A Guide to All Derwent Colored Pencil Sets

drawing of a ferrari made with derwent lightfast colored pencils next to a set of derwent colored pencils

Derwent produces many colored pencil sets. And in this article, we'll explore all 8 of them, discussing their unique features, pros and cons, and best uses. So, let's get into it!

A Brief Overview of the History of Derwent

Derwent is a renowned British brand with a long-standing history of producing high-quality art supplies, particularly colored pencils. Founded in 1832 in Keswick, England, Derwent was originally known as the "Cumberland Pencil Company."

The company has continued to evolve and innovate over the years, developing a wide range of premium art materials.

Derwent's colored pencils are beloved by artists worldwide for their exceptional quality, smooth texture, and extensive color range.

The company is committed to producing the finest art materials and ensuring that artists have access to a diverse selection of products to cater to their unique creative needs.

Derwent's dedication to excellence and innovation has made them a trusted name in the art world for nearly two centuries.

What Colored Pencils Does Derwent Make?

Derwent currently makes 8 sets of colored pencils:

  1. Lightfast
  2. Chromaflow
  3. Coloursoft
  4. Inktense
  5. Pastel Pencils
  6. Watercolour Pencils
  7. Derwent Colour Drawing Pencils
  8. Procolour Pencils

1. Derwent Lightfast Pencils

set of Derwent Lightfast Colored Pencils

Derwent Lightfast pencils are a premium range of colored pencils designed to stand the test of time. Boasting exceptional lightfastness, these oil-based pencils resist fading for up to 100 years under museum conditions. With a creamy, velvety texture, they enable smooth blending and layering for rich, vibrant colors.

This high-quality set is available in a complete range of 100 colors, ensuring artists have access to a wide spectrum of hues. All colors comply with internationally recognized lightfast testing standards, including ASTM D6901 and the Blue Wool Scale ISO 105.

Derwent Lightfast colored pencils color chart
Color chart: all 100 colors of the Derwent Lightfast colored pencils (source)

The price of the Lightfast set reflects its professional quality and is generally higher compared to other Derwent sets. However, the longevity and color performance of these pencils makes them a worthy investment for serious artists.

The Lightfast pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 100 pencils with prices ranging from about 30 USD to 295 USD.

The oil-based core of the Lightfast pencils allows for easy mixing with a paintbrush directly on paper or canvas surfaces, creating a paint-like effect. These pencils are perfect for detailed drawing, layering techniques, and even work well on colored papers due to their opacity.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Lightfast pencils:

ProsCons
100% lightfastHigher price point
Creamy, velvety texture
Wide range of 100 colors
Strong point for detailed drawing

In conclusion, Derwent Lightfast pencils are an excellent choice for professional artists who require a high-quality, lightfast set of colored pencils. With a buttery texture, extensive color range, and lasting durability, these pencils are well-suited for various applications, from drawing to illustrating.

Although the price point may be higher, the long-lasting color performance and overall quality make the investment worthwhile.

2. Derwent Chromaflow Pencils

Derwent Chromaflow pencils offer a bold and vibrant color experience, making them an excellent choice for artists who love to blend, layer, and shade with ease. These colored pencils feature rich pigments that deliver an impressive color laydown.

The Chromaflow set is available in a versatile palette of 72 highly-pigmented colors, providing artists with a wide spectrum of hues to choose from. With their premium core strength, these pencils can withstand pressure during sharpening and use, ensuring a reliable drawing experience.

Derwent Chromaflow colored pencils color chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Chromaflow colored pencils (source)

The Chromaflow pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 21 USD to 71 USD.

Derwent's Chromaflow pencils reflect the brand's heritage and commitment to quality. Each pencil is inspected to meet the highest standards, making them suitable for artists of all skill levels.

These pencils are ideal for various artistic applications, including drawing, coloring, and illustrating. With their vibrant color palette and reliable core strength, artists can confidently create bold and dynamic artwork using Chromaflow pencils.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Chromaflow pencils:

ProsCons
Wide spectrum of 72 rich, highly-pigmented colorsNot specifically designed for detailed work
Premium core strength
Suitable for blending, layering, and shading

In conclusion, Derwent Chromaflow pencils are a fantastic choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that deliver bold, vibrant colors. Their premium core strength and versatile color range make them suitable for a wide array of artistic projects.

With the exceptional performance and reliability that Derwent is known for, these pencils are sure to become a favorite among artists everywhere.

3. Derwent Coloursoft Pencils

set of derwent coloursoft colored pencils

Derwent Coloursoft pencils are known for their soft, velvety texture, making them highly versatile and perfect for artists who love to experiment with bold, vibrant colors. These pencils are highly blendable, allowing for an infinite spectrum of rich color combinations.

The Coloursoft set comes with 72 colors, offering a wide range of hues for various artistic applications. These pencils are ideal for a multitude of drawing styles, including bold landscapes, detailed illustrations, portraiture, and fashion design.

Derwent Coloursoft colored pencils color chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Coloursoft colored pencils (source)

The Coloursoft pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 19 USD to 96 USD.

