In today’s post I would like to share with you the results of my adventures with Lyra Aquacolour Crayons. I wanted them for Art Journalling as they looked an excellent way of achieving bold layers of colours and have the advantage of giving a crayon or paint style of finish.
Lyra Aquatones are a watersoluble wax crayon. You can use them as they are for a wax crayon effect, add water over a coloured area for a colour wash like water colour. Alternatively you can use a piece of scrap paper as a pallet and scribble colour on that and then use a damp brush to pick up the colour to enable you to apply the colour with a smaller brush to more detailed areas.
- Paper covered crayon, so you don’t get messy unless you want to.
- Portable, a great way to have a large selection of colours if you want to create on the move.
- Excellent quality of crayon. They are velvety smooth to use and the pigment blends beautifully. These crayons seem to allow a little more time to blend than other brands.
- Excellent Pigment content; lay down large areas of colour and vary the depth of colour by how hard you press the crayon to the paper.
- Not yet found a source of individual crayons, to replace ‘favorite’ colours later on.
- Being wax, don’t leave them in direct sun or near radiators ;) They will melt left in hot conditions
- Due to the wax content, if you are using them for a background to stamp over it is better to stamp using a pigment ink and heat set. I found the dye inks resisted in some areas where wax was still present after blending out with water.
Value for Money
Excellent! I bought 48 crayons in a set in a tin box for £32.99. (Correct at time of writing May 2009).
Would I buy them again?
Comparison to similar products
I have done a side by side comparison of Lyra Aquacolours with Caran Dache Neocolor II, which are also water soluble wax crayons. Lyra’s compare very well, they are just as good for pigment quality and density as the Neocolour IIs.
Although the advantage of the Neocolour IIs in the long run, is that they are available individually in many art shops as well as online. I suspect that unless I find a stockist of individual Lyra Aquatones, that as the Lyra crayons wear out they will be replaced in the set with their Neocolour equivalent.
As for getting the hang of them, like all products of their kind; it is a case of using them with different papers and varying amounts of water until you achieve the result you are looking for.
For a water stable finish apply a layer of crayon then go over it with thinned gesso. This will lighten the colour but does mean any subsequent layers you apply on top are not disturbed. I saw this demonstrated on a video by Millande on You Tube.
Caran Dache Neocolour II Crayons
Best wishes and thanks for reading, see you soon
***UPDATE*** 16 July 2009
Do check out the comments under this post before you make your final decision. Liesan has been using these Lyra crayons for longer than me and has discovered they may not be as light fast as the Neocolor II ones. I’m using them within a book, so it wouldn’t be a problem for me but if you want to make a piece of art that will be on show and in the light all the time it would be more of a concern. ;)