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> Learning Colored Pencil Techniques, Anybody interested?
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DesertRose 
Posted: 28-Mar-2005, 03:50 PM
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I love this medium and was wondering if anybody would like to learn. Or perhaps you already know how to draw with colored pencils and would like to just exchange ideas with one another. What do you all think? smile.gif


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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 07-Apr-2005, 05:28 PM
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Hey, did someone mention colored pencils?????????????????????????????

I still remember the first time I encountered them... I was working in a gallery/frame shop, and a woman came in with some drawings for us to frame for her boss. They looked like graphite, but had wonderful colors - I asked about the medium, and she said they were Prismacolor colored pencils. We had never heard of them before, but I got a set of 36 as soon as I could.
The woman who had brought in the drawings had been self-taught, but she offered to have some informal classes at her home. I went, along with maybe 2 other folks, and by the end of the first week I knew I was going to love these things!! I had always enjoyed bird-watching, thought I'd try drawing some birds with the colored pencils, and well... I've been using pencils since about 1979!

The waxiness of Prismacolor pencils gives them a whole new dimension in technique. I learned to layer colors, blend colors, and in the end have a drawing that looked almost like a watercolor (if I wanted to take it that far.) Of course you could always NOT press down so hard, or layer so much, and you could end up with a wonderfuk sketchy sketch.

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DesertRose 
Posted: 07-Apr-2005, 05:43 PM
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Hey there! SB! Yes! I have always loved colored pencils. I remember when I went to this art exhibit in GA when I first moved there, there was this gal named Susan who did these terrific colored pencil drawings and I knew right then and there I wanted to learn that medium. I had the wonderful opportunity to take classes with her for 3 or 4 years. It was the best fun I had had! It took me awhile to learn the medium though. All that layering of colors to get the realistic look I wanted. In time I kind of got the hang of it, but I have a long ways to go still. My favorite pencils are Prismacolors, but I also love Caran d' Ache as they have colors that Prisma doesn't have. I mainly did portraits, but been trying to learn wildlife and desert landscape as well. With all the rain we have had here in the desert, I am hoping that I can get some good pictures and maybe that will inspire me to get my pencils out. wink.gif
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Haldur 
Posted: 12-May-2005, 11:10 AM
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Interested to know more about the techniques involved with colored pencil art. I've been an artist for as long as I can remember, am now 24, but have not really come up with any good works using colored pencil. I'm interested to know things regarding stroke and line work and all of that because it seems when I do it things don't look quite right. Don't know if it's the amount of pressure I'm applying, the kind of pencils, paper, etc. so I'd be very enlightened by any information you might have!

Thank you!


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Aaediwen 
Posted: 12-May-2005, 06:17 PM
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QUOTE (Haldur @ 12-May-2005, 12:10 PM)
Interested to know more about the techniques involved with colored pencil art. I've been an artist for as long as I can remember, am now 24, but have not really come up with any good works using colored pencil. I'm interested to know things regarding stroke and line work and all of that because it seems when I do it things don't look quite right. Don't know if it's the amount of pressure I'm applying, the kind of pencils, paper, etc. so I'd be very enlightened by any information you might have!

Thank you!

Hey Haldur, maybe post a scan of that lighthouse you showed me the other day? See what kind of pointers you might get?


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DesertRose 
Posted: 13-May-2005, 02:12 AM
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Hey there Haldur and Aaediwen! Wow! A reply! LOL

Haldur, what kind of pencils and paper are you using?

I use two brands of pencils only. Prismacolor which is a more soft and waxy substance and then I use another brand called Caran d'ache. They are harder, but you can layer, layer with those pencils and not get quite the waxy finish. Plus, they are great for fine lines and they have colors that Prisma doesn't have. I DO NOT recommend Derwent pencils..........bleh! They are awful to work with.

The main thing with colored pencils is layering different colors on top of each other. You cannot work fast with them and you want to start off slow and with light strokes in the beginning. I usually do a pencil drawing first on tracing paper and then transfer the initial drawing to the paper or board I want to do the finished project on.

Paper? I use Strathmore Vellum. It is kind of between a smooth and rough surface. I usually get 3 ply. But my favorite is cold press illustration board. It has a little bit of a rough surface and catches details really well. You can usually get the art store to cut the size you want. I have also used pastel paper and even mat boards if I want to have color in the background.

Hopefully, my friend, Siobhan Blues, who taught me colored pencils and is an award winning artist will come in here and add to this discussion and help you as well. Would love to see your piece that Aaediwen is talking about. smile.gif

Here is some of my colored pencil work to give you an idea.

http://share.shutterfly.com/osi.jsp?i=EeCMmzhy4YuHuw



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emerald-eyedwanderer 
  Posted: 13-May-2005, 02:25 AM
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I would love any suggestions and advice, Celtic Rose! I have no real experience with colored pencils, just a pencil sketch or oil paintings usually. It would be really interesting smile.gif


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Haldur 
Posted: 13-May-2005, 12:11 PM
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Thank you Aaediwen, I'll bring that to you ASAP! smile.gif Rose, I'm completely blown away by your artwork! It's AWESOME!!! And thank you so much for the tips, I truly appreciate it!
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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 18-May-2005, 01:15 PM
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Hey ya'll!

