Best Art Easel Reviews 2018

Artists understand the importance of a good easel. The challenge has always been that of getting the right easel for the kind of work you do. Whether you need one for display or demonstration or for studio use, we want to help you get the right one, which is why we we’ve compiled a list from our extensive research on the best art easels in the market. These 5 products are just a subset of all the amazing art easels manufactured by our five featured brands, so feel free to check out other art easels from these brands.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Type
Use
Materials
Capacity
Size
Our Top Choice
US Art Supply Coronado Art Easel
US Art Supply is deeply committed to home and office decoration and markets only the best products at affordable prices.
The easel adjusts to different heights for different canvases and has a sliding drawer that can hold your art supplies. It’s sturdy and can be easily assembled and dissembled.
Some find this easel to be a little bit unstable.
Standing
Adult, outdoor
Wooden
34 inch canvases
24.7 x 18 x 8.5 inches; 13.1 pounds
Best Value
Art Alternatives Marquis Artists Easel
Art Alternatives specializes in art surfaces, black books, creative tools and art supplies that are both durable and affordable.
It’s well-built, affordable, lightweight and foldable. It can also sit pretty on any flat surface so you don’t strain your neck from looking down.
This easel can only hold small canvases or canvas boards
Table Top
Adult
Wooden
11 x 14 inch canvases
15.2 x 12.1 x 4.3 inches; 2.6 pounds
Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Dulce Easel
Jack Richeson designs and markets quality art easels, paint brushes and supplies for professional and recreational painters.
It’s well constructed, has a beautiful design and can be easily assembled. It’s also easily foldable, fully adjustable, movable and stored.
It’s not suitable for smaller canvasses.
Standing
Adult
Wooden
84 inch canvases
21 x 24 x 58 inches; 27.9 pounds
Melissa & Doug Deluxe Standing Art Easel
Melissa & Doug makes imaginative toys and other products that encourage kids to be more creative and have fun.
The height levels are adjustable and it cleans easily. It’s also well made, sturdy, stable and easily assembled.
The dry erase surface isn’t magnetic so it can’t hold magnetic numbers and letters.
Standing
Kids
Wooden
18 inch canvases
27 x 26 x 47 inches; 15 pounds
Ohuhu Aluminum Field Art Easel
Based in California, Ohuhu designs and markets a wide range of everyday products, including high quality art easels, at terrific prices.
It’s extremely lightweight and folds to a small size of 21inches for easy storage. The legs are easily adjustable when using it on uneven ground.
The legs of this easel are wobbly at times.
Standing
Adult
Aluminum Alloy
66 inches canvases
21.6 x4 x 3.2 inches; 1.8 pounds

(Updated )
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Watch Our Art Easel Review

How Do I Choose the Best Art Easel?

Did you know that before the advent of the written word, drawing and painting were the basic ways of non-verbal communication? Way back, long before the days of the hip and artsy Macbook, the earliest discoveries about human existence were from drawings made on cave walls which provided many clues as to the lifestyle of the ancients. So, it’s no wonder that there are a lot of people today who are interested in re-enacting, as it were, these practices of drawing and painting. From those days till now, with either paintbrush or airbrush in hand, the art business has been evolving and has gotten to a point where a piece of art can be sold for millions of dollars. There have also been tools designed to make this business a lot easier for its practitioners, one of which being the art easel.

The moment you hear the word “easel”, the picture that comes to mind is that of an artist with a paint stained shirt, brush in hand, French cap on his head, a scenery before him and making a sketch on a canvas. An art easel helps an artist to support his canvas while tilting it to an angle while he works on it. The easel is also used to display finished art work during an exhibition. Most artists are usually at a loss as to which easel will work best for them. For instance, the water-color painter needs an easel that won’t allow the color to run off while an oil painter needs an easel that’ll let him work without his work collecting dust. A child painter, on the other hand, needs an easel that can be adjusted to his height. While most painters already know the type of easel they need for their work, others only know what they want to achieve but don’t know which easel will help them achieve that. Whichever category you fall into, we’ve got you covered in this guide.

Let us begin by looking at the different types of easel that we have:

A-frame easels:
    These are also called Lyre easels. Like the name implies, they’re shaped like the letter A; triangular with 3 legs – 2 in front and 1 in back. These types of easel are easy to store away since you can lock the three legs into a vertical stand and lean it on a wall in the corner. They can hold canvases as large as 38 inches to 75 inches and even something smaller. This isn’t an ideal easel for large scale jobs, however.

