5 Tips: Creating Stunning Art With A Small Budget

by Wendi OBrien

5 Tips Creating Stunning Art On A Small Budget

If you have been into art for any length of time you know how expensive supplies can be. Today, I will be sharing my 5 tips for making stunning art with a small budget. 

Tip 1 – Make Art In Black and White

Not only is this budget friendly, but it is a great way to understand value in your artwork.  This is important to create depth and interest in your art. 

Regardless of working in color or black and white value is what ultimately determines whether your piece looks flat or dimensional.  Your lights need to be light enough and darks dark enough. 

The best way to learn this is to simplify the process and work black and white.

Tip 2 – Work In Graphite and/or Charcoal

Both mediums are very affordable, widely available and easy to work with.  They are also very forgiving, meaning the are easy to make adjustments, so they are great mediums for a beginning artist. 

There is also no worries about fading as most artwork created with graphite and charcoal stand the test of time providing they are used on an archival surface.

Tip 3 – Work In A Monochrome Pallet

Using various shades of a single color is absolutely stunning and creates an emotion not only with the subject of the art but the color chosen.  This is also a great way to introduce yourself to color when transitioning from black and white. 

You will learn the different values of the colors because…for example: not every blue has the same value. 

Learning these differences is key to creating successful pieces using color and learning how to color mix.  

Tip 4 – Purchase Quality Products From The Start

Fighting with your art supplies is not something any artist should go through and makes for an unpleasant experience which leads to much frustration. 

Starting out with quality products not only allows you to have the best experience possible while learning, but also allows you to create art that will stand the test of time ensuring the highest lightfast ratings and archival qualities.

While you may consider it just practicing, some of those practice pieces surprise us and end up being something we wish we would have used archival supplies on. 

So don’t skimp when it comes to your supplies.  This includes brushes, pencils, paper, canvas…pretty much anything that you would use to create with. 

Tip 5 – Build Your Collection Over Time

I know…I know….we all want that full set of pencils or all the colors of paint, but it really isn’t necessary when starting off.  By purchasing supplies in small quantities, you learn how to mix your colors to create the colors and look you want. 

Sure, you need a few basic colors, but once you have those you will quickly learn how to layer or mix them to create the various colors you need to complete an artwork.

This also allows you to try many different brands and lines of pencils, paint or markers to see what works best together and for your working process. 

There is nothing worse than forking over hundreds of dollars to get every color of an art supply just to find out that you don’t like it, it doesn’t work with your other supplies, or it doesn’t play nice with the methods you use creating your artwork.   

Limiting your supplies doesn’t mean you limit your art.  Stunning art is made every day with limited art supplies.  Enjoy the process and all the techniques you learn during your journey.  Remember….You are only limited by your imagination

Until next time…keep on arting!

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