These ain’t your kids’ colored pencils


Last year for Christmas, someone in my family got me, at my request, Aloyna Nicklesen’s Colored Pencil Painting Bible. I had seen it on Amazon and thought it could be awesome. Plus, I’ve had a 48 pencil Prismacolor set since I was in Jr. high school and I thought it was high time to learn how to use them. Now, a year later, I’ve finally cracked it open and… this book is inspiring. Really. Her paintings are spectacularly realistic and the book goes into detail about techniques I’d have never thought up in a zillion years. So, I packed up all my necessary materials along with the book for my WDNO at the library. It turns out, colored pencil painting is slow and requires quite a hell of a lot of skill.

First of all, I’ve never oil painted so I don’t own any mineral spirits. This is a required material according to Ms. Nicklesen, so I searched around my house for an alternate. I chose castor oil. While, castor oil did sort of blend the color a bit, it also soaked through the paper. I’m going to guess that the artists of history had it right and used mineral spirits in lieu of castor oil because it is better. Go buy mineral spirits.

Then, I had 1.5 hours to work with, and this is what I accomplished:

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Pretty unimpressive. With 20 minutes to closing time, I decided to begin one of the exercises in the book (Yes, there are exercises!! I love that!). I started to sketch a pair of cherries. This is my incomplete 20 minutes worth:

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Verdict: Keep at it.