Wednesday, 19 May 2010

CPSA Lightfastness Handbook Version 6 - out now

Version 6 of the CPSA Lightfastness Workbook was published at the beginning of May.

The workbook provides a set of sheets for all the different brands of coloured pencils. CPSA has been working its way through all the brands since it published the first version. Each sheet records the name and number of each coloured pencil which passed the lightfastness tests for every brand of artist grade coloured pencil in production. Which is another way of saying I can't think of any which are not now covered by this book.

Version 6
now includes new results for the following:
  • Caran d'Ache Luminance 6901,
  • Cretacolor Karmina,
  • Cretacolor Marino,
  • Staedtler Ergosoft,
  • Staedtler Ergosoft Aquarelle,
  • and Staedtler Karat Aquarelle
  • Updated information about brands tested
  • Corrections and additions ot color listings
  • Complete list of all pencils tested by brand
The lightfastness tests are conducted according to the international art materials standard for coloured pencils approved for this purpose in 2003 - which you can find explained on my website page about lightfastness - An overview of the lightfastness of reputable coloured pencils.

This is the post I wrote when version 5 was published and I got hold of my copy of it - CPSA Lightfastness Test Result Workbook - Version 5 published
If you want to know whether or not the colours you are using are acceptably lightfast or better (ie rate 5.5 or better against a blue wool card under approved test conditions) then I strongly recommend getting hold of the lightfastness test results. I've personally seen some of the original blue wool cards which were used and the way some of colours had bleached to nothingness when exposed to light!
How to order

This book is available only to CPSA Members which adds to the cost of this book an extra $40 to coloured pencil artists living in the US or Canada or $45 to artists living elsewhere. The cost of the book on the order form is indicated below

Cost in U.S. Funds
U.S. $15 + $2 shipping = $17.00
All other countries $18 + $5 shipping = $23.00

That means the cost of this book is as detailed in the table below.

Category of purchaser
CPSA membership
cost of bookpostage
existing CPSA member / lives USA

lives USA
existing CPSA member / lives Canada

lives Canada
existing CPSA member / lives overseas

lives overseas

A fully paid up member of UKCPS living in the UK would need to pay $68 for this book.

I can highly recommend it - although I do wish CPSA would price it to make it more accessible for UKCPS members. I know many members who would like to order a copy but who have been completely deterred by the huge cost to overseas artists who are not members of CPSA.

In effect this is prospective income which CPSA is not realising at the moment due to its pricing policy. Such income could be realised if
  • either subscription rates were created for overseas members of other coloured pencil societies which recognise that they are unable to participate in or benefit from the bulk of CPSA activities at a branch level
  • or a book price for fully paid up members of recognised coloured pencil societies located outside the USA which doesn't require you to become a member of CPSA (eg book price plus a premium contribution to recoup costs)
I'm sure an agreement could be reached for mutual benefit if there is goodwill and effort applied on both sides.

A greener option? Another option which I hope CPSA will seriously consider is to produce the book on CD or DVD so that members could print off only those pages they needed for the brands of coloured pencils that they own. That would be a much greener option, would help cut costs of production and postage and would save a few trees as well!

Further Information

For further information, try the CPSA website - Product Research

My website Making A Mark has a page which provides An overview of the lightfastness of reputable coloured pencils. This covers:
You can also read more about pigments and how they relate to colour in Making a Mark: Colour - a materials perspective #1 - pigments and dyes

Coloured Pencils - Resources for Artists
Find out about coloured pencils. This leading resource has information for everybody from experienced artists to beginners wanting to learn all they can. Topics include
  • tips and techniques for working with coloured pencils,
  • information about coloured pencil brands and associated products (CHECK OUT the poll - find out which make of artist grade coloured pencils is the favourite.)
  • coloured pencil societies,
  • coloured pencil artists and
  • forums where you can discuss coloured pencil matters with artists working in coloured pencils

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