I got a big order of art supplies last week that I bought from the Dick Blick website. It’s always fun to get a big box of art supplies delivered even if it is expensive. But the newness of anything wears off and then it matters what you make with the art supplies. That’s what I’m contemplating now. What to make.

The bulk of the art supplies was acrylic paint. I got fourteen new tubes/containers of paint including a $20 tube of orange. I mention that only because I usually try to stay away from $20 tubes of paint. At least it was a big tube. I haven’t even had a chance to use the new paint yet and that’s a bit of a disappointment. It’s perfectly logical that I haven’t used them yet as I just finished four large paintings in a rather short amount of time and haven’t had the chance to start another but still I feel little bad for no reason except the realization that art supplies aren’t magic. I really expect them to be when I’m anticipating their arrival.

I also got a couple of storage boxes for photographs. I’m a person who enjoys organizing things and I have my small collection of fine art photographs just stuck on a shelf. They are mounted and protected in mylar so they weren’t unprotected but I want to be able to look at them easily without them sliding all around. I decided to buy an art storage box for about ten bucks. For me that’s a lot of money for a box (though it’s on the cheap end of art storage boxes) and in the past I’ve made my own storage boxes for less money but this time I wanted something a little fancier. The box was perfectly alright but ended up not looking as fancy in real life as I though it would. It’s just a paper box.

What’s weird about liking to put things in order and getting special boxes and such for the stuff to be ordered is that it’s exciting to get the boxes but once everything is in order the excitement is gone. The whole point of putting stuff in order it to make it convenient for yourself in the future and in the future it is cool to have things easily found and accessible but once everything is away in its new place there is no reason yet to take it out. So you stand there with everything in its place and say to yourself, “That’s nice. Now what do I do”. Order only shows its value when you need to get something done.

The other interesting thing I got was a variety of new markers. Since I was enjoying making art cards with the Sharpie markers I bought a while ago I decided to get a set of 36 Bic “Mark-It” markers. They’re cheap, $20 for the set, general purpose permanent markers much like the Sharpies and I bought them just for fun. I do like them.

Another purchase is some small black Copic drawing markers that are refillable and have replaceable tips. I tried these out right away and ended up spending quite a bit of time with them doing some tiny drawings. I usually don’t draw as small as I did with these markers but they lent themselves well to it and drawing that size ended up helping me out with some character designs I wanted to do. They were a nice buy.

Copic Sketch markers have a very good reputation but I haven’t used them much. That’s because they weren’t around in the US (they’re Japanese) during my marker heyday sometime in the 80s. I used mostly Berols and Prismacolors back then. I only recently got back into using markers and so decided to order a black Copic sketch marker to try it out.

Copics have a good reputation because they last a long time and come in a wide variety of colors. They are also expensive at $5 to $7 a marker. A set of twelve is $60 and up. The black Copic Sketch marker was the one thing they screwed up on my order. It came in a black Copic Sketch marker box but it was a Teal Blue regular Copic marker. The Sketches have a different tip than the regulars.

In the end I was glad they made the mistake because it’s such a nice blue. It’s well pigmented. If all their colors as as rich I can see where their reputation comes from. The thing I didn’t like about the Copic was it’s shape. The marker’s barrel is square. That’s good for not rolling off the desk but I found it a bit uncomfortable to hold. It sure is a nice blue though. Now I want to try out some other colors but I have no real reason to. I don’t uses marker that much. Still I might get a few more.

The rest of the order was filled out with my usual pads of paper and bottles of ink. They look impressive sitting there right out of the box but then they go into their usual places and wait to be called on and be used. There’s that whole order thing again.

It’s not often I place such a large order all at once but I needed to restock my acrylic paints. This summer was the first time I painted on a large scale in acrylic (usually painting large is reserved for oil paints) and it ate up my stock of acrylics. It was fun getting a whole bunch of stuff at once. It took me about two weeks to figure out everything I wanted. I must have put on and taken off from my “To Buy” list twice as much stuff as I ending up getting. It was a fun process but now everything is bought, put away, and is waiting to be used. The magic is over and it’s time for the work to begin.