My Oil Painting Materials

Still life painting of the attributes of the arts


When I was starting out as an artist the choices in art supplies were endless and confusing - and costly too if you ended up with the wrong things.  I used to do a lot of research online to figure out what to use, but in the end I found the best source of information to be artist friends and the materials lists provided by teachers in workshops.

Over time I have gradually gathered the supplies I need and figured out what I like. I haven’t experimented with an extensive range of materials, but here are the items I tried and still enjoy using for my painting work today. 

I have also added in some of the tech gear I use in case you are interested in capturing images of your paintings.

I haven’t put in any links to the materials.  You can just google most of it and it should be readily available. Nothing is sponsored.

A cup of pens and pencils

Oil paints

I generally use paints from Gamblin or Michael Harding.  I do have a somewhat vast collection of oil paints, but these are the ones I reach for the most.

  • Titanium white
  • Cadmium Yellow
  • Bright yellow lake
  • Yellow ochre
  • Raw Umber
  • Cadmium orange
  • Cadmium red light
  • Alizarin crimson permanent
  • Burnt umber
  • Raw sienna
  • Bright green lake
  • Viridian
  • Ultramarine blue
  • Ivory black
Tubes of oil paints


  • Rublev Oleogel
  • Rublev Linseed oil/stand oil
  • Gamblin Gamsol (odourless mineral spirits)
  • Gamblin Gamvar (for varnishing)


  • Jack Richeson Italian Steel Tripod Easel
  • Meeden Art Large H-Framed Easel
  • New Wave Palette – Expressionist Confidant Natural Stain
  • Brushes by Rosemary and Co or Escoda
  • Raymar Painting Panels – L64C Artfix Linen Panels
  • Centurion Oil Primed Linen Panels
  • Timber panels primed with Michael Harding Non Absorbent Acrylic Primer
  • Double sided tape (to stick canvas to drawing board)
  • Strathmore paper 400 Series
  • Staedtler pencils
  • Staedtler kneadable art eraser
  • Sanding paper and blade to sharpen pencils
  • Drawing board 
  • Tombow Mono Zero Round Retractable Eraser
  • Artist View Catcher
  • Sakura Pigma Micron Pens
  • Charcoal pencil (any)
  • Linen apron (mine is by H&M)
  • Excel Mahl Stick
  • Paper towel
  • Bin with lid (air tight)
  • Brush cleaner
  • Gloves (I always paint wearing gloves)
Paint brushes in jars on a shelf
Pens and pencils in a case

Studio Furniture

  • Ikea Alex Drawer Units
  • Ikea Trotten Standing Desk – for my still life stand
  • Ikea Trofast drawers converted to a taboret
  • Old timber box – for my still life stand
  • Tables for work surfaces. One reserved for clean work, and the other for oil painting

Things to paint

  • A large collection of bowls and vases (find items you love)
  • Fruit and flowers from local gardens and florists
Louise apple picking, holding an apple and looking through the leaves of an apple tree

Tech Gear

  • Aputure Amaran Led Light with soft box for still life work and for taking photos of my paintings (I have 2)
  • Jinbei light stands
  • Canon EOS 6D camera (100mm macro lens)
  • Polarising filter for lens 
  • Polarising sheets for lights
  • Jusino tripod
  • Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop
  • Davinci Resolve (for video editing)
  • Epson V600 Scanner (to scan my smaller paintings)
  • Epson P900 Printer (for my art prints)
  • Brother laser printer (I take photos of my drawings and print them to transfer to a canvas)
  • Alienware monitor
  • Custom PC
  • Spyder X monitor calibrator
  • Spyder Checkr Photo
  • Dell Multi Device Wireless Keyboard and Mouse (I recently upgraded to these and gosh it makes a difference from the rubbish I was using before)

 Final Thoughts

To get a job done, i.e. make a still-painting or take photos of your artwork, you will need gear.  For a long time, I got by on the bare minimum due to space constraints.  And then for a long time I didn’t want to invest in the gear I needed  because it seemed excessive.  Consequently, I could never get the job done properly or I was always frustrated with the result.  If you want to paint still-life subjects from life using natural light, you won’t need as much gear compared to painting under studio lights.  Similarly if you want to get your paintings photographed by someone else, you won’t need as much gear compared to doing it yourself.  So decide what path you want to take, and then research and invest wisely, and get the gear you actually need. 

You will also need to commit plenty of time to learning how to use all the wonderful gear - which comes with many challenges, but rewards too.

Painting of the case of Venus showing the still life set up


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