My Workshop Checklist

Starting to gather my materials for my upcoming oil painting workshop “Coast” in Artform, Dunmore East.

We will be painting outdoors as well as in the studio, so I will bring supplies for both. A full materials list is provided below.

This is my Plein Air Oil Painting kit

– box easel (half size)

– box of painting supplies

– small backpack

– This allows me to carry the easel in one hand, the box in the other, with extra sundries in the backpack, so the weight is spread evenly.

Contents of art box – brushes, palette knife, tubes of paint, Sansodor thinner, Liquin, baby wipes, plastic bags, latex gloves, dippers, kitchen towels, apron, small jar.

My plein air demos will be on small canvases or lightweight boards, but I will work on a larger scale in the studio.

These are my preferred canvases

Belle Arti thin edge canvas from Evans Art Supplies. Smooth surface, in multiple sizes. You can choose thin or thick edge and preferred size. This one is 25 x 35 cm×35-cm-Linea20-Canvas/

For Plein Air painting Belle Arti also have a thin canvas panel in several sizes. This one is 12 x 16 inches×16%22/

We will combine sketching with our painting practise – to study our subject in greater depth, as well as to allow us to sometimes travel light and take advantage of a break in the weather. If time is short, we can take a walk with our sketchbooks, make notes and studies of different subjects, then continue to develop our paintings in the comfort of the Artform Studio.

You can choose any sketchbook you like – I have a larger one for more detailed studies (A4 size) as well as a compact lightweight one that I use for travel sketching. The paper should be sturdy enough for a light watercolour wash, though it is also fine to just work in pen or pencil.

I have several different watercolour painting sets for sketching. It’s hard to recommend one in particular, and you should just bring whatever you have. The above set is Derwent Inktense Blocks, which are water soluble.

These are my favourite oil brushes, firm but springy – Royal and Langnickel Oil / Acrylic brush set.

This is the Palette Knife I use most of the time. About the size of my little finger, oval tipped (not pointed), and curved handle. Available in a pack of 5 knives by Create in most art supply stores.

And I like the Unipin Fine Line Drawing Pen 0.5, in Dark Grey – it marks like a pencil, but won’t smudge or erase.

For tonal sketch studies I use the Pitt Artist Pens, Soft Brush in shades of grey


Portable folding easel if you have one

Folding stool (optional)

Several canvases, larger for studio work, smaller for plein air painting (many canvas boards can be too coarse, except for the Belle Arti brand listed above)

Selection of brushes – I prefer acrylic brushes

Sketchbook, any size  

Sketching materials of your choice – pencil, charcoal, pens, watercolour pencils or pan set

Palette knife, oval tip

Disposable palette pad for oil painting

Bulldog clips to hold down palette or sketchbook page if it’s windy


Odour free thinner such as Winsor and Newton Sansodor, or Zest It. Some low odour brands such as Bartoline are not suitable for classroom use.

Jam jar for cleaning brushes

Liquin (fast drying medium) or linseed oil

Dippers or small jars to hold medium

Kitchen towels and baby wipes. Latex gloves (optional)

OIL PAINTS to include the following colours or similiar

Titanium White

Ultramarine Blue

Cerulean Blue

Cadmium Yellow

Cadmium Yellow Light

Cadmium Red

Magenta or Alizarin


Sap Green

Burnt Sienna

Raw Umber

Indigo or Paynes Grey

These are my 12 « essential colours » for outdoor painting and demos, Bring your own normal supplies for our studio time,  we will pack light for outdoor work. I use Winton Oils most of the time. 

Additional Supplies For Plein Air painting

Water bottle and / or coffee flask
Sunhat or visor, sunscreen, insect repellent 
Windbreaker or rain jacket
Comfortable walking shoes
Small plastic bags for clean up

Bring your iPad and / or smartphone, to paint from your photos in the studio

And bring any paintings you’re working on that you’d like me to help you with


  1. John kent

    Can I have details of the Dunmore trip – availability, accommodation and cost.


    1. Hi John, the July workshop is fully booked, however we will be doing the same course from 30 September to 03 October. Tuition cost is €450, plus accommodation. Details are on website
      I will also be doing 4 day Summer Art School workshops in the Schoolhouse for Art in Enniskerry from 22-25 July and from 19-22 August. See Hope one if these might work for you.
      Kind regards


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