Well, happy Friday and l thought it would only be fair to share with you the final result of my test out of my new Schpirerr Farben pencils. This piece has been such fun to draw and l chose it especially because it would use plenty of the colors in the tin.
To be absolutely fair to these pencils, the drawing is completed using only these, l have not even resorted to my trusty Polychromos to sharpen the edges. Actually one of the best surprises with these pencils has been their ability to hold a point despite being so soft. I have used no blenders. The pencils themselves have done all the work. I like to do this because not everyone has access to the many, many pencils l have and if you are looking to buy only one set, you want to know what results you can get using only them.
These are such an affordable brand that l really wasn't expecting the great results that l got. For me the stand out feature is the vibrancy of the color right from the start. And the color doesn't leave pencil dust all over the place either. I was able to layer them really well and to mix new colors easily.
l would love to see more pale, pastel shades in the range and most of all l would love to see a lightfast rating, but for the price these are anyone beginning just can't go wrong with these. They offer a real viable alternative to Prismacolors without the Prismacolor problems. I didn't have any break when l sharpened them, they are definitely more long lived (l find my Prismacolors wear down fast), they don't spread color dust and l didn't find the same wax build up problems even though they have a very similar feel in use.
So yes, l am impressed and want to wish everyone behind Schpirerr Farben real success with their lovely product.
Woo hoo! Today l am sooooo excited to share with you my new pencils. They are a brand new brand, only just released here. And l am so lucky that l got to try them. Now l am going to let you into the story. I was contacted by the lovely Tania offering to send me a set of these new pencils to try and l emailed her back to say that l would be really excited to try her new pencils, but that l had to be totally honest with her and told her that l could never say good things about a pencil if l didn't think it was good. I value my reputation too much and l certainly would hate anyone to spend their hard earned cash on a poor product that l recommended. I simply couldn't do it. I turned to my other half after emailing and said,' l don't think l will be hearing back from her!'. Well, to my surprise l did hear back! And last Sunday on my doorstep was a lovely package containing my new tin of pencils.
I am not going to spend ages telling you about the packaging (l hate reviews that show you the box they came in etc, etc! I am screaming,'yes, but the pencils! What are the pencils like? How do they blend? How do they feel?!'). There are 72 colors in a nice sturdy tin. And l will tell you right away that they are selling on Amazon at a practically give away price.
Now l am used to working with the best brands in the world and here l am presented with a very affordable set of pencils by an almost unknown brand. I was really intrigued to see how they performed. I was also hoping very much that l would like them because not everyone can afford (or wants) to spend 300 dollars on a tin of pencils and to be able to say to those people you can try out how you like working with coloured pencils without laying out a lot of money would be so good.
So the first thing l did was make myself a color chart. Not something l normally do, but my one quibble with these pencils is that the colors on the barrels are not always a good match for the actual color of the pencil. But, you know, the same is true of many more expensive brands and it takes five minutes to make a color chart.
The first thing l noticed is that the color is sooo vibrant. This immediately gave me good vibes. And creamy, smooth! Mmmm! I like a pencil with a creamy smooth lay down, l was excited now for sure! Above you see my first progress shot of my new piece with these pencils. To be honest, l am staggered that you can get this quality for the price. You can see that l got beautiful vibrant color. I haven't used any of my other brands on this piece not even for sharpening the edges. They have the creamy feel of Prismacolor pencils (if you like those, you will love these), but they are so much nicer than Prismacolors. They sharpen beautifully and hold their point much better than Prismacolor pencils, so l was able to get fine detail that l really can't get with Prismacolors. They don't have the same build up issues either. The vibrant color builds very quickly and l didn't use any blenders with this piece, just the pencils.
I was able to blend new colors easily (this piece will be going on Instagram next week and you will then see that l used the full color range for it). The white has beautiful resistance to colors laid over the top and is as good as any other white pencil when used on top of darker colors.
My only real issue with them is that they have not been tested for lightfastness (this doesn't mean they are not lightfast, it just means that we simply don't know) and because l sell my art l like to know the colors l use have met certain standards. Hopefully, this may change in the future.
I just want to say to anyone who has been put off by the high price of the top brands, or who is starting out with color pencil or who just loves color pencils, try these. I am sure you will love them.
Haaaappy Friday. I cannot believe how quickly the weeks fly past and how bad l am at writing a regular blog! I don't know why l decided to draw another chameleon so soon after the last. Well, l do! It was the colors! This chameleon has the craziest colors ever and l loved them. And sometimes l see a load of colors like this and that is all l can see. My color addiction takes over and no logical part of my brain says, 'Stop! Think carefully about the work involved in this!'. No. Not me. I just see the chance to use all those lovely colors l never get to use. Or that is what l tell myself, because even that isn't true! I always pick colourful subjects so there really aren't any colors l never get to use, l even get the flouroescent ones in there at times!
My second mistake was the decision to work bigger, much bigger than l have ever drawn a chameleon before. The idea was that o would be able to really get in the detail. I didn't think this through properly. It is much bigger than before, but the dots are still not much bigger than the point of a pencil and so l can't really get much more detail than l have in the past. It just takes much longer. Much, much longer! I would have to have worked twice this size to get detail in the detail. What was l thinking!
The photo you see above is about twenty hours of work and none of it is finished and it looks weird! Truthfully, by this point l wanted to stop! But there is some kind of grim determination in me that makes me want to see a piece through to the end, so l gritted my teeth and ploughed on. It took four days of painstaking work before l even got a shot l would post on Instagram (that will be Monday if you want to see it). And l eventually even lost track of the number of days l spent on it. I thought that l had learned patience, but it was thoroughly tested. It just looked so flat, all the way until the end really. Usually parts of a drawing start to come to life and it gives me the motivation to continue, but this piece just refused! I did finish it though and l feel happy with myself if not totally happy with the picture for seeing it through. But l am certainly going to think a little more carefully before starting such a big project again.