My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products: Drawing

Disclaimer: None of the products mentioned in this post are sponsored. All recommendations are my own, and none of the links are affiliate links.

Among the top 5 most frequently asked questions I get is this: What art materials do you use, so I can get better at drawing like you are?

Top 5 Drawing

I’m going to begin by mentioning that great tools do not a good workman make. A lot of the improvement in my work comes from years and years of constant practice, learning and dedication to what I do. If it were as simple as buying the right products, then

a) literally every single person would want to be an artist,
b) the fine art market wouldn’t be so niche, and
c) these products would probably cost (even more of) a fortune….so I guess not everyone would be an artist and we’d be back to square one!

Having said that, the right set of tools can often take your work from great to flawless (cue Beyonce), massively improving the quality, if not the skill, of your work. So without much further ado, here are my top 5 drawing tools that I use on a nearly daily basis:

1. Derwent Graphic Pencils 24 Tin

My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products | Little Brown Artist
Derwent Graphic 24 Tin. £27.10 , Derwent Website


These are, without a shadow of a doubt, the absolute best pencils I’ve ever used. I was lucky enough to have them gifted to me, or I probably wouldn’t have invested in the entire set.

I’ve used these precious babies for over 4 years now, and they ‘ll easily last me another 4 years at the very least. The grades I use most commonly are 5H, 2H, H, HB and 2B.

For a more detailed review of these, have a look at this blog post:

Product Review: Derwent 24 Graphic

2.  Daler Rowney Fine Grain HeavyWeight Sketch Pad

My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products | Little Brown Artist
Daler Rowney Fine Grain HeavyWeight Sketch Pad (A4) £11.45, Amazon


This is by far the best paper I’ve ever used, and I’ve used a whole lot! Yes, it’s a bit pricey, but the super high density means that it holds blending and erasing really well, and you can do a lot of pressure work without ripping the paper up!

3. Cretacolor Blending Sticks

My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products | Little Brown Artist
Cretacolor Drawing Accessories Set. £10.50 , Amazon

Now blending stumps are usually the easiest and cheapest to buy, I once found a set of 5 for 50p at a local art store. They are essentially just tightly rolled paper stumps, and are so much better at blending than your fingers or tissue…or so I think, anyway!

I actually have everything in the set pictured above, and this is the only brand where the stumps haven’t bent or unraveled on me. I’m sure they’re sold separately from the set, or there are more affordable alternatives, but these are just my personal favourites.

4. Faber-Castell Kneadable Eraser

My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products | Little Brown Artist
Faber-Castell Kneaded Eraser. ~£0.50, DickBlick

Kneaded erasers are something I wasn’t even aware existed until I started watching videos of other pencil artists at work! These are very mouldable erasers, almost like Play-Doh,  that you can shape into a fine point to get rid of little details without erasing off too much.

The Faber-Castell ones are particularly lovely because they are super affordable, and don’t dry out and harden after a few weeks of use, unlike some other brands do. These stay quite soft and pliable for months together, which is very useful. Trust me, you do not want to start drawing a complicated piece and realise you have too many hard erasers and no kneadable ones left… *shudder*

5.  Pebeo Fixative For Dry Technics

My Top 5 Holy Grail Art Products | Little Brown Artist
Pebeo Fixative For Dry Technics. ~ £10.75, in store

I have to admit, I can not find a decent shopping link to this one, but this fixative has worked incredibly well for me. It does not turn my drawings yellow, does not alter the tones noticeably, and dries super quickly.

The only problem I have with this one is the smell, however that does not linger in a well ventilated area (and you shouldn’t be spraying fixatives in a closed room anyway! Tut tut!).

Finally, here are some of my favourite pieces created using some of these:

And there we go! These are some of the things I use most commonly on my graphite drawings. I can not recommend these products enough, they have truly taken my art to the next level, and as someone who is obsessive about constantly aiming for a higher standard, they have honestly helped  invaluably!

As always, I’m open to post requests from all you lovely people, and would love to hear what you think of this post. Have you tried these products yourself? What are your holy grail drawing products? Let me know, I’d love to try them out! 🙂

Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you have a pleasant Wednesday!


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