Many people have asked me what I carry with me into the field to paint, so I thought I’d do an inventory. Here’s the whole kit:
On the left is a knapsack with sun hat. It holds a garbage bag, a roll of blue shop towels, a box of nitrile gloves, and a bottle of water. Not shown are my lunch and sunscreen. In the middle is a tackle box with paints, palette knives, brushes, a brush washing tank, and a ViewCatcher. On the right is a pochade box. It sits on the tripod in the foreground.
Usually, I wear the backpack and sling the pochade box over my shoulder, leaving my hands free for the tripod and tackle box. Sometimes I will put the pochade in the knapsack, but this can be problematic when I get paint on the outside of the pochade. If the painting site is more than a few minutes walk, I put everything into a large frame pack, or I use a hand cart.
The tackle box cost about $15 in the fishing department at Target . Recently I have been using water miscible oils – Holbein Duo and Royal Talens Cobra. I typically use a very limited palette, so I could save myself some hassle by leaving three quarters of the paint tubes at home.
I store my brushes in a bamboo roll which fits perfectly in the bottom of the tackle box. I bring a variety of sizes, mostly bristle, lots of filberts, some flats, one or two rounds, and a liner.
The brush washing tank has a leak proof lid, so I fill it with clean water before I head out.
The ViewCatcher is an invaluable composition tool. I try to bring it with me everywhere.
Here’s the pochade box on its tripod. It’s an EASyl Lite from Artwork Essentials. It has a 10″ x 12″ mixing area which I’ve covered with glass. This pochade has room to carry two wet panels up to 10″ x 12″. I usually use 9″ x 12″.
The tripod is a Manfrotto 055XPROB. My understanding is that this exact model has been replaced by the more affordable 055XPRO3. I chose this tripod because it is light, sturdy, tall, and easy to adjust. One thing I really like about it is that the legs can be spread really wide for extra stability.
The tripod is fitted with a Manfrotto 496RC2 Ball Head with quick release plate. I chose this head for ease in leveling and adjusting the pochade box. The quick release plate stays on the pochade box allowing me to snap the box on and off the tripod in seconds.
Some people bring an umbrella to block the sun. I don’t have one so I just try to set up in the shade if at all possible.