How to Sharpen a Pencil - Pro Tips

Posted in Blog on February 23, 2019


As an artist, one of the most important things you need to remember is that you require good quality art supplies for drawing.

It also goes without saying that you should learn how to use art supplies properly in order to become good at what you do.

This is why we are going to look at one of the basics: how to sharpen a pencil.

It seems pretty straightforward but there are actually more than one way. Let’s take a look, shall we?

Method 1: How to Sharpen a Pencil with a Sharpener

The first and the most obvious method of how to sharpen a pencil is – you guessed it – use a sharpener.

You can go for either the small portable sharpener that you use manually or an electric sharpener.

Manual sharpeners often come with two holes in a small plastic square.

One of the holes is suitable for a smaller pencil and the other is better for the larger ones.

This is everybody’s preferred method of how to sharpen a pencil because the sharpener is small, portable, affordable and very effective at what it does.

Easy and Effective

All you need to do is insert the pencil in one of the sharpener’s holes and turn it until the blade makes the tip fine enough for your liking.

Electric sharpeners are a pretty nifty tool.

They sharpen your pencil into a tip that is able to create fine lines.

It’s one of the favorite art supplies for those looking to save a lot of time.

All you need to do is insert your pencil inside the hole, apply a little pressure on it and the sharpener will do the rest.

It’s as easy as that!

Method 2: How to Sharpen a Pencil with a Knife

If you want to learn how to sharpen a pencil like some professional artists do, method 2 is for you.

It is a little trickier so I’d recommend that children ask adults to do it for them and to the adults, I’ll still tell you to be very careful while doing this.

I want you to learn how to sharpen a pencil and not give yourself a nasty cut while you’re at it.

Read this very carefully and follow the instructions properly and you will get one of the finest sharpened pencils you have ever seen.

Learn to Hold

First things first, you need to hold the pencil properly.

Leave about an inch-and-a-half from the top and grab the pencil tightly.

This will ensure that your pencil and blade do not slip out while you sharpen.

Make sure that you hold the pencil in your non-dominant hand while you hold the blade in the dominant hand (if you’re right-handed, hold the blade in your right hand and the pencil in your left hand).

Your knife needs to be sharp. Position the blade about three quarters of an inch up the pencil from where you are holding it.

Remove Wooden Layer

Start to remove the wood by lightly carving it.

Try to make it narrower near the top so that the graphite becomes exposed near the top.

Keep this up until the top part becomes narrower and narrower.

Once you are satisfied with the length of the graphite that has been exposed, sharpen it very lightly with a cutter to create a fine tip.

And there you have it, folks. You have successfully learned how to sharpen a pencil.

The second method is our favorite because you get a tip that you can use with multiple kinds of grips while drawing.

Try it out, have some fun with your pencil but be very careful.

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