H-Frame easels:
    These are, funnily enough, shaped like the letter H. They have a rectangular base and the legs are mostly fixed so they take up a lot of space except when you’re working with the smaller models. They can take up canvases of up to 84 – 96 inches, they’re sturdier and they generally cost more than the A frame. They’re more ideal for large scale jobs.

Giant easels:
    As the name implies, these are designed for artists who have a dedicated studio where they work on a large scale. Obviously, they’re huge and they take up a lot of space. They support canvases of up to 8 feet. They’re built to last and are quite pricey but worth the investment. Ideally, they work with 85 – 120-inch tall canvases.

Convertible easels:
    These are hybrid easels because they can easily “convert” to different types of easels for different work modes. One moment it’s a standing easel, and the next it’s a table top. It’s ideal for artists who work in different modes; water-color, oil and acrylic painting, because they can adapt it to suit whatever mode they are working in. They can handle canvasses up to 84 inches tall and some of them come with a paint tray to hold your supplies. They’re sturdier than most A frames but more expensive too.

Single mast easels:
    These are the simplest types of easels you can find. They may not come out as sturdy as the A frame or the H frame easels but they’re quite easy to move around. These are ideal for beginners and students and for an artist who wants to paint an outdoor scenery. They can handle canvases up to 72 inches tall and are quite affordable.

Table top art easels:
    These are ideal for artists who have space challenges and work on a small scale. As the name implies, these easels are portable enough to sit on a table top. They’re easily stored away as some of them can be folded into a box. They’re available in both H frame and A frame and also in single mast. Some also have drawers where you can stock your art supplies. They’re handy for artists who need to move their easels from one point to another. They can hold canvasses up to 32 inches high.

Plein air or portable easels:
    These are specifically designed for the outdoors. They mostly have tripod legs, and are made from either wood or aluminum. They’re easy to carry and easy to set up. They can hold canvases of up to 45 – 78 inches high.

Bench easels:
    These easels are a combination of an easel and a bench. This is ideal for outdoor painters or artists giving demonstrations. With this easel, you don’t need to hurl a seat along with you. They mostly have wheels which allow for easy transport. They can hold canvases of up to 24 inches high.

Display easels:
    These easels are, as you might have guessed, meant for displays. They’re usually not sturdy and cannot bear the pressure of painting. They’re more for aesthetics and can hold a painting of up to 55 inches high.

Children's easels:
    These are for our future Michelangelos. They’re usually adjustable to allow them to grow along with your child. There are the 2-sided models that allow 2 kids to work on it at the same time. Some others have different additives like chalkboards, magnetic boards and/or dry erase boards. Some also have dispensers that dispense disposable papers.

Whether you prefer to work from home or from the studio or outdoors, this guide will surely help you make an enlightened choice of an art easel for you and yours.
Price
Price, price, price. This is one of the most limiting factors for most people when buying any product. Come to think of it, if you had all the money in the world, you’d probably get on the internet and pick the most expensive easel you see. The reason you’re doing this research is that you want to the get the best art easel out there that can fit into your budget. We understand that perfectly. For this reason, we’ve researched numerous art easels within the vast price range of $7 to $1600. But that’s NOT the range we’re working with in this review. We’re restricting things to a sweet spot where you’d get good quality at the right price: $17 for the low end and $170 for the higher end.

What we did was to look for great features in the expensive ones and see which of them exist in the not so expensive ones, thereby providing you with a list of valuable art easels that will most likely fit into your budget. After all, the most expensive art easels in the market may not be the best art easel for your painting needs.
Features
Your choice of an ideal art easel is dependent on the kind of painting you do. For artists that work on large scale canvases, a table top easel will be a waste of money and for artists who work on small scale and in a confined space, a giant easel will be most inconveniencing. You may consider the nature of your job also. A vigorous painter should look for a sturdy easel that can stand the pressure of the vigorous painting. Like we said earlier, your work mode goes a long way in affecting your choice of easel too. A water color painter may not go for the same easel as an oil or acrylic painter. Well, these are not the only factors that affect your choice of an easel. There are features peculiar to certain easels that may be necessary for the type of job you do.

