Lesson One

In this lesson we will discover the range of the common pencil. We are going to start with the fundamentals of the pencil through line, texture, tone, shape, shadow and composition. Then we are going to draw something together that should be a lot of fun. Why don't we get started? The first thing we should talk about are the tools we will be using for this lesson.
  1. Pencils

    • Pencils come in a wide variety of hardness depending on the clay to graphite mix. 9H is the hardest (lightest) and 9B is the softest (darkest). Also the pressure you use will affect the lightness and darkness of the pencil on the paper. You will acquire your own specific style as you practice.

    • For our lessons you can use the 2B pencils you use in school or you can purchase drawing pencils from your local arts supply store. I use the Derwent Graphic Set, which ranges from H through 9B. But there are many other manufacturers of very good quality pencils. The reason I use pencils designed for drawing is that sometimes regular pencils can have hard or clay spots in the lead and will scratch a piece of paper and cause an anomaly I don't want.

    • You may use whatever you want. A 2B pencil will give you a great tonal range to start with.

  2. Paper

    • There are a variety of papers that can be used to create your work. I will use a plate finish or kid finish Bristol board for the drawings in this lesson. But you can use any type of paper you want. Be aware however that the tooth or surface characteristics of the paper will affect your drawing. The coarser the surface or tooth of the paper the more graphite will be placed onto the paper and the more voids will show through. It is important to choose the right paper for the drawing. For most applications that will depend on your specific needs styles and composition of the work. Some will want the textured look of a rougher paper other will want to control everything in the drawing and want a finer toothed paper.

  3. Erasers

    • You will need a plastic eraser, a kneaded eraser and if you can an eraser shield. If you don't have an eraser shield you could use a plain piece of paper to protest the portion of the drawing that you do not want to erase.

  4. Other Equipment

    • Rulers
    • Unscented and aloe free tissue paper. It is important that the tissue paper you use does not have any oil or scent in it. This is a blessing in that the tissue will be very inexpensive.
    • Paper Towels
    • Dust Brush
    • Paper Stumps or Cone Blenders
    • Pencil Sharpener
    • Drawing Board

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