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Supply Your 5-Pencil Method Toolbox...

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Drawing Pencils

The 5-Pencil Method uses a 4H, 2H, HB, 2B and 4B set of pencils. The most important features to have in a set of pencils is 1) for the values that each pencil grade creates to be fairly equally spaced, and 2) for the pencils to lay down a smooth application without being "gritty" or "scratchy". For more insight into picking a set of pencils, take a look at Darrel Tank's last pencil review.

 

Buy Blick Studio pencils (Blick)

Faber Castell 9000 — the 4H, the HB, 2B, and 4B (Amazon)

Faber Castell 9000 (Blick)

Tombow Mono pencils (Amazon)

 

Dry Cleaning Pad Eraser

A powerful tool, capable of cleaning up even the messiest of messes on your paper. Great for removing that excess graphite that winds up smearing around the outskirts of your drawing, or any other large scale erasure.

 

Buy on Amazon

Prismacolor Large Kneaded Eraser

A must-have for any 5-Pencil Method artist! This flexible flub fixer has many uses, but is best known for its ability to take on any shape you need to get the job done. Mold it into a teardrop shape and pinch the edge for precision edits. Or, use the blunt end to gently “tap back” value without causing damage to your paper.

 

Buy on Amazon

Tombow Mono Zero Eraser

This is your “white pencil”

 

Single pack (Amazon)

Double pack (Amazon)

Langnickel L279 Camel Hair Brush

You’ll never draw hair or even skin textures the same way again after you’ve added this tool to your arsenal! As you draw with your softer pencils, extra graphite is being left behind on your paper. This silky soft brush glides gently across your paper, spreading the excess graphite dust, and creating a fresh layer of value that can be removed with an eraser for stunning contrast!

 

3-size pack (Amazon)

2" brush (Langnickel)

18" Clear Acrylic Straightedge

Darrel’s straightedge and divider method for accurately laying out a drawing is a game changer… Now you can harness the power of unchanging angles and create drawings that start, stay, and finish accurately! This 18" clear acrylic straightedge is one half of this powerful method.

 

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Divider

There’s no need to guess whether or not your proportions are accurate—not when you can simply measure the relationships between features with a trusty divider. You can see exactly how Darrel uses this handy tool, along with a straightedge, in his series How to Draw Accurately—Every Time! Checking your proportions has never been easier!

 

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Strathmore 300 Series Vellum Paper (9x12)

The 300 series paper won Darrel over with its great blend of texture and utility. Textured enough to grab and hold your graphite with ease… Strong enough to stand up to all of the strokes and erasure you can throw at it! The 300 series paper is now one of the few papers Darrel trusts with his time-intensive works of art.

 

This small 9x12 sketchbook is great for small sketches, practicing strokes, or testing a new pencil technique. Not advised for full portrait projects.

 

Buy on Amazon

Strathmore 300 Series Vellum Paper (14x17)

Great for small portraits and drawing studies

 

Buy on Amazon

Strathmore 300 Series Vellum Paper (19x24)

A great size for playing it safe! You always want to allow yourself some extra space to enlarge your drawing or add unplanned features. This large drawing pad gives you ample space to start large and get larger. (Don’t forget you can always crop the paper down to size when you’re finished)

 

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X-acto Powerhouse Pencil Sharpener

Model 1792

Your time is precious and so are your pencils, don’t waste time sharpening with subpar sharpeners! The X-acto Powerhouse has the power and precision needed to give you a sharp point in no time—every time.

 

PLEASE NOTE: A 120-volt power source is required for this item.

 

Buy on Amazon

Another option on Amazon

 

Prismacolor Col-Erase Colored Pencils (12‑Pack)

A high quality pencil that responds and erases very much like a graphite pencil. They’re perfect for a slow build up of color and easy removal if you should ever slip up (which happens).

 

Buy on Amazon

“I still believe Darrel's videos got me through the tough times going through my chemo treatments. Got me back to my drawing and got my mind off the rough times.”

 

“If I had not stumbled across Darrel Tank's awesome site and got a spark for art back in my life, I would never have started drawing again. If I had not learned to draw with the tools Darrel recommends I would have been discouraged and given up a long time ago.”

“In a year I went from not being able to draw anything to drawing very realistic portraits. Thanks to Darrel's great teachings, patience, and encouragement.”

 

“I cannot thank you enough for all of your 5-Pencil Method tutorials. Absolute beginners and advanced portrait artists alike can garner much skill and confidence by taking your classes. I truly cannot thank you enough. My portraits (pets and people!) have improved 100% since participating in the online classes.”

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The 5-Pencil Method uses a 4H, 2H, HB, 2B and 4B set of pencils. The most important features to have in a set of pencils is 1) for the values that each pencil grade creates to be fairly equally spaced, and 2) for the pencils to lay down a smooth application without being "gritty" or "scratchy". For more insight into picking a set of pencils, take a look at Darrel Tank's last pencil review.

Faber Castell 9000 — the 4H, the HB, 2B, and 4B (Amazon)

Faber Castell 9000 (Blick)