We love it when there’s a new product in the market to try, and more so when there’s a product that matches something unavailable locally. Our latest find does just that!
Apsara, by Hindustan Pencils (the largest pencil manufacturer in the country) has a new, erasable variant to their color pencils. Traditionally we understand that the best color pencils have the highest pigmentation on paper and blend well – but when they are erasable, they are meant to be temporary and the application of the medium changes.
The pencils come in a pack of 12, costing Rs. 150.00 for a pack and include colors like: Black, Dark Brown, Light Brown, Orange, Red, Dark Pink, Violet, Dark Blue, Light Blue, Lime Green, Dark Green & Yellow.
As pencils go, the shape is pretty standard, a heavy, round, printed barrel with a metal ferrule and eraser attached to one end. We would have like to see perhaps hexagonal pencils instead since they kept rolling off the desk while we used them.
The ‘lead’ was thicker than standard, which was greatly appreciated since finer color pencil leads tend to break off easily while sharpening. We used the Omega rolling pencil sharpener and didn’t break a single long point, however, the tip did crumble a little when we tried the standard Apsara medium point sharpener.
Working on a higher quality art paper seemed to be more of a challenge than working on regular printer paper. The base material of the color pencils seem to adhere much better on a smoother surface.
The erasers attached to the pencil itself was greatly disappointing. Instead of going with a good quality material like Apsara’s regular non-dust erasers, they chose to go with a crumbly pink rubber eraser – the kind that we think can erase pen off paper.
Tip: the Apsara non-dust erasers work perfectly well, they take nearly 95% of the pigment off the paper; using the attached eraser will get you decent results, but might take some paper with it and leave you with a mess of rubber crumbs.
Overall Impression: These pencils are great for sketching!
- The pencil leads are thick and sturdy. (We dropped it once and the point didn’t shatter!)
- Erasable lightly pigmented pencils work perfectly if you are trying to make up a draft; and inking on color always looks good!
- The weight of the pencils was appealing personally, but this is a preference.
- Works great on cheap printer paper.
- You would require a better sharpener to maintain these pencils.
- Doesn’t come in single colors – for those who like to sketch with just one color.
- Doesn’t work too well with textured papers
- Weight of the pencils may be uncomfortable to some hands.
- The round barrel lets it roll of the table easily. (Very, very, easily)