It is always a challenge to find anything worth buying for a dollar anymore. Like the old saying goes, “You get what you pay for”. But in the art world, on some occasions, you do come across some very useful and practical items that are nicely priced for just a buck or two, and maybe up to three. Several of these items certainly can make your life easier by having them available when you need them.
Now, depending on the medium you currently use, you may or may not need all of these great items. But certainly if you are an artist you will find several of them to be worthwhile.
Let’s check them out!
1. Cheap Joe’s 8 oz WaterBottle- (Q216) .79- Consider Cheap Joe’s Water Bottle for your portable water supply and stow it away in your art tote.
2. American Journey Fine Mist 2 oz. Spray Bottle- (AJSB-1) 2.79- Fill each American Journey Misting Bottle with water or color to create wonderful effects. Use watercolor, gouache or acrylics to create a fine mist over your painting. Great for all sorts of painting techniques.
3. Jacquard 8oz. Yorker Bottle with tip- (JCC1004) .99- With their “Yorker Spouts”" these Jacquard bottles allow you drip, drip, dribble, dribble, squirt, splat, and sploosh. All you need to liven that painting right up!
4. Cheap Joe’s Round #6 Uggly Brush- (CJUGR-6) 1.69- Cheap Joe’s Uggly brushes are just as the name implies, they are cheap and they are ugly. They were created to be an inexpensive art paintbrush that you could use when applying masking fluid and when they are used up, just throw them away! They are available in rounds and flats of various sizes.
5. Cheap Joe’s Masking Fluid Pick Up- (RCR1) 1.69- Cheap Joe’s Masking Fluid Pick-Up is made especially for removing dried masking fluid from your paper. It will also remove dried rubber cement or residue from your masking fluid pen.
6. Cheap Joe’s Expanding Sponge- (CJSPONGE) 1.49-Cut out shapes for stamping or just add water and watch our Cheap Joe’s Sponge take shape! Great for the decorative artist in the bunch. Also great for blotting your brush when painting!
7. Master’s Single Palette Cup 1 oz.- (AS6120) 1OZ 2.69-
8. Master’s Single Palette Cup 2 oz.- (AS6122) 2OZ 2.79-
Aluminum Single Palette Cups are especially for use with turpentine, mineral spirits, Liquin, linseed oils and mediums. The bottom of these cups have a clip which slides over the edge of your oil palette. Each Aluminum Palette Cup will hold approximately 1 oz. or 2 oz. of liquid.
Don’t waste another drop of paint! With Cheap Joe’s Empty Aluminum Paint Tubes you can save that extra paint in your palette for another another day and another round of painting. Got a special color blend? Save that as well! You can even store gesso or other painting mediums to use in your plein air kit! Beats having all of those large jars to tote around!
11. Cheap Joe’s 3B Single Sketching Pencil- (CJP) .85- They’re terrific, high quality 3B pencils that are great for sketching or just having around. Keep a dozen or so around to share with your painting buddies!
12. General’s Sketch And Wash 2pc. Pencil Set with sharpener- (GPC588) 2.29- Sketch and Wash pencils are a watersoluble graphite drawing pencil. This means these pencils create deep rich lines like a regular graphite pencil but they can be blended with a wet paintbrush to create great shading effects.
13. Cheap Joe’s Soft Plastic Eraser- (CJE) .58 ea. (SOLD IN A 12 PK)- A great eraser can become an artist’s best friend… and who do you know that can’t use another friend? Cheap Joe’s super-soft, white erasers are perfect for erasing pastels and charcoal and cleaning watercolor paper without harming it.
14. Faber Castell 2 Hole Metal Sharpener- (FC185710) 1.99- The Faber-Castell Double Hole Metal Pencil Sharpener has extra sharp steel blades for a clean point. One for standard graphite pencils and one for colored pencils.
15. Cheap Joe’s Plastic 2 Hole Sharpener- (PS) .89 ea. (Sold in a 12 PK)- This Cheap Joe’s Double-Hole Pencil Sharpener has two openings. Accepts both standard and over-sized pencils. Contoured grip. Buying in bulk makes it easier to share these with your painting buddies!
16. Sakura IDENTIPEN 2 tip Black Fine Marker- (SK44181) 1.69- Sakura Identi-Pen Dual-Point Marking Pens are permanent, pocket size and waterproof. It will write on just about anything at all and it comes equipped with a fine and extra-fine tip. Joe loves ‘em…we think you might too!
17. Cheap Joe’s #8 Round White Synthetic Watercolor Brush- (CJWSR-8) 1.69- This Cheap Joe’s White Synthetic Round Brush is a great brush for beginners and even young budding artists. The size 8 is all you need to complete those small travel sketches! Measures 1-3/8″L x 5/16″W.
