Smooth Green Snake in Prismacolor

This week I worked on a small picture of a snake in my sketchbook.

I saw this great video on YouTube by MiltonCor of him drawing a brilliant realistic snake with Prismacolor pencils.

Here’s the You Tube Video…

I thought it was fabulous so I had to have a go.  I’ve not worked seriously with Prismacolor alone before although I have used them in conjunction with watercolour in the past.


I began by downloading probably about twenty Smooth Green Snake photos so I could have a good idea of what I wanted to draw.  I used different bits of different photos for my reference.  That way I could have my snake in exactly the pose I wanted.

I made a sketch and then just began trying to draw it with the Prismacolor pencils.


It was much harder work than painting because you have to press so hard to get the colour to transfer but the quality of the colour was excellent.  They really are great pencils!


Once I completed the snake I filled in the black background with black ink and a brush and then added extra highlights with a white gel pen and extra detail to the eye.

Here’s the finished picture…

I think it’s recognisably a snake and I like the colours but it’s not as realistic as I was aiming for and the shiny bits don’t work as well as I’d wanted either.  I will have to watch Milton more closely!  Still, it was great fun for such a small image and I learned a ton of things about how to use pencils effectively.





18 thoughts on “Smooth Green Snake in Prismacolor

  1. Thanks – I think I’ll try that. I sometimes touch up watercolours with prismacolors or the Faber Castelle Aquarelles, but a watercolour underpainting for a proper coloured pencil drawing sounds like a brilliant idea. Thanks again!


  2. I love your drawing. I work with colored pencil periodically and Prismacolor pencils are very nice to work with. I think your drawing turned out really well for a first attempt. When I work with colored pencil I frequently work in layers so the color builds up. If you try that you may not need to press so hard. Also a watercolor underpainting may help.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Looks good to me, perhaps you could lighten the top scales behind the head as you’ve implied light coming from above and more light here will work against your dark background. Have you noticed how the highlights on the original are mainly dragged and not solid blocks of colour, although I don’t think that will radically change the piece.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Really like what you’ve done here JO. I use Faber Castell watercolor pencil because I can buy them loose from my local art shop. Primascolor only come in sets …. I can see that they have some vibrant rich colors. The black background really works well here. I like.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Many thanks! I do like Prismacolour. I also like the Derwent watercolour pencils too. The only problem I have with pencils generally is that I have to have quite a bit of physical strength to draw an extensive piece with them. Paint goes on my more easily. 🙂


  6. Very beautiful! I’ve started working with coloured pencils lately but haven’t tried Primascolor. