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Four different-colored Blackwing pencils, tucked into the narrow, vertical pockets of a black A5 Art Toolkit.

Blackwing Pencils for Sketching and Writing

Supplies | January 30, 2023

We have enjoyed exploring the subtle differences between these four pencils and love what each one brings to urban sketching, note-taking, and detailed drawings.
A Pocket Palette and Folio Palette laying on a table, next to two well-used sketchbooks.

Sketchbook Kaigi with April Wu

Demos | January 24, 2023

This is a recording of our live Sketchbook Kaigi demo on Developing Your Daily Art Habit with April Wu!
Close-up view of watercolor artist Gavin Snider’s sketchbook, with a painting of a city street.

Artist Goals for 2023

Inspiration | January 02, 2023

Happy New Year! Today we’re reflecting on 2022 and setting goals and intentions for the new year.
Art Toolkit accessories: X-Shot Cup, mini binder clip, Pocket Mister, Refill Syringe, and kneadable eraser.

Time to Accessorize!

Supplies | December 14, 2022

We have curated a steadily-growing list of our favorite additional accessories to take on the go.
Holiday wreath cards by Lisa Spangler.

Holiday Card Making with Lisa

Demos | December 07, 2022

Art Toolkit Ambassador Lisa Spangler demonstrates color mixing and guides us through creating homemade holiday cards!
A Hahnemühle ZigZag book expanded to show a series of sketches.

Telling a Story with ZigZag Sketchbooks

Inspiration | November 21, 2022

We love what an accordion book can bring to art adventures! The expandable format is perfect for telling a story, batching thematic observations of the world around you, or capturing a whole experience in one sketchbook.
Fall leaves scattered on watercolor paper with a contour drawing of the leaves and splash of watercolor.

Color Splashes and Contour Drawing

Technique | November 08, 2022

We invite you to try a fun and meditative approach to exploring place and color. Art Toolkit Ambassador Nikki Frumkin shared this exercise on a recent Hike and Draw event in Seattle.
Close-up view of granulation effect in watercolor pigments: Letter Sparrow’s Kelly Green, Sunflower, Italian Orange, and Violet Ochre.

Exploring Watercolor Granulation

Technique | November 03, 2022

Recently, we’ve been experimenting with the properties of paints, and this week we are focusing on granulation with the very special Grow Untamed Palette and a selection of Daniel Smith watercolors!
A white card with the words: “I want to wake every morning into love, where love is the question of how I’m going to help you get free, where that means whatever it needs to mean.” by Saretta Morgan.

Expedition Press Poetry Prompts

Inspiration | October 25, 2022

We asked our friend Myrna Keliher at Expedition Press for some lines of poetry that have been a source of inspiration to her.
Gestural sketch of red-winged blackbirds by Maria Coryell-Martin

Gestural Sketches

Technique | October 03, 2022

Whether you’re limited on time or your subject likes to move around a lot, gestural sketches are a fast and energetic way to capture the essence of a subject in a short amount of time.
A5 and Pocket Art Toolkits shown personalized with a shoulder strap and embroidered patch.

Personalizing Your Toolkit

Supplies | September 30, 2022

We would love to share some fun ideas and tips for how you might personalize your Art Toolkit.
Two sizes of Art Toolkits shown

A Tour of Our Toolkits

Supplies | September 28, 2022

So, what is an Art Toolkit? Here is an in-depth tour of our kits and some ideas for filling them with your favorite supplies!
Hood Canal Bridge sketch by Maria Coryell-Martin.

Road Trip Sketching Tips

Inspiration | September 19, 2022

Car trips can be a fantastic way to capture the world and the feel of moving through it, and an Art Toolkit can help make it simple.
Drawing of a banana using both hands by Nakaia Macomber-Millman.

Sketching with Both Hands

Inspiration | September 14, 2022

We’re inviting you to step outside of what’s familiar and try drawing with both hands… simultaneously!
Bunny sketch by Maria Coryell-Martin.

Helpful Tips for Painting Fur

Technique | September 07, 2022

Getting fur right is tricky, so we came up with some helpful tips for recreating that soft, directional texture on paper!
An upside down sketch of a jar of pens and pencils by Nakaia Macomber-Millman

Drawing Upside Down

Inspiration | August 24, 2022

If you’re ever looking to stretch your observational skills, we would like to recommend drawing upside down!
First spring wildflower watercolor by Nakaia Macomber-Millman

Do You Know Where You Are?

Inspiration | August 10, 2022

What could be a more fitting way to celebrate our planet than by deepening your knowledge of the patch of Earth on which you live?⁠ Here are 20 opportunities to explore deeper into the place you live through a series of questions. You can use each question as a potential nature journal prompt, an artistic prompt, or a way to get to know the world better.⁠

Drawing tools, arragned pleasantly.

Our Sketching Tools in Action

Supplies | August 03, 2022

We have quite a variety of drawing tools in our shop! From fountain pens to calligraphy felt tips, pencils and mechanical pencils, we curated our collection to make sure there’s a tool for every type of sketcher.
Empty compact watercolor palettes, shown in three sizes.

Customizing Your Palette

Technique | July 19, 2022

Our new empty palette option allows you to build precisely the palette you want. But how do you know what that is? Setting up a palette is personal and depends on your preferences as an artist. Our range of palette and pan sizes lets you customize your layout to your needs.

Refillable pens, ink cartridge, and converter.

How to Use a Pen Cartridge Converter

Technique | July 14, 2022

Refillable ink cartridges are a way to be a little greener and use ink that you can’t find in cartridge form. They are a little tricky to fill, so we made a tutorial to demystify the process.
A peek at Maria Coryell-Martin’s sketchbooks over the years.

Developing Your Own Style

Inspiration | July 08, 2022

It takes time to develop your own style. For many artists, creating starts as an imitation of work they already like, and there is nothing wrong with that! But how do you make the transition from being inspired by to just being inspired?
Paint-filled traveler’s palettes laying on a table next to their cotton bags.

TRAVEL & SKETCH Virtual Trip with Maria

Demos | June 24, 2022

Watch Maria and April Wu from TRAVELER’S COMPANY USA as they talk about their limited edition palette collaboration, and Maria shares her favorite adventure sketching techniques.
Selected illustrations from the Art Toolkit Adventure Checklist.

Overnight Art Adventure Checklist

Inspiration | June 17, 2022

We love combining a campout with an art session, but we know it can be easy to forget essential items, especially if you’re on a spur-of-the-moment adventure!
Hahnemühle paper-making machinery.

Paper Makes a Difference

Demos | June 16, 2022

In this video, Joe “Paper Nerd” Domeier from Hahnemühle USA shares his vast paper knowledge with Maria!
A misty mountain landscape by Sophia Trinh.

Saltwater Painting with Sophia Trinh

Inspiration | May 31, 2022

We are thrilled to announce that Sophia Trinh is joining our team of Ambassadors!⁠ In this video Sophia shows us two ways she uses salt in her watercolor paintings.
Texas Coneflower sketch by Lisa Spangler.

Painting Coneflowers with Lisa Spangler

Inspiration | May 25, 2022

A few weeks ago, our friend and Art Toolkit Ambassador Lisa Spangler taught a workshop at Nash Prairie Preserve near the Gulf Coast of Texas, an extraordinary place protected by The Nature Conservancy. Here, Lisa shares some exercises that you can use to get to know wildflowers in your area, wherever you are!
Color study by Lisa Spangler.

Mixing Triads with Lisa Spangler

Demos | May 04, 2021

Lisa demonstrates how to make small pamphlet books and shares tips on mixing triads, featuring our Greenleaf & Blueberry CMYK Palette.
Mike Daikubara’s Pocket Palette, with a small sponge nestled inside.

Seeing Palettes in a Whole New Way

Inspiration | February 18, 2021

One of the great things about sharing our supplies with the world has been seeing all the clever ways artists are making use of them.
Images from The Sketchnoting Handbook by Mike Rohde.

Sketchnoting with Mike Rohde

Demos | February 12, 2021

Follow along as Mike shares his Sketchnoting techniques with me in this recording of our live demo.
Cover of the book Drawing with Children.

