Take a Shopping Trip With Me

by Ethan


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When you take up oil painting, you’re going to have to have to buy oil painting supplies. Some of these supplies can be quite expensive. Especially if you want to make good paintings.

Now, some of you might have received supplies as a gift, or have them laying around for awhile. That’s fine too, but not all supplies are created equal.

For example, I was at my in-laws place for the holidays and they had a dinner party. One of the guests prepared soup from scratch. It was delicious. They made the broth from a bunch of chicken bones. It takes hours to make and it was well worth it as it was delicious.

We all started joking about his soup being good, but it can’t compare to campbells or progresso. Those soups would have taken just a few minutes to heat up from a can, but they wouldn’t have been near the same quality as the home made soup.

To make the home made soup, one needed to buy special ingredients, that perhaps cost more than a few cans of progresso, but it is the only way to make that delicious soup. You’d never get that from soup in a can.

It’s the same with oil painting supplies.

Also, if you think you can learn to oil paint without spending a decent amount of money on supplies, you are mistaken.

I thought you might want to come with me on a shopping trip for oil painting materials and see how much is spent.

Let’s buy our supplies

I don’t want this to be a huge shopping trip. After all, I don’t have a lot of money to spend, right? So I will start with brushes.

In bristle brushes, I need to get two number 4 brushes, a new number 6 and two number 8’s. I also need 2 new small sable brushes.

I need some paints too. Some more flake white, a cadmium red, and yellow ochre, and a burnt umber.

I need canvas. I personally buy rolls of unprimed canvas as well as oil primed canvas. I never buy pre-stretched canvas in a package, as these canvases are junk to be honest. Actually, it’s not the canvas that is junky, but how they are prepared.

“But, I don’t want to go through preparing a canvas and all that…It’s too complicated and too much work”

I know that argument, but listen…If you paint on crappy surfaces, you’re going to have crappy paintings. The old master paintings you admire are not on crappy canvases. You will never achieve the look of those paintings with cheap and badly prepared canvas – plain and simple.

At the very least you could buy pre-packaged canvas and add extra priming layers to it. Oil Painting Formula covers a complete video demonstration of this plus so much more.

You’ll be amazed at the immediate difference in the look of your paintings and the ease of painting.

So for the sake of this article, let’s say I need to buy 4 canvases all mid size, around 18 x 24 inches. You will also need a can of priming paint to prepare these canvases.

And let’s say I need a bottle of oil as well.

Ok, let’s total the shopping trip. I’ll use Mister Art as the store I am buying from.

They are a pretty popular online store – and a discount store. Now, I personally do not order form them. I just about always get my materials in person from stores in my area. But I wanted to do this experiment so anyone can follow my experiment for themselves online and even try it for yourself.

Buying brushes and paint

The brush sizes I wanted were not all in stock (see, I didn’t cheat for this) so I ended up getting the following:

  • 3 – number 3 bristle flat,
  • 2 – number 10 bristle flat
  • 1 – number 12 bristle flat.

I also got two number 4 real sable brushes. Ok, that’s it for brushes. Not a lot at all. And I am getting them at a discount art supply store, and my total so far is $46.29

I got the 4 tubes of paint I wanted. I chose grumbacher for this experiment. They are not usually the brand I buy, but they are popular and they were discounted more than the others. For this experiment, I am trying to spend as little as possible.

Also, they didn’t have a large tube of flake white (the white I prefer) so I substituted Titanium white. And you always buy a larger tube of white because it is used so much.

So, the total so far is $80.13.

Buying canvas

I got 4 frederix pre-streched canvases. 2 16×20 inches and 2 18×24 inches. I highly do not recommend these canvases, but for the sake of this article I wanted to keep it cheap. My total is now $106.63.

But, remember, I would recommend buying a roll of canvas, but that’s more expensive but, of course, makes better paintings and makes the painting process easier. You be the judge if it worth the extra money. You already know my opinion on this.

Remember, when you buy pre-stretched canvases, you absolutely MUST add a priming layer to them. If you don’t, I have to conclude that you are not following the instruction I am trying to give you.

It’s also then likely you are not following other parts of my instruction. Just picking and choosing which you will follow, and then you will not achieve the results you are after.

Many times, people who do this can’t figure out why they are not achieving the results they want and my instruction gets branded as “didn’t work”. You can be sure nobody wants that. :)

So back to the shopping trip…

I added a small 8oz can of oil priming to my cart. I also added an 8oz bottle of refined linseed oil and my total comes to $131.71. Add in shipping and my total comes to $145.69

So, I went shopping for just a few supplies and spent $145.69.

If you have no supplies at all, these are not enough to get started. This is just a shopping trip of someone who is looking to add to the supplies they already have.

If you have to start from scratch, you will spend more, perhaps double.

So I just wanted to take you on a real life shopping trip and show you how much you will easily spend.

Of course, now that you have all these supplies most people are never taught how to really use them.

I know you don’t want to just play around with this expensive stuff like a kid. You’ll end up wasting the supplies and getting nothing out of it.

You’ll use up the paint, wear out the brushes, and waste the canvas on another bad painting. and have nothing to show for it. Not a painting you are proud of or even some newly acquired knowledge that you can put to use for your next painting.

This is why it pays to take time and invest some money in good oil painting training.

Especially if you consider this more than a hobby.

There are plenty of other sites online that will teach you to make “hobby” paintings. Those 27 minute landscapes that don’t distinguish between cheap quality materials such as cheap paint and real artist quality paint.

But, that’s not what this is about. This is about traditional oil painting. The way the masters did it.

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For more information:

Click Here If you’d like to see a free trailer of my newest complete oil painting training program – “Oil Painting Formula”

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