Wednesday, July 11, 2012

5 Ways to Save Money on Art Supplies

5 Ways to Save Money on Art Supplies

As an artist you know that finding the right tools for your trade is important.  From paper, to pencils, to paint, there is usually something you need to replenish your supply.  But a trip to the art supply store can be expensive; especially if you allow yourself to get carried away with impulse buys.  Consumer-saving sites like and these following five tips will help you save money as you stock up on what you need.

1.                   Don’t waste your good paper:  You will need to have a supply of high quality paper for your final projects.  Don’t allow yourself to use this paper for just anything. recently published an article, Drawing on a Budget, that suggests that drawing exercises, experiments, and practice studies can all be done on cheap office paper.  That way you won’t feel you’ve wasted your best materials on something less than your best work. 

2.                   Make sure you really need it:  Art supply stores are well stocked with every imaginable tool you could use.  However, most of what’s there you won’t actually need.  Don’t get carried away purchasing things you think you might have a use for.  If you’re not sure, chances are it will only collect dust.  Stick to the necessities.

3.                   Take care of your existing supplies:  It may seem like an obvious statement, but artists can be hard on their tools.  Some things, like paper, have to be replaced regularly.  Others, according to, like paintbrushes, can be well cared for.  If they are good quality brushes to begin with, they will last you a long time. 

4.                   Check out garage sales:  You won’t be able to stock up on paper this way.  But you may be surprised at the deals you can find on frames, quality pastels, and pencils.  You’ll have to be patient, because you won’t find what you’re looking for at every garage, moving, or estate sale.  If you keep your eyes open, though, you may come across a real gem.

5.                   Sign up for mailing lists:  Online art suppliers and physical art retailers often have mailing lists.’s article, How to Save Money on Art Supplies, explains that these lists will send out sale announcements and coupons to your email inbox.  You can coordinate your next trip to coincide with a big sale, or use coupons for specific items you need.

Creating art is not always a cheap endeavor.  The tools needed to create that masterpiece can really add up.  If you’re careful with what you have, and plan ahead for what you need you can find ways to cut the costs.

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