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In case of inclement weather, bring some of your own good landscape photos, No magazine photos please! Working from a laptop or iPad is fine. 

The most important thing is to have a good lightweight setup for working in the field. We will spend some time in the studio, but the bulk of our time (weather permitting!) will be in the field. 

Make sure to check the weather forecast and pack accordingly. Bring a sunhat, sunscreen, and water bottle.


For Oil Painters

Easel: Make sure you have a sturdy portable easel that you can use. I use a pochade box- here are some sites to check out with good options:,,, These websites also have some great painting accessories to check out.  If you have any questions, please e-mail me.

Palette: Either wood with a nice patina, glass or plexiglass work well.  Paper palettes are not recommended. 

Storage: you’ll want wet boxes to store your wet paintings in.  You can get nice wood panel holders, but they are expensive.  A cheaper option is at They make boxes from corrugated plastic.  

Panels: I prefer oil primed linen panels. As far as sizes I suggest a range from 6x8 – 11x14.  I work mostly 8x10, 9x12, 10x12, and 11x14. Plan to have some cheap 6x8 panels for painting exercises. 

Brushes: Please do not show up with ratty old brushes.  Invest in good brushes and I will show you how to maintain them so that they last for years. I use Rosemary and co. ivory brushes.  I also like Silver Brush Limited’s Grand Prix line of hog bristle brushes. Sizes- I use mostly flats (if you order from Rosemary and Co. they call them long flats or short flats. I use more of the long flats.)  I also have a few brights and filberts. I pack a range from #2-10. 

Paint Student grades work, but not as well as artist grades. Here is a nice basic palette: cadmium Yellow light, cadmium yellow medium, yellow ochre, cadmium red light, Alizarin crimson, burnt sienna, cobalt blue, ultramarine blue and titanium white. Pthalo Blue is nice for desert skies, but it is a dangerously strong color. 

Turpentine jar/brush washer: Also available at  Type brush washer into the search.  A small sealable jar for cleaning brushes.  


Easel Umbrella (optional)


For Pastel Painters

Pastels: I have a reasonably priced pastel set available. I don’t require you have it, just have a look and see what you think. Bear in mind, this is a general set, colors are chosen for a wide variety of landscapes and seasons. I did not put it together as a set specifically for the Northwest. If you purchase it, I’d suggest using it to augment your own pastels.

More is More!! Bring as many pastels as you can reasonably use. I break mine in half, so that I can fit more colors into my field kit. I use a variety of brands, Terry Ludwig, Diane Townsend, and Blue Earth being some of my favorites. Best to get out there and get working with your pastels so that you can figure out what works for you. Again, I’m happy to help you add to your palette as you feel the need. 

Paper: I use Pastelmat, but it’s not for everyone! It comes in 12x16 and 9x12 packs- I’ve experimented with the colored papers, and I really like them. I also use UART (400 or 500 grit) and Ampersand Pastelboard. (Just avoid dark colored papers!) You can purchase either the Pastelmat or the UART mounted to board from Dakota Art Pastels Paper sizes from 8x10 and 12x16, up to 16x20 is fine. 

Sketchbook, pencil, eraser. 

Easel umbrella. (optional, but can be helpful.) Here’s what I have:

Other Stuff:

  1. Palette cup (for clean turps)

  2. Easel umbrella

  3. Water bottle, sunscreen, sunhat 

  4. A medium paint knife for mixing

  5. Medium (linseed oil, liquin, that sort of thing) 

  6. Paper towels! (I like Viva.)

  7. Sketch book, pencil, and erasers.

  8. Some landscape photos

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MISA - Madeline Island School of the Arts
978 Middle Road
PO Box 536
La Pointe, WI 54850
(715) 747-2054
[email protected]
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