Monday, June 1, 2015

5 supplies to Start Sketching

Supplies to start sketching are pretty basic.  I think it's best to have minimal supplies. It's easy to get overwhelmed with a lot of supplies if you aren't familiar with them and if you have a bunch of different things you probably won't know what to start with.

I also think it's not that important to have top of the line supplies in the beginning, either. If you haven't spent a lot on what you have it isn't as stressful if you make a lot of mistakes or to try something new.  There's supplies at all price points and there are even cheaper ones that function well. Sometimes you can even find good ones in the children's toy section. Every person likes different brands and there no way to know which ones you will until you try them.

5 things to start sketching.

1. Paper or sketchbook
  Paper is what you need to lay down your sketches on. You can use anything that can be written  on but if you want to consistantly draw or sketch, a  sketch pad is best.

The covers of sketchbooks out there  have tons of different names, mostly to tell you about the type of paper in the book. Different mediums need different weights and types of paper...sketching, drawing, mixed media, watercolor and so on.

Sketching and drawing are the most basic of papers. They don't have to be anything fancy.
A pad labeled sketch paper has lightweight paper for more gentle work. Drawing paper is a little heavier and designed for more details and layers.

Mixed media and watercolor sketchbooks are for when you want to add color with markers, paints, or whatever you can get your hands on.

I've read that photocopy paper or cardstock  is good for beginnings because it is heavy enough to handle a lot of erasing. Amazon has multiple kinds of cardstock and any sketchbook you can think of.

2. Pencils
 Drawing  pencils make your marks! A no. 2 scholastic pencil works fine and is great if you're a beginner. I've read, A lot of painters plot sketches of their paintings with mechanical pencils.

If you want something a little fancier or more artistic you can go for graphite pencils or charcoal pencils.

Graphite is more precise and charcoal is a lot messier and more abstract.

My choice is graphite.  Graphite pencils come in different grades numbering their hardness and darkness. All you really need is a few different grades to produce a wide range of shades 2H, HB, & 2B but you can also find sets of 12 or 24 pencils in all grades. This is a good explination of graphite grades.

Fine drawing pencils here.

3. Erasers
In my experience, erasers have a lot to do with the paper and medium you use. School erasers seem to work with light pencil sketches. Anything dark and a school eraser  doesn't lift and sometimes smears the drawing.

My favorite eraser is a kneaded eraser .You can pull it apart and sculpt them into the shape you want, dab, rub, pretty anything you'd like.

There's a number different types of erasers, you can find more information on their differences here.

4. Blending Stump
  A blending stump is a stick of tightly wrapped pressed paper. It is used to blend your sketches, create gradations, and make different tones. They also  really help to make your pictures look smooth and cover up stray pencil marks.

A lot of people also use their a tissue,  paper towel, or even you finger. However you  fingers contain skin oils that can make the drawing look dull or dirty.

You can find blending stumps here

5. Pencil Sharpener
   There's multiple ways to sharpen a pencil. The basic manual, twist one, electric ones, and fine sandpaper.  I think a plain pencil sharper you manually twist or an electric works the best. And sharpen often! A pointy tip makes you lined more precise.

You can find pencil sharpeners here

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