Let us look at some of them:
  • Style of easel – French style, field, streamlined, etc.
  • Adjustable height – The height that it can be adjusted to
  • Portability – For moving the easel around
  • Material – Oak, beechwood, aluminum, etc.
  • Capacity – Size of canvas it can accommodate
  • Additional Features – Drawers, palettes, etc.
  • Assembly – Ease of assembly
  • Stability – Stability of the stand
  • Space – How much space do you have?

    • Want to know the importance of these features and how you can work them into choosing your art easel? Then come along with us!
Construction and Design
Understanding the style of easel you’re looking at will help you determine if it’s the right easel for you. Your easel can be French style – has a sketchbox, a canvas and an easel that can be easily folded away; field style – doesn’t have a sketchbox, just the easel and the canvas; streamlined style - these are mostly for displays and presentations. This means that your kind of art and its requirements determines which of the styles you can go for.

It’s best to go for easels that have adjustable height; it gives you versatility in doing your work. You can choose to sit and paint or stand instead. An easel with a fixed height does not give you that option. Also, for children’s easel, this is a top feature to put into consideration, unless you want to buy a new easel every time your child grows taller!

If you are a Plein Air artist or painter, buying a giant easel would mean buying something that would not be of use to you except when you have a studio where you want to place it in. If your major mode of painting is outdoor, you need to go for a portable easel, maybe a lyre easel. Also, if you don’t have a studio that’s designated for your work, you’re probably using your sitting room as a makeshift studio which means you are limited by space; it’s more advisable to go for a portable and foldable easel that you can easily put out of the way when you’re done working.

Most art easels are made of wood but there are different types of woods. You have oak wood, the common beechwood and the hybrid of 2 types of Eucalyptus wood – Lyptus. Research has it that the Lyptus is stronger than the oak wood which is stronger than the beechwood. There are also aluminum easels. They aren’t as sturdy as the wood easels but they serve a lot of beginners and art students. If you’re looking for something to start with while you gather enough money to invest in your ideal easel, the aluminum easel can serve you temporarily.

Your easel should be easy to assemble. You don’t need an easel that’ll require you calling an expert whenever you need to set it up. If that’s the case for a studio easel, it’s quite understandable, but for a portable easel or children’s easel, it should be as simple as possible to assemble.
Performance and Ease of Use
One of the major features to look out for in your easel is the capacity of the easel. This means the dimensions of the canvas that can fit on the easel. As stated above in the consideration factors, every type of easel has a dimension of canvas it can accommodate. You cannot buy an A frame easel when you want to paint on a 120-inch tall canvas. Of course, you know it won’t work. So, look out for the capacity of your easel before picking it up.

Every artist loves convenience and that’s why most artists will go for an easel with additional features that can help make his work easier. An easel with drawers that’ll accommodate your paint supplies will make work a lot easier for you since you can just place your paints and brushes in this drawer. Some other easels come with palettes. These palettes may not suit your color scheme or may not be the type of paint you work with but there are some artists who will love it. Your children’s easel should also come with additional features like magnetic boards, chalkboards, paint drawers, etc. These additional features even add to the stability of the children’s easels.

Most H frames are the most stable types of easels you’ll find in the market because their stands are made to “sit” on a base. The long framed “feet” create enough stability for it. It is not as though other types of easels are not stable, most A frames and portable easels are designed to withstand vigorous painting pressure.

Your available space is key in choosing your art easel. If space limits you, it’s more advisable to go for easels that are easy to be folded away. However, if you have a designated studio and you work on a large scale, there’s nothing wrong with having sturdy and standard easels.

What is the Best Art Easel?

Determining the best art easel for you is purely a subjective matter. Nonetheless, we believe that the buying guide you have just read must’ve shone some light in dark corners so you know exactly what to look out for before making a purchase. Now join us as we look more closely into the features of the five art easels we selected for you.
Our Top Choice
The US Art Supply Coronado Easel can act as both an easel and a storage unit. It’s made of beech wood, extends to a full height of 71 inches and accommodates canvases of up to 34 inches tall. If what you want is a metal art easel instead, take a look at the US Art Supply Huntington Large Easel. It extends to 72 inches and is extra sturdy.
US Art Supply Coronado French Style Easel & Sketchbox With 12" Drawer, Wooden Pallete & Shoulder Strap

US Art Supply Art Easel USA E-500


Features
US Art Supply is a subsidiary of TCP Group. The parent company started out a home decoration store but now owns over 10 online brands which supply high quality art, pool, home and office tools and accessories. It keeps its customers happy and satisfied by supplying these quality products at competitive prices.