The ultra-soft texture of Coloursoft pencils is perfect for mixing and blending, enabling rapid and dense color application. With the boldest color range in the Derwent color pencil collection, the pigments in Coloursoft pencils are highly vibrant and saturated.

Featuring a wide 4mm core, these pencils allow for smooth color laydown and easy application. The versatile color range and soft texture make them suitable for artists looking to create expressive, colorful artwork.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Coloursoft pencils:

ProsCons
Soft, velvety texture for easy blendingCan be difficult to draw fine details
Wide range of 72 vibrant colorsSome colors can be a bit transparent
Suitable for various drawing styles

In conclusion, Derwent Coloursoft pencils are an excellent choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that offer bold, vibrant colors and a soft texture for easy blending. With a wide range of 72 colors and suitability for various drawing styles, these pencils provide endless creative possibilities.

Derwent Coloursoft pencils are a reliable and versatile option for artists looking to elevate their artwork with rich, dynamic colors.

4. Derwent Inktense Pencils

Derwent Inktense pencils offer vibrant and versatile color, perfect for a variety of projects. These water-soluble pencils can be applied wet or dry to achieve different effects, providing artists with flexibility and creative freedom.

The Inktense set includes 72 colors, ensuring a wide range of hues for various artistic applications. With a round 8mm barrel and a wide 4mm core, these pencils provide added control for fine detail work.

Derwent Inktense watercolor pencils color chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Inktense pencils (source)

The Inktense pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 21 USD to 102 USD.

Inktense pencils feature ink-like pigments that come alive when water is added. Artists can apply the dry pencil to a wet page or wet pencil to a dry page, allowing for a range of unique effects. Once the color dries, it becomes permanent, leaving an ink-like stain that allows for layering while maintaining vivid colors.

These water-soluble pencils have a soft texture and are highly blendable, making them ideal for use on a variety of surfaces, including ceramic, wood, fabric, and paper.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Inktense pencils:

ProsCons
Water-soluble for versatile applicationNot many light colors
Wide range of 72 vibrant colors
Suitable for various surfaces

In conclusion, Derwent Inktense pencils are a fantastic choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that provide versatile, vibrant colors and the unique feature of water-solubility. The wide range of 72 colors and the ability to use Inktense pencils on various surfaces make them a valuable addition to any artist's toolkit.

With their flexibility in application and stunning color effects, Derwent Inktense pencils are sure to inspire creativity and elevate artwork to new heights.

5. Derwent Pastel Pencils

Derwent Pastel pencils are perfect for creating detailed drawings and sketches, offering easy blendability and less mess. These naturally water-soluble pencils are ideal for portraiture and life studies, allowing for a range of artistic expressions.

The set includes 72 colors, providing a wide variety of hues for different artistic applications. With a 4mm wide core, these pencils are easy to control for accurate drawing and can be sharpened for detailed work.

Derwent Pastel Pencils colored chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Pastel Pencils (source)

The Pastel Pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 19 USD to 132 USD.

Derwent Pastel pencils can be mixed, smudged, and blended for a range of effects, making them highly versatile. Their soft and blendable texture, along with the very fine powdery consistency, is ideal for both loose and detailed work.

As a naturally water-soluble medium, these pastel pencils can be used with water to create light washes, adding another dimension to the artist's creative options.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Pastel pencils:

ProsCons
Easy to blend and controlLimited to 72 colors
Vibrant colors
Can be difficult to sharpen
Suitable for various drawing styles

In conclusion, Derwent Pastel pencils are a superb choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that offer easy blending and versatility. The wide range of 72 colors and their suitability for various drawing styles, including portraiture and life studies, make them an essential tool for artists.

With their blendable texture, fine powdery consistency, and water-solubility, Derwent Pastel pencils provide endless creative possibilities for artists looking to enhance their artwork with beautiful, nuanced colors.

6. Derwent Watercolour Pencils

Derwent Watercolour pencils allow artists to enjoy the subtle beauty of watercolor with the control of a pencil. Their soft texture makes blending and layering a breeze, offering a unique and versatile drawing experience.

The set includes 72 colors, providing a wide range of hues for different artistic applications. These pencils have a 3.4mm core, making them easy to control for accurate drawings and less mess.

Derwent Watercolour pencils color chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Watercolour pencils (source)

The Watercolour pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 19 USD to 97 USD.

Derwent Watercolour pencils are easier to control than watercolor paint pans, making them ideal for more accurate drawings. They can be sharpened to a point for more detailed work, and their soft texture allows for easy blendability and building up light layers.

These pencils can be used wet or dry, providing versatility for various drawing techniques. The subtle color palette makes them perfect for creating landscapes, seascapes, en plein air, and traditional artworks.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Watercolour pencils:

ProsCons
Easy to control and blendNot very saturated
Wide range of 72 colors
Can be used wet or dry

In conclusion, Derwent Watercolour pencils are an excellent choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that offer the unique combination of watercolor and pencil control. The wide range of 72 colors and their ability to be used wet or dry make them a valuable addition to any artist's collection.

