixing plate and called it a day. I can't really ascertain the quality because I've not really familiarized myself with a lot of brands of gouache. I can say that since I've been futzing with it, it's become my favorite medium. It's super opaque like acrylic, but lifts like watercolor.



  • COLORED PENS: Right now I'm using Stabilo 68's, but I've had pretty good luck with simple crayolas in the past. They're water soluble, and pretty decent in a pinch. Stabilos are great because the colors are really crisp, and they blend together surprisingly well. (Without water or anything, though their solubility is nice if you're using vellum based paper.)
  • WATER JAR: I just used a little discarded spice jar from my kitchen. A  little thing like that is nice because it's light.

Of course depending on what sort of art you want to do, you may want to carry around an entirely different set of supplies. As always, tailor my suggestions to your own personal needs, and don't hesitate to contact me if you have questions!

I recently picked up my latest sketchbook, after fiddling with one I'd been using on and off since 2009. (And filling up the one I'd had since Christmas of 2012.) It's so refreshing to start anew!

I'm not very far into things yet, just a couple of pages. Here are a few random doodles:


The ladies from Witches of Eastwick, with their arms tied together. 

photo 1

A little Coraline.


And some reference notes on drawing eyes. 

Happy arting~!


**Just so we're clear, no one paid me to rave about my kit; these are just supplies I've personally had the best luck with.