Monday, January 17, 2005

Colored Pencils

Prismacolors are my favorite colored pencils! The are thick with soft leads, brilliant colors, have a smooth soft feel, are waterproof, lightfast, and contain a wax base that is perfect for blending. Additional items to add is a good Color Pencil Accessory Set that contains a colorless blender for blending a pure color. A tint is a color with white added while a shade of a color contains black; a colorless blender doesn't tint or shade, it simply allows you to extend a pure color, and well, blend. The accessory set also contains lightfast drawing pencils, a colorless blending marker, kneaded eraser for erasing mistakes and lifting color, a pencil extender, and a pencil sharpener.

For rich, vibrant drawings --- use a close color for the color you're striving for, then layer a similar color over top to add more visual interest. A GREAT resource book is The Color Pencil Solution Book by Jane Gildow & Barbara Beneditti Newton. It will teach you everything you will ever need to know about care of pencils, setting up a color pencil working studio, techniques, papers to use, how to achieve textures, and yes, even metallic colors! such as sterling silver, tarnished and aged golds, copper, ect. There is 348 color illustrations, 128 pgs., all within a hardcover book. There are also projects to scan and print, or copy for practicing complete with instructions contained within the book and suggested colors to re-create them.

Now, I did mention that Prismacolors contain wax. A commom occurance when using Prismacolors is an effect called "wax bloom". Basically, as you layer color over color, the wax assists with the blending propreties of the pencils, however, wax bloom can occur if your project isn't treated. Wax bloom simply means a project left untreated will contain a top coated waxy appearance. I've found any workable fixative or low-odor mineral spirits applied over the project reduces it greatly for a beautiful piece of artwork every time.

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