I’m working towards a project I’ve had in my mind for a long time. In this project I want to use washes of water and linework together, and I’m fascinated with combining drawing and painting, which is why I currently have a mini-obsession with water-soluble pencils. (I may change my mind later and work with ink pens and washes, but I am a pencil nerd and really want to find out their possibilities before giving in to penwork.)
So here we go – déja vu – with more testing.
This time I’ve chosen a simple linear motif to test out three types of water-soluble pencils against each other. I’m sticking to a palette of natural colours as that is what I want for my project.
The criteria are very much based on the quality of line this time:
- how the water sets the colour
- is the linework opaque or partially transparent?
- has the linework dissolved or disintegrated and to what extent
- to what degree the linework has bled into the water
- relative tonal relationship between the wet line and the flowed areas
- how much the colour transfers to the wash
I am comparing three types of pencils: (A) Derwent Inktense, (B) Derwent Graphitint and (C) Faber-Castell Albrecht Dürer.
(A) Derwent Inktense: ink-based pencils
(B) Derwent Graphitint: graphite-based pencils
(C) Faber-Castell Albrecht Dürer: watercolour pencils
- The Inktense hold the integrity of line best, out of these three types of water-soluble pencil. The line value is strong, although it does depend on the amount of pigment applied to begin with in the linework.
- The Graphitint are better for more subtle linework, where the dissolving quality can be used to its advantage in artwork.
- The Albrecht Dürer have a flowing quality of colour away from the linework – it’s less uniform in flow than the others, which could have its own advantages.
I hope you find this useful. Leave me any thoughts or comments, or if there’s anything else you notice or would like me to test out, let me know.