10 Must-Have Creative Tools for Your Toolbox
Written by  Daisie Team
Published on 9 min read


  1. Acquire a sketchbook
  2. Invest in quality drawing pencils
  3. Select a set of markers
  4. Purchase acrylic paints
  5. Choose a color wheel
  6. Pick a palette knife
  7. Obtain a digital drawing tablet
  8. Get a set of brushes
  9. Secure a canvas
  10. Grab a roll of washi tape

If you're looking to add some oomph to your creativity, you're in the right place. This is your straightforward guide to the top 10 innovative creative tools. A well-rounded collection of both digital and physical resources for your toolbox, these items are sure to spark your imagination and enhance your creative workflow. So, let's dive in, shall we?

Acquire a Sketchbook

First things first, you need a sketchbook. But not just any sketchbook— you need one that matches your creative style. Your sketchbook is like your creative companion, it's there to capture your ideas, drafts, and doodles. It's the place where you'll jot down bursts of inspiration that come at the most unexpected times. Here's what to look for when shopping for the perfect sketchbook:

  • Quality: Prioritize paper quality over size or design. The heavier the paper weight, the better it will handle different types of mediums like pens, markers or light watercolor.
  • Binding: Spiral-bound sketchbooks lay flat, making it easier to use the entire page. Bound sketchbooks, on the other hand, are more durable and portable.
  • Size: Consider your workspace and mobility needs. If you're always on-the-go, a smaller sketchbook might be best. If you work from a studio or home office, a larger sketchbook can offer more room for detailed work.

Remember, every great idea starts with a single mark on a page. So, give yourself the gift of a beautiful space to make those marks. This is the first step in building your collection of innovative creative tools.

Invest in Quality Drawing Pencils

Stepping up from a basic school pencil to a set of quality drawing pencils can feel like a revelation. Suddenly, your lines have depth, your shadows have nuance, and your sketches take on a life of their own. But what exactly should you look for when choosing your drawing pencils? Here are a few tips to help you make the right choice:

  • Range: A good set of drawing pencils should have a range of hardness from 9B (softest) to 9H (hardest). This allows you to experiment with different line weights and shading techniques.
  • Quality: Look for pencils that have high-quality graphite. This ensures smoother application and less smudging. Brands like Derwent, Faber-Castell, and Staedtler are trusted by artists worldwide for their consistent performance.
  • Comfort: Consider how the pencil feels in your hand. You'll be spending a lot of time with these tools, so it's important they're comfortable to hold and use.

Investing in quality drawing pencils is a small step that can have a big impact on the quality of your work. It's an easy way to expand your collection of innovative creative tools and take your creativity to new heights. So, why not give it a shot?

Select a Set of Markers

Markers are like the secret weapon of the creative world. They can add vibrant colors, intricate details, and bold lines to your artwork. But with so many choices out there, how do you pick the right set for your toolbox? Here are a few things to consider:

  • Type: There are different types of markers, including alcohol-based, water-based, and oil-based. Each has its own unique characteristics. For instance, alcohol-based markers blend smoothly and are great for coloring, while water-based markers are perfect for drawing and lettering.
  • Colors: As an artist, you know the importance of color. So, when choosing markers, look for sets that offer a wide range of hues. This will give you more freedom to express your creativity.
  • Quality: Just like with pencils, the quality of your markers can make or break your artwork. Look for markers with high-quality ink that doesn't bleed or fade over time. Brands such as Copic, Prismacolor, and Tombow are known for their reliable quality.

Adding a set of markers to your toolbox is a great way to diversify your innovative creative tools. They can open up a whole new world of possibilities for your artwork. So why not explore this colorful side of creativity?

Purchase Acrylic Paints

When you think about painting, what comes to mind? Are you picturing vibrant splashes of color on a canvas? If so, you're probably thinking about acrylic paints.

Acrylic paints are a favorite among artists for many reasons. They're versatile, easy to work with, and they dry quickly. Plus, they come in a variety of colors, so you can create just about anything you can imagine. So, if you're looking to add a new medium to your collection of innovative creative tools, acrylic paints are a solid choice.

