List of 25 Best Drawing Supplies & Materials Essentials

best drawing supplies

All you need is the best drawing supplies for drawing to get started. Most people start with pencils and paper. Your curiosity as an artist will lead you to try new techniques and materials soon.

Although technology has advanced over the centuries, artists’ materials have remained largely unchanged. Using most materials today is easier, and the range of pigments available is more varied. However, we still use them in the same way essentially.

Drawing materials are expensive but can produce many drawings before needing replacement. If you wish to avoid unnecessary expenses and disappointment, start modestly. Start with a medium you’re interested in and then branch out gradually.

Our Favorite Drawing Supplies

25 Best Drawing Supplies Essentials

1. Strathmore 400 Series Pastel Pad

Strathmore Assorted Color Pastel Paper Pad 18'X24'-24 Sheets -403180

Using watercolors on this paper will make it warp, but it can be used for any drawing tool. It’s a suitable thickness and weight. It’s challenging and sturdy enough to handle water, just like Strathmore’s watercolor paper, one of the best drawing supplies. You get a great blend of texture in the charcoal and pastel paper notebooks. I guess you can sketch away, too, since the prices are pretty reasonable.

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2. Staedtler Mars Lumograph Drawing Pencils

STAEDTLER Mars Lumograph Art Drawing Pencils, 12 Pack Graphite Pencils in Metal Case, Break-Resistant Bonded Lead, 100 G12

Most people use 2B, HB, and B for deep blacks that blend seamlessly. For complex, light lines, H pencils are perfect.  In addition to being easy to sharpen, these pencils also feel comfortable to hold even when you are drawing for hours on end. Staedtler’s are the best graphite pencils for the price that I’ve used.

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3. Prismacolor Quality Art Set

Prismacolor Quality Art Set - Premier Colored Pencils 48 Pack, Premier Pencil Sharpener 1 Pack and Latex-Free Scholar Eraser 1 Pack

Colored pencils in beautiful, bright shades are included in the Prismacolor Quality Art Set. Additionally, you will receive a Latex-Free Scholar Eraser and a Sharpener. It’s not like those Crayola colored pencils you used in elementary school. Soft lead, rich colors, high-quality pencils. The Prismacolor pencils are ideal for creating extraordinary drawings or bringing a black and white design to life through coloring.

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4. Winsor & Newton Cotman Water Colour

Winsor & Newton Cotman Water Colour Paint Sketchers' Pocket Box, Half Pans, 13 count (12 colors and a brush)

The best watercolor sets come in tubes like acrylic and oil paint, not plastic sets like those in elementary schools. There are lovely watercolor pencils as well as groups of good plastic pencils. The Sketchers Pocket Box is an excellent option for people on the go. Their colors are rich and beautiful.

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5. Winsor & Newton Galeria Acrylic Paint

Winsor & Newton Galeria Acrylic Paint, 10 x 60ml (2-oz) Tube Paint Set

The Winsor & Newton 10-tube set is an excellent option if you’re looking for something a little fancier. However, the paint will be more expensive and the pigments stronger. It doesn’t matter which you choose.

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6. da Vinci Brushes

da Vinci Brushes 5359 da Vinci Watercolor Russian Red Sable 5359-5 Brush Includes Series 36 Sizes 0, 1, 2, 4 & 6-Round Shape, Set, Black

Generally, we advise against buying cheap brushes shed all over your canvas. We have the brushes you need at da Vinci Brushes. Da Vinci brushes are relatively affordable and durable, so we included them in this guide, although there are many more brushes out there. There are brushes made of synthetic hair and bristles and brushes from natural animal hair and bristles.

