with Salgood Sam at Syn Studiosalgood@gmail.com

Materials List

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Q: “I don’t have time to get everything before the first class, what do I need first?!”

A: No problem! And it’s not a bad idea to talk to me in class about what materials we will need, some of the substitutions possible, and why. And it can be tough sometimes on a busy schedule to come up with everything you’ll need for the course. This is a short list that will cover the key items, must have first class materials:

♦ A thick wood pencil like a carpenter’s pencil, or a solid graphite crayon, block, or pencil, for life sketching.
♦ Three dark blue or black standard Prismacolor pencils. Good for fast expressive lines.
♦ 1 0.7mm mechanical pencil. .
♦ Some Prismacolor Col-Erase® Colored Pencils, the come in box sets and loose individuals, I recommend at last 6, a set of two blue, two orange or green, and two red.
♦ A good pencil sharpener! One that does not break your tips. Try them at the shop. Some of the best for cheep are the small metal models.
♦ Erasers; One kneadable & One white plastic. You will want both!
♦ A Pentel Presto! Pocket Correction Pen. aka a Whiteout pen. There are other brands but I don’t recommend them, they all are kind of terrible. Office depot should have them if the art stores are out.
♦3-4 18”x24” Cartridge paper pads! – you can use newsprint but only if it’s smooth, not the rough kind. Really you will get far better results from white Cartridge paper pads! Again, smooth here makes a difference.
♦ One Large [9”x12” or larger] sketchbook, or pad of SMOOTH paper. Not a “sketch” pad, something like fine marker paper is much better. And one small pocket or purse sized sketchbook for sketching while out and about. Again, Smooth paper is important!

Dynamic Drawing Materials List

Along with your existing favorite gesture drawing instruments, explore this list and try to get one or more of each of these mark making tools. For example, you should get a nice brush of some kind, I give the Pentel Pocket Brush or Art Brush by first recommendation, but a good quality felt brush pen is ok to start with too. Not nearly as good as a real bush, but the Faber Castell Pitt Pen brushes are a decent option and come as part of their nice ‘manga’ set of pens. Montreal can be a frustrating town to source some things in, but I’ve investigated a few stores locally, and included a list of shops at the end here I think I can recommend. I’ve also linked to examples of many of the items, and most can be gotten from sites like jetpens.com or amazon.ca. That’s how I often get those items I can’t find locally.

Corrections! making changes and fixing stuff tools!

  • ♦ Erasers; One kneadable & One white plastic. You will want both!
  • A Pentel Presto! Pocket Correction Pen. They can be had at many art stores and most office supply shops. I’ve picked up Prestos at De Serres and Staples. And saw bins full of them at Librairie Jasmin co-op UQAM! Bic makes something like them, and there are other correction pens but none as good. Ask for those before going with the Bics. And this is NOT correction Tape! Do not get Correction Tape.
  • White Gel Ink pens! Personally use Uni-ball Signo Broad UM-153, there are others. I have not exhaustively tested them so try out a few? These are more for drawing white liner details than corrections but when sketching they can be handy for small touch ups and highlights.
  • ♦ OptionalDaler Rowney, Luma Bleed Proof White or  Dr. Ph. Martin’s Bleed Proof White-Opaque paint for watercolour. I’ve been doing some comparison testing and there are other options out there, but as white graphic artists correctional paint goes, those two brands I find to be the best.
  • ♦ Very OptionalDr. Ph. Martin’s, or Liquitex, white india ink. Harder to find in montreal, De Sarres sometimes has the Liquitex but was sold out when I visited. Both are interesting drawing options if it can be had. I’m testing out the Dr. Ph. Martin’s now. Not for corrections as much as drawing in white with a brush or nib.

Papers: We will use a lot, you’ll want to make sure you stock up. The paper you use for dynamic studies can be cheep, but it needs to be decent, and most importantly smooth paper! At least as smooth as what you make photocopies on. That’s Cartridge paper. Here’s my recommended list.

