Drawing With Prismacolor Colored Pencils
Prismacolor Pencils provides information and product resources, such as Prismacolor Pencils, for creative artists of all levels. Because drawing is the foundation for building visual art expression and skill, students in particular will benefit from tips and guides offered on this website.
The process of drawing develops a student’s ability to transfer what they see in three dimensions to the two-dimensional drawing plane. Student artists usually begin to learn how to draw using pencils, charcoal, and pastels to copy still life. Beginner drawing classes use simple objects such as bottles, boxes, cylinders, and round objects such as balls to get the student artist familiar with how draw what they see – not what they think they see. Inexperienced drawing students sometimes get very frustrated while getting used to seeing the world in a different perspective, especially how objects relate to their surroundings and positioning. For instance, a square box placed directly at an artist’s eye level will look different from the same box placed in either a higher or lower position. Rather than draw what they see, the beginner artist draws what their mind knows – that a square has all equal sides. When they look at their drawing, they often become frustrated because their rendering does not look like the still life. Most beginning art students need lessons on perspective, proportion, and foreshortening.
In addition to learning perspective, proportion, and foreshortening, students should be taught color theory, and how varying values of one color can help bring dimension to a drawing. Prismacolor pencils are excellent media to begin learning the properties of color. Prismacolor pencils come in 132 different colors, with a soft texture that make them ideal for blending colors and values. Art students can experiment by layering lighter values of a color over a dark background. Value can also be adjusted depending upon the amount of pressure put on the pencil. Putting more pressure on a pencil will result in a darker value of a color as opposed to using less pressure. However, when drawing, it is best to use layering techniques, such as coloring over an area several times, using a loose grip. Applying too much pressure on a pencil can lead to paper tearing. In addition, when too much pressure is put on pencils, it also leaves an impression in the paper, which makes it nearly impossible to correct. However, applying heavier pressure on a pencil is good way of accenting a drawing. This technique works best when a drawing is nearing completion.
The great appeal to having a palette of 132 Prismacolor Pencils is the opportunity to experiment with blending complimentary, secondary, and tertiary colors. Blending color exercises accomplish two objects; first, it facilitates the learning of color theory and secondly, it helps a beginning artist get used to handling a pencil as art instrument, rather than a writing utensil. An artist’s grip on a pencil is looser, and usually more angled to the side than a writer’s grip. A writer grips a pencil tighter and applies deliberate and even pressure to paper. An artist grip is the opposite – almost to the point where it can easily fall away from the hand. A good exercise for the student artist to do is to loosely wave the wrist and allow the pencil to waiver back and forth. This can be done in the air, without the need to put pencil to paper. Once the student feels comfortable, the same exercise can be performed on paper, using a light grip of the fingers. This will help the student become more comfortable and gain better control of the pencil.
“Drawing With Prismacolor Colored Pencils” was written by Brenne Meirowitz, BA, MA, MS.
©2009 Brenne Meirowitz. All Rights Reserved.