As far as paint is concerned I have been using student quality aka Liquitex Basics and Michael's Artist's Loft Level 1. I consider my skill Level -5 with no intention of persuing painting for anything other than a most enjoyable hobby. Economizing has been a focus.
I even went so far as using Exterior Latex paint I bot at Home Depot. That's really economical. I bot the primary colors red, blue, yellow plus white and mixed my own colors from there. House paint has UV protection built in. Funny thing is I painted my all time favorite this winter using house paint. I liked it so much I framed it!
The main drawback to house paint is that the colors are muted but they were perfect for the feeling I was going for with "My Montana", rustic and warm. I was also quite proud of myself for being able to mix the colors from the primaries.
Had to use the flash to take this and got the flashback off the glass. If you're interested you can see what the colors really look like by clicking here.
This past week Michael's had a 60% off coupon. I have a pretty good inventory of canvases and I wasn't about to buy another expensive brush so I decided to treat myself to some Winsor & Newton Series 1 which Michael's calls a Level 2.
I bot the Cerulean Blue Hue and took it out for a test drive on a canvas board. OMG! What an amazing color and it goes on so smooth! I was so enraptured by the color I just kept painting away until I had covered the entire 11 x 14 board. Now I can't bare the thought of sullying it by painting anything else on the field so I'm just calling it "The Sky". It is now an abstract celestial painting. 😎
At this point I have to recommend one buy the best quality paint they can afford. It makes a world of difference.