The US Art Supply Coronado Easel is made of sturdy beech wood and is capable of acting as a storage unit. It features a sliding drawer that’s divided into compartments and can be used to store several art supplies. It also has a wooden palette for additional storage space. This art easel has a shoulder strap that’s adjustable and a leather handle that can be used to easily transport the easel to any location of your choice. It can also stretch out to a full height of 71 inches and can fit canvases that measure up to 34 inches. It’s durable and quite easy to assemble and dissemble.

US Art Supply has other art easels you might want to check out:
  • US Art Supply Table Top Aluminum Tri-Pod Artist & Display Easel 10-Pack (Large - Single Arm) which is made of lightweight aluminum metal. It can be folded to 19 inches for easy storage and portability and it can fit canvases up to 22 inches
  • US Art Supply Solid Solana Adjustable Wood Desktop Table Easel with Drawer that can function as a storage box and a painting easel. It can adjust to 4 positions to fit canvases up to 11 by 14 inches. The drawer has 3 compartments and can be used to hold art brushes and other supplies
  • US Art Supply "Easy-Folding Easel" Black Steel 63" Tall Display Easel is made of lightweight steel metal and is fully collapsible. It can be easily assembled and supports up to five pounds of art canvas. It’s also easily foldable and is easily transported
Best Value
The Art Alternatives Marquis Art Easel can also function as a portable storage box for brushes and other supplies. It’s well-built, lightweight and foldable and has a handle for easy transport. For a desk art easel that can be easily converted to a book stand, check out the Art Alternatives Napa Table Easel & Book Stand. It can adjust to 3 positions and folds flat when not in use.
Art Alternatives Marquis Artists Natural Adjustable Desk Box Easel

Art Alternatives Art Easel AA13510


Features
Art Alternatives is well known for designing art supplies at affordable prices. With a mission to make art part of everyday living, it designs and manufactures different styles of canvas, black books, art easels, creative tools and art supplies for different arts stores around the world.

The Art Alternatives Marquis Art Easel is a sturdy yet lightweight art easel that can act as both a painting easel and a portable storage box. It’s easily foldable and comes fully assembled. This easel can adjust to 4 positions and can accommodate an 11 by 14-inch canvas. It’s made of pine wood and has a movable drawer, which has three compartments and can be used to store art pencils, brushes, paints, whatever you want. It also has a handle that provides easy portability.
Art Alternatives has some other art easels you can check out:
  • Art Alternatives Sonoma Sketchbox Easel is a field easel that can also function as a storage unit. It’s made of hand-sanded beech wood and the hardware and fittings are made from brass. It has a shoulder strap and leather handle for easy portability and a wooden removable palette
  • Art Alternatives Children Tabletop Easel is an art easel for kids. It has a double chalk board side and a tray that can hold art supplies. It folds easily and has a handle for easy portability
  • Ravenna Box Easel Black by Art Alternatives is made from seasoned hardwood. It can sit pretty on any flat surface and can be easily assembled and dissembled. It’s affordable and capable of holding canvas up to 34 inches tall
The Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Dulce Easel has a H-frame which is quite functional and offers great stability for working standing or seated. It’s sturdy and can hold canvasses up to 7 feet high. If you prefer a more heavy duty field easel made of steel, check out the Jack Richeson Italian Field Easel. Its legs and canvas holder is adjustable and allows lowering of the easel to a height of 30 inches.
Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Dulce Art Easel – Holds Canvasses up to 7ft

Jack Richeson Art Easel JACK-840200


Features
When it comes to art easels, pastels, canvasses and supplies that are durable, functional and of great quality, Jack Richeson definitely leads the pack. With several painting accessories and art materials, it has become one of the most sought after brands by professional and recreational painters and sculptors. Moreover, Richeson has top class customer support team that delights in ensuring you derive maximum benefit from any of its products you buy.

The Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Dulce Easel has a maximum canvas height of 84 inches and a base width and depth of 21 by 24 inches. It has a sliding mast that can be extended to its highest point while leaving the independent tray at its lowest setting; this enables artists to work on large canvases. It has a H-frame and a quad base which offers great stability for either sitting or standing while working. The compact easel height is 58 inches and when extended, it’s 95 inches high and can accommodate canvas up to 7 feet high.

