Using a Julian Easel

Q. My husband recently purchased a Julian Easel for me, at my request. I tried it out and made quite a mess of my floor and watercolor paper. What are the advantages of using an easel versus a table and which is best?

I think the easel is really wonderful, but I don’t quite know how to set everything up.

A. It’s up to each individual artist whether they want to work on an easel or a table. Different artists paint differently and want different effects.

The Julian Easel is made for both studio and outdoor painting. The canvas carrier part of the easel can be raised or lowered and can be set at any angle for watercolor or oil painting. It sounds like you are positioning the easel in the vertical position and your watercolors are dripping down off the paper. What you need to do is lower the top part of the easel to a flatter angle. When using your easel in the studio you can either use it with or without the legs, or you can unfold the legs completely and set the easel on your table to paint.

Tera Leigh is a writer and artist living near San Francisco. She writes columns for several magazines, including Decorative Artist’s Workbook and Artist’s Sketchbook (from the editors of The Artist’s Magazine). Her Web site is

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