Monday, January 21, 2013

Staedtler Lumograph & Faber Castel 9000 Pencils

I was in my local art supply shop today, and they stock the Staedtler Lumograph, a pencil I've seen recommended a couple of times.  I bought one, and here's a quick comparison with my current favourite Faber Castell 9000 (both pencils are 2B grade);

1) The Lumograph has the darker line - the Faber Castell is a noticeably lighter colour side by side.
2) The Faber Castell blends/smudges more easily - a series of vertical strokes is easily blended into a smooth patch of grey - the Lumograph strokes are still somewhat visible even after quite vigorous smudging.
3) Here, at least, the Faber Castell is cheaper (between 10 and 20 pence cheaper, depending on where you buy).

The difference between the two pencils isn't enormous, but the Faber Castell 9000 is the one I like best - it's slightly smoother, and I like the ease with which it blends.  The Lumograph seems to hold a point better, and I can see that its dark, tenacious line could be useful on occasion.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Thumbnail Foxes


Some sketching and colour testing on an A6 Clairefontaine "Graf It" pad. Smoother than most sketching paper, but I like that. Holds up ok under light washes too, although I doubt it would take much more than that.

The Graf It pads are about £1 in this size, and worth picking up in my opinion.

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Monday, January 14, 2013

A New Thing - Caran d'Ache Gouache Studio 8

Caran D'Ache Gouache Studio Set

I was mooching around my local WH Smiths when I found this.  It was on the clearance shelf, and marked down for being damaged (£10 rather than £15 or £20, depending on where you look for the rrp). 

Inside the Box

A quick examination revealed that nothing was missing, and that the contents were in good condition (the outer cardboard sleeve was a mess, and that seemed to be all). So, an impulse buy was made.

What you get (in a large plastic clamshell case) is a decent no.5 brush, seven cakes of gouache, and a tube of white.

With the Paint Tray Lifted Out 

The tray holding the paints can be lifted out, giving a very large space for mixing colours.  The paints themselves are student quality, apparently, which means they won't be hugely light fast, but by all accounts will provide a decent way to try out this type of paint.

Colour Test

I've not done much with these yet (the colour test is the only thing I'm comfortable showing off) - the appeal for me is the opacity - and also the reason I'm finding things difficult, having become accustomed to watercolour! Figuring out how much water to add is proving tricky too.  With that said, they mix nicely enough, and once I figure out how/if I can get the effect I want, I think I'll enjoy them.  If I fail, I'll just use them for adding to my watercolours :)


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