Tools I use

Art supplies I use for my drawings

If you still think about which medium to use to create your art, I recommend colored pencils. Colored pencils have many benefits. They allow precision, control of detail and depth. You can work lightly for a soft look or with many layers to get the oil painting effect you see in most of my drawings. Additionally, they are very easy to carry, and you can work almost anywhere. It is an economical medium, and you don't need many extra supplies. Even if you buy the most expensive colored pencils (that I highly recommend) you will still spend less than stocking up on markers, oil paint, airbrush, and other tools. Working with colored pencils requires little space and no drying time and creates no fumes or chemicals. Not to mention that when you gently touch the paper with a colored pencil, nothing happens, which is not the case when working with markers, oil paint, or watercolors... You have full control, and this is what I like the most about colored pencils.

Colored pencils

I get a lot of questions about the materials that I use on a daily basis. On this page, you can find all about them, and I explain their usage and why I prefer those over others. If you want to draw colorful, realistic drawings like mine, you might also look for the tools I use. If you are looking for the highest-quality colored pencils, yet not the most expensive, and you want a lot of nuances, then the Prismacolor Premier set of 150 pieces is your best bet. These colored pencils are really soft and can be easily spread over the paper.

If you want to draw a variety of things, as I do, you shouldn't buy the set of 24 or 48 because they are just not enough if you want really beautiful, colorful drawings. Of course, you can play with nuances, mix them up, and draw one over another, but this requires a lot of practice, patience, and experience. I bought the set of 150 - which you can see in the upper right corner of this chapter - for a really good price (this set usually costs $190 and sometimes more). If you use ad blocker, you can't see the embeded Amazon ads, so click on the text links. For the set of 150 by Prismacolor Premier click here.

Get the colored pencils I use: Amazing Prismacolor Premier set of 150 pencils (you can buy the very same set I use after clicking the link/image below). Buy it now while cheap.The Best Prismacolor Colored Pencils

Prismacolor pencils are so soft and behave so much unlike any other brand on the market. When used correctly, Prismacolor drawings can take the appearance of a painting. They are perfect for blending and burnishing. Take a look at my drawings below. These are made with Prismacolor Premier colored pencils only. In these drawings, I used Warm Grey 60%, Cool Grey 50%, and many other nuances, to achieve a lifelike result. Check out my YouTube videos to see how I drew all of these.

Since there are lots of colors that I use for my drawings, particularly portraits that Prismacolor does not manufacture, I've found them by Caran d'Ache Luminance. These colors are Buff Titanium, Brown Ochre, Burnt Ochre 10% and 50%, Steel Grey, Olive Brown, Payne's Gray, Raw Umber 10%, Slate Gray, Burnt Sienna, Raw Sienna, and many more. You can buy an individual Caran d'Ache Luminance colored pencil on Amazon after clicking the links below, but if you can afford the set of 76 (link right/below), don't hesitate to buy these high-quality lightfast pencils for yourself and make your work easier and successful. You cannot create smooth textures and amazing drawings with cheap colored pencils!


Take a look at my fan-art drawings below. All these are done with colored pencils. Colored pencils are just enough for achieving anything. These artworks and more are included in my "Fanart Collection" paperback 8.5" x 11" (21.59 x 27.94 cm). Get it on Amazon: Fanart Collection

I also use oil-based Polychromos colored pencils by Faber-Castell. Polychromos Colored Pencils contain the highest-quality pigments for unsurpassed lightfastness. I have a set of 120 pencils because there are a lot of colors here which we cannot find in the sets of Prismacolor and Luminance. The buttery smooth color laydown offered by Polychromos can be easily blended for layered effects, highlights, and transitions. Their break-resistant, water-resistant, smudge-proof 3.8 mm leads are encased in premium California cedar with Secureall bonding to resist breakage while providing sharp, fine lines and permanent, rich color. These pencils are good for more colorful subjects, such as flowers, fruits, landscapes. So, I've supplied myself with all these sets of the previously mentioned brands, which makes my work much easier.

Download my Color Picker Android App, pick a color from the reference photo, and the app will suggests which colored and graphite pencil to use.

Or get the desktop version - PenPick software. PenPick ® is a desktop software color picker for artists, which runs on Windows and macOS. This software suggests which colored or graphite pencil you should use for the picked color. PenPick has two workable panels: one for colored pencils and one for graphite pencils. The colored pencil panel suggests four most popular and highest-quality colored pencils to match the selected color:

  • 150 colored pencils by Prismacolor Premier
  • 120 colored pencils by Faber-Castell Polychromos
  • 76 colored pencils by Caran d'Ache Luminance 6901
  • 72 colored pencils by Derwent Coloursoft and 72 colored pencils by Derwent Procolour, mixed.

The graphite panel automatically converts color images to black and white and suggests among 20 nuances of graphite by any brand.

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Derwent Procolour and Derwent Coloursoft are also great colored pencils and I have them in my collection. These vibrant, highly pigmented color allow smooth laydown with a texture that has the covering power of wax yet glides like an oil.


The next important thing for you to be successful in realistic drawing is the smooth paper. The right paper is significant, especially when you work with as many layers as I do. You can build up twenty layers, or even more, which is very hard for your paper to endure, thus can cause the surface to tear or buckle. I recommend a smooth, fine-toothed paper, such as the Bristol. I usually draw on an 11" x 14" or 9" x 15" smooth white paper. You can buy it here: Strathmore Bristol Smooth Paper Pad, 9 x 12-Inch, 20 Sheets. This is the cheapest selling website that I could find. Bristol Smooth Paper is an amazing quality paper, great for sketching with graphite pencils, drawing with colored pencils and any other medium. I wouldn't recommend a smaller paper because we cannot go much into details.

I also often draw on toned paper because my drawings appear even more realistic. It is really interesting to start a drawing with white or another bright colored pencil. If you take a look at my drawings on green and grey papers in the image below, you can notice that they are way more lifelike than those on white paper. If you haven't used toned paper yet, you should try it, you won't regret it. In the last couple of years I'd rather draw animals on toned paper than on white paper. You can buy an excellent pack of toned paper after clicking on the Amazon link on the left. For my 3D drawings, I use the amazingly smooth and thick A4 Fabriano Bristol paper (link on the left of this chapter).

Watch my real time (not sped up) drawing videos on Amazon, and learn to draw.

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To save your time drawing grid lines, download my Android app Grid Drawing Tool, and create a perfect grid on your reference photos within a couple of seconds:

Get android apps that successful artists use:

Color Picker
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Grid Drawing Tool

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