What do I buy?

"The Red Truck" was painted en plein air in Waldoboro, ME.

“The Red Truck” was painted in Waldoboro, ME.

Although the snow last night belies it, it’s that time of year when we pull out our paint kits and organize them for the coming season. I’ve been out once with Corinne McIntyre’s mid-coast group of Plein Air Painters of Maine (PAPME). Next Wednesday Peter Yesis, Renee Lammers and I plan to meet in Rockport to inaugurate the northern group’s season.

This week I was writing supply lists for each individual student in my weekly studio class. That provided the motivation for me to make my 2016 supply list for plein air painters. This list is aimed at oil painters, but if you need information for watercolor, acrylics or pastels, contact me.

Victoria Brzustowicz made an imitation of my palette box with two dollar store baking trays and some duct tape. Here at my 2015 Acadia workshop.

Victoria Brzustowicz made a copy of my palette box with two Dollar Store baking trays and some duct tape. Bam!

A first painting kit can be dauntingly expensive. I have tried to keep the costs down for everything except the paints. They are where quality makes a real difference for the beginner.

My mom had a typewritten camping supply list she used for every vacation. With six kids, she needed it. I made my first plein air supply list because I was continually forgetting something important. It has morphed into a widely-distributed teaching tool.

She made her corrections in ink on a battered photocopy. I make mine in Google Drive, but the principle is the same—needs change. I collect ideas from other painters and try them out. The keepers I share with you.

Sure, it's work to pack, but in the end, you get to do this.

Sure, it’s work to pack, but in the end, you get to do this.

I have started collecting how-to posts on my website. As with this list, you are welcome to share these with others for their personal use. I just ask that you not copy the material for publication; they are copyrighted work.

I still have openings in my workshop starting on August 7 in Acadia. This includes 12 nights at the beautiful Schoodic Institute, room and meals, and a whole lot of serious painting instruction—but a lot of laughs, too. You can find more information here, or email me and I’ll send you a brochure.

And on that note, I’m teaching my first session in my new Rockport studio. While this group has already started, if you’re interested in future classes, that information is here. Email me with questions.

Carol Douglas

About Carol Douglas

Carol L. Douglas is a painter who lives, works and teaches in Rockport, ME. Her annual workshop will again be held on the Schoodic Peninsula in beautiful Acadia National Park, from August 6-11, 2017. Visit www.watch-me-paint.com/ for more information.