Here are a few things to consider when purchasing acrylic paints:

  • Quality: Not all acrylic paints are created equal. Some are more pigmented, some have a smoother consistency, and some are more durable. Look for brands like Golden, Liquitex, or Winsor & Newton for high-quality options.
  • Colors: While it's tempting to buy every color under the sun, start with the basics. A primary color set—red, yellow, and blue—can be mixed to create a wide range of hues. Don't forget to pick up a tube of white paint, too!
  • Sizes: Acrylic paints come in various sizes. If you're just starting out or experimenting with a new color, a smaller tube might be a smart choice. If you find a color you love and use often, go ahead and get the larger tube.

With a selection of acrylic paints in your toolbox, you'll be ready to bring your creative visions to life. So, are you ready to dip your brush into the world of acrylic painting?

Choose a Color Wheel

Colors create emotions, tell stories, and add depth to your art. But understanding how colors work together can be a bit tricky. That's where the color wheel comes into play, a useful addition to your collection of innovative creative tools.

A color wheel is a circular chart that shows primary, secondary, and tertiary colors. It's a visual representation of the relationships between colors. By using a color wheel, you can easily see which colors complement each other, which ones contrast, and how to create harmonious color schemes.

When choosing a color wheel, consider the following:

  • Type: Basic color wheels show primary and secondary colors, while more advanced ones also include tints, shades, and tones. Decide which one suits your needs best.
  • Size: Color wheels come in different sizes. A larger one might be easier to read, but a smaller one is more portable. Think about where and how you plan to use it.
  • Material: Most color wheels are made of sturdy cardstock, but some are plastic. Plastic ones tend to be more durable, but they can also be more expensive.

Remember, the color wheel is not just a tool, it's a guide. It can help you make informed color decisions, but it shouldn't limit your creativity. After all, art is about breaking rules and pushing boundaries, right?

So, are you ready to add a splash of color to your artwork?

Pick a Palette Knife

Next on our list of innovative creative tools is the palette knife. Not to be confused with a regular kitchen knife, the palette knife is an essential tool for both mixing paint and applying it to your canvas. Its flexible steel blade allows for a range of effects that are difficult, if not impossible, to achieve with a brush.

Palette knives are fantastic tools for creating textured, impasto work. They're great for spreading thick layers of paint, and for scraping away parts of your artwork to reveal the layers beneath. They can also add fine details, such as blades of grass or strands of hair, with precision.

When picking a palette knife, consider these factors:

  • Size: Palette knives come in various sizes. Smaller knives give you more control and are perfect for detailed work. Larger knives, on the other hand, are great for spreading large amounts of paint quickly.
  • Shape: The blade shape impacts the kind of marks you can make. A long, straight blade is versatile for both mixing and painting, while a diamond-shaped blade is ideal for detailed work.
  • Material: You'll find palette knives made from either metal or plastic. Metal knives are more durable and offer a better feel, but plastic knives are cheaper and easier to clean.

Using a palette knife can be a bit challenging at first, but with practice, you'll soon appreciate the unique effects and textures you can create with this tool. So, are you ready to take your art to the next level?

Obtain a Digital Drawing Tablet

Delving into innovative creative tools, let's not overlook the digital realm. One of the game-changers in digital art is the digital drawing tablet. It's like having an endless sheet of paper that allows you to create, erase, and revise your artwork without the mess of traditional art supplies.

Digital drawing tablets capture the movement of your pen on their surface and translate it into digital strokes on your computer. They are perfect for graphic design, animation, digital painting, photo editing, and so much more. With a digital drawing tablet, you can bring your art to life in ways that traditional mediums can't match.