  • ♦ A Large [9”x12” or larger] sketchbook, or pad of smooth paper. And a small pocket or purse sized sketchbook for sketching while out and about. Again, Smooth paper is important! I’ve recently fallen in love with the RHODIA line of drawing pads with smooth ivory paper. Affordable “Ivory” smooth paper perfect for fast sketching. Whatever you get though, SMOOTH is important! Smooth smooth smooth…
  • ♦3-4 18”x24” Cartridge paper pads! – you can use newsprint but only if it’s smooth, not the rough kind. We get far better results from white Cartridge paper pads! Again, smooth here makes a big difference.
  • ♦ Optional: A pad of Bristol, smooth [hot press] paper for refined Ink work. 9×12 is fine, but you might want to get 11×14 if you want to ever do anything larger. I find the Strathmore 300 series to be ideal, and their windpower line is also workable. Don’t buy the 200 series Bristol though, it bleeds too much. It’s also possible to buy this in loose sheets and have it cut to your preferences as well.
  • ♦ Optional: A pad of mixed media paper or watercolour paper, something designed to be used with wet media as well as dry. You can buy them in large loose sheets like i’ve linked to, or in a pad. Another I really like but i’ve only seen sold in town is packs of Fabriano Accademia. I got 50 sheets of A3 200g/m² paper once, still using it. It has a nice level of roughness and takes ink wash and water colors really well, as well as Brush Pen ink. Great stuff and a good size for looser more gestural work. Call ahead to DeSerres and ask them to order some if you want to try it. They are listed as the local distributor.
    We don’t use a lot of wet media in the class, but get at least three big sheets to start if you buy loose paper. As you get more confident with the brush you’ll want to try it out.

Local art store options include DeSerres all over town, and a few others. But I always recomend to call ahead or check their sites before heading out, to see who has what where?;
La Boutique des ARTS de la Coop UQAM is not bad, and a one time membership feel means their prices are a tad cheaper than DeSerres generally after. And around the corner from it in the same building, is Librairie Jasmin co-op UQAM! Great for things like the Gell Pens and Presto Correction Pens.

Brush pens and nice sketchbooks can also be found usually at Au Papier Japonais, and Nota Bene Papeterie has some very nice sketchbooks and a great selection of pens!

There’s La Cohop Saint-Laurent des Arts, another spot were membership has its benefits. And I quite like Encadrements Des Cèdres.

I hear Avenue Des Arts in Westmount can be good, Kama Pigment for pencils and paints and a small drawing supply section, and if you’re a student at concordia they have a decent Art Supply Store worth checking out too.

Again I suggest calling ahead for all of these to see who has the things you need before visiting them, saves time. Also several of the items, like gel pens, mechanical pencils and correction pens, can be sourced at places like Staples!

This, is a photo of my own tools with most of the things listed.



4 Responses to Materials List

  1. Julie L says:

    The pentel correction pen is any sort of “liquid paper pen” out there I figure. The people at the 2 stores I visited had no idea what it was, google image suddenly gave me the answer 🙂

    As for the Pentel Aquash brush, I guess any kind of water brush will do? They don’t have the Pentel one at Omer Desseres but I was shown another brand. Waited for first class to confirm our guess was right before buying. The item was located next to small paint rollers at the Omer on Taschereau.

    Faber Castell Graphite Aquarelle 178036 maybe it’s a typo, 178026 exists, it’s the 2B version. The pack of 5 includes a brush with them (but I guess we may use the water brush instead )

    this totally felt like a treasure hunt btw!

  2. jonathan.picard says:

    Hi! If I do no find the
    2 Faber Castell Graphite Aquarelle pencils 178036
    what can I take as a replacement (HB, 2B, 4B, 6B, 8B? graphite aquarelle)

    Thanks! See you Sunday!


    • salgoodsam says:

      For those, a water colour pencil of some kind, the kind that are water-soluble. Were they out? I’m going to the shop today to pick up a few things, i’ll look to see.

    • salgoodsam says:

      Ok, was just there. The Faber Castell Graphite Aquarelle pencils are hard to find, they are with the paints on the other side of the main isle, and at the far end.

      The have some loose pencils in plastic jugs, though they are running out of those.

      And there are some packs of sets.

      If you can grab some those are by far the best watercolor pencils there are.

      But if you can’t get those any black or very dark water colour pencil will suffice for our class. None of the supplies on the list are impossible to substitute for different brands, just what i found that matched the things i find useful.

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