Art Supplies You Might Want to Bring to SCAD

“Paint supplies on outdoor table on sunny day near tree” by Kai Oberhäuser on Unsplash

One question that incoming freshmen ask me again and again is, “What sort of art supplies should I bring?” The short answer: everything you have and can possibly bring. But if you’re flying to SCAD, you probably won’t have space for all of your art supplies.

Unless you come to SCAD with transfer or AP Studio Art credits, two of your first classes will be Design 100 and Drawing 100. The total cost of supplies for foundations classes easily exceeds $300 dollars, so bring what you can.

SCAD sells first year kits at Ex Libris. These kits have most of what you will need for your foundations courses. Most professors also have class specific bundles available for purchase at Ex Libris. But if you have most of the supplies in the kit already, you’re better off just buying the items you need once you arrive at SCAD.

This is what’s in the kit:

  • Tuff Stuff eraser stick (any stick eraser will do)
  • Kneaded Eraser
  • Factis Eraser, white
  • Scissors
  • Utility Knife with extra blades
  • Cutting mat 12X18 inch
  • Artist’s/masking tape, 3/4 inch (1/4 and 1/2 inch are also ok)
  • Drawing compass
  • Triangle ruler, 8 inch 45 degree
  • 8ths beveled ruler, 2x18 inch
  • Cork backed stainless steel ruler, 24 inch and 12 inch
  • Compressed charcoal sticks
  • Charcoal pencils
  • Micron pens, assorted sizes and colors
  • Higgins magic ink, black
  • Graphite pencils, assorted weights
  • Chamois cloth
  • Sketch and wash pencil
  • Soft vine charcoal
  • Ebony pencil
  • Pencil sharpener
  • Tracing parchment
  • Glue stick

But all this isn’t all you need. Each professor has different requirements for materials, but here are some of the common ones:

  • Bristol board
  • Sketchbooks
  • Paintbrushes
  • Gouache/acrylic/watercolor paints
  • Colored pencils (prismacolor/ faber castell)
  • Portfolio for carrying art stuff
  • Sharpies
  • Color wheel
  • Double sided tape
  • Tape, any kind
  • White-out
  • Metal t-square 24 inch
  • Palette /palette paper
  • French curves
  • Circle/square template
  • Rubber cement

This list only pertains to foundations classes. Your major will probably require some other supplies, but you probably won’t take them in your first quarter, so don’t worry about it.

None of your classes will require all of what has been listed above. DO NOT buy art supplies to bring to SCAD; buy them once your professor has told you what to buy. Otherwise you will end up buying supplies that you won’t use and waste precious money. Professors don’t expect you to come to class with all the supplies listed on the syllabus. If they do expect you to bring certain supplies, the professor will email you beforehand telling you to bring them.



Houdini / Technical Artist. SCAD Visual Effects ‘20. Lives and breathes Houdini, Nuke, Unreal, and (sometimes) Maya.

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Jessica Beckenbach

Jessica Beckenbach


Houdini / Technical Artist. SCAD Visual Effects ‘20. Lives and breathes Houdini, Nuke, Unreal, and (sometimes) Maya.