Art Supplies Artist Issues

What to do when you cant afford Art Supplies

Every now and then we come across artists who upload art supply hauls on YouTube or on their blog. Guilty! I’ve done it too. It is just a way of expressing our excitement. Even we have waited a long time and saved up to buy those art supplies. But, when someone who can’t afford all that, sees videos like that, they can’t help but feel a little jealous or sad that they cannot afford it. Even I look at art supply haul videos by established artists and become a little sad that I can’t afford all that.

So, you slowly build. You slowly grow. Baby steps. I waited and saved for nearly two years to be able to afford a full set of 120 Polychromos by Faber Castell. Now having said all that, it doesn’t mean you cannot be an artist with limited means. Of course you can. How do you do that? Simple. Start with basic art supplies.


Graphite is one of the cheapest and best ways to improve your drawing skills. Just start with one 2B and an HB pencil. This will take you a long way in terms of shading and controlling values. If you can draw excellent art with just these two pencils, then imagine what you can create once you have that complete set of graphite pencils. I recommend buying some graphite powder and a set of Faber Castell 9000 once you can afford it. You even get cheaper sets by Camlin in India. You can start by drawing on some basic copier paper.


Again, this is a perfect medium if you want to do some excellent shading. Try out some basic charcoal and charcoal pencils. Derwent has a set of four Charcoal pencils (Hard, Soft, Neutral and White). Camlin also had a set of three Charcoal pencils which are really inexpensive.


This is another medium that has a lot of possibilities if you are looking to do more of painting and less of drawing. Try to find the least expensive artist quality watercolors. The best artist quality watercolors available in India in a low price range are by Camlin(artists watercolor cakes) and FaberCastell(artists watercolor tubes).

You will also need a basic set of watercolor brushes. If you do not want to buy a whole set then I recommend going for a large flat brush, a medium filbert brush and a small round brush.


This is again one of the most affordable forms of art to make as a beginner. All you need is one Micron pen or a 0.5 pen by Faber Castell. Choose the size you prefer and get started. There is a lot of inspiration on the internet when it comes to this medium/form of art. Pinterest also offers a lot of inspiration. You can also combine zentangle with watercolors to create an interesting effect.

So, get started. These are great options to start with. Having a ton of art supplies doesn’t necessarily make you an excellent artist. What you create, makes your identity as an artist.

If you have any questions/suggestions, leave them in the comments below. If you want to read more of my blog posts, you can subscribe by just submitting your E-mail id at the top of the sidebar on my website. If you are reading this on a mobile phone, you can scroll down and find the subscribe button there. You’ll get an update every time I publish a post. No spam. I assure you.



I also have a YouTube channel with art tutorials, hacks, time-lapse videos  and much more. Do check it out here. Have a nice day.