Hobbies Fine Arts & Crafts How to Choose Art Supplies for Gifts Share PINTEREST Email Print Guido Mieth / Getty Images Fine Arts & Crafts Drawing & Sketching Art Supplies Basics Tutorials Painting Arts & Crafts By Helen South Artist Helen South works in graphite, charcoal, watercolor, and mixed media. She wrote "The Everything Guide to Drawing." our editorial process Helen South Updated June 17, 2017 The art shop can be pretty confusing, especially for non-artists, but take heart, with a bit of thought - and snooping to see what's already on their shelves - you can choose the perfect creative present for the artist in your life. Always choose the best quality within your budget - 'you get what you pay for' is a rule of thumb with art materials. For Children: Choose Safe, Age-appropriate Products. Forget those huge sets of cheap art stuff - opt for a small set of good quality materials instead. Crayola products are reliable. Avoid pens/markers for littles (the lids get left off).Good quality triangular-grip pencils are ideal for small children, while primary age kids will love Faber-Castell's tin of Watercolor pencils, which comes complete with a brush. A4 Canson spiral-bound sketchbooks are good value and always useful. Consider a simple how-to-draw book for kids from 6 years. Choosing Children's Art Materials Teens: Find Out What They're Into! Some teens won't draw, having decided that they don't have any talent. Doug Dubosque's 'Draw 3-D' might entice them to reconsider. Many teens will enjoy a book on drawing fantasy or Manga/Anime characters. For budding cartoonists, permanent fine fibre-tipped pens are great. Consumables like paper are always a good choice - a pad of Strathmore 400 series paper is perfect, or choose a bound sketchbook to use as a daily journal. Also consider a book on their favorite period from Art History. Top 5 SketchbooksDragon and Fantasy Drawing Books Creative Adults You'll need to find out what they have already, or what they don't have! Many adults enjoy experimenting with different media. A Watercolor Field Sketching Box by Winsor and Newton or Daler-Rowney will be a sure winner, and a luxury sketchbook is always a popular choice. If in doubt, consider a subscription to an art magazine, or a video/DVD. Great Magazines for ArtistsMovies about Art and Artists Grownup Gift Suggestion: a DIY Ink Sketching Kit Put together an ink drawing set. You'll need a two nib-holders, two fine drawing nibs (perhaps a few, they are inexpensive), a bottle of Indian ink of a reputable brand, and a pad of medium/lightweight, hot-pressed watercolor sketch paper. To allow for pen-and-wash, include a number 8 Taklon Round Brush, a tube of black watercolor paint and a small mixing bowl. Pen and Ink BasicsNibs for Dip PensPens, Inks, and Nibs Grownup Gift Suggestion: Conte Sketching Set Conte crayons are ideal for figure sketching and encourage loose, expressive work. Team a pad of large-sized pastel paper in various colors with a kneadable (putty) eraser, 2 large blending stumps (tortillons) and a box of conte crayons in various colors including black, white, sepia, and earth colors, and a tin of Workable Fixative spray. Which Paper for Pastel and Chalk Drawing?Budget Artist's Pastels Kids Gift Suggestion: Colored Pencil Kit Encourage little artists with a spiral-bound sketchbook teamed with Freddie Levins 'Draw Cartoon Animals' or Steve Barr's '123-Draw Cartoon People' from Peel Books. Include a set of 12 student-quality colored pencils, with some extra earth colors or skin colors from the loose pencil selection in your art store. Add a white plastic eraser, kneadable eraser, and a sharpener.