Oil-Based Prismacolor Pencil Crayons


Back in my early high school days, I discovered oil-based Prismacolor pencil crayons - quite the level up from anything else I'd ever tried. Using them ever since, even today I consider them the 'cream of the crop' when it comes to colored pencils.

By far the best feature of this type of pencil crayon, is the ability to blend different colors together, similar to how you would when painting. Minus the oil, regular pencil crayons are a lot more rigid and don't blend nearly as well as Prismas do.

The example below, shows a drawing I did of a dragon, very similar to the one you'll see on the main page in the Cartoon Dragons section of the site. As you can see from the coloring job, Prismacolors are very bright, and using a variety of different shades, you can blend the colors into one another.

Prismacolor Dragon

Something I like to do before-hand, is create a quick color pallet off to the side. Once the colors are all laid out, I'll number them off according to the desired transition from dark to light.

Similar to oil pastels, blending colors together can be done in a number of ways. You can do it color-to-color, use a tissue, use a colorless 'blending stick' - another neat product... or if you like - fingers work great too! When creating lightened areas, blending with the white pencil crayon that comes with the set yields great results. You can create some really neat effects, blending in a circular motion.

Aside from the obvious benefit of easier blending with oil-based pencil crayons, here are some other interesting things to know...

  • Prismacolors are made with special top-quality pigments, making for extremely vibrant results. Often, people will second guess as to whether your art is made with pencil crayons!
  • They come in box sets of 12, 24, 48, 72, 96, 120 and 132. Lots of variation according to the type of drawings/art you plan on coloring. Not to mention, you can mix these colors together to yield even more.
  • The colors are moisture-proof - always a plus!
  • You can apply them to surfaces other than paper - plastic film, wood and vellum.
  • They're a standard in the industry.

Something to note regarding the softness of these pencil crayons though. Due to their oil-based properties, keep in mind that they're softer than your average type. It's important not to press down too hard when coloring with them, as they can break up with less force applied. Of course, this is expected when coloring with a softer oil-based colored pencil.

All in all, I definitely recommend you give them a try as I think you'll be quite please with the results.

To pick up a set for yourself, have a look at Dick Blick Art Supplies - one of (if not THE) biggest art suppliers in North America and on the Internet. To visit DickBlick.com and check out their Prismacolor selection, click on the following image...

Prismacolor Colored Pencils

Click here to return from Prismacolor Pencil Crayons to Drawing & Art Supplies