Jack Richeson has other art easels that you can check out:
  • Jack Richeson Weston Full French Box Style Easel is a brown wooden art easel that can also serve as sketch box. It holds canvas up to 34.5 inches and it has a slide-out drawer that has three compartments for storing art supplies
  • Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Lobo Easel is fully adjustable and can hold canvas up to 44 inches and tilts forward to hold pastels. Its base and depth dimension is 25 by 28 inches and it can be extended to 70 inches
  • Jack Richeson Best Deluxe Lobo Wood Easel can be used both horizontally and vertically. It’s capable of holding canvas up to 62 inches which can be extended to 70 inches. It can tilt and also has a bottom shelf that can hold art supplies
The Melissa & Doug Deluxe Art Easel is a kid sized art easel that’s double sided and fully adjustable. It includes a dry-erase board, child safe paper cutter, chalkboard and is easy to assemble. If you’d prefer a magnetic art easel for kids instead, check out the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Magnetic Standing Art Easel. It’s made of sturdy wood and the height can also be adjusted 3 times.
Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Standing Art Easel – Also Available with Frustration Free Packaging

Melissa & Doug Art Easel 2001 – Deluxe Easel


Features
Melissa & Doug is well known for making toys and other products that encourage fair play, creativity and imagination in kids. It believes in making learning and discovery process fun for kids, which is why it manufactures only products of the highest quality.

Melissa & Doug Deluxe Art Easel is a multi-functional standing art easel that’s made of sturdy wood. It’s a double-sided art easel for kids of all sizes. The height of this standing easel can be adjusted three times to grow with your kids. It includes a dry-erase board that can be easily cleaned with a damp cloth and also a chalkboard that allows your child to practice letters and words. It also includes a paper roll holder that can fit an 18 inches or 12 inches wide paper roll. The child-safe paper cutter allows children to safely cut art papers and materials and the plastic tray attached to both sides of the easel allows them to keep art supplies during the painting process.
Melissa & Doug has other art easels for kids you can check out:
  • Melissa & Doug Double-Sided Magnetic Tabletop Art Easel - Dry-Erase Board and Chalkboard is made from sturdy wood and can fold flat for easy storage. One side of the art easel is a magnetic dry-erase board while the other side is a chalkboard
  • Melissa & Doug Deluxe Standing Easel Bundle that includes the Deluxe Standing Easel, Accessory Kit, and Artist's Smock. Featuring the deluxe standing easel with adjustable heights, accessory kit including paints and smock to prevent stains
WARNING: Choking Hazard - Small parts. Not for children under 3 years old.
The Ohuhu Field Art Easel is made of aluminum alloy and has an adjustable height of 21 to 66 inches and can stand on the floor or table top. It also has adjustable knobs for quick height and angle adjustments. If you’re planning to use an easel for watercolor paintings, check out the Ohuhu 36-color Watercolor Pencils \/ Water Soluble Colored Pencil Set. It’s excellent for both indoor and outdoor sketching.
Ohuhu 66-Inch Aluminum Field Easel with Bag for Table-Top/Floor

Ohuhu Art Easel OH-82003-02


Features
Ohuhu is well known for delivering quality, functional and reliable art easels with great features for an awesome painting experience, both indoors and outdoors. It has a wide range of intelligently designed art easels, from the natural wood art easel to the metal and aluminum art easels. With so many years in the art and sculpture industry, it’s a brand you can rely on to give you top notch art easels and durable accessories to go with it. If you’re wondering why its patronage is so high, it’s because it also delivers these products at unbeatable prices.

The Ohuhu Aluminum Field Art Easel is made from high quality aluminum alloy. It’s extremely lightweight and is quite tough and sturdy. It can be used as a floor and table top easel as the height can be easily adjusted from 21 to 66 inches. For outdoor painting, the legs of this easel can also be adjusted to stand pretty on uneven grounds. It also features a spring loaded top clamp which secures the canvas in place and prevents it from falling off. It also has adjustable knobs which can be turned easily for height and angle adjustments. This easel can be folded to 21 inches for easy storage and it comes with a free carry bag with shoulder strap for easy portability.

Get the Best Art Easel of 2018!

We believe that some of your confusion about the best art easel have been cleared and that you now have a better picture of the type of art easel you should be getting. If that’s the case, do go ahead and make your purchase without any more hesitation!

Our Top Choice
US Art Supply Coronado Art Easel
Best Value
Art Alternatives Marquis Artists Easel
Jack Richeson Lyptus Wood Dulce Easel
Melissa & Doug Deluxe Standing Art Easel
Ohuhu Aluminum Field Art Easel