When investing in a digital drawing tablet, consider the following:

  • Pressure Sensitivity: The higher the pressure sensitivity, the more control you have over the thickness of the lines you draw. This allows for more intricate and detailed drawings.
  • Size: Larger tablets offer more room to draw, but they're also more expensive and less portable. Smaller tablets can be a good starting point if you're just getting into digital art.
  • Brand: Renowned brands like Wacom, Huion, and XP-Pen offer reliable tablets with good customer support. However, there are also less well-known brands that offer good value for money, so do your research before making a decision.

A digital drawing tablet is an investment, but think about the endless possibilities it opens up. Who knows, your next masterpiece could be just a digital stroke away!

Get a Set of Brushes

When it comes to innovative creative tools, brushes are your trusty sidekick. They're like an extension of your arm, translating your ideas onto the canvas. With every stroke, a brush can create magic, but not all brushes are created equal. So, let's talk about how to choose the right set for your artistic endeavors.

The key to a good brush lies in its bristles, handle, and shape. Here's what you need to look out for:

  • Bristles: Brushes come with either synthetic or natural bristles. Synthetic bristles are great for acrylic and watercolor paints, as they maintain their shape and don't leave stray marks. Natural bristles, on the other hand, are perfect for oil paints because they hold and distribute the paint evenly.
  • Handle: Long handles are suitable for easel work, while short handles work best for table-top painting. The handle should also feel comfortable in your hand.
  • Shape: Round, flat, filbert, fan—each shape serves a different purpose in your painting. A basic set with a variety of shapes is a good starting point.

Acquiring a set of brushes can be as straightforward or as intricate as you want it to be. It's all about finding the right tools that work for you. Remember, the goal isn't to collect every brush under the sun, but to master the ones you have in your toolbox. So, ready to paint your next masterpiece?

Secure a Canvas

Now that you've got your brushes, it's time to find a surface for your creativity to explode upon — a canvas! A canvas is one of those innovative creative tools that provides the stage for your imagination to perform. But how do you choose the right one? Let's find out.

Canvases come in different types, sizes, and textures. Here's what you should consider:

  • Type: Canvases can be either stretched or panel. Stretched canvases are great for larger works and give that classic, artistic feel. Panel canvases are more compact and durable, perfect for small projects and outdoor painting.
  • Size: The size of the canvas should reflect your vision for the art piece. Are you going for a grand statement or a subtle impression? Choose the size accordingly.
  • Texture: The texture of a canvas influences the look and feel of your painting. A rough texture adds depth and character, while a smooth one allows for detailed work.

Choosing the right canvas is like choosing the right home for your ideas. It's not just about the size or the texture, but how these factors align with your vision for the painting. So, what's it going to be: a large, textured canvas for a bold statement piece, or a small, smooth one for a delicate portrait? The choice is yours!

Grab a Roll of Washi Tape

Have you ever heard of washi tape? If not, let me introduce you to one of the most versatile items in our innovative creative tools collection. Originating from Japan, washi tape is a type of masking tape that's not just functional, but also colorful and decorative. It's like the Swiss Army knife of the art world!

Here's why you should consider adding a roll (or ten) to your toolbox:

  • Variety: Washi tape comes in an array of colors, patterns, and widths. You can choose from simple solid colors to intricate designs, making it an easy way to add a splash of color and detail to any project.
  • Usability: It's easy to tear by hand, yet it's also durable. You can use it to mark areas, create borders, or even as a medium itself to create patterns and designs.
  • Flexibility: Washi tape adheres well to a variety of surfaces but doesn't leave a sticky residue when removed. This makes it perfect for temporary decorations or for changing up the look of your artwork without any commitment.

So, are you ready to add some color and fun to your art projects? Grab a roll of washi tape and let your creativity flow. Remember, it's not just about creating art, it's about enjoying the process. And with washi tape in your toolbox, the process just got a whole lot more enjoyable!

If you're eager to expand your creative toolbox even further, don't miss the workshop titled 'An Analog & Digital Mix: Customising Your Tools As An Illustrator' by Florencia Fuertes. This workshop will show you how to get the most out of both traditional and digital tools, and help you create stunning illustrations that stand out from the crowd.