My Essential Studio Tools

My Art Studio Essentials

Items For Painters – My Essential Studio Tools

For many years I have shared my artist process and inside my studio on Instagram. While it has been a great tool for connecting with collectors, it has also been an opportunity to connect with fellow Artists of all stages. I get asked all the time about my custom made easels and my lighting equipment. Oftentimes there are questions about the brushes I use, the paints I prefer and even the cameras I utilize to capture my process. Instagram is a tough place to offer an in depth account of my studio tools, particularly when I am good at writing and love to share with people outside the Instaverse. So, after nearly two decades making art daily, here are the keys to my studio and a list of my essential tools and where you can pick them up online.

My Essential Studio Tools

Brandy Saturley Studio, Vancouver Island, Canada, 2024

Wall Easels: these were custom built by my partner and me after we began looking online for options. At the time my studio was in the living room of our condo, and while I have great easel, the wall easels offered the opportunity to work on more than one painting at a time, while not taking up space. I found Paper Bird Studios online, they make handcrafted wall mounted easels, but they are pricey and shipping to Canada from Virginia. So we took Jason Tueller’s design and used it to make our own right here in Victoria, Canada. We used walnut and ended up making three wall easels. Since moving to my new home, and setting up a dedicated studio space, I dropped it down to two walls easels and kept my free standing crank easel.

My Essential Studio Tools

Brandy Saturley Studio – Victoria BC Canada, 2024

Free-Standing Easel: I bought the BEST Classic Santa Fe II crank studio easel when I was in my condo, it’s a great sturdy studio easel and will easily take up to a 72″ canvas and still offer stability.

Studio Lighting: I like to control my lighting in the studio, I largely close up my windows to the outside and use four adjustable freestanding LED photography lights from GODOX. These lights offer the ability to control colour temperature, lumens power and angle of lighting. I can also control them by remote, but don’t often use the remotes as I find it just as easy to manually change the settings. The GODOX LED’s are meant for a photography studio, which is perfect for studio photography and video outside the ability to light for painting. I use the Godox LEDP260C Ultra-Thin 30W Dimmable LED Video Light Panel Lamp 3200K-5600K. I added the universal tripod stands by Amazon basics.

Paintings Gallery Canadian Artist

Brandy Saturley Studio – North Saanich, Canada, 2023

Ring Light: for video where I am speaking to the camera, recording painting process videos, and for Zoom, I use the 18 inch LED Neewer ring light with changeable filters from cool to warm light. It’s dimmable and comes with a tripod mount for iPhone. It makes everyone look great and comes with a useful camera remote.

Studio Supplies Cart: I love my cart, I keep some paints and mediums, as well as my brushes in this handy cart that I can move freely in the studio. It’s also a great place to put tapes, scissors, rulers and whatever else I might need to grab at a moments notice. I bought my sturdy steel 3 shelf cart through ULINE.

Go to Local Art Supplier: I have been loyal to my local supplier for years, Opus Art Supplies, they offer pro-discounts if you are buying over $1000 of supplies per year. I buy Golden Fluid acrylics, Golden OPEN, Liquitex acrylic gouache, Golden mediums and varnishes, Holbein Duo Aqua Water Mixable Oils, my canvas and panels through this awesome local business.

Brandy Saturley art supplies

Golden Fluid Acrylic Paints and Mediums

Go to Local Acrylic Paint Supplier: there is a well known paint maker on Granville Island in Vancouver called KROMA, they offer top notch acrylic paints at reasonable prices and even supply paint to the Vancouver Film industry. Launched in 1970, KROMA has now been a part of the Vancouver art community, providing paint to painters for 50 years. Their success is based on the word of mouth recommendations of regular customers. While their business has slowly grown they still make each colour with considerable care, by hand, in small batches.

Kroma acrylic paints

Brandy Saturley in studio with Kroma paints, Banff Centre for Arts & Creativity.

Paintbrushes: after my time in London, England at the Royal College of Art I came to discover Rosemary’s Brushes – from the Rosemary & Co. brush company. The finest handmade brushes on the planet and quite affordable as well. Shipping directly to my front door via Royal Mail service. I have come to develop a bit of an addiction to these great brushes. I am particularly in love with their SMOOSHING brushes, great for feathering and blending hard edges. If you purchase brushes please enter my affiliate coupon code BRANDYSATURLEY24 at checkout. Referral email for setting up a new account .

My Essential Painting Tools

Using a Rosemary & Co. mini smooshing brush for tiny details.

Don’t forget the good old dollar store (Poundland in the UK) and building supply stores, they offer many great tools for artists at reasonable rates. I also love walking the back aisles at our local Princess Auto, it’s amazing what you can find that can help you in the studio. From paintbrushes to foam brushes, rollers for finishing and painters tape.

My Essential Art Supplies – studio table at Pouch Cove Foundation, Newfoundland, 2023

Remember, I have been building my studio for nearly twenty years and three moves, so as your art career grows, your studio will grow with you and these pieces are things you invest in both daily and over time. There is no sense going out and buying the best of everything right from the start, what you need grows out of where you are heading with your art career. Next post I will cover camera supplies, printers and archiving software.

Happy art making everyone!

Sincerely Yours,

Brandy Saturley