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Working with coloured pencils

In an effort to be more diverse, I'm introducing different mediums to my portfolio, starting with coloured pencils. It's been a few years since I last used them, but after reacquainting myself, I realised why they're so popular with illustrators. Their soft, gentle finish was the perfect choice for my sketch of a little girl and her puppy:

The frustrating thing about coloured pencils is that they can take a long time to build. Being impatient, I almost abandoned the picture in favour of other, more instant, mediums. But then I reminded myself to keep working at it. As if by magic, that one layer, where everything starts to take form, emerged:

During a recent illustrators’ course at Sydney University, I tested out a bunch of coloured pencils. I can see the benefit of having a mix of types and brands in your toolbox, but my favourites are the ones that are lightfast, with a smooth, hard-ish lead. That's just my preference. But, it’s best to experiment and go for the type that feels right for you.

I picked up a good tip about pencils on my course—keep a small sheet of sandpaper next to you while you're working. You can use it to sharpen your pencil leads into a point, instead of wasting so much of them using a sharpener.

Anyway, here's the finished image:

I'll be drawing two more pictures of these sweet little characters and making them available as high-quality prints soon. Stay tuned for more info.

Don't forget to follow my progress on Facebook and Instagram!

Thanks for reading.

Victoria xx

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