A Quick Colored Pencil Sketch! {Tips & Tricks for a Limited Palette}

Hi friends! You might think that you need a huge set of colored pencils to make a realistic picture. Truth is you can do a lot with a few. I only used 6 pencils in this drawing of a clementine:


All of the supplies I used are in the January Smart Art box. I love the Coloursoft pencils by Derwent, I actually have 36 of them but I limited myself to the set of 12 colors that came in the kit. I will show you how to mix and blend using colored pencils and a colorless blender so you can make the most out of what you’ve got. Smart Art has reserved more of these colored pencil boxes for you guys and you can save 10% if you order one now, they will ship out February 1st. Watch the video for a full tutorial on this picture.



•Derwent Coloursoft Pencil Set (12PCS)
•Finetec Blending Pencil
•Kum Long Point Pencil Sharpener
•Maruman Artist Paper Series Book
•Full How-to Project Tutorial
•Educational Pamphlet

Here are the colors I used from the Derwent set of 12 Coloursoft pencils: c300 indigo, c330 blue, c720 white, c040 deep cadmium, c080 bright orange, c610 dark terracotta

I hope you give this a try, keep layering colors until color richness is achieved.  If you want a fun box of art supplies delivered to your home every month check out Smart Art’s monthly subscription boxes, they are a wonderful gift to give yourself! Thanks for stopping by and til next time happy crafting!


11 Responses

  1. Hi Lindsay🙂
    Your coloured pencil drawing is fantastic!! The colours are vibrant, juicy and they make your drawing look real.
    Thank you for showing how it can be done with ONLY 6 coloured pencils.
    Best wishes.


  2. Yummy that looks so real. Going to have to try that.


  3. What a wonderful drawing! I hope you will be showing us more colored pencil drawings!

    I have a question: if I already have the Inktense pencils and the Polychromos from Faber-Castell, would buying these make any sense? They seem a bit like pastel pencils to me, they sound a bit “chalkier”, is it easier to get pigment onto the paper? I could get them 10% off right now but I’d still have the pay the remaining 90% ……


  4. That is really GREAT. I enjoyed watching it and did learn from it.


  5. Nothing to do with this project but do you have any projects using glitter or making something out of glitter… I have some glitter ( a lot ) and would like some ideas Ps I don’t want to join facebook or pintress just to look, too complicated for my age

    Sent from Outlook Mobile


  6. Wow it looked like an orange right from the start, but it became more and more realistic. Those pencils look so soft to use. It was apparent you didn’t force color it onto paper. The blendless pencil surely made a difference. Again, WOW!


  7. Do you think this Finetec blending pencil would work with any type of colored pencils?
    And, in your opinion, do you think this is your most favorite of all the colored pencils you have, the Derwent Coloursoft pencils?


    • yes, it will, it is a wax stick with a bit of pumice I think. It depends on what look I am going for. I have a lot of older Prismacolors, all the colors I think so I often reach for them when I need a large selection (I only have 36 Derwent Coloursofts) and I like prismas but the leads tend to break and the newer pencils break more and sometimes the casings cracks so they used to be awesome but now they are unreliable, some are great, some break. The colour soft pencils are consistently reliable (as are all the Derwent pencils in my opinion) and I have never had a lead break so for a wax based pencil they are my pick. I will be adding to my collection (or maybe biting the bullet and buying the full set of 72 LOL!) and weening off my prismas, now, there are many brands I have never tried. You can always order a few pencils open stock from several brands and make up your mind, we all like different things:) If you want an oil based pencil I think Polychromos are best, the color is rich, vivid and smooth. They are more transparent than wax based pencils so they are best on white or light paper. I like to work on colored pencils so I tend to choose my Prismas or Coloursofts. Before making an investment in a uge set of pencils try a couple and see what you think, that step has saved me hundreds of dollars over the years:) BYW, Love pencils so it is hard to choose and there are always new ones coming out!


  8. I LOVED this tutorial – I watched it the other day on YouTube. Like magic seeing it all come together with so few colours. I have a lovely set of polychromos but struggle to get the best out of them. Really hope to see more tutorials on coloured pencil work from you as you always take such time to explain what you are doing and why.


  9. Loved this! Wow! I hope I can do something like this one day. A little at a time. You always say you learn by doing not watching. I’m trying both. Watch all your videos more than once to try to remember tips! Thank you for this beautiful one with colored pencils. I look forward to seeing more!
    I have been working with cheap pencils and learned a lot. Had already decided to go with Derwent when I can buy good ones after hearing so many people talking about quality. Now to hear you recommend them helps. You have so much experience so your opinion matters!
    Thank you again! Great job!


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