Having Fun with Water Soluble Sketching

I love mixed media sketching, but never delved into the vast universe of water soluble sketching – until now!

I recently splurged on some new supplies, and today I’ll share a bit about them, but there will be much more in the future as they become a normal part of my practice.

This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase an item through my link, I may receive a tiny commission which allows me to purchase more supplies. Thank you for your support!

Water Soluble Graphite Pencils

I purchased a few brands in several B values to compare, which I think is really important. But after using them only briefly I realized that for my preferred way of sketching I really only needed 6B or 8B. I guess the lighter values will be my ‘back ups’ and sit in my drawer until I need them.

Water soluble graphite swatches multiple brands
On the left I used a lot of water, middle was very little water, and right was wetting the paper first then sketching onto wet paper.

First impressions are that they require very little water to activate, but even a LOT of water won’t completely dissolve them if you used firm pressure. To be honest I didn’t notice that much of a difference in quality between brands. The Derwent seemed darker, so maybe that’s a slight advantage.

I compared them to the Faber Castell Albrecht Dürer “Cold Grey 6” which was the closest to my eye.

Buy them here (affiliate links):

Water Soluble Wax Pastels

This was definitely a new medium for me. I bought the Caran D’ache Neocolor II after lots of artist recommendations and I am so happy with them. They feel so solid (not crumbly), creamy smooth, and the colors are so vibrant. I will be using these in combination with watercolor, gouache, acrylic and even inks. Keep an eye out for future videos! For now, here are some swatches.

Buy them here (affiliate link)

Caran d'ache neocolor II water soluble wax pastel swatches

Water Soluble Colour Pencils

Caran d’Ache Prismalo Bicolor Set of 12 Colour Pencils (Colour Treasure – Limited Edition)

Let’s face it – sometimes you just need a bit of fun! These dual-color pencils provide some excitement. They are rather vibrant colors so I’m not sure how often I’ll use them, but I do like the idea of a challenge now and then! Like close my eyes, grab 2 or 3 of these and see what I can sketch.

Caran d'Ache Prismalo Bicolor Set of 12 Colour Pencils (Colour Treasure - Limited Edition)
Caran d'Ache Prismalo Bicolor Set of 12 Colour Pencils (Colour Treasure - Limited Edition)

This is the “treasure” set which is limited addition.

Buy it here (not affiliated)

Faber Castell Albrecht Dürer Colour Pencils

Faber Castell Albrecht Dürer Colour Pencils

I’ve been excited to try these for a while, and so happy with my choices. This set is perfect for landscapes.

Already I find them a joy to work with. The color lays down smooth, it’s easy to blend, and they activate quickly in water. I like to draw on top of my wet watercolor paintings to create all sorts of cool lines, shapes, and textures. I find them particularly fun for rocks and trees!

Buy them here (affiliate link).

Faber Castell Albrecht Dürer Colour Pencils swatches
Faber Castell Albrecht Dürer Colour Pencils swatches

Watch the unboxing/swatching/first tests of these supplies here:

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I'm an independent artist living in Scotland. Always chasing the light, and painting the beautiful highlands.

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