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Brian Buckrell - Supply and Equipment List   2023

Preparing for Plein Air

Any questions  -

Two of the five days will be spent indoor preparing ourselves for the three outdoor days. The dates we chose for each will depend on weather. 

For the indoor days I will be providing some references and we will work on those together. Please bring a few reference photos of your own, the subject matter you chose to work with, but choosing as though they will give you an “outdoor” experience.  

Painting surfaces – for plein air work mid size to small   

  • Approximately fourteen panels/canvases - from 8x10 , 9x12, 11x14, 12x16 (MAX)  as you prefer - generally the larger sizes if using  acrylic and the smaller if using oils.

  • I recommend QUALITY canvas boards or Masonite/hardboard/mdf boards  treated with at least two coats of gesso  or with canvas glued to surface. Stretched canvas is fine but will need a board to back it to prevent light passage. I will be doing at least one day on black gesso boards. 

  • If you have any old frames kicking around of the size of the panels you will use,  bring them along. You will be surprised how much stronger they will make your work appear. 

Drawing – for planning sketches and thumbnails

  • Lead Pencils -2B or  4B

  • Water soluble coloured pencils - one light colour, one dark colour

  • drawing pad up to 8x11

  • ruler or straight edge

  • viewfinder -  I use View Catcher but others fine

  • acrylic marker pens -  .2mm or .4 mm  - one dark (black/purple/deep blue) and one light colour 

  • If you have a cell phone or tablet consider loading the app Notanizer – both Android and Apple – for working in values and bring it along

Painting equipment

  • Equipment suitable for working on location – eg. pochade box designed for plein air best - and also for use in the studio

  • Umbrella suitable for plein air painting - ideal but not essential - particularly important if working in acrylics

  • bring usual painting supplies and equipment

  • Palette - whatever system you use be equipped to put out a full range of colours to work from  – NO working with tiny dobs of paint one colour at a time 

  • palette knife

  • water containers - acrylic 

  • odourless solvent - oils 

  • paper towels or rags

  • soap etc for cleaning brushes

  • Rubber shaper - I  use rubber shapers particularly in acrylics - 2 " - not essential but think you would benefit from the investment - you can play with mine to try it


My ACRYLIC palette  that I will be working from as an example - I do not put them all out at once for plein air - generally a warm and cool of each primary plus, a few convenience colours ( colours I just like) and a gray and black – but I generally have them with me in case I would like to use them . 

Strongly encouraged

  • burnt sienna or indian red or iron oxide

  • raw umber or bunt umber

  • cad yellow light or medium 

  • yellow ochre

  • cad red or cad red light 

  • alizarin crimson or quinacradone violet

  • ultramarine blue

  • pthalo blue – green 

  • viridian or pthalo green 

  • chrome oxide green

  • Ivory black 

  • titanium white 

  • dioxazine purple

     Convenience colours you might like to have

  • Quinacradone burnt orange 

  • Liquatex - Light Blue Permanent, Light Blue Violet, medium Magenta , a neutral gray value 5 

  •   Golden Fluid - small bottle fine - for glazing

    • Phthalo Blue Green Shade

    • Quinacridone Violet 

  •    acrylic GLAZING medium, or a retarder or Golden Open slow dry medium 


  • bring what you like to use but DO NOT BRING worn out old brushes 

  • I use a mix of water colour brushes  and acrylic synthetics for acrylics  - mostly flats and brights and a few smaller to rigger


I use water-mixable brands .  I choose the water-mixable not for health but for convenience of clean  up.  Bring what you work with. 

  • titanium white , ivory black, neutral grey

  • cad yellow light, yellow ochre

  • cad  orange, cad red light

  • transparent red iron oxide 

  • alizarin crimson 

  • dioxazine purple 

  • ultramarine blue and phalo blue

 viridian  and chrome oxide green

  • burnt sienna and raw umber

odourless mineral spirits

  • Bring brushes that you like for your technique 

    • I work with a mix of hogs hair, synthetic firm and soft brushes in a mix of sizes



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