Who: Clara Bee Lavery, Toronto-bred-and-based illustrator/artist, zinester, weirdo-about-town.
*Faber-Castell pens - usually XS or S
*Prismacolor pens, ranging from 01-05
*Windsor-Newton and Reeves Gouache paints
*Yoghurt lids (the best palettes that ever were!)
*coffee (nice mid-tone browns!)
*paint brushes, as cheap as they come
*ecojot 5x7 sketchbooks
*Daler-Rowney 135 lb HeavyWeight paper pads
Why do I love these supplies?
I am extremely privileged to come from a family who values and appreciates art-making. My dad does really beautiful, strange paintings and drawings of wildlife and rural settings, my mom makes bizarrely lovely puppets and hats, & my sister is a comic artist who makes these amazing sequential inkwashes. I grew up in a supportive and creative environment, and this has extended to my adult life: my parents still send me care packages with art supplies every so often, and I really can’t overstate how crucial that is to my practice. Like many artists, I am low-income, and a couple of good pens in the mail make a world of difference. Thanks, parents!
I just discovered Prismacolor pens after years of loyalty to only Faber-Castell. My ex-boyfriend gave me a beautiful set of ‘em when I got married last summer, and I’m hooked!
As for paper, I’ve been buying the exact same sketchbook for years. It’s a nice, cheap option and I like the plain covers for drawing on. It’s not the most ideal paper for painting on, but I’m not a fancy kind of gal - I just use Photoshop to clean up the wrinkles. If I’m illustrating for a client, though, I use a sturdier option like 135 lb cold-pressed bristol board - I usually only need two or three big pads of those a year.
The nicest thing for art-making that I own is my beautiful drafting table, which my best friends and husband went in on together for my birthday last year. When I’m working on a piece, I keep the upper right hand corner covered in magazine clippings, postcards, stickers - anything that matches the aesthetic I’m going for - as inspiration and to focus my practice.
As you can see, I am very lucky to have others looking out for me and encouraging my practice. Though I live in a society that doesn’t value or pay artists, I am so fortunate to be part of a community that actively fosters my work. I try to do my best to put that positive energy back into the world with my drawings, and through supporting other artists as they support me <3