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Secret Blending Weapon - Q-tip in a Clutch-Pencil by Doctor-Pencil Secret Blending Weapon - Q-tip in a Clutch-Pencil by Doctor-Pencil
I have long since known that cotton blends graphite better than blending stumps, and I have always preferred the solid blending stumps over the hollow kind. I have used cotton make-up patches before, which work well for blending large areas, but lack control, and you cannot use them for small areas.

I have also used Q-tips in the past, but did NOT like the “feel” of it in my hand, because it was too thin to hold properly. I recently had the idea to break a Q-tip in half, and insert it into a clutch pencil. By the way, “Clutch Pencils” are made to hold graphite leads, and I also use them for specific parts of the drawing, just like I use Mechanical Pencils for specific parts of a drawing, when I don’t want to continuously sharpen a pencil.

By inserting a Q-tip into a clutch pencil, it gives you the feel of a pencil in your hand, which you are obviously used to feeling.

I CANNOT TELL YOU WHAT AN AWESOME BLENDING TOOL A Q-TIP MAKES, WHEN YOU COMBINE IT WITH THE FEEL OF A PENCIL! Now, I ONLY use blending stumps for tight corners, and very small areas. I also use a “Color Shaper” for specific blending areas, such as where hair follicles meet the scalp.

See my blog post on Color Shapers HERE [link]


I highly recommend you try using a Q-tip in a clutch pencil! It is taking my skin textures to a whole new level of smoothness! It also allows extremely subtle tonal values, which I could not achieve with blending stumps.

Hope you find this to be of some use for your toolbox!

Happy Drawing!
Add a Comment:
 
:iconthorstein7:
Thorstein7 Featured By Owner Jul 25, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks for the recommendation! I've just bought a clutch pencil to use with cotton buds.

I'm a disabled artist and holding anything smaller than a pen when drawing is damn near impossible, but this has solved that issue.

La la la la
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jul 29, 2014  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Awe way cool, glad it helped brother! :D
Reply
:iconvesperwinchester:
VesperWinchester Featured By Owner Jun 15, 2013  Student General Artist
You devious genius, you!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thanks MUCH!! :D
Reply
:iconmarkstewart:
markstewart Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2013   Traditional Artist
Fantastic idea Rick, that's a great handy tip. I must try this .. i can see how it is easier to apply a bit of pressure like this. I find them too flexible and i can get a bit frustrated with them at times not being able to vary the strength needed without obscuring the work area with my hand.
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Yes, it hard for tight spots but great for larger areas! :D
Reply
:iconmarkstewart:
markstewart Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2013   Traditional Artist
Can't wait to try it, thanks for sharing Rick :D
Reply
:iconmaryjane-art:
MaryJane-Art Featured By Owner Jun 9, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
haha, nice Tip, THANK YOU
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 11, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Ubet :D
Reply
:iconv-4-vengeance:
V-4-VENGEANCE Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Nice tip
Reply
:iconenigmatic-freak:
enigmatic-freak Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Ah , Crafty ! ;)
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 24, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:D:D
Reply
:iconvesperwinchester:
VesperWinchester Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Student General Artist
OOooh! You are devious! I love it - gonna try it now!
Reply
:iconlucatedde:
LucaTedde Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
That's a cool tip man!!! :D
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
simple but effective :D
Reply
:iconlucatedde:
LucaTedde Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
:w00t:
Reply
:iconrusimredom:
RusimRedom Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
xD
Reply
:iconman0ftomorrow:
man0ftomorrow Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
wow...that's awesome...
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
it is, try it!
Reply
:iconartfreakish:
Artfreakish Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
Man, if I lived nearby your homecity I would become your apprentice. Like I would really let you teach me. Every day hahaha. Thanks for another great tip Rick!!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
haha yeah, I feel like I could SHOW someone much better than explaining it via text :D
Reply
:iconartfreakish:
Artfreakish Featured By Owner Jun 5, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
I understand that, I wished you were my teacher haha I guess the youtube videos, the tips and advice will heve to subvise :D
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:iconboykins:
BOYKINS Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
LMAO i just now discovered this accidently.. great minds think alike!!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
haha yeah it works great!!
Reply
:icontriplesight3394:
triplesight3394 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You're a Cicerone to so many people! I've learned so much from you!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Awe thanks!! Have you seen my TIP BLOG? Link below :D
Reply
:icontriplesight3394:
triplesight3394 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I've read most of your stuff, on other sites as well. I just read one of the blogs. Very important stuff when drawing! I draw by sight too, but the tools available to me don't allow me to get to the level you are! I'm still trying to get techniques down.
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I was so in love with drawing, I soaked up everything I could read at first :D
Reply
:iconroren001:
roren001 Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013
Great idea!!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
simple but it works gr8!!
Reply
:iconjazmocamp:
jazmocamp Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Rick, Thanks so much for sharing these tips and I really like the pencil holder idea. I will definitely try it out!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
yes, it's awesome!!
Reply
:iconnosgorath:
nosgorath Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
You, dear mister, deserve a medal for this :D :D I use Q-tips, I have a clutch pencil, but I never would have thought of doing this :D No more accidental smudging and losing minutes of my life because of the frustration it brings !
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
ha, yeah it just hit me! I look fwd to blending now! :D
Reply
:iconninjificus:
Ninjificus Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
is that supposed to work better than a tortillon?
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I don't like tortillons and have always used solid blending stumps. This works BETTER than ANYTHING I've ever tried!!! :D
Reply
:iconninjificus:
Ninjificus Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
I've gone through a bit of different stuff, didn't know there was a difference honestly. I used toilet paper and tissue paper when I first started out and that makes it a bit too light as you can tell from my older stuff. I think I'll give this a try when I get back into graphite. Right now I'm on a prismacolor and chalk pastel kick :D
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
yes, I will try color one day too! :D
Reply
:iconninjificus:
Ninjificus Featured By Owner Jun 4, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
have you not done so before? It is a whole new fun thing to do when plain drawing gets stagnant.
Reply
:iconsorbetti:
Sorbetti Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Why didn't I ever thought of this :D You're a genius. I have to try this too :hooray: Great tip, thanks Rick!
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
hehe yeah, sometimes it just hits you! Like the electric eraser I just got, will also hold a "tape wrapped Q-tip" for speed blending! :D
Reply
:iconlonnyclouser:
LonnyClouser Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Have to try this - agree with you that holding a q-tip to blend just doesn't feel "right." Thanks for the tip .... keep them coming!! :D
Reply
:icondoctor-pencil:
Doctor-Pencil Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I WILL USE THEM 90% OF THE TIME NOW! Soooooooooooo awesome!!
Reply
:iconlonnyclouser:
LonnyClouser Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
Haha - just noticed my pun! Thanks for the tip - HAHAHAHAHAHA!! I'm going now.
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