Reeves Watercolor Pencils
12-36 count pack
Deep Hues are Possible
Good For Beginners
Blending Could be Better
Somewhat Poor Color Selection
Reeves Watercolor Pencils Review
Reeves’ budget watercolor pencil line attempts to capture all of the positive attributes a good watercolor has while still maintaining a good price and low barrier to entry. For the most part it does this. These pencils show good blending while also still having the necessary details that you look for. Color for the most part is good although there can be a bit of dispersion from the posted color to the actual color and, even after adding water, there can still be some remnant markings that just don’t want to blend fully. Color options are limited to 12 to 36 packs of this round, wax-based line.
Visual Appeal – 3/5
Visually these will provide plenty of color and deep hues can be achieved with liberal application. Blending is for the most part good so colors that aren’t available in the relatively small color selection can be achieved for the most part. However, sometimes the color you expect to come out on the page will have a bit different feel than you anticipated so you might have to play with them some. In addition, even after exposing the color to water, pencil marks can still sometimes be seen. This might be a bit frustrating in areas that you are looking for a consistent color and flow.
Usability and Durability – 3/5
The wax cores are relatively hard so they should be ready to tackle many applications. Sharpening is not overly cumbersome. It would be nice to see a better external grip (hexagonal or triangular) especially considering you might have to work some of these in pretty good to get the desired effect. Layering is quite good with these as well so be sure to experiment.
Packaging and presentation – 3/5
Since Reeves really is more focused on beginners and hobbyists and their price points agree, the packaging and presentation of these isn’t anything special. They come in a standard cardboard box that will only do an ok job of protecting the pencil. The pencils themselves are a colorless wood, but at least the respected color accents are at the base as well as an aesthetic blue line directly above.
Cost – 3.5/5
Well into the budget range, these align nicely with the beginner-but-still quality market segment, and compared to other similar product lines these hold up fine. These aren’t going to have the creamy feel of some higher-end brands nor the wild color options and superb blending ability, but they are a great starting line for someone jumping in to watercolor pencils.
Overall ranking – 3/5
A solid offering, these won’t disappoint if you are just wanting to casually paint or work on some color techniques. For anything more than that you will probably want to save up a little longer and purchase a higher-end line. Issues with not being able to mix in lines, somewhat lack of color options, and some other minor complaints keep these from being an absolute homerun.