If you have been practicing your drawing for a while you will have gained a degree of confidence about making a mark.
The only difference is that painting uses other materials and mediums and that colour is involved.
Many of the philosophical issues above relate to painting as well. Don't buy gear that is so expensive you won't want to dirty it. Putting out pea sized dollops of paint is hardly conducive to free creative expression.
Start with affordable paints at first, because you are practicing. Its unlikely many of your practice works will be sought for purchase. Even so, the quality of many of the student grade materials is very satisfactory.
As you progress and have gained a degree of confidence and dexterity, you will want to expand and try some of the higher end materials. Again we suggest you buy a few at a time and get to know their advantages.