Thursday, 10 March 2016

Review Faber Castell Polychromos Pencils




Instagram  


After using my set of Faber Castell Polychromos pencils for almost a year now, I think it is time to write a review about them.

After trying 5 pencils to make sure I really like these pencils, I bought a set of 60 pencils.
Besides the quality of the pencils I also wanted a pencil that was round shaped and not hexagonal. For some reason I find hexagonal pencils not so comfortable.



The Polychromos pencils are oil based. I had already read that oil based pencils work a little different than wax based pencils, and this really is the case.
It is hard to describe the difference but one thing that is different is that once you have put te colour on paper, you can move it around a little like pastel pencils. At first I didn't like this but now I'm taking advantage of it.

Sharpening the pencils goes very easy. I have a cheap pencil sharpener which produces very sharp points on the pencils. I haven't had any breaking points so far and I do not expect any breakage in the future.

Because I love layering and blending so much, the coloured pencils of my choice need to be able to layer dozens of colours on top of each other. The Polychromos pencils do a great job, as long as you keep a light hand.



                 


Faber Castell Polychromos Pencils are available in the Passion for Pencils Webshops.



PROS:
  • Reasonable price compared to other pencils in this quality range. 
  • Pencils are well made, leads are perfectly centered. 
  • Leads are glued in the pencil which makes it very unlikely to have breakage. 
  • Colours are vibrant and very lightfast 
  • All pencils have the same softness/hardness.
  • Pencils are not too soft and not too hard. They are exactly right to my taste.
  • No wax bloom
  • You can move the colour around a little bit which makes it possible to blend very smoothly.
  • Good layering and blending
  • The pencils are erasable. 

CONS:
  • When you are used to wax based pencils, Polychromos take a little while to find your way with them. 
  • I bought the set of 60 pencils but found that I missed some essential colours, like a dark brown, dark grey and some light colours. So I bought them open stock. 
  • I would have liked some more light colours in the range, like a lilac and light pink. 
  • The pencils smudge. This smudging allows you to move the colour around a little bit but it also smudges my hand. This forces me to put a sheet of paper on the drawing on which I place my hand. Otherwise my hand smudges the paper. I find this really annoying. 


Conclusion

These pencils are one of the best pencils in the world. Many professional artists use Polychromos pencils.
Besides the smudging I absolutely love these pencils. I use them almost every day and I love the results I get with them.


So if you are looking for a set of professional quality pencils, Faber Castell Polychromos pencils are an excellent choice!








21 comments:

  1. depending where you live, these pencils in canada are the most expensive pencils on the market , way more than prismacolor premiere pencils . The biggest set of faber castell's can cost you well over $600.00. where as the prismas only around 300.00

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I always used Prismacolor, unfortunately the Prisma's quality has reduced at some point and now the leads break frequently and also the wood casing doesn't seem to be the same quality. I since invested in a set of Polychromos and the quality of this set is amazing. The 120 set of Poly's in the wood case only cost me $350 from Amazon.

      Delete
    2. After searching and re-searching for a price that I could afford, I found a vendor through Amazon offering Faber-Castel for half the regular price!I simply clicked for "buying more choices" after I found what I was looking for and the array of prices were very competitive. I was very hesitant on buying as I thought they would not be the original Faber-Castel but they site is based in Europe, so i placed the order and paid ONLY $170.00 all fees included for 120 color pencils, and the colors arrived in earlier than the time frame they gave me AND they are the ORIGINAL Faber-Castel. You may want to try the site is "yes1000 from Europe",they are located in Lithuania.

      Hope this help!

      Delete
    3. In Canada Deserres.ca has the 120 set for $279. And always have. I bought mine in 2016

      Delete
  2. Polychromos have a very light purple colour which is called 139 Light Violet but for some reason is not in 120 set and you can only get it open stock (avability is limited though). I can also recommend Caran D'Ache Pablo pencils. They work beautiful with Polychromos.

    ReplyDelete
  3. I really wanted a set of polychromos, but I wasn't willing to pay the high price. Puffy jo is right...in Canada they are very expensive. I bought a set of Lyra Rembrandt Polycolor which are also oil based. I've had them a few months and I am enjoying them. I have a set of 70.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I really wanted a set of polychromos, but I wasn't willing to pay the high price. Puffy jo is right...in Canada they are very expensive. I bought a set of Lyra Rembrandt Polycolor which are also oil based. I've had them a few months and I am enjoying them. I have a set of 70.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Tenho muita vontade de comprar Polycromos, mas o valor não é nada animador, mas pelos vídeos que acompanho parece que vale muito a pena.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Tenho muita vontade de comprar Polycromos, mas o valor não é nada animador, mas pelos vídeos que acompanho parece que vale muito a pena.

    ReplyDelete
  7. You had mentioned that you have the 60 set of Polychromos and then added 15 to it. I would like to do the same. Would you mind listing what you added to the set please? I am enjoying your tutorials very much. Your work is outstanding! Thank you

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry for answering your question two months after you've posted it here.
      I will post a list of my Polychromos pencils soon.

      Delete
  8. If you open an Amazon Visa account they will give you $50 off and you can get the pencils for less than $150.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Have reentered the color pencil world. I would like to know the list of pencils you added to your 60 set of Polychromos please. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sorry I am answering your question 2 months after you've posted it! But so many people are contacting me these days.
      Anyway, I will make a list of all my Polychromos pencils and will post them soon.
      Wish you a lot of happy colouring!

      Henny

      Delete
  10. I am glad you said these smudge. I am just trying mine and was wondering if it was my cardstock or me since no other pencil ever seemed so smudgy. I will try them on another project but i feel better :)

    ReplyDelete
  11. Your blog is perfect, I really enjoy it!

    I LOVE my 120 box of polychromos.
    I only like the silver (251) gold (250) and copper (252) less. They somehow don't give the color I like them to do.
    Are more people having the same problem?

    I also added light violet (139) to my box beause it isn't in the normal 120. Does anyone know if there are more colors missing in the standard 120?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Your blog is perfect, I really enjoy it!

    I LOVE my 120 box of polychromos.
    I only like the silver (251) gold (250) and copper (252) less. They somehow don't give the color I like them to do.
    Are more people having the same problem?

    I also added light violet (139) to my box beause it isn't in the normal 120. Does anyone know if there are more colors missing in the standard 120?

    ReplyDelete
  13. You can purchase Polychromos on ebay for as little as $170. I got mine there. The shipping was free and they came from Poland.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I have the set of 60. Want to buy a few individual ones. Can somebody please give me a list of what other colors i need.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Polychromos are an incredible value. I too bought a set of 60 on sale, and buy open stock from Deserres I Canada @$2.79. So I can use a favourite colour with impunity, I know I can replace it. Makes all the difference!! I use Irojitens for detailing, but when they're gone I'd have to buy a set of 30 to get another (not likely!!). I'm such a fan of the Polychromos that I'm making up a colour chart that include the RGB values for all 120 colours.
    Of course, none of this would be possible if I did not know how to use them. Passion For Pencils has been such a rich source of knowledge in techniques, colour choices, enhancing depth, et. Henny, you contribute more to the world of colour pencils artistry than anyone else out there!!!

    ReplyDelete