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June 3, 2013
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Secret Blending Weapon - Q-tip in a Clutch-Pencil by Rick-Kills-Pencils Secret Blending Weapon - Q-tip in a Clutch-Pencil by Rick-Kills-Pencils
I have long since known that cotton blends graphite better than blending stumps, and I have always preferred the solid blending stumps over the hollow kind. I have used cotton make-up patches before, which work well for blending large areas, but lack control, and you cannot use them for small areas.

I have also used Q-tips in the past, but did NOT like the “feel” of it in my hand, because it was too thin to hold properly. I recently had the idea to break a Q-tip in half, and insert it into a clutch pencil. By the way, “Clutch Pencils” are made to hold graphite leads, and I also use them for specific parts of the drawing, just like I use Mechanical Pencils for specific parts of a drawing, when I don’t want to continuously sharpen a pencil.

By inserting a Q-tip into a clutch pencil, it gives you the feel of a pencil in your hand, which you are obviously used to feeling.

I CANNOT TELL YOU WHAT AN AWESOME BLENDING TOOL A Q-TIP MAKES, WHEN YOU COMBINE IT WITH THE FEEL OF A PENCIL! Now, I ONLY use blending stumps for tight corners, and very small areas. I also use a “Color Shaper” for specific blending areas, such as where hair follicles meet the scalp.

See my blog post on Color Shapers HERE [link]


I highly recommend you try using a Q-tip in a clutch pencil! It is taking my skin textures to a whole new level of smoothness! It also allows extremely subtle tonal values, which I could not achieve with blending stumps.

Hope you find this to be of some use for your toolbox!

Happy Drawing!
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:iconthorstein7:
Thorstein7 Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the recommendation! I've just bought a clutch pencil to use with cotton buds.

I'm a disabled artist and holding anything smaller than a pen when drawing is damn near impossible, but this has solved that issue.

La la la la
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:iconrick-kills-pencils:
Rick-Kills-Pencils Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Awe way cool, glad it helped brother! :D
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:iconvesperwinchester:
VesperWinchester Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2013  Student General Artist
You devious genius, you!
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:iconrick-kills-pencils:
Rick-Kills-Pencils Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thanks MUCH!! :D
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:iconmarkstewart:
markstewart Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2013   Traditional Artist
Fantastic idea Rick, that's a great handy tip. I must try this .. i can see how it is easier to apply a bit of pressure like this. I find them too flexible and i can get a bit frustrated with them at times not being able to vary the strength needed without obscuring the work area with my hand.
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:iconrick-kills-pencils:
Rick-Kills-Pencils Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Yes, it hard for tight spots but great for larger areas! :D
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:iconmarkstewart:
markstewart Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2013   Traditional Artist
Can't wait to try it, thanks for sharing Rick :D
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:iconmaryjane-art:
MaryJane-Art Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
haha, nice Tip, THANK YOU
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:iconrick-kills-pencils:
Rick-Kills-Pencils Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Ubet :D
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:iconv-4-vengeance:
V-4-VENGEANCE Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Nice tip
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