Here is what the panels look like. They come in two colors: Mid Tone Gray and Umber Wash. I ordered two 6" x 12", one of each color, and one 8" x 10" umber wash. Dick Blick is having a special deal since these are a brand new item. You buy one size and color, say a 6" x 12" umber wash, and they give you a 6" x 12" mid tone gray for free! So I ordered three panels and I received six. Love that deal.
Note: Since my camera is still lost, I had to take these photos with my phone, and they are not very good. Unfortunately my phone does not read colors very well. I apologize for the quality.
After I got the plastic off the panel I ran my hand over it and was surprised at how amazingly smooth it felt. Remember it is a gessoed board. I expected more tooth than this.
The edges of the board are beveled, which is nice and it will fit into a frame quite nicely. It reminds me a lot of Ampersand's Hardbord, except for the beveled edges and the toned top. Here is a close-up of the beveled edges.
Of course, the first medium I chose to try out on the panels was my favorite - colored pencils. I love to use my pencils on boards and panels of all types, so I was excited about trying this new board out!
I chose to just draw a simple circle. After 3-4 layers, I was just pushing color around and the tooth had completely disappeared. Here it as, without being blended with a brush yet. I could also add light colors on top of darker colors without a problem.
So, after I blended with a bristle brush with a medium pressure. I did use hard pressure at times because the colors simply would not blend well together. As you can see below, a lot of the pigment came off rather than blending.
But there is one thing I have discovered. You can erase every last shred of colored pencil completely off the board! No sign that it was ever there. Also, if you like to use turpenoid to blend your colors, all it will do is take the pigment off the board rather than blend.
For the next review, I will try water color and watercolor pencils on these boards and see how they work. Then I will try acrylics and finally oils.
I hope you enjoyed this review and found it informative! Keep an eye out for the next one coming soon!