Ever since I learned about this technique I have become fascinated with the pencils. Maybe it is because I never got that big box of 64 Crayola’s like the other kids. By the way, I own one of those boxes of 64 Crayola’s today.
To learn the technique there is no better instructor than Sue on this Youtube clip (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCCo9799dWo). You can also go to her website www. heartprints.net and see a different demo.
I started out with a small 24 Prismacolor set (using a 40% off coupon) and added to my stash as Michael’s put their open stock Prismacolor pencils on sale for $1. Unfortunately, it didn’t take me long to collect all the various colors that M’s had to offer.
I found the cute carosel at a store locally call Home Goods. I love the colors against this black background and it makes me want to color each and every time I see it.
When I first got the 24 color set, I used my electric pencil sharpener to get the pencils ready to use. However, I discovered there is actually a sharpener designed for the Prisma pencils and the difference in how this hand sharpener sharpens the pencils and how the electric pencil sharpens is very different.
I can get a finer point with the Prisma sharpener and it is achieved without eating up a large amount of the pencil.
Tip: Do not press the pencil in the sharpener to hard it will break the soft lead. Also, you will need to empty the sharpener often, to keep the shavings from clogging the sharpener.
Since these pencils cost around $1.59 – $1.99 (depending on the color) I want to keep as much pencil as I can to use instead of being chewed away to get a point the way the electric pencil sharpener did.
Although, Sue in the clip said you can use cotton swabs to blend, I have not had any luck with finding those that are tight enough to achieve the blending I like.
So, I buy stumps to use with this technique and like the results and the control I have over where they are traveling on the picture as I’m blending. There is a sanding pad utensil that you can buy to use with stumps, but I found a good emery board works just as well to clean the stumps off and keep a good tip on them.
Sue mentions Gamasol in the demo. That is a manufacturer’s name for low odor mineral spirits and a small bottle from them is about $5. I went to our local hardware store and bought a can of low odor mineral spirits for about $5 (4-5 times as much for the same price) and I’ve had it for over a year now.
I found this bottle with a sponge applicator on top and a lid at M’s in their art department. You need to keep this up out of the way of children and pets. You also need to keep it sealed so the mineral spirits don’t evaporate away.
This bottle sits inside one of the cubbies of the carosel along with the stumps and the emery board. That makes a neat little compact organization tool for holding everything I need when I get ready to color. I just pick-up the carosel and move it over to my workstation. I have grouped the various colors together (pinks and purples, reds and orange, blues and grays, etc.) that way I can see what will be used as shading and highlight for the various colors.
I only have one concern. I found a new source for open stock Prisma Color Pencils and they have a lot of colors I don’t have, including metallics. What’s a girl to do?
Well, this girl went onto the Heartprints web site downloaded the PDF file for the chart ( http://www.heartprints.net/pdf/Prismacolor%20Pencil%20Chart.pdf). I took all the colors I had and matched them to the number on the chart and then blended the color so I could see what it looked like after it had been blended.
This really serves two purposes: 1) I now have a list of all the colors I already have and I just tuck this in my purse and carry it with me so I don’t buy duplicate colors, 2) I can also see what each color looks like blended so when I’m doing a project I don’t have to guess.
Well, I am now sitting me up a monthly budget for Prisma Color Pencils so I can get all the colors I don’t have and I can fill up that chart. By the way there are more colors than what that chart shows, which must mean I’ll have to sit down and build a complete chart.
Who needs 64 colors of Crayola’s when you can have 100’s of Prisma Color Pencils. It’s not just coloring anymore it is being artistic and designing…..now where is that duckie I was coloring? Is it in my Big Coloring Book 1 or my coloring book I got for $1.