4 Essential Types of Colored Pencils for Every Artist

Did you know that the ancient Greeks and Romans used wax-based crayons? Experts believe that these may have been the earliest form of wax-based colored pencils. Thousands of years later, colored pencils have evolved into an easy-to-use medium for artists of all ages.

Regardless of which age group you fall into, the odds are that you’ve used colored pencils before. But did you know that there are different types that you can use?

Keep reading to learn about four of the different types of colored pencils with which you can experiment.

1. Color Sticks

Are you working on an art project that requires a lot of color? If you are, consider picking up some color sticks.

Colored sticks are the same as colored pencils, except for the fact that they lack the pencil part. Instead of having a wooden shell, the entire stick is made of the core found inside colored pencils. This makes them great for applying large amounts of color without having to run to a pencil sharpener every few minutes.

2. Watercolor Pencils

Although you can use them wet or dry, watercolor pencils contain a water-soluble binder that lets you blend them on paper. This makes it easy to mix colors, as you do with paint.

Watercolor pencils have harder cores than regular colored pencils. This means that when you use them dry, they won’t do as good of a job as filling in spaces. However, when you add a little water, the pigment spreads.

Many artists apply a base laser using watercolor pencils, then go over it with wax or oil pencils.

3. Wax-Based Pencils

Wax-based pencils are the most common types of colored pencil. They include the lower grade pencils you see in most stores, as well as artist grade pencils.

Wax-based pencils have a softer core than other types, such as oil-based. They also have a unique texture that makes them great for layering and blending. Their softer cores also cause them to wear down faster than other types of pencils.

4. Oil-Based Pencils

Although many people think that wax and oil pencils are the same, there are some differences between the two. Check out this guide to learn about wax vs oil colored pencils.

Many experts consider oil pencils to be premium, and they’re therefore more expensive than other types. They have a harder core, don’t break as often, and blend and layer well. You also won’t have to worry about the glossy consistency that wax-based pencils often have.

Create a Masterpiece Using Different Types of Colored Pencils

Next time you’re at an art store and staring at a pack of Crayola colored pencils, consider trying something different. Experiment with some of these different types of colored pencils, and you’ll be amazed at the art that you can create.

Do you now have a better idea of some of the different colored pencils you can use? Before you go and head to the artist studio, make sure to check out some of our other articles for more guides and tips.

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