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Customer reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Showing 1-10 of 64 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 72 reviews
on April 7, 2016
Cretacolor Monolith Set

I started drawing/sketching again recently. I'm not a professional nor have I been taught. I wanted to play around with these and I really like this set so far. The pencils vary in darkness. I wish they gave you lighter pencils as well. The sharpener works great and the kneaded eraser works on light sketching. I like the tin case to store the pencils. I usually wrap a rubberband around it when I travel with it just so it doesn't pop open.

This is a great set for a casual artist not looking for anything fussy.
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on April 26, 2015
One arrived broken, which was a bummer, but can happen so 'it is what it is'. Just disappointed it took a little of the length of 'life' off that pencil. Other than that, it seems fine. I did look at this set on several other sites and this was the best price overall. I used to do pencil drawing years ago and am kind of disconnected from the materials. It would have been nice to have an insert telling what each thing was used for. This is a pretty basic set, it should have some direction included as the audience may mostly be new hobby-level artists.

I have to admit I was a big dingus when it came to the extender, what I mean is I put the full pencil in there and was like 'what the heck??'. Then I realized that it was to use when the pencil was short. DUH. I still don't know what the 'cap' is for.

Well, I'd post a pic but for a while I'm sure I won't get much past stick figures, but we'll see. The pencils felt good and heavy in my hand and as I picked each one up I felt more and more like drawing again. And there's no better way to learn than doing....
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on June 13, 2011
I love arting. I don't know much about the technicalities of it but I sure do love producing it. I am not even really sure how good I am. I do know that I read many reviews about these and thought "they are just pencils?" Then I ordered them and tried them. I don't know exactly what it is about them, perhaps the extra weight I perceive as balance in my hand, or the smooth lacquer finish that almost feels like I am holding a fine art brush or even the way the graphite just eases off and glides onto the paper as if I am painting a stroke of a drawing but these things are magnificent. When I have them in hand it makes me want to draw. Even if I have nothing on my mind I just have to do something.

I didn't know what the purple one was so I had to look it up. I will save you the trouble in case you don't know. You can apparently use it just as you would all the others but then you can go back over it with a wet brush to give the finished look that of a watercolor. The included one is plain black graphite in color but they evidently make a line of all different colors you can purchase. I thought it was neat.

I am not sure how to use the holder. I imagine though that it is used when they get too small to hold with ones hand. When I first opened the kit I tried to jam the full pencil into the holder and thought it looked silly, so that is how I came to that conclusion.

I was a bit puzzled by the cap as well. it fits rather loosely over the pencils. To me, it almost seems as if the way they are sharpened from the factory makes the bevel rather long so the point hits the tip of the cap before the edge has a chance to grip the shaft and hold on. If one were to use a different sharpener and shorten the bevel I imagine it would fix this, or I am just missing something.

The sharpener is of good quality. I have many sharpeners, some I have paid a bit for that perform crappy and some that I have paid pennies for that perform admirably. This sharpener falls under the category of cheap and good. I use it first to sharpen these then use another sharpener to put a fine point on without wasting much graphite.

The kneaded eraser is a kneaded eraser. It was larger than some that I have bought individually but by no means is it huge. I did find it to be of quite a decent quality though.

I imagine that many of my epiphanies about this set are pretty common knowledge to most artists, but if you are just a good drawer looking for something other than a pencil than this may not be so common so i offer it here.

My bottom line is that when I run these out I will buy more and continue to do so until I stop drawing.
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on September 29, 2013
I have never used anything like this before but it is really cool. I have yet to try out the 4B water soluble pencil. I'm not the best drawer but these types of pencils are really cool to use and sort of make me feel professional. The weight of each pencil is sort of heavy compared to a normal pencil but I actually like that more because it makes it more professional.
The box has a tool that if you are getting short on a pencil and it's harder to hold, that you can put it into so its like a handle/extender so you can continue using which I think is really cool. The handle design is simply and fancy. There is a tiny pencil sharpener that does the trick when using these pencils. The eraser is very nice but a bit difficult if you want to erase a tiny spot on a drawing since it's like taking putty to paper... not very precise. Also, there is a sort of cap that comes in it too that is in the image, bottom right. I think it's to be used as a cap on a pencil to protect it but I'm honestly not sure. I can't think of another purpose. There is already the handle for when the pencil is short to put it in, but this piece is very tiny so I'm not sure what it would be used for other than a cap.
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on November 30, 2015
Most sets don't give you a wide range, or if they do, the set is HUGE (and let's face it, we're not all intense artists). I like the portability of the set and how convenient it is. My one gripe is that it's made of light plastic on the inside, so it won't hold the pencils like that forever. Likely, it'll break and I'll be left with pencils rattling around. I suppose I should just get a real case, but I like the tin. If they could make the inner plastic holder more solid or permanent, I would buy sets for every artist I knew.
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on November 24, 2012
I bought these for my Artist Mother who's been drawing and painting her entire life. Most of her work begins with a regular No.2 pencil and sketch pad. There's no vast array of artist tools for her to chose from. She could sell her work and make a small fortune but, I suppose there is something to be said for the "starving artist". I stumbled upon this set rather accidentally and it caught my eye. I decied to buy it in hopes that she'd have a better quality pencil to start her sketches with. I had no idea how much she would love and appreciate these. SHE LOVES THESE PENCILS!!! I had several gifts to give my Mom (and this may have well been the least expensive) and of all of the lovely things she received, she liked these best. She went on and on about the pencils and I'll spare you all of those details. The thing that you should know is that you should BUY THESE for the sketch artist in your life. This is much more than a box of plain pencils and, will allow the sketcher to create quality pencil drawings with depth and dimension. The set arrived on time and in excellent condition.
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VINE VOICEon August 18, 2012
I absolutely adore Cretacolor products. Another set of various Cretacolor drawing products had two Monolith pencils included in it. I found them to be a dream to draw with and loved the results so I decided to buy this set.

The paper I use with them are Strathmore Drawing and Sketch 400 Series as well as Rising Stonehenge. They have a great tooth for working with these pencils. I love the effects I can get with the watercolor pencil and am anxious to buy more of those.

Having such a nice looking pencil extender is a real plus. I love pencil extenders to get as much use from my pencils as possible. Because these are woodless pencils I can shave or file them down when they're too short to use even with the extender to make graphite powder.
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on May 20, 2014
These pencils feel amazing! I love the staying power the point stays sharp if you have a habit of twisting your pencil as you draw( which I do). Had worked my drawing pencil to almost the lacquercoating before I learned that the sharpener is perfectly balanced to bring back the shape the pencil came in with minimal loss of graphite. My kit came missing the cap.but all else was as I expected.very pleased with this and am going to order the set for my son in law . His skills are infinitely better than mine so he should bring skill to the pencils. Where in my case the pencils add to my skills.
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on October 22, 2015
Absolutely beautiful box set. The eraser is a bit soft and leaves lines behind sometimes, but the pencils and everything else are spectacular. Tip: if you're having issues with the extra handles, try moving the metal collar to change how open it is.
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on June 3, 2013
I love these pencils, they deliver great tone to almost any kind of paper. They tend to be a little soft for textured paper (though that might be "written" off to my tendency to apply too much pressure). I was uncertain as to why a holder would be necessary until I broke my 9B mimicking a drum riff from "Life From From a Window" by The Jam. I tend to draw listening to music. Broken two inches from the point I placed it in the holder and IMMEDIATELY understood the value for when a pencil is shortened similarly due to normal use. I am already ordering more of the Cretacolor in expectation of using these up.
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