I go to art school for computer animation and mechanical pencils are outlawed. Mechanical pencils - when sketching - make the drawing look stiff because the line is constant throughout the entire image. This makes it appear flat. My Traditional Animation teacher took my mechanical pencil out of my hand laughing and said, "Oh no, not this. No - you can't do THAT!"
Even though you have to keep sharpening a regular pencil, the line quality is outstandingly better. There's more flow. So although mechanical pencils are nice, unsharpenable, and smooth and constant - comparing my drawings of mechanical and wooden pencils side by side - mechanical pencils will never capture movement as a old-fashioned wooden one. But if you're doing finishing detail at the very end and need to get into hard to reach areas - a mechanical pencil will work.
Mechanical pencils are too thick? What, do you draw on postage-stamp sized images with a magnifying glass? Loosen up and draw bigger, grab a wooden pencil and address the paper with the side of the point instead of the tip, get your whole arm into it. Unless you like the idea of future you having carpal tunnel issues, in which case go get yourself a #000 Rapidiograph pen and go wild.
Me, I carry a mechanical pencil in my kit for when I want to do little doodles, but I won't go smaller than a .5mm. I used to have a clutch pencil in a drafting kit I inherited from my father, and it was interesting but it was a lot less convenient than a mechanical - you gotta carry around the crazy sharpener, which gets filled with super-fine graphite dust that can make a ginormous mess.
I have been using 0.5 and 0.7mm mechanical pencils for quite some time. I use them for work, school, and drawing. In case of drawing, I use them only to make light outlines which will be coverd with either ink or paint later on. I like using them mainly due to convenience -- I can use them for just about everything plus they do not require pencil sharpner.
Wow Ive acatually never heard of clutch pencils. Although it looks just about the same as a wodden pencil pretty much. Its looks pretty classier though.
ive only used mechanical but i find them too thick Then you been using the wrong lead sizes or pressing too hard, cause there are many sizes of mechanical. What my friend does to make it even pointier, she gets another piece of paper and rubs it on paper to make it a slant on top. Kind of like this pic only pointier. See the slant and the top? That is the point you want to make, but a little sharper then that. [link]
I love wooden pencils. With a passion. They just feel more natural and comfortable in my hand, and you can see your uh... usage by the way they go down? I don't know, I think it's a measure of pride when I use up a particular pencil and have to start with a new one.
What you use that give you thick lines? Do you use a 0.7 or 0.9mm?
I like both equally though I work with my mechanical pencil more than my clutch pencils because I hate resharpening if I want fine, crisp lines. And the clean up, oh the clean up (pencil shavings). So far, I keep my clutch pencils handy for shading or layouts. My mechanical pencils are there if I feel lazy and not to pencil dance to get a picture done.
I'm loving my 0.5 and 0.3 mm pencils, I'll need more lead for the bastards soon.
Yeah, a lot of my favorite art supplies come from there! They carry awesome brands! Hobby Lobby? In Minneapolis (where I live) they have a good selection, but maybe that varies with the kind of store you go to. Sorry about that one!
The one I go to has an excellent selection in sketchbooks, watercolor books, etc. drawing pencils, but it mostly has home accent stuff. The other store, Meiniger's has a broader selection of supplies, but I don't like catching the bus or driving there.
Mechanical Pencil = good for constant lines. Personally I love my clutch pencil, it can get a very fine tip, it does wear down, but I carry my sharpener with it. The reasons I like a clutch over traditional wooden are because the overall weight and the length of the pencil remain the same, I get most of the convenience of a mechanical pencil, but I get a thicker lead that I can do more with. Its easier for me to shade with the side of a 2mm lead then a 0.5mm lead.
Mechanical too thick? Really? I don't know what kind you're using, but I use 0.5mmm, and it's pretty fine. They make leads down to 0.2mm.
Anyway, I have a clutch pencil that I inherited, but I haven't really had the chance to use it yet. The ones I've seen hold a thicker lead than mechanical pencils do. I more typically use wooden pencils in varying grades for roughs and sketching, then mechanical for finer lining and detail work. I have used the 0.5mm mechanical lead for shading small areas, and it works fairly well as long as the marks are light and tones are built gradually with lots of cross-hatching.
You can get the mechanical lead to come to a point, too. Scribble on some scrap paper while holding the pencil at an angle, and the lead gets more worn on one side than the other, making the tip sharper.