18. Cheap Joe’s 1/2 in. Flat White Synthetic Watercolor Brush- (CJWSF-50) 2.59- This Cheap Joe’s White Synthetic Flat Brush is a great brush for beginners and even young budding artists, also great for travel and sketching. Measures 3/4″L x 1/2″W.
19. Master’s 5 pc. Plastic Palette Knife Set- (Q226) 2.99- These one-piece molded Masters Plastic Painting Knives are durable and easy to clean. Ideal for mixing and applying oil and acrylic paint. Great for plein air!
20. Master’s Artist Soap Bar- (GPC102) 2.99- The Master’s Hand Soap cleans gently cleans of oil and acrylic paint, stains, grease, inks, and more while it conditions your hands.
21. Xacto #4 size Bull Dog Clips- (BDC) .99 ea.- The No. 4 X-Acto Bulldog Metal Clip features a lightweight design and easy-to-operate, spring-loaded action, making it tough enough for your largest tasks while remaining easy on your hand. Great for clipping watercolor paper to your Gatorboard so there is no need to staple.
22. Strathmore Assorted Styles of Trading Cards- (105-901) 1.99 ea.- This Strathmore Artist Trading Card pack includes an economical 100 lb. (260 gsm) Smooth bristol weight board. Smooth is ideal for both traditional and specialty pen and ink tools. Ideal for experimentation with airbrush. Acid free. Strathmore Artist Trading Cards measure 2-1/2″ x 3-1/2″ and come in a variety of paper types and accessories.
22. Strathmore 400 Series 4×6 Drawing Pad- (SM400-1) 1.89- This Strathmore 400 Series Drawing Pad contains one of the most versatile sheets Strathmore offers, this cream colored 80 lb. drawing paper is ideal for sketching and most finished work. Medium surface readily accepts pen and ink, pencil, charcoal, crayon, and markers.
23. Strathmore 3.5X5.5 Recycled Sketch Pad- (702-2410) 1.99- This Recycled Sketch Pad pad contains 30% post-consumer materials. Features an innovative and durable fold-over cover that keeps the paper intact after repeated openings. 50 lb. paper weight. The small size is great for travel sketching or an ideal notebook!
24.Cheap Joe’s Bucket Opener- (L336037) 2.99- Super handy for quickly and conveniently gaining leverage on those gallon bucket lids of Gesso. Also opens 5-gallon paint buckets. Great time saver!
25. Joe’s Prime Really Good Canvas Panel 8×10- (JPCB810) 1.49 ea.- Each Joe’s Prime Really Good Canvas Panel provides a truly acid-free painting surface. We stretch double-primed artist grade canvas around the back for a clean appearance.
27. Strathmore 6×6 Canvas Paper Pad- (SM3106) 2.39- A canvas-textured paper for practicing techniques with oils and acrylics. Designed for artists who are looking to express themselves beyond the traditional paper-pad boundaries.Great for testing colors and techniques. larger sizes can be stretched on stretchers just like real canvas!
28. Joe’s Prime Really Good Cradled Painting Panel 5×7-(JPPPBS57) 1.99- Joe’s Prime Cradled Painting Panels are crafted from 100% artist grade Tung wood and accept all acrylic gessos and oil priming. This Standard size wooden panel is 3/4″ deep. You can even mount watercolor paintings right to the smooth surface!
29. Joe’s Prime Fine Art Board 4×4- (JPMDF44) 2.29- Gesso them! Paint them! Mount them! Joe’s Prime Extra Fine Art Boards are fiberboard panels designed for both painting and mounting. These half-inch thick panels do not require framing and are ready to hang vertically or horizontally using the pre-cut hanging slots in the back. We have used these hardboard panels as a painting surface with acrylics, oils and watercolor-with or without gesso. Panels can also be used to mount digital art, drawing papers, cotton canvas and prints. These affordable artist boards are sealed on the back for protection. Cheap Joe’s recommends proper sealing/finishing of finished work for final protection.
30. Chartpak Assorted Wood Tone Touch Up Markers for Frames- (FTM-99) TS 2.79 ea.- Chartpak Touch-Up Markers for Picture Frames are the perfect solution to touch up those little nicks and scratches you find on your picture frames. The large, firm chisel tip provides even coverage, even in the tiniest scratch. Works great with the Neilsen Wooden Frame Kits! I recommend purchasing one of these when you select your frame kits!
31. OOK 50 pc. Picture Hanging Kit- (59204) 2.19- Get hOOKed on OOK! Hang your best artwork the professional way using OOK framing accessories. Includes 10 assorted picture hooks (10 lb-50 lb.), (20) 1/2″ screw eyes, 17 nails, 1 Coil of 30 lb. picture wire and (2) 1-3/4″ sawtooth hangers. Everything you need is right in the package!
