Wednesday, 5 January 2011

The Favourite Watercolour Pencils Awards! (2010 Brand Poll Results)

2010:  Which is your favourite brand of watercolour pencil?
In 2010 I introduced a new Opinion Poll to determine the best brand of Watercolour Pencil on the market at the beginning of 2010.

144 people voted during 2010 in the 2010 POLL: Which is the best watercolour pencil? on Coloured Pencils - Resources for Artist to determine the best brand of watercolour pencil.

(For details of the best artist grade coloured pencils see The Favourite Coloured Pencil Awards! (2010 Brand Poll Results)

The poll is now closed and below you can find the results.  When considering the results, it needs to be remembered that
  • this is a new poll and generally more reliable results are generated as more people get to hear about the poll (which is now repeated annually with a new poll starting January each year)
  • not all brands are easily available in local art shops.  However all are available from online suppliers (see below for links to Art Suppliers in the UK and USA)
Having studied the results I've split the favourites into three different categories
  • The Favourite Watercolour Pencil in 2010 - Faber Castell Albrecht Durer
  • The Favourite Woodless Watercolour Pencil in 2010 - Joint Winner Caran d'Ache Neocolor and Derwent Aquatone
  • The Favourite brand of Watercolour Media in 2010 - Joint Winners: Derwent and Faber Castell
Faber Castell's Albrecht Durer is the pencil of choice with 34% of respondents choosing this pencil over the next most popular pencil the Derwent Inktense (20%).  This means that Faber Castell - by focusing on a single pencil for both artist grade and watercolour pencils - has won both both polls.

However while Faber Castell tends to offer just one brand of pencils, Derwent manufacture a range.  Derwent tied with Faber Castell for the manufacturer producing the most popular watercolour media in pencil form.  Each attracted 34% of respondents choosing their brand of watersoluble media.  (see the table below which totals the results by manufacturer).

Watercolour Pencil Manufacturers 2010
(all brands) %
Caran d’Ache (all brands) 20.9
Cretacolor 1.4
Derwent ( all brands) 34
Faber Castell Polychromos 34
Lyra Rembrandt 4.9
Sanford Prismacolor  4.9
Royal Talens van Gogh 0
Table: Total of % of all respondents
per manufacturer of water soluble coloured pencil media

Essentially the marketplace for watercolour pencils is a three horse race with Caran d'Ache putting in a very respecetable showing in 3rd place with over 20% of market share.

The results also indicate that wood pencils are more popular than woodless pencils.

There is a tie for the most popular woodless pencil between the Cretacolor Aqua Monolith and the Derwent Aquatone - both of which had 4.2@ of the vote.

The most noticeable result of the Poll is how much more popular artist grade pencils are over the watercolour versions.  I wonder if this is because it's possible to dilute all artist grade pencils using solvent?

Those using watercolour pencils will be interested to know that the CPSA test the lightfastness of all watercolor pencils and provide the results in their CPSA - Lightfastness Test Result Workbook Version 6



LindieLee said...

I wonder why light fastness was not a standard for judging the best?
Derwent Inktense and Graphitint are not light fast, I know I own them and will faze them out of my collection.

Making A Mark said...

Mainly ignorance of the lightfastness ratings that have been done

Plus the fact I can't quite those which are available (via the CPSA Lightfastness Handbook - as CPSA chooses for this information to be limited to its members)

You're absolutely right about the Inktense and Graphitint.

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