Reeves Watercolor Pencils

12-36 count pack

Wax core

Round Barrel

Budget-priced

Pros:

Deep Hues are Possible

Durable

Good For Beginners

Cons:

Blending Could be Better

Somewhat Poor Color Selection

 

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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 colors and deep hues can be achieved with liberal application.  Blending is mostly 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.

You may also notice that the colors that are available are on the bright side.  While that certainly helps to increase the “pop” of the color, it does somewhat polarize what sort of pieces you can do.  Very subtle and dull works that don’t need a lot of color will be hard to capture with these and you will likely need the assistance of other watercolor lines.

Usability and Durability – 3/5

The wax cores are relatively hard so they should be ready to tackle many applications and be suitable for those with a heavy hand.  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.

As for incorporating water into them, they are about average.  You can get some decent color spreading but it may require more water than you would have hoped.  So if you prefer to use a thinner paper, be extra cautious of this so as to not oversaturate the paper.

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 aren’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.

Recently, they have also updated their packaging to a more modern look.  The pencil cores appear to be the same, but the barrels are now colored a bright blue and the box comes in a simple white color configuration.

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 into watercolor pencils.

Overall ranking – 3/5

A solid offering, the Reevers Watercolor Pencils 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 home run.  But we do appreciate their durability and reasonable asking price.

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