Madame Ink PRO 12:41am, 23 May 2012
Anyone find something really good to organize your gear? That does not make you look like you are running away from home?
With some pockets so stuff is not floating free in the black hole of a messenger bag. I used one last week and stuff is just knocking around in there too much. I usually carry a small bottle of ink, a 12 pan watercolor set, and a good size pencil case with 2 sketchbooks.

I was thinking maybe an old school army navy bag might work, but wondered what people are using.
Jacquie1995 4 years ago
My friend has a backpack which is attached to a small fold out seat. I just have a small backpack. I probably carry far too much gear, but I never know what I'm going to want until I get there!
Madame Ink PRO 4 years ago
Well I think I solved my own question: I got a small soft tackle box by Plano ( model 3380 I think ). Under $20. Slightly bigger than a lunchbox, with a partitioned organizer inside. You have the option of wearing it around your waist or as a shoulder strap. It is big enough to hold all my gear ( pillboxes converted to watercolor palettes/bottle of ink/ 2 waterbrushes, 3 pencils, 1 ink pen, 2 sketchbooks, wallet,phone, snack).
Took it on a trail run yesterday and it did quite well. The idea of a foldout seat sounds great!
sketchySteven PRO 4 years ago
I use a "dry bag" for camping / photography gear. Then, if it rains, I can just put everything in it. They are washable, too, so if I get washy wet paint on them... no problem. Washer.
Sketching Chris 4 years ago
I'm not of much help here - I always look like I'm running away from home, using a backpack full of stuff (apart from my sketching stuff I carry waterproof jacket, something to sit on, food, drink, camera,... ). Since I use my bike or walk and often don't know how far my search for a motive will lead me, I like to have everything with me "just in case" it rains, or I get hungry etc. :-)
My colleagues always make fun of me when we spend the recess in the garden and I come with my backpack. "Now where are you going?" is the usual question. Nowhere, but I use to tell them "Just in case a fire breaks out - *I* have everything with me, money, keys, IDs,... what about you?" ;-)
joanne de Neve 4 years ago
In a Dutch shop for anglers i found a great backpack/folding stool.
It has many places where you can organize and store away small fishing gear.
Perfect for all my pens and painting stuff. Has a seperate bag with the right size for a bottle of water and an outer baggie for inks (since i managed to spill inks on my sketchbook twice before).
It is also very light and rain doesn't get into your things.
Don't buy the expensive version, it's too heavy. Just take the cheap one, mine still lives after three years of intensive use and doesn't even look that scruffy.
And Chris... there is room enough for your survival gear. I tend to carry around more or less the same crazy amount of stuff.
One thing though: you need to turn the stool 90 degrees or it sits very uncomfortable.
Sketching Chris 4 years ago
Joanna, that sounds great. Do you have a link to a picture?
And I never thought of my things as "survival gear", but you're right, that's exactly what it is. :-)
michael.1153 4 years ago
Like Steven, I tend to be minimalist. I do simple, 5x7 watercolors on location. Everything I need, except water, can fit into one or two (more comfortably) pockets on my cargo pants. If I'm not wearing cargo pants, I use a small zipper pouch or my iPad case. I usually don't carry water unless I know I won't be able to find it or I am going somewhere specifically to paint. I keep debating about whether or not to carry a pencil sharpner. I've never used it in the field. You can see my "kit" at
sketchySteven PRO Posted 4 years ago. Edited by sketchySteven (member) 4 years ago
Lost my dry bag and all my gear in it... ugh. :( Gonna buy one of these:

My Medium Sized Daily Sketch Kit by WWendi
Madame Ink PRO 4 years ago
UGH STEVEN: what a blow! Hope it still turns up! That little bag looks great!
sketchySteven PRO Posted 4 years ago. Edited by sketchySteven (member) 4 years ago
I have no hope of seeing it again. Lost it at a Drive-In Theater / Concert... so it's either in the landfill or someone is enjoying some nice art supplies. I learned a valuable lesson in what NOT to bring to a boozy celebratory outing.

I also ordered the "peel" back type pencil case... I like the idea of my case standing up on its own (thought that's idealistic of me since I'd just sit it on the ground and watch it turn over).

Kokuyo NeoCritz Transformer Pencil Case Grey Orange Trim 4 by betolung
Debo Boddiford PRO 4 years ago
Here is the sketch bag I am currently using and the supplies that fit in it:

Guild of Natural Science Illustrators Conference by Debo Boddiford

Ready to Sketch by Debo Boddiford
JZaidel Posted 4 years ago. Edited by JZaidel (member) 4 years ago
Lands end Square Rigger.
sketchySteven PRO 4 years ago
My new kit...
New sketch kit by sketchySteven
julietteplisson 4 years ago
lovely new kit! it's terrible to loose your art bag with all your stuff!!
sketchySteven PRO 4 years ago
It stunk loosing my kit!!! But my new set-up is pretty good. I had to cut the end of my brush off to make it fit i the pencil case. That's the only major modification.

What's not shown here is the squeezable apple sauce pouch that I washed out from my 8-year-old son's lunch. It holds my water now and fits nicely in my duct tape cup.
reddout Posted 4 years ago. Edited by reddout (member) 4 years ago
I love timbuk and their bags. I think I own 6 of them. The small/mininsize is a great get up and go sketch bag!
heirloomgrd 4 years ago
I've been carrying all my stuff in one of those 5-gallon buckets with a padded-seat type lid that the hunters use, keeps everything dry and crushproof and holds a good-sized sketchbook.
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