We Asked 7 Painters to Show Us What Their Studio Looks Like Right Now

January 24th 2021 // Writer: Shane Allen // Art

When you get an idea for something you want to make, one of the first things you realize is that you need the tools to make that idea come to life. That then opens up a rabbit hole of thousands of different things you can buy to help that process run smoothly, In turn, that raises the questions,..

Which ones do I actually need?, Will they actually make me better? and Where do it put all?

It differs for everyone. Some tools are made from more quality materials, making it more comfortable for you to use. Some will last longer so you don't have keep buying them over and over again. Some are cheaper, allowing you to work on budget, but still be able to get your ideas out. Some are made in just the right color you like. Maybe your favorite artist uses that same thing, so when you use it, you feel as confident as they do.

Where you keep everything is a whole other story, some people need to be extremely organized or they wont be able to start working. Others work best when everything is just laying in front of them unorganized.

You'll discover what works best for you though trial an error. You may buy a $20 pen thinking it'll make your drawing better,, just to realize your drawings are just as good with a ballpoint Bic pen. Maybe you think that you have to buy a bigger studio to improve your work, come to find out you're making the same quality stuff as you were in your bedroom.. Some of the best music ever was recorded on the cheapest of microphones.

In this article, we asked 7 painters to show us their studio and art supplies as they are, not cleaned up or organized, unless they already were, to see how much the importance of their tools ranges from artist to artist. Turns out, everyone is different.

What is the same between everyone, is that they have an idea. The idea always comes through in the work. The idea is the important part and how you get there, is usually not. Creativity always comes first. Sometimes the right tools are extremely important in producing what you want to produce. Sometimes, they aren't important at all.

Jessica Matier

What kind of brushes do you use? How old are they?

I use a wide variety of brushes some expensive some not. Acrylic, watercolor, and hake along with some household items like towels and rags. I've had a few since college but since I'm not the greatest at cleaning I end up throwing them away.

How important is to you that you have the exact materials you need to work? Brushes, paints, brands, etc.

I've become accustomed to working exclusively in my studio which has made familiarity vital. I require the same specific materials and if I don't have them it's an uphill battle.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how organized are you? Why?

This is a tough question because I do spend a lot of time organizing and cleaning. However, as you can see in the photos I tend to let things get disarrayed when I'm in the middle of producing new work. For these reasons, I would give myself a 6.

How often do you get paint on your clothes?

A few times a week. It's always a sleeve that brushes against the canvas.

Jessiica's Instagram

Nehemiah Cisneros

What kind of brushes do you use? How old are they?

I work with brand new brushes on each painting. I begin with large Home Depot, Wooster Pro, flat brushes to block color. The manual labor to complete large-scale paintings compares to the exhaustion felt from house painters covering surfaces without leaving brush strokes. I devour up to two packs of Blick artist-series brushes per image. I run through them like cigarettes. Recently I've become obsessed with Princeton 2/0 rounds for the more refined lines in my paintings, so I buy those in bulk.

How important is to you that you have the exact materials you need to work? Brushes, paints, brands, etc.

I prefer the flatness of acrylic paint to cover brush strokes, There's an expectation for the flowing line quality of illustrative flourishes I'm keen to make, So I use Molotov acrylic ink or Golden High Flow. After trying alternative brands, I feel the combination of those materials is the most practical for producing the current work. Since I do a lot of line work, brushes become disposable after they have lost their original shape.

On a scale of 1 to 10, how organized are you?