My Favorite Art Supplies

Rainbow Mermaid by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com

Hello Everyone!

Today I will be sharing with you some of my favorite art supplies, and examples of the illustrations I created using them! If you have read some of my previous posts then you know that I am currently studying art at my college. I have shared some of my life drawings and my favorite techniques to create those pieces (you can find that post here), but in this post I will be showing more of my “stylized” illustrations.

So starting off, lets talk about probably any artists most important tool….

Sketchbooks!

Sketchbook Page by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com
Sketchbook Page

Sketchbooks are an extremely important tool for any artist, since it is a way to explore concepts (such as this character design I’m working on for one of my stories), try new techniques, and all around PRACTICE! That is why I usually invest in a sketchbook with paper that can withstand multi-media, unless its super cheap or visually pleasing. Therefore, I usually purchase a Canson or a Strathmore Mix Media sketchbook! They are reasonably priced and work pretty well with most the supplies I use!

Speaking of supplies, lets talk about the first one I enjoy using…

 Markers!

Unicorn-Woman by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at Amystebbins.com
Unicorn-Woman

Colored markers are one of my favorite ways to create a piece! Of course I still use colored pencils (usually the Prismacolor brand), but markers are such a great way to color quickly and blending is a bit easier to do. Currently my favorite brand of markers are Copics (featured in the picture above). I only have a small collection of these alcohol based markers, but I use the ones I do have a lot! One of my favorite things to create with them is definitely the rainbow hair on my characters above and below!

Crescent Moon by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at Amystebbins.com
Crescent Moon

Now, these are some of the more expensive markers you can purchase. You can certainly create an equally nice illustration with a more affordable brand (such as Prismacolor which I also use, or Promarkers which is next on my list to try), but the fantastic thing about copics is that they are refillable. The price to purchase the marker and the refill is probably cheaper in the long run than having to buy a whole new marker each time it goes dry. (plus- the marker tips can also be replaced). There are ton of videos and articles of people debating which markers are better. Personally, I want to try as many as I can because they all offer something different. It really boils down to your personal preference!

Watercolors!

Tiger Lily by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com
Tiger Lily

It seems that my favorite artists always turn out to being using watercolors, so at the end of last year I finally invested in some decent watercolors! Working with watercolors can definitely be very tricky and I’m still learning, but once you start to understand how they “behave” so to speak, they can be so much fun!

Rainbow Mermaid by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com
Rainbow Mermaid



The main watercolor set I use is a simple Winsor & Newton travel set (featured above). The pigment is really nice and vibrant, and while the colors are limited in this set, they are not hard to mix. Since it is a travel set, I will often bring it with me along with some Pentel Aquash Brush pens to do watercolor sketches on the go.

Desert Fairy by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com
Desert Fairy

A more recent watercolor set I have been using are my Finetec metallic watercolors! These are very fun to use because they add so much shimmer to any piece. I also use Sakura metallic gelly rolls to add smaller metallic details. It is really just something extra I enjoy adding to a piece, but I would say if you just want a basic set to learn with than these are not a necessity.

The Dreamer by Ciarra Stebbins, find more at amystebbins.com
The Dreamer

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So that is all I will say about some of my favorite art supplies. I’m sure by the end of this year I will have more things to add to this list! If you have any questions about any of the supplies I’ve listed here, please feel free to comment down below.



I hope you enjoyed seeing more of my artwork, and if you would like to keep updated on all of my work, then please follow me at my personal Instagram account, here. Also make sure to follow our blog Instagram account for more great photos, here!

As a final note, if any of you are interested in any of the pieces I have shown in this post (or in any other post), do comment down below which piece and maybe why you like it. I am planning to sell some prints of my artwork in the near future and any of these could be fair game!

Thanks for reading! 🙂

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