what is he good at / interested in? what do you want him to have? i think your best bet for quality and value would be to select a few things and put them together yourself, rather than buying a broad, pre-packaged set. if it's drawing that he's great at, then maybe oil pastels, charcoal, good pencils and a sketchbook. if it's painting, then watercolors, a few nice brushes, and an abundance of good paper. it depends on his interests (sculpture, printing, drawing, painting, whatever) and i understand that he probably likes to do more than one thing, but i would try to focus on one area if you're going for quality. i don't have specific brand recommendations, but if you go to an independent art supply store, the employees will be able to help you.