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  1. #1

    LF:recommendation on pencil crayons

    Hey guys,

    Currently i am still using my older set of prismacolor pencils, however I've heard from a lot of people that the quality of prismacolors has died.
    Lots of breakage, hard pieces, and sometimes not as rich a color pigment.

    Anyways, I know there of Faber-Castell Polychromatic Pencils and of course the high end Derwent Artist pencils.
    Both have some good reviews. Since I dont need pencils right this instant I was wondering if anyone here as used these in replacement to prismacolor, or perhaps only ever one of these types. Perhaps you can recommend something better!

    I am looking for recommendations of what I can buy to replace my prismacolor pencils, good artist quality pencils.
    Yes, I can buy them separately to test them, but nothing beat a person who has used them for a longer period of time.

    I use them to create rich color, some burnishing and I do blend them quite often (Often with a blending pencil).
    I don't mix them with water or other blending solutions.
    In fact I currently use Derwent blending pencils and I have not had an issue so far but I have not had a chance to try any faber castell pencils.

  2. #2
    Premium User QT Melon's Avatar


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    The reason people complain about quality of color pencils is that people will buy sets and not buy them individually. The problem is that stores don't have individual ones out for inspection anymore.

    There were quite a bit of breakage in Prismacolors, not just recently. It was due to several factors.

    Bad Wood Grain. Sometimes you'll get a pencil that just has bad wood casing, it splinters and cracks. You can usually see ones with bad wood grain if you look at the end of the pencil that is not sharpened.

    Bad Casing Not Centered. You basically want to look at the end of your pencils that are not sharpened. The lead should be in the center. If it's too far off then you're going to have breakage. You'll also have a problem where sometimes the lead slips out of the casing. I've had many Prismas do that when I buy them in sets.

    Making long thin points when sharpening them. It's best to use a wide base and short fat point. Instead of using an electric sharpener, sharpening them yourself or a metal sharpener may be a better option.

    Prismacolor pencils are really not meant to cover large areas. They do in fact have art stix http://www.dickblick.com/products/prismacolor-art-stix/

    Art Stix are meant for large areas of coloring. Don't waste your time on a pencil doing this unless you know how to sharpen it in a way to give a large flat side.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by QT Melon View Post
    The reason people complain about quality of color pencils is that people will buy sets and not buy them individually. The problem is that stores don't have individual ones out for inspection anymore.

    I don't think this is true, I only EVER got my prismas seperate, most art stores don't even sell them in sets. The quality has gone down, just about all the pencils I've bought since highschool have had constant problems with breakage, inclusions, and have been highly waxy.

    I haven't done real media in a really long time but I've seen recommendations from professional artists and freelancers for Faber Castle Polychromes. They've been described as fairly sturdy (low breakage, even with an accidental drop) no inclusions, good oil based pigment, and easy to sharpen, and blend. I haven't tried them out cause I don't have money (or the space to do real media right now). But when I do they are going to be what I go for, because I love working with pencils.

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by lorenith View Post
    I don't think this is true, I only EVER got my prismas seperate, most art stores don't even sell them in sets. The quality has gone down, just about all the pencils I've bought since highschool have had constant problems with breakage, inclusions, and have been highly waxy.

    I haven't done real media in a really long time but I've seen recommendations from professional artists and freelancers for Faber Castle Polychromes. They've been described as fairly sturdy (low breakage, even with an accidental drop) no inclusions, good oil based pigment, and easy to sharpen, and blend. I haven't tried them out cause I don't have money (or the space to do real media right now). But when I do they are going to be what I go for, because I love working with pencils.
    yes I have heard some great things about the faber castell pencils so I may try those as they do sell them separately here.



    Quote Originally Posted by QT Melon View Post
    The reason people complain about quality of color pencils is that people will buy sets and not buy them individually. The problem is that stores don't have individual ones out for inspection anymore.

    There were quite a bit of breakage in Prismacolors, not just recently. It was due to several factors.

    Bad Wood Grain. Sometimes you'll get a pencil that just has bad wood casing, it splinters and cracks. You can usually see ones with bad wood grain if you look at the end of the pencil that is not sharpened.

    Bad Casing Not Centered. You basically want to look at the end of your pencils that are not sharpened. The lead should be in the center. If it's too far off then you're going to have breakage. You'll also have a problem where sometimes the lead slips out of the casing. I've had many Prismas do that when I buy them in sets.

    Making long thin points when sharpening them. It's best to use a wide base and short fat point. Instead of using an electric sharpener, sharpening them yourself or a metal sharpener may be a better option.

    Prismacolor pencils are really not meant to cover large areas. They do in fact have art stix http://www.dickblick.com/products/prismacolor-art-stix/

    Art Stix are meant for large areas of coloring. Don't waste your time on a pencil doing this unless you know how to sharpen it in a way to give a large flat side.

    Ah thank you QT, I know that prismacolors no long sell separate pencils.
    The store that is near my house actually sells the faber castell and derwent separately so I guess I'll just have to buy and try.

    I know about the stix which they sadly don't sell near me, and yes I have a special pencil sharpener for such things, manual only and I don't use the sharp angled side I use the wide end, so that is currently not the issue.
    Thanks for the advice

  5. #5
    Regular Monster's Avatar
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    Caran D'Ache Luminance Colored Pencils. They don't break as easy, blend beautifully, more vibrant...just all around better.

  6. #6
    Regular Marzipan's Avatar
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    I LOVE my polychromos set. It was one of the best art investments I've had! They're oil-based so they have a different consistency to them, a lot less "creamy", but they blend wonderfully with all types of pencils and you can even do "washes" with them with rubbing alcohol. I totally recommend them 100%

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by Monster View Post
    Caran D'Ache Luminance Colored Pencils. They don't break as easy, blend beautifully, more vibrant...just all around better.
    Wow, I've actually never heard of those


    Quote Originally Posted by Marzipan View Post
    I LOVE my polychromos set. It was one of the best art investments I've had! They're oil-based so they have a different consistency to them, a lot less "creamy", but they blend wonderfully with all types of pencils and you can even do "washes" with them with rubbing alcohol. I totally recommend them 100%
    Hmm I know I need to look into them, Ive never actually tried blending with alcohol but i heard it works great! Usually only use water with watercolour pencils. Thanks for the recommendation I'll have to buy a few to try that with, sadly I feel like I'll be needing to relearn pencil crayons lol

  8. #8
    Senior Sparkyopteryx's Avatar
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