"Pencil Lead, What Is It?"
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It is also known as graphite lead. Nowadays, is commonly used as a refill for an automatic pencil. There are lots of commercially available lead such as BIC, Staedtler, Faber Castell, Paper Mate, Mont Blanc and many others.
This well-known medium is one of the most beautiful for pure line work, and its use is an excellent training to the eye and hand in precision of observation. Perhaps this is why it has not been so popular in our art schools lately, when the charms of severe discipline are not so much in favour as they should be.
It is the first medium we are given to draw with, and as the handiest and most convenient is unrivalled for sketch-book use.
Watch how graphite pencil is made...
It is made in a large variety of degrees, from the hardest and greyest to the softest and blackest, and is too well known to need much description. It does not need fixing.
For pure line drawing nothing equals it, except silver point, and great draughtsmen, like Ingres, have always loved it. It does not lend itself so readily to any form of mass drawing. Although it is sometimes used for this purpose, the offensive shine that occurs if dark masses are introduced is against its use in any but very lightly shaded work.
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