32. Logan’s Pre- Cut 5×7 Mats- (L57AW) 1.99 ea.- Make your artwork “pop” with these Logan Pre-Cut Mats. Each single mat is made with 4 ply buffered pH neutral white core acid-free mat board. The more you buy the cheaper they are!
33. 3M Highland Masking Tape 1/2 in.- (2307-12) 1.99- 3M Highland Masking Tape is an all purpose grade masking tape with balanced construction for consistent unwind, conformability and easy tear. 1/2″ x 60 yds. Cheap Joe’s Tip for using tape on your watercolor paper is to place the piece of tape on your clothes to “de-tack” it before applying to your paper and it won’t tear your paper when you remove it!
34. Cheap Joe’s Paper Cutter- (PC1) 2.49- Cheap Joe’s Hand Held Paper Cutter is just the thing to cut 140 lb. paper or even 300 lb. Simply fold the paper and zip it. A tool every studio should not be without! Great for clipping coupons, too!
35. ArtBin Clear Storage Box Open compartment- (700AB) 2.49-
- Crystal clear Prism boxes offer easy viewing of art supplies
- Great for markers, paint tubes and frequently used art and craft supplies
- Open storage
- Easily fits inside other ArtBin boxes and soft side totes
- Dimensions: 7-1/4″ x 1-1/4″
36. Divided compartment- (709AB) 2.49-
37. Cheap Joe’s Perfect Mat System 5×7 Clear Acetate Envelopes only- (PS57B-10) 2.59- Joe Miller’s Perfect Show Archival Acetate Envelopes are durable enough to use again and again for beautifully displaying and safely protecting your artwork. Each crystal-clear bag is 40 microns thick and features a strong re-sealable adhesive strip that prevents your artwork from sliding out when being viewed or transported. The 5×7 size is perfect for greeting cards!
Ok, so lots of cool, useful stuff that is very cheap! However, in my search, I did come across a few items that were just over three dollars, so I thought I would include them as well!
A FEW GREAT FINDS JUST OVER THREE:
Strathmore 6×12 Watercolor Pad- (SM44012) 3.19 PAD- Strathmore 400 Series Watercolor Pads offer a strong surface that will allow lifting and scraping applications. The natural white color and traditional cold press surface make it an ideal sheet for watercolorists of all levels. 12 sheets per pad.
Catalyst Contours Nylon Texture Tools- PRCW-21 CAT TOOLS 3.49-
Catalyst tools allow artists a new form of expression. Catalyst tools are ergonomically designed to fit in your hand allowing a direct interaction with your work.Designed for use with heavy-bodied paints, Catalyst is at home with oils, acrylics, and water-miscible oils. Because they are heat-resistant, they excel with encaustics. Artists are using them with plaster, clay, and even frosting. Catalyst tools are even great for food crafting.Clean-up is a breeze, Catalyst tools are easy to wipe clean and is solvent resistant. Clean up in most cases may be done with mild soap and water. Dried paint can be peeled off the silicone surface.Catalyst Contours - Made of solid nylon, Catalyst Contours feel natural in your hand with their comfort-touch finish. Contours’ multiple edge shapes allow for extensive creativity with plaster, and heavy acrylic mediums. Hanging holes are great when it comes to studio organization.
Cheap Joe’s Value Finder- (CJVF) 3.29- Using a dry erase marker (not included), sketch your composition directly onto Cheap Joe’s Value Sketch and Composition Finder, then you’re ready to transfer it to your sketch or canvas or pad using the “grid” method. Also handy for finding that ideal placement for your point of interest.Cheap Joe’s Value Sketch and Composition Finder also includes a gray scale and value finder. The red tint of the plastic helps neutralize color and isolate light and shadow in a scene.Keep one in your studio and one on your person.
The Guerrilla Painter Handy Hook- (GP127) 3.69-The Guerrilla Painter Handy Hook is useful to a paint rag, brush washer and more off the side of your pochade box or French easel. Lightweight steel hook. Measures 6″.
The Faber-Castell Clic & Go- (FC181520) – 3.69- The Faber-Castell Clic & Go is a collapsible and expandable water pot. Easy to clean and store, travels easily. Ridges on the cup are the perfect place to hold brushes in between uses. The water pot holds approximately 12 ounces. PVC and Latex-free.
So, you see, it can be as easy as 1, 2, or 3 dollars! And you can see these are some really useful items. It really should always be this easy to find the things you need at a reasonable investment. It really is the little things that mean a lot!
Happy Buck or Two Day!
And keep your eyes open for all of the great stuff you can get for just a little bit of dough at Cheap Joe’s!
Make More Art, Spend Less Money!