Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners - what is essential and what is optional? You can’t start your painting journey without proper painting tools. But there are so many different supplies available... so let's find out what you really need for start. Smart Art Materials

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners - what is essential and what is optional? You can’t start your painting journey without proper painting tools. But there are so many different supplies available... so let's find out what you really need for start. Smart Art MaterialsToday we are going to touch the base and talk about Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners.

You can’t start your painting journey without proper tools. However, art materials shopping can be exciting and overwhelming at the same time. Just because there are so many different paints, brushes, palettes and other tools you are not even familiar with.

Start The Art 🙂

I remember my first steps in the art supplies shop – I almost lost my mind! I wanted it ALL without even knowing what exactly I need to start. If you know what I’m talking about, or you just looking to fill in the gaps in this matter, this article is for YOU!

First of all, take it easy! Don't try to buy it all at once, first figure out what you need. Second, always compare prices and don't forget about online shopping, because most of the time the same items cost 10-50% cheaper online (for example on Amazon) than in your local art store.

NOTE: this post is about art supplies for painting, and if you are looking for pouring supplies, check out this article - Acrylic Paint Pouring Supplies – Essentials and Fancy Add-ons

Now, let's discuss some essentials!

Essential Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners

These four listed below are absolutely essential for starting:

1. Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art MaterialsAcrylic Paint. First things first –  you need the paint. The good one. The one, that is just right for your needs. It’s a very important yet a very hard choice. Heavy or soft body? Colors? Brand? Grade? To get answers to all these questions, I highly recommend you to dive deep into these posts:  Acrylic Paint Definition, Acrylic Paint Basic Palette, Paint Body Explanation and Student VS Artist Grade  – all you need to know before Paint Shopping.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials2. Painting brushes. Painting brush is your magic stick in the world of painting. It's essential even for those who work in pouring or airbrush technique. There are dozens of different kinds, shapes, sizes of brush – easy to get lost. But once you find your perfect set, and learn how to use it, you will advance to the next level of your art experience. To get started, go ahead and read this complete Painting Brush Guide.

3. Painting Surface. You can’t get away without it because you need something to paint on. There are multiple Supports suitable for acrylics. Canvas and Canvas Paper are the most popular ones. The choice depends on their characteristics and your goals.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials4. Palette. Unless you splash or pour your paint right on the painting surface, you need a palette. Just like with any other art supply, there are quite a few to choose from. To make a deliberate choice, you need to get familiar with this Paint Palette guide.

Level Up ⇒ Add-ons

As you grow and develop your painting skills, try to add these tools to your art routine. This will make a huge impact on the whole process of painting and will help you express your creativity even more.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials5. Painting knives and Palette knife. Painting knife allows you to create incredible textured effects. Palette knife is meant for mixing paint on the palette. Check out this Painting Knife and Palette Knife article to find out more about these amazing tools.

How to choose an Easel for Painting? Check out this guide from Smart Art Materials.6. Easel. It's important to set up your art workspace to make your painting process as comfortable and as effective as possible.  And easel is a quite essential add-on, especially if you paint a lot. Find out why you need it and what are the types of easel here - Easel for Painting, and here you can find some tips on how to organize the workspace.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials7. Acrylic Mediums. Adding acrylic medium, like gel, modeling texture paste, glazing medium etc, to your paint is a way to make it even more versatile. You can find info about different types of it in the Acrylic Paint Medium guide. Give it a try and I promise, you are going to love the outcome!

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials8. Gesso. Gesso is a primer that prepares the surface for painting. It dries hard, making the surface stiffer. To find out why and how to use it, read about Gesso Primer for Acrylic Painting.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials9. Varnish. Are you at that point where you want to save some of your paintings, give as a gift or sell? Well, then you just have to start using Varnish. Varnish is a protective blanket for your painting's longevity. To learn more about it, review this Varnish for Painting article.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials10. Scraping tools and Sponges. These are irreplaceable instruments for the creation of unique textured effects. Mostly used in abstract painting. Sponges are amazing for creating uneven color textures, while scraping tools combine very well with gels and modeling pastes. Read more here.

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners Smart Art Materials11. Masking Tape. Masking tape or Artist's tape is made of a thin and easy-to-tear paper. It is used to mask off areas that should not be painted.

Let the Creativity begin!

Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners. Smart Art Materials

I hope you’ve enjoyed this introduction to the Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners. 

There are always many options for different levels and budgets. Start with the basics and slowly add to it one thing at the time.  

And remember, at the end of it, art is not about tools and supplies. It's about how it makes you feel. Learn, practice, experiment, have fun and never ever be afraid to fail.

Art is not a thing, it is a way.

- Elbert Hubbard

So find your way and never give it up.

If you have any questions, please leave me a comment below

Sincerely yours,


6 thoughts on “Acrylic Painting Supplies for Beginners

  1. Lizzie B says:

    Thanks for the quick low-down Olga! I’ve recently starting using acrylic paints for some wood painting I’ve been working on. Obviously my painting surface is a bit different, but the other basics you’ve outlined are so perfect for me to know as I work on getting better with my crafts. Thanks again 🙂

  2. Cheryl says:

    Hi Olga, I loved your post here and wish that I was painting more often. You covered all the items that are needed in a way that was easy to read and understand, and the other articles that you referring to are also very informative.

    I really like to paint as it is very therapeutic and a good thing to do if you have had a stressful day. A good way to de-stress. I will most certainly come back and visit your site for more information. Thank you for a great post.

    • Olga says:

      Hi Cheryl, you are welcome! 🙂 I know how sometimes it’s hard to find the time for our hobbies and even ourselves in our busy everyday life, but when we actually do – it feels amazing! Painting is very therapeutic and even meditative thing for me to do too.

  3. Ewo Lam says:

    Hi. Olga. I like your introduction to acrylic painting. The posting helps beginners to make their buying decisions.

    I have a project comes up to my mind. It’s watercolour painting on a canvas shopping bag.
    I have heard that acrylic paints can have watercolour effects, but I am not sure what kind of surface preparations should be applied to the bag before painting. Would you suggest a gesso and a varnish that will work for the project?

    • Olga says:

      Hi Ewo, thanks for the comment! Yes, you can create watercolor effects with acrylic paint. For this project, I would recommend you to get acrylic paints that are designed for fabric, that will definitely work the best and will ensure the durability of the painting. Prepping your surface with gesso is also a very good idea!

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