Ok. I have question. I am working on some drawings, and am doing them with color pencils.
They look very "scratchy", and I am trying to blend just using a finger. It is not working real well.
How can i make pictures look more blended and smooth?

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Hi Deborah, it depends a lot on the kind of pencils you use - the quality of the pencils as well. Eg. F-C polychromos pencils are oil based - they are harder than wax based pencils and more difficult to blend. The trick with colour pencils is layering and that also means heavier paper. If you use polychromos pencils you can blend with the white or the ivory pencil, but the tone changes so you will have to add colour again.

You do get blenders for both wax based and oil based pencils - which you can also try. But the trick remains layering. Hope that helps :)

Thanks  much Lizette de Vries Venter!

I achieve that smooth even no stroke look by coloring in 5 steps....horizontal, vertical, diagonal r to l and l to r and then in small circles....that evens everything out with no pencil lines.....its a bit much but I like doing it this way...hope this helps

Colored pencils are all about the layering.  Sorry Deborah, but they are a very slow medium.  You can use markers or watercolors as an underlayer to help speed things up or use a colorless blender to dissolve the wax binder to help them blend a bit more. Rubbing alcohol works as an inexpensive alternative, simply apply it with a small brush or q-tip.

achieve my best work with Prismacolor color pencils. The best surface to work with is smooth bristol board. Any tooth to the support gives me a very scratchy look. I burnish areas with a white pencil, other color, or colorless blender - this works wonders. If too much wax builds up (a wax bloom), Turpenoid on a Q-tip will get rid of the excess wax and also blend the colors. You can even lighten an area with the Turpenoid. Good luck.

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