|Some of the bicolored pencils I'ved tried -- with disappointing results.|
From the length of the customer service “returns” line at Costco, it seems that quite a few people didn’t get what they wanted for Christmas. I’m happy with what I received, but what about all the things I haven’t gotten because they haven’t been made yet? I bet every sketcher has an ongoing wish list of things they want – if only someone would invent them. Here’s mine:
- Good quality, double-sided colored pencils, preferably with water-soluble cores. The idea for today’s post came to me a few days ago when I was putting together my minimal kit and wishing I could have a few more compact colored pencil colors. Every time I see a set of bicolored pencils, I try them with high hopes, but invariably my hopes are dashed: Most such pencils are a novelty intended for kids, and the cores are hard and pale. Caran d’Ache’s red/blue Bicolor is the one exception – high quality and with the same water-soluble cores as their Supracolor collection. I wouldn’t need a huge color range – just the basics that would come in a standard 12-color box, but compressed into six sticks. How about it, Caran d’Ache?
- An even better alternative would be a device to make my own! A while back I was so enamored with the idea of double-sided colored pencils that I started wondering if I could make my own. I became ecstatic when I discovered the Tsunago, a Japanese device that enables you to create a single longer pencil from two stubs. I could attach one pencil backward, with a different color on each end! Before I bought it, though, I learned that the device works only with graphite cores. So close and yet so far away! But I’ve saved all my colored pencil stubs for when someone develops a similar device for pigment cores. (I’m going to put my money on the Japanese, who seem to invent most of the cool art supplies and tools.)
|Such a handy brush! But the bristles could use work.|
- A waterbrush with real bristles. I’m not talking Kolinsky sable – synthetic hair would do just fine – but I want bristles of better quality than the vinyl on all the waterbrushes I’ve used. I suspect that the fact that waterbrush bristles are always wet is a reason why this hasn’t been developed yet; the constant moisture would probably wreck the hairs. But with so many urban sketchers using water-soluble media, a waterbrush like that would make some clever inventor wealthy!
- A brush pen with black ink on one end and gray on the other – both waterproof. This is just a small tweak of the highly versatile and compact Akashiya Keicho doubled-sided brush pen, which contains water-soluble inks.
|I know an urban sketcher who makes his own double-sided implements this way.|
- A better portable pencil sharpener. The Kum 2-hole I’ve been using is OK, but I wish there were a better alternative that still accommodates my larger-barreled Caran d’Ache Museum Aquarelles. The domed case is clumsy and leaks shavings, and while it gets the job done, I have to twist pencils carefully to avoid breaking the core.
- A single, upright, slotted pencil case that would Velcro onto the inside of my Rickshaw Bagworks bag. This would be a counterpart to my Tran Portfolio (which houses my colored pencils) and would replace my hodge-podge of multiple organizers for the rest of my implements. I’ve already designed it and drawn the pattern – I just need someone to make it for me. (Oh, I suppose I could DIY it, but that would mean hauling the sewing machine out of the closet and trying to remember how to thread the bobbin . . .)
|The design for my ideal in-bag pencil/pen case.|
It’s a reasonably modest list, I think. What’s on your wish list of not-yet-invented products?