As the spring weather gets better and better, I am anxiously awaiting a fun event that will be happening at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts in a little more than a month. Art in Bloom is a great fundraising event that the Friends of the Institute put together and help raise money for the Friends Children's Fund. This year I will be doing 2 sidewalk chalk paintings and am going to have a blast, weather permitting of course. So with that, I have been busy getting the supplies of chalk that I will be needing and wanted to share with you some of the ones that I have had success with! The biggest problem I had up until I bought the chalk backpack below was how to get all of the messy chalk out to events that were across town. I have really come to love this tackle box that I picked up at Cabelas. It allows me to store my chalk and still be able to look into it without having to open up each of the plastic bins.
So onto the most important aspect of any chalk artist and that is the CHALK/PASTEL. Over the years I have come to find varieties that work well for me on surfaces including concrete, asphalt, and bricks. The one that is always my go to is the brand of Koss. I have really loved this semi hard chalk and its brillant colors that it brings. The only problem is that it is not the most readily available, but worth the shipping costs to get it. Most of the time with Koss, I will order the 48 stick packs and they are usually around $20 each set.
Another variety that I really love to use is the Reeves pastels. I know that these tend to be on the lower end of the quality scale but when you are painting on concrete, you can go through tons of chalk in a hurry. It just isn't feasible to use high quality like Unison, you would go broke if you did. Anyways, Reeves provides a great foundation to get your images started and can be a very useful and inexpensive product. With these, the sets of 12 can usually be bought for around $4 and the sets of 36 can be attained for around $9
A third great option that I like to use is chalk from "Eternity Arts". It is larger in size, but works great for a quick layer of color. It also is used by some of the well known sidewalk artists such as "Tracy Lee Stum". These sticks of chalk are available in sets of 72 or 35 or by individual sticks for around 90 cents a piece.
Finally, there are other options when it come to pastels, I would just suggest that you find the manufacturers that you like. Others that I use here and there include Unison, Sennelier, and Rembrant. So as you can see, there isn't any one chalk that is out there, but by mixing and utilizing the different brands, you can attain the best images for the sidewalk! The one below was one I did from a mixture of Koss and Reeves.