Derwent Natural Graphite blocks are brilliant for creating big dramatic drawings. Use them flat to cover large areas or on their edge to add detail.
Working with a chunky block of solid graphite is hugely satisfying, encouraging you to create quick, dramatic sketches and atmospheric line drawings. Natural Graphite has a slightly dusty quality, so it blends very easily and you can even add a little water for the subtlest wash effects. As a block, Natural Graphite has impressive covering power and can be used on its side for a solid sweep of tone. It comes in three versatile grades, soft, medium and hard.
Available individually, and in soft, medium and hard grades.
Ten Top Tips - By Debbie Adams
- Use a sandpaper block to sharpen your graphite.
- Use the edge of the Natural Graphite to draw as if it were a pencil, rotating it from one corner to the next as needed to keep a pointed edge.
- Practice your shade/tone value in the form of a shade chart.
- Gradual blending - a smooth application of tones from very dark to extremely light with a very gradual blend in between. It should be done very gradually so that you cannot see where one tone/shade ends and another begins.
- To diffuse a sharp line or edge use a paper stump to soften.
- To keep your surface clean, use a clean piece of paper to lay your drawing hand on. Avoid touching your paper with fingers as graphite will pick up the oily residue and your fingerprints with show on the artwork.
- For areas that need highlighting use your kneadable eraser to lift out graphite.
- Step away from your work to look at your drawing from time to time. The full perspective is often not seen when working.
- When artwork is completed, clean around your drawing with a kneadable eraser.
- Practice often and get used to your tools.
Watch the Video
In this video clip professional artist Fiona Peart uses Derwent Natural Graphite to complete a drawing of a zebra. During the clip Fiona shows various techniques including creating lines using the block and adding detail to a drawing.
You can also download a project sheet, where Fiona will guide you through creating a drawing of some cows.