My Favorite Products

One of the most frequent questions I receive is "What pencils should I invest in for colored pencil drawing?"

Here is my answer:

First off, I purchase my products almost exclusively from Blick Art Supplies. I've found Blick offers competitive pricing, top notch customer service, and quick delivery (and sometimes for free on orders over $45).

I am an affiliate with Dick Blick which means that I may receive a commission, at no charge to you, on sales made using any of these links.


Prisma Premier:

For the starter, someone who is not sure yet if colored pencil is for them or if you are buying for a child/teen and you don't want to break the bank, I would recommend Prismacolor Premier pencils.  

They are affordable and considered a professional grade pencil. I'll be honest, I'm not a fan of student grade (anything) as I really feel it impacts the outcome of your work. Prisma Premier are also amazing for blending by burnishing and they have an extensive line of colors. 

Click the image below to see more:

Prismacolor Premier Colored Pencils - Set of 72

Faber-Castell Polychromos:


One of my FAVORITE pencil brands. These are the work horse pencil in my collection. They blend nicely, they are a little harder but apply smooth (like butter!) so I can get great details with them. For me, these are a must have pencil!

Click the image below to see more:


Faber-Castell Polychromos Pencil Set - Gift Set of 24

Caran d'Ache:

I've listed this company last, but they are my ABSOLUTE favorite brand for not only colored pencils but graphite pencils also.

You WILL notice a difference when you use these pencils. They cover brilliantly, smooth colors out on pastelmat, blend very nicely, and feel great using them on any paper surface. 

I use these two lines interchangeably and they have become my go to pencils. They are more expensive than the other brands that I have listed but really, you will not be disappointed. 

Click the image below to see more:


Luminance Colored Pencil Set - Assorted Colors, Set of 12


Caran d'Ache Pablo Colored Pencil Set - Assorted Colors, Set of 40


The paper you use is a very personal preference. I would experiment with several different types to see what you like the best.

I prefer to use hot press watercolor paper and pastelmat. These two types are what I use most often. 


Be sure you get hot press as it has a smoother surface than cold press paper. I use watercolor paper a lot because I do watercolor and I use it for graphite and charcoal drawing too. So, it makes sense for me to keep a bunch of it on hand for my projects. Watercolor paper can handle a lot of pencil layers and heavy burnishing. It is very durable.

I only buy Arches watercolor paper. Click the image below to see more:

Arches Watercolor Block - 10


This paper takes a little while to get used to, but it is so amazing for layering, and it allows you to layer lighter colors over darker colors. 

The pads/boards come in different colors. I use mostly dark grey, white, light grey, but love having other colors for different types of projects. 

I've really grown to love it and use it almost exclusively now. Click the image below to see more:

Clairefontaine Pastelmat Board - Dark Grey, 19-1/2


I do enjoy using drafting film for certain projects that require a lot of texture as far as little hairs/fur, or for whimsical, dreamy pieces. If you purchase double sided, you can flip the film over and draw on the backside to give your art added depth. Drafting film is a plastic that has a film on it to allow for your pencil to be applied to it. You have to be careful with erasing or applying too much pressure on drafting film because if you remove the film your pencil will just slide on the paper and not lay down any color.  

 Grafix Dura-Lar Matte. Click image below to see more:

Grafix Dura-Lar Mattes - 11