Artist Stuart Loughridge places a high importance on sketching as it is the foundation to all of the work he does in the studio. He discusses the materials he carries with him as he goes out to sketch. The first, bare minimum, kit is a trifold leather bound book with loose paper, a mechanical pencil to avoid needing to sharpen, and an eraser. This kit is only for outline sketching with minimal shading.
If he has more time to stop and work he’ll carry around a homemade pencil kit. It has different leads of pencils along with a white pencil, water, brushes, watercolor medium, white gouache, razor blades, clips, paper towels, and a bottle cap for his working water and quick water changes.
If he knows he’ll be out for a long walk he’ll bring his homemade pocket watercolor kit. The kit stays in a bag for protection while in his backpack. He has a small water bottle, opaque white, and his palette. The palette is a book that has been altered into a sketch kit. It is held in one hand while he works with the other hand. It has his colors and palette with his working water container as a bottle cap that is loose so that, again, it can be easily changed without having to turn the whole palette over. The paper clips onto the inside cover of the book with brushes stored underneath the palette and a file folder in the back of the book with paper and unfinished sketches.
If he’ll be out sketching for several hours he brings a larger homemade kit constructed out of a day planner. It attaches to a tripod or is held in the lap and is more of a commitment to carry around. Inside are brushes, clips, water, a palette with colors and a removable water container, eraser, mechanical pencil, paper towels, and loose paper. The paper is clipped to a piece of mat board for working. Everything is locked down with clips and velcro so that nothing blows away in the wind.
The larger kit is ideal for long excursions, the medium kit is easy to hold in one hand and is great for 45 minute sketches, while the small pencil kit is the most essential one because everything starts with a great pencil sketch.