Thinking of getting my Mom a set of good pencils and pencil crayons for her birthday, does art mastodon have any suggestions? Will they cost a fortune? Boosts welcome
Personally I wouldn't recommend prismas either unless someone really knew what they were doing. They're... I dunno, I find them more similar to oil pastels than pencils. Good at what they do but they behave a fair bit different from alternatives.
Prismacolor is generally a good brand for quality/cost/availability where I'm at.
I personally use a wood less colored pencil but idk how easy the brand is to find out side of an art sore.
@Canageek cheap but good: staedtler pencil crayons are pretty common, lots of options for how many to buy in a set, usually come in nice reusable packaging. I actually found a basic set at the dollar store for $3 recently and like them a lot! The like pro artist ones are prismacolors, but they can be veryyy pricy. You can always get a small selection if you want some fancier ones bc art stores sometimes sell them individually
@Canageek Faber Castell sells different lines at different prices. The top tier is Polychromos for wax/oil-based and Albrecht Dürer for watercolour pencils, and those are pricey. Goldfaber is a bit less so, and it might be available in single colours, at least I've seen them locally (in Germany, though). They're available in watercolour pencil or not, too, and still nice quality IMO
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Hi, I'm an artist and I had highschool art teachers in my family, so I have big opinions on color pencils!
Prismacolor used to be the best brand (and one of the most expensive), but a few years ago they changed how they're made, so now they're terrible, according to the artist Melanie Gillman, who was devastated because she had based her art career around them: https://web.archive.org/web/20181210161209/http://pigeonbits.tumblr.com/post/66689831066/heres-a-short-little-review-comic-i-did-about She recommends Polychromos instead.
In my opinion, familiar ol' Crayola and Prang are affordable, available in sets ranging in size from modest to overwhelming, *and* they have perfectly good quality.
For a gift, I recommend Crayola watercolor pencils. They can be used like regular pencils, or you can go over them with a wet paintbrush to create a variety of effects. They're fun to experiment with, which makes them fun and special for a gift, and most people haven't had the opportunity to play with them.
If you go with watercolor pencils, be aware that they might include a cheap-quality paintbrush, or none at all. Good quality watercolor paintbrushes can be expensive, since they're real sable hair, but getting one or two sizes of them would help make the gift special.
A good-quality pencil sharpener and a pocket knife would be good to include, if she doesn't already have them. A pocket knife is the best way to sharpen them while keeping the lead from breaking, but it's ok to use a pencil sharpener for at least part of the time. I don't know how to find the best pencil sharpeners, brand wise, but ones that taper really short will do the least damage to the pencil. Trying to make do with a bad pencil sharpener that keeps breaking your pencils can be frustrating and take the fun out of using them, so this part matters.
Oh! And color pencils don't erase very well, but including a Japanese style white plastic eraser and/or kneadable eraser would be a nice part of the set. They don't make icky smudges.
recommending art supplies
Dang. Adding my set of Berol Prismacolors to the list of things in my possession that have become unexpectedly irreplaceable.