Sorry to be away so long... between mom being in the hospital several days and a son who is going to be getting married in two weeks, I haven't had time to get online much these days! But things have calmed down for awhile so I'm trying to catch up on threads.

I second CelticRose's choice of colored pencils. Prismacolor are my all-time favorite too. She and I use similiar techniques, the layering of colors. Its like, use light pressure and put in midtones first leaving alone the areas of the drawing that will be the lightest... gradually darken the areas that will be darkest, add in some of the lightest colors, and pretty soon they will start to blend a bit on their own. To finish, you can use a colorless blender over the whole drawing...

I've got a step-by-step illustration around here somewhere, let me see if I can find it and I'll scan it in. I used to teach classes at a local art center, but that was a couple of years ago...

Be back soon,
SB
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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 18-May-2005, 01:51 PM
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Let's see if this demonstration shows up...
Nope, oh well I must be doing something wrong...
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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 18-May-2005, 02:03 PM
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Okay, I have downloaded a scan of a step-by-step demonstration of how to draw a dog. Its on my web site, SGGardnerhttp://www.sggardner.com/

On the web site, click the link on the left that says "Wildlife & Equine Art", and when it takes you there right at the top it says "click here to download file"

Click on that, and you'll be able to see a closeup of the demonstration - print it, email it, or download it whatever you choose! From the first sketch to the first application of color, to the final steps of layering color and burnishing with a clear blender pencil this will show you how I work.
And in the bottom right corner are color samples of the Prismacolor pencils used in the drawing.

SB
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DesertRose 
Posted: 18-May-2005, 03:27 PM
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Oh SB! Thank you so much for coming in here and showing us your beautiful artwork, website and then demonstration. I was thinking about doing a demonstration here in helping to get folks started, but I just haven't. so you were a life saver.

I forgot. do you use a pencil sketch first using a 2 B pencil for the initial drawing or or Indigo Blue colored pencil? I know people who do either and I couldn't remember what you do. I always use a 2 B pencil. Much easier to erase mistakes.

Certain items you all want to get is a good electic or battery operated pencil sharpener for really sharp points. Personally, I have had better luck with the cheap battery operated ones. Also, a battery powered eraser. Those come real in handy for really tough areas to erase. I buy mine at Office Max or Office Depot. Much cheaper there than at an art store. I also use the gray gum erasers too.

Any questions, just fire away!
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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 19-May-2005, 10:35 AM
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I use a 2B pencil to do the initial sketch with; its easier to erase. I do try to make all corrections while still using the pencil too, because color can be difficult to erase.

The electric pencil sharpener is a wonderful gizmo; I've got one that has lasted a very long time, something like 5 years! Using them often to sharpen colored pencils wears them out fast most of the time; must be the waxy pencil lead. I'm just lucky to have gotten a good sharpener, it'd probably never happen again with another one.

Fixitive is good to use too on the finished drawing. With Prismacolor pencils, eventually the darker colors will have 'wax bloom', where a grayish cast will appear on the dark areas... but a light blast of any fixitive spray designed for charcoal or pencil work will keep this from becoming a problem.

SB
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DesertRose 
Posted: 19-May-2005, 05:48 PM
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SB, I have never had luck with electric sharpeners. I don't know why. They always seem to jam on me and break off the waxy lead. I have to open it all up and clean it out. I quit buying them and like the cheap $5.00 battery operated ones now. I can't believe how long that one has lasted me.

I do the same thing you do with the 2B pencil. I had a good teacher! wink.gif smile.gif
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Siobhan Blues 
Posted: 20-May-2005, 07:56 PM
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QUOTE (CelticRose @ 19-May-2005, 06:48 PM)
SB, I have never had luck with electric sharpeners. I don't know why. They always seem to jam on me and break off the waxy lead. I have to open it all up and clean it out. I quit buying them and like the cheap $5.00 battery operated ones now.

Hey, I've been through 2 electric pencil sharpeners before I got the one I've been using so long! I think the waxy leads really do wear out most models pretty quickly. I'm just lucky with this one.

You ought to see this other sharpener I use, its a poor little hand-crank sharpener in the studio; its attached to the mat cutting table and I use it to sharpen everything from graphite to pastel pencils. It sounds like a tree limb grinder sometimes now when I put something particularly offensive in it - laugh.gif laugh.gif laugh.gif

SB
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