Thursday, 29 September 2011

Drawing tools

I have had a few questions about what I use to draw with, so here it is. This is my small case for carrying anywhere just-in-case. 

It usually contains the same things. 

I have a propelling pencil. This carries 0.5 lead, soft lead though, usually 2B, with a pack of spare leads. It really is just for a few guide lines at the start of a picture. I do not like to get too hung up on precision with the pencil, better to commit to the pen line as soon as possible. It is a discipline that makes you focus more and stop messing with the sketch. Most of my drawing is accomplished with a Pilot G-Tec-C4, black ink, 0.4 mm nib.

Having inked in some of the sketch I will use Letraset Pantone pens, usually Cool Greys, in three tones.

These ones are 2, 5 & 11; 11 being the darkest. After using the greys I often use graphite sticks to apply some texture to the shadows. This tends to work better if you have paper with a bit of texture to it. Flat paper is useless and water colour paper is too rough. The best thing I have found so far is paper made from left over unbleached cotton from the garment industry pressed flat and made into Sari sketchbooks, but most artists’ sketch books have a roughness to the paper. 

The Titan is good soft graphite while the Koh-I-Noor is harder but water soluble so you can smudge it with a wet finger. The knife is to trim the graphite’s.

One new thing I have found is the Pilot Parallel Pen.

 This is a bit like a calligraphy pen. It uses two flat plates for the nib with the ink passing between them. This gives a stable broad line that varies in thickness according to the angle of the pen and amazingly you can turn the nib on its side to use the corner for a very thin line. Great fun and very versatile, it was this pen that gave the tentacle picture that brush like line. 

Nice to have that technique in your pocket as a pen.

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