Rebecca Kahrs Oil Painting Supply List

Below is a list of my own personal oil supplies that I use.  As you well know there are many tools of the trade out there and each of us have to find the ones that work best for our own ways.  The items below are a suggestion to get you started.  

Oil Paint Colors

Oils like watercolors have three different pigment classifications.  Opaque, Transparent and Semi-Transparent.  The colors I have chosen are based off of that knowledge.  I would suggest that you start with the 37-40ML tubes.  Also as in watercolor.....please stick with your artist grade brands not the student grades.  My first choice for you would be Gamblin and Rembrandt.  Some of the colors have the brand name listed beside them.  The first list are the colors necessary to get started with.  The bottom list is an expanded list of my other colors that you may want to purchase at a later date as you progress.  

  • Titanium White
  • Cad. Yellow Lite
  • Cad. Yellow Med.
  • Indian Yellow -Gamblin
  • French Ultramarine Blue or Ultra Marine Blue
  • Phthalo Blue  -Gamblin
  • Permanent Rose or Quin. Rose  (they are the same0
  • Alizarin Crimson
  • Cad. Red Med.
  • Transparent Oxide Brown (Rembrandt)
  • Transparent Red Med  (Rembrandt)

Additional Colors For Future Classes:

  • Cad. Orange
  • Winsor Violet (Dioxazine)
  • Sap Green (Gamblin or Daniel Smith Brands Only)
  • Transparent Oxide Orange  (Rembrandt)
  • Magenta
  • Cerulean Blue
  • Caribbean Blue  (by Old Holland Oils)
  • Richeson Shiva Ice Blue


Brushes are also very personal so again, I am only trying to help you with some suggestions of ones to start out with.  Something to consider......The natural stiffer bristles will give you more brush strokes and the synthetic ones will give you smoother strokes.  I have chosen a few of each. 

  • Princeton Brush Company Series 6300B Bright Size 4
  • Princeton Brush Company Series 6300B Bright Size 6
  • Princeton Brush Company Series 6300FB Filbert Size 2
  • Winsor & Newton Monarch Synthetic Mongoose Fiber
  • Series 5502 #6 Flat  item# 05276-1006
  • Series 5502 #8 Flat  item# 05276-1008
  • Palette Knife - Your choice but I prefer the pointed elongated triangle style

Painting Surface

For our first class we will be using the Fredricks Canvas Pads for practicing.  I strongly feel for the exercises that we will be doing in class that this is the most cost efficient for our needs.  We will be cutting them to size and taping them to a board such as a 11 x 15 gatorbord or a sanded piece of plywood.  The canvas pads come in various sizes I would choose the 12 x 16, 14 x 18 or 

16 x 20....your choice.  You will need a board as stated above to tape them too for your mounting surface.  (Some of you have gatorbords from watercolor..this would work just fine.) 


Depending on whether you prefer to sit or stand and paint....that’s another personal choice.  If you already have a french easel then the legs can be folded and it can be placed on the table if you prefer to sit.  If you don’t have an easel then you will need to get one.  You can purchase table top easels very inexpensively. 


There are many choices of mediums in oils to choose from.  We will be learning about all of them but for this particular class we are going to keep things very simple and just use Gamsol.  Gamsol will be used as our solvent and our medium.  Gamsol is an odorless mineral spirits and we will only be allowed to use this in our class at the church.  Please do not bring in anything else to use. ONLY GAMSOL.   


To start with you may want to get a disposable palette pad for your first 4 week workshop.  I use a glass palette that I made and I put it in a flat tupperware type container and store my un-used paint in the freezer for up to 2 months.  I can use a razor blade to scrape off the paint when cleaning it up for the next use.  I will show you my palette and storage case and if you would like one I’ll help you make one. 

Additional Items Needed

4 “WHITE” disposable plastic table can get them at the dollar store.  You will need one for each week.  Please only use the white ones. 

2 Glass Jars for your Gamsol  (I use my old ball jars or salad dressing jars)

Your role of white artist tape


Pencil or Hard Vine Charcoal 

Viva Paper Towels

Baby Wipes.......get a large container for wiping and cleaning your hands.

Latex gloves if you hate getting the paint on your skin and nails.

Murphy’s Oil Soap for cleaning your brushes 

For your convenience All items on this list can be purchased at Dick Blick.  

If your just buying your oils for the first time.......

Please....NO Water Based Oils or alkyd based oils.