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7. DIY Solid Wood Canvas Frame Kit

DIY Solid Wood Canvas Frame Kit 24 x36 Inch for Oil Painting & Wall Art - Customized Wooden Art Frames for Paintings & Canvases - Easy to Build Canvas Stretching System - Framed Picture Accessories

Canvas frame kit that is super simple to assemble! Just scissors are required. Glue, pliers, and other tools are not necessary. The bars forming the corners of our canvas stretcher frame fit together perfectly, so assembling it is a breeze. Whether you know nothing about framing, or even if you do, it’s now easier than ever to make your solid wood canvas frame!

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8. Kuretake gansai Tambi Watercolor paints

Kuretake GANSAI TAMBI 48 Colors Set, Watercolor Paint Set, Professional-quality for artists and crafters, AP-Certified, water colors for adult, Made in Japan

Think of a slightly related gift to what the painter uses for their work if you don’t know what to get them. It allows them to enjoy their creations without worrying about whether they are perfect. Mainly an acrylic painter, Ashley Longshore enjoys working with these watercolors for fun. Her favorite watercolor palette boasts a variety of colors and excellent pigmentation.

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9. Yasutomo Black Sumi Ink

Yasutomo Yasutomo Sumi Ink Japanese Bokuju Black 12 oz

A brush tip pen or ink and water are most frequently used when drawing. When the ink is dry, you can go over it in watercolor, and it will not bleed. This is the ink that I prefer since it does not fade over time, and it is waterproof. It also has a lovely bottle.

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10. Faber-Castell World Colors Ecopencils

Faber-Castell World Colors Ecopencils, 27 Count - Diverse Skin Tone Colored Pencils For Kids

At our house, colored pencils work hard but are underappreciated. Even though they’re not as popular as googly eyes or foam paint, kids still use them for drawing. The brands we like are Lyra, Prang, and Faber-Castell World Colors.

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11. Washi Masking Tape Set

30 Rolls Washi Masking Tape Set, 15mm Wide Colorful Rainbow, Decorative Writable Craft Tape for DIY Scrapbook Designs

Around here, masking tape and painter’s tape are staples. The tapes can be used to mask sections, create borders, hold the armature in place while printing, and fasten tabletop covers. We have always used Washi tape whenever we have created holiday crafts tables. We add it to letters, to sketchbooks, we use it to color and print our collages, and so on.

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12. Fiskars Scissors Blunt

Fiskars 194160 Back to School Supplies, Kids Scissors Blunt-tip Bulk, 5 Inch, 12 Pack, Assorted Colors

Fiskars scissors are a good choice. I use them to cut paper and punch holes. Kids’ fingers fit naturally and more comfortably in the larger finger loop and ergonomic thumb loop. Their handle should be brightly colored, shiny, and smooth.

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13. Elmers Liquid School Glue

Elmer's Liquid School Glue, Washable, 4 Ounces Each, 12 Count - Great for Making Slime

There are so many reasons why glue is necessary. And may not even qualify as a stand-alone item on this list. The glue bottles are just so much fun to squeeze for little kids, especially those who love to squeeze, that we had to add it.

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14. Water Brush Pens

Water Brush Pens - Set of 6 Brush Tips Aqua pens - Great for Watercolor Paints, Water Soluble Pencils, Brush Pen, Markers - Refillable Brush Pens - Aqua Pen, Art Brushes - MozArt Supplies

To use with your watercolor painting, fill these brushes with water. You have many options for creating art with utensils that have different nylon tip shapes and sizes. Others are perfect for painting large areas of color, while others are excellent for hand lettering.

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15. Excel Blades K71 Fingertip Craft Knife

Excel Blades K71 Fingertip Craft Knife - 7 Inch Ergonomic Hobby Knife With Finger Loop - Crafting Supplies - Scrapbooking Knife and Cutting Tool For Precision Cutting and Trimming - Green Teal

You can fatigue your entire hand if you hold traditional X-Acto knives tightly for too long. A hole in the handle resembles an oval shape and grips your index finger when in use. You can slice your paper collage with it comfortably and controllably.

