Here is a photo (and this photo is of the cleaned up version, believe it or not!) of the palette I usually use – it’s called a “Possum Palette” – and is a bit more expensive than traditional palettes. I have been using this one for quite a few years.
As you can see, it has round cups that fit into depressions around the palette. The cups are plastic with attached lids – I have a few of them open in the photo. (The only problem with mine is that the cups will fall out if I tilt the palette – the newer models have a ridge in the cup holder area and they won’t fall out).
It comes with 22 cups, but you can purchase more (I think they come 8 cups in a plastic box).
There are a few things I love about this palette: (1) the paint tends to stay moist for much longer periods in the cups; (2) I am not locked into using paints previously squeezed out into my palette – it’s so easy to pull out one cup and insert another; and (3) since I sometimes paint on more than one painting at a time – it’s great to pull cups out and place them into a butcher tray for different paintings.
I am personally responsible for 30+ people buying these palettes – hint, hint to the company!!! If you want one you can purchase it from Daniel Smith or Cheap Joe’s (wait for a sale for a better price!!!)
I also like the butcher trays, but have recently found another product – it’s plastic and a bit cheaper and does not have that curve in the center that you seem to have with the butcher trays. It’s made by Mijello and is called a peelable palette – since you can peel off traditional acrylics. (That does not work for my fluid acrylics, though; I just wipe them off and hope for the best!). It works just fine for my watercolors, too. I’m pretty sure I got it at ASW (or maybe it was Jerry’s).
Anyway – just thought I would share!