With their blendable texture and subtle color palette, Derwent Watercolour pencils are perfect for creating beautiful, nuanced artwork with the ease and precision of a pencil.

7. Derwent Drawing Pencils

Derwent Drawing Pencils offer an earthy color range, perfect for wildlife and landscape drawings, portraits, and life studies. These wax-based pencils provide a unique velvety finish, giving your drawings a distinctive look and feel.

The set includes 24 colors, ensuring a variety of hues for different artistic applications. Featuring a 5mm core, these pencils are among the thickest artist-grade pencils on the market, allowing for stronger mark making and layering.

Derwent Colour Drawing Pencils color char
Color chart: all 24 colors of the Derwent Drawing Pencils (source)

The Drawing Pencils are available in sets ranging from 6 to 24 pencils with prices ranging from about 18 USD to 46 USD.

Derwent Drawing Pencils are 100% resistant to color change for up to 100 years, ensuring the longevity of your artwork. The colors blend and mix together with ease on the page, providing seamless transitions and a professional finish.

These pencils have a very pigmented, opaque laydown, making them ideal for application on mid-tone and dark papers. The extra-wide color strip is useful for stronger mark making and layering color.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Drawing Pencils:

ProsCons
Creamy, velvety textureSmaller color range (24 colors)
100% resistant to color change for up to 100 years
Highly pigmented, opaque laydown

In conclusion, Derwent Drawing Pencils are a fantastic option for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils with a unique velvety texture and an earthy color range.

Though the set offers a smaller range of 24 colors, the creamy texture, colorfastness, and highly pigmented laydown make them an attractive choice for artists looking to create stunning wildlife, landscape, and portrait drawings.

The extra-wide core and blendability of these pencils make them a valuable addition to any artist's toolkit.

8. Derwent Procolour Pencils

Derwent Procolour Pencils offer the perfect combination of a strong point and smooth laydown in a single pencil. These high-quality colored pencils have the covering power of wax yet glide like oil, providing a professional finish to your artwork.

The set includes 72 colors, giving artists a wide variety of hues for different creative applications. Each pencil features a 4mm core, ensuring a strong point for fine detail.

Derwent Procolour Colored Pencils color chart
Color chart: all 72 colors of the Derwent Procolour pencils (source)

The Procolour pencils are available in sets ranging from 12 to 72 pencils with prices ranging from about 22 USD to 118 USD.

Procolour pencils are highly pigmented, providing an effortless, smooth laydown with a clean finish. The texture is consistently smooth across all colors, ensuring a seamless drawing experience.

The strong core of these pencils retains a sharp point for fine detail, allowing for precise artwork. Minimal chipping and dusting help to keep your work smudge-free and maintain a clean appearance.

Here are some pros and cons of the Derwent Procolour Pencils:

ProsCons
Highly pigmented and smooth laydownSmaller sets contain color gaps
Strong core retains a sharp point
Minimal chipping and dusting

Derwent Procolour Pencils also scan beautifully when creating professional copies of your work, ensuring that reproduction prints are true to the original.

In conclusion, Derwent Procolour Pencils are an excellent choice for artists seeking a high-quality set of colored pencils that deliver a smooth laydown, strong point, and minimal chipping. The wide range of 72 colors and consistent texture make them a versatile and valuable addition to any artist's collection.

With their professional finish and compatibility with scanning, these pencils are perfect for creating artwork for reproduction or display.

Other Products by Derwent

In addition to their renowned colored pencil sets, Derwent offers a variety of other high-quality art supplies to cater to the diverse needs of artists. Some of their popular products include:

  1. Graphite Pencils: Derwent offers a range of graphite pencils, such as the Graphic and Sketching lines, perfect for sketching, drawing, and shading. These pencils are available in different grades, from soft to hard, for a variety of artistic applications.

  2. Charcoal: Derwent's charcoal products include pencils, blocks, and sticks. These versatile drawing tools are ideal for creating rich, dark tones and expressive marks in your artwork.

  3. Water-soluble Graphite: The Derwent Graphitint and Water-soluble Sketching lines combine the best of graphite and watercolor. These pencils can be used dry or with water for a variety of effects and techniques.

  4. Erasers and Sharpeners: Derwent offers a selection of erasers and sharpeners specifically designed for their pencils. These tools help maintain the quality of your pencils and ensure precise, clean lines in your artwork.

  5. Paper and Sketchbooks: Derwent also provides artists with high-quality paper and sketchbooks, designed to work seamlessly with their pencils and other art materials.

  6. Accessories: Derwent offers a range of accessories, such as pencil cases, wraps, and blending tools, to help artists keep their materials organized and maximize their creativity.

In summary, Derwent's extensive product line caters to a wide variety of artistic needs and preferences, ensuring that artists have access to premium materials for their creative endeavors.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Derwent colored pencil sets offer artists a wide range of options, catering to various styles, techniques, and preferences.

With their long-standing history of producing premium art materials, Derwent continues to be a trusted choice for artists worldwide.

I hope this guide has provided valuable insights into each of the eight Derwent colored pencil sets discussed, helping you make an informed decision on the perfect set for your artistic endeavors.

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