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16. Sketch and Drawing Art Pencil Kit

Amazon Basics Sketch and Drawing Art Pencil Kit - 17 Piece Set

Sketch kit has all the best drawing supplies you need for artists of all skill levels. Use intricate shading and blending to create detailed art or just sketch and doodle. This kit combines several drawing techniques to create complex designs. Users can experiment with different drawing tools without breaking the bank in this dynamic kit for artists of all levels.

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17. MUJINHUA Professional Charcoal Pencils Drawing Set

MUJINHUA Professional Charcoal Pencils Drawing Set, Colour Pencils Sketch Highlight White Pencils for Drawing, Sketching, Shading, Blending, for Beginners & Pro Artists, Set of 12

For many artists, charcoal is the preferred medium for the best drawing supplies. The tones and contrast of charcoal are striking. Blending and erasing it allows artists to create various effects in their art. In addition, charcoal produces strong darks with a wide range of values. As a result, the artist can quickly capture visual information to be applied and manipulated.

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18. General’s Classic Charcoal Set

best drawing supplies

There are also white charcoal pencils for highlighting, and each pencil is labeled with its hardness level. It is an excellent blending tool as well as an excellent eraser. You can work large or small with charcoal sticks due to their various thicknesses. In addition to powder charcoal, vine charcoal is also an option, but those are specific tools that most people won’t need initially. Despite their relative affordability, I’ve had great results with General charcoal pencils for a long time.

19. Prismacolor Eraser Multi-Pack

best drawing supplies

Kneaded erasers are my preferred type because they are universal and don’t shed bits throughout the workspace, but ArtGum’s plastic eraser is suitable for stubborn graphite, and neither sheds bits. You can choose the one you require depending on the medium you’re using since this set gives you all three.

20. Koh-I-Noor Gioconda Soft Pastel Pencils

best drawing supplies

Both Koh-i-Noor and Prismacolor make great soft pastel pencils for a reasonable price. The fine tip of my pastel pencils allows me to draw with more precision and control. However, Prismacolor’s pastels are the best to use when you’re working large.

21. Gamblin Artists’ Oil Color

best drawing supplies

One of the most flexible types of art you can do is an oil painting, one of the most expensive. Paint in oil is thicker, stays wet longer, and can be applied over an extended period for a better mix and blend. Colors are made with oil and made in a certain way. There are hundreds of different oils on the market, but they are made certain.

22. Blick Studio Aluminum Tripod Travel Easel

best drawing supplies

Aluminum Tripod Travel Easel from Blick Studio is a stable, portable, lightweight easel designed for Plein air painting. It is also perfect as a temporary set up in a small home studio. Its telescoping legs can be easily adjusted from floor-standing to tabletop positions with a single touch.

23. Apple Pencil 2nd Generation

best drawing supplies

I will use an Apple pencil to draw on my iPad if I am short on time for things I do not need to scan. Artists of any kind would love to receive this set, but illustrators would particularly appreciate it because it saves them time and allows them to take on more work.

24. Aqua Monolith Watercolor Pencil Set

best drawing supplies

This set of watercolor colored pencils would be an excellent upgrade for older kids who already know how to use colored pencils. The color richness and the wood-free design of her paintings allow her to create a variety of textures and line thickness by varying the angle of the pencil. They can also be applied with water or dipped to diffuse the pigment, just like watercolors.

25. Fiskars Lever Punches

best drawing supplies

Hand punches produce uniform shapes on paper, whether you’re scrapbooking or creating collage art, whatever the papercraft you’re working on. Various shapes are available, and these tools can be used in the same manner as conventional hole punches, ranging from very simple to highly complex.


Developing the right skills and using the correct materials is crucial to becoming an accomplished pencil artist using the best drawing supplies. Especially as a beginner, you should use tools that work well together and give you consistent results.

Working with the wrong tools can lead to disappointing results, even if you have good technique. It will also prevent you from making progress.

Put together a toolkit that works for you to finally start working on your technique instead of coping with toolbox issues.

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