Thursday, July 24, 2014

Leadholders 101: Where to Find Leadholders for sketching and drawing

During my drawing classes students get the opportunity to try and draw with a variety of specialized sketching tools. One of the most popular happen to be one of my favorite mechanical pencils for doodling on the go: leadholders. I have gotten many of mine through JetPens.

The "Drafting Tools" section of your local office supplies store would also be a good bet for finding the reliable German Staedtler Mars Technico 780 2 mm leadholder. Its main advantage would be the built-in lead pointer in its push button. Though refills available in brick-and-mortar stores are usually limited to standard HB graphite drawing leads.

You can find a greater variety of 2 mm graphite lead grades online, and even some red and non-photo blue leads.

I would recommend getting one or two Uni leadholders and a selection of your favorite lead grades. If you plan to sketch lightly and then ink your drawings, you might want to use harder leads like 3H or H. If your style relies more on linear strokes, you might want to go with F or HB leads. If you prefer bold dark lines and prefer to draw with lots of shading, a 2B or 4B would be good choices. If you need a lead pointer to restore your sharp points, I would recommend the KUM Automatic 23 or the Kum Automatic Brake Long Point sharpener that also features 2 mm & 3.2 mm lead pointers on its sides.

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