Monday, August 30, 2010

New Derwent Pastel Pencils

 Derwent Pastel Pencils on UArt 800
ATC size

I received the promised samples of Derwent's new formula pastel pencils on Saturday and I have to say that I'm impressed.  To be honest, I didn't think I would be as Derwent's were at the bottom of my list of favorite pencils.  I only had a few of the old formula Derwents but they seemed to have chunks of something hard in them and were sometimes scratchy to use.  As with all the brands I've used, some colors were scratchier than others.

These new pastel pencils are creamier and go on easily and smoothly.  I haven't checked their lightfastness yet as I've been going full-tilt since I received them but I've heard that they are pretty lightfast.  I'm sure some colors are better than others but it's that way with all brands.

So, would I buy these pencils?  Definitely yes.  The only disappointment is that the pencils are just a hair larger around than standard sized pencils and won't fit into my pencil sharpeners.  The standard sized hole on my electric sharpener is just a little too small and the larger hole in the handheld sharpener is too big.  I can make it work but the core breaks easily and I need to go slow and very carefully.  I think it will be back to a craft knife and sandpaper for these.

As I said, I've been on  the go all weekend and have just done a very quick trial to see how they worked for me.  The painting above is from a reference photo by Teresa from and please know that my quick sketch in no way reflects her skill as a photographer!

I received four sample pencils - Titanium White, Kingfisher Blue, Dark Fuchsia, and Naples Yellow.  I also received the much-touted blending stick, a very hard white, square stick that helps blend large areas or one area into another.  I wanted to use just the new pencils as a test and Teresa's photo contained colors closest to the samples I received so you won't see a refined painting here.  But, I do hope you can see the smooth lay-down of the pastel and the way the pastel blends even into areas where the blending stick wasn't used.

Thanks for the new formula, Derwent!  I'm very excited by the release of these new pastel pencils!

No comments: