Erasers: Art Supplies Essentials

When it comes to art supplies, having the right erasers for the job is as important as the proper pencil. And one basic eraser will not serve all purposes. It's important to understand the functions of erasers when it comes to sketching and drawing. For example, do not erase away all of your lines and marks. Lines track the progression of an art piece and guide the viewer into your methodology. Know when and where to leave some of your fascinating marks and lines. For all of the other lines you do not want to reveal to the world, you will need the perfect eraser for the job.

Battery Operated Eraser
A handy tool for giving great precision and control back to artists is the battery operated eraser. Look for a quiet eraser with a battery charger and be sure it feels comfortable and balanced in your hand.

Blu-Tack Reusable Adhesive
Designed originally as an alternative to using pins and tape to hang posters and other decorative art,  artists have since nabbed the product for its ability to mold into precise points to clean up pencil and pastel work.

Electric Eraser
For the busy artist, the electric eraser is a swift, efficient way to erase. The tip rotates to clean away large areas quickly or to carve out delicate details. For an even finer point, sharpen the eraser tip on sandpaper. Look for a lightweight, quiet electric eraser, contoured to fit comfortably in your hand.

Grip Eraser
The grip eraser is an ergonomic, triangular-shaped, easy-to-hold eraser. It handles both large areas and small details nicely.

Gum Eraser
The gum eraser is a soft, block-shaped eraser that is usually a yellow-beige color.  It is used to remove large areas quickly, which means that it is not good for precision work. The gum eraser cracks and crumbles easily. Keep a broad brush at hand to sweep away loose eraser crumbs.

Household Cleaner Eraser
A household cleaner eraser is a pliable, non-abrasive eraser that will not damage your paper's surface. It picks up graphite, charcoal and pastel cleanly. All residue is brought into the eraser itself so it doesn't leave behind any crumbs. The eraser is usually grey or white when new. When dirty, pull and knead the darkened parts into the lighter [cleaner] inner eraser. You can mold the eraser into any shape to get into small areas. Used as a subtractive drawing tool, it lifts and lightens and creates lines and shapes. Since the kneaded eraser does not wear away like others, the only time you will need to replace it is if it is lost. You can alleviate this problem by buying a spare.

Pink Eraser
Colored erasers can leave traces of color on the white of your paper. Use a colored eraser only on rough beginning sketches and never on a final project.

Pencil Top Eraser
Most quality artist pencils will not have an eraser on one end. For that option, purchase soft wedge-shaped eraser caps.

Plastic Eraser
A plastic eraser erases drawings on delicate tracing paper, polyester-based drafting film and acetate cleanly without smudging. The plastic eraser is usually white and wrapped in a snug cardboard or plastic. Keep the sleeve on it, as it will protect the eraser from getting dirty.

Putty Rubber
A putty rubber is another name for the kneadable eraser used for cleaning pencil, pastel and charcoal drawings.

Rubber Eraser: White
The rubber eraser is a super-soft eraser that picks up its own eraser crumbs. It is good for use on fine watercolor paper without roughing or abrading it. When the squared-edge becomes too rounded to get clean edges blunt, you can trim it with a craft knife.

Rubber Eraser: Black
The black rubber eraser is an eraser made especially for charcoal and graphite. It has the same properties of the white rubber eraser.

Shield
The eraser shield is a flat metal card with punched-out shapes and openings. If it is laid over your pencil in work, and then erased over, it will lift out intricate areas.

Soap Eraser
This kid favorite erases away pencil lines.

Stick Eraser
This pen-shaped eraser is ideal for subtractive drawing. The stiff eraser can be trimmed into shape with a craft knife to form into points, wedges or any shape that you need to erase away, highlight or create detail.

Triangular Wedged Eraser
This eraser is triangularly shaped, which provides you with three corners and three wedged sides for use.

Twist Eraser
This eraser is housed in an easy-to-use pen shape. A twist of the top feeds out the product.

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