Drawing with Children

Inspiration | February 05, 2021

Today’s book recommendation comes from our Marketing Coordinator, Nhatt Nichols.
Watercolor study of evergreen trees with color swatches and Demi Palette.

Tips for Painting Evergreen Trees

Technique | November 16, 2020

When painting evergreens, it helps to have a few premixed shades of green, especially for sketching on the go...
Fall leaves watercolor using negative shapes by Maria Coryell-Martin.

Negative Shapes: Autumn Leaves

Technique | October 02, 2020

So much of watercolor involves attention to shapes! I like to work from large to small shapes and often start painting the negative spaces between and around objects.
Watercolor sketch of snowy mountain peaks and an icy lake by Jill Richie.

Artist and Archeologist Jill Richie

Featured Artists | October 02, 2020

Alaskan artist Jill Richie creates connections between humans and the environment with her plein air studies. Learn about her family quarantine art project, the importance of learning from your environment, and the virtues of not being too fussy with supplies or results.
A swirl of colors shows the mixing posibilities of the Ultimate Mixing Palette.

Sketching with Barbara Luel

Demos | September 25, 2020

Barbara and I played with color and form and talked about how freeing it can be to create.
Max Romey sketches by the light of his headlamp high in the mountains.

Max Romey

Featured Artists | September 12, 2020

Max Romey is an artist, videographer, and trail runner who is sketching his way through Alaska.
Sketch of the Villa di Maser building by Palladio by Liz Steel.

Sketching Architecture with Liz Steel

Demos | August 15, 2020

Join me and Liz Steel as we sketch the Villa di Maser building in Italy, using some of the techniques she has developed for her book, 5 Minute Architecture.
Mixing Palette with three large pans for mixing watercolors, and a Demi Palette with paint-filled pans on top of a color study.

Mixing Palette

Supplies | August 07, 2020

Sometimes you need just a little extra space to make precisely the shade you need.
Rack with a range of brushes in Maria Coryell-Martin’s home studio.

Studio Tour

Demos | August 06, 2020

See my workspace, favorite tools, and sketches from various expeditions.
Painting of feathers using white gouache by Maria Coryell-Martin.

White Gouache

Technique | July 20, 2020

White gouache can be a fantastic tool for adding final highlights to sketches. It can make cat whiskers, snow, or sailboats pop right off the page, and I especially love working with it on toned paper.
Local Color book by Mimi Robinson alongside our Garden in Bloom Palette.

Summer Reading List: <i>Local Color</i>

Inspiration | July 10, 2020

We have summer reading on our minds! We'll be sharing inspiration from our bookshelf over the next few months and would love your recommendations.
Biker painting by Russ Roca.

Russ Roca of Path Less Pedaled

Demos | June 12, 2020

Russ (@pathlesspedaled) creates vibrant, loose watercolors that capture a sense of the freedom felt riding a bike.
Flower paintings by Chelsea Ward.

Live Demo with Chelsea Ward

Demos | May 29, 2020

Chelsea shares ideas and techniques for painting sunflowers, as well as her approach to lettering.
Watercolor still life paintings of fruit by Samantha Dion Baker.

Live Demo Series

Demos | April 03, 2020

Join Maria as she paints with other artists, every Friday for a new live demo series.
Art Toolkit nestled in sustainable packaging.

Sustainable Packaging

Behind the Scenes | March 25, 2020

It’s been nearly a year since we ditched plastic in our packaging to move to more eco-conscious materials, and we haven’t looked back.
Sketching at Fort Worden.


Inspiration | March 12, 2020

Adventures to the far corners of the earth can be exciting and romantic, but aren’t necessarily something you can fit into a typical weekend, much less an afternoon! There are lots of ways to find smaller adventures if you’re willing to look for them.
Painting by Chelsea Ward (@sketchynotions).

Sketchy Notions

Featured Artists | March 09, 2020

Chelsea Ward (aka @sketchynotions) is an artist and plant-lover who creates colorful and whimsical sketches and stationery.
The Pocket Palette and Demi Palette compared in size.

Palette Evolution

Behind the Scenes | March 01, 2020

Ten years on, a look at the evolution of the Pocket Palette.