Basic watercolor set for beginners

February is dedicated to watercolor sketches!

My goal is to show you how to paint with watercolor quickly and without any pencil sketch.


If you are just starting to think about watercolor, and you like how it looks but do not want to spend a lot of money for supplies, this post is for you!


You should have 3 things:

  1. Paper

  2. Paints

  3. Brushes


1. Watercolor paper.


Don’t worry about paper types too much, I am going to talk about it in my future posts.

Remember one very important thing - you need a lot of watercolor paper!


I recommend Canson XL Watercolour Pads.

It’s a good price-quality ratio.


Pay attention to paper weight - 140 pound/300 gram.

Canson XL Watercolour Pads are popular products which you can find not only in art supplies stores but also in Walmart.

There are different sizes of paper pads. However, you do not need a big one - 7x10” or 9x12” is enough!

I personally prefer a wire pad with dimensions 7x10”. It’s very convenient to keep your sketches all together like in a journal.




2. Watercolor paints.


At the beginning, buy something cheap. If you like watercolor, you can invest your money into professional quality paints. However even cheap paints are made different!


I recommend 2 brands:


Prang Watercolour Sets (8 pc or 16 pc)




Yarka Watercolour sets (8 pc or 12 pc)


Both of them you can buy on Amazon or at our local store which does worldwide shipping.


They are for kids however for very beginners of different ages they are good!

Actually, if you need paints for small sketches and very light washes these sets work too.


3. Brushes.


Prang and Yarka sets already include one brush. It’s pretty small.

That’s why I recommend buying bigger brushes.


You may be surprised - IKEA brushes for kids are great for watercolor and for other mediums too!



IKEA’s set has 6 flat and round brushes of different sizes. Round brushes have a sharp point - for watercolor painting it’s important. Moreover IKEA brushes are soft and we need soft brushes for watercolor.


Tips: Be gentle with your brushes, do not press very hard on them, do not leave them in a jar with water, wash them very well with warm water and they live for a long time.


Otherwise it’s easy to change them - IKEA brushes are very cheap!


Conclusion: if you want to try watercolor painting, you do need to waste your money.

Watercolor pad costs around $10

Paints cost $8-16 depends of a set

Brushes cost $4


Voilà - $25-30 and you are ready to paint with watercolor!


Have fun and stay tuned to read more posts about watercolor!


For now, watch my short video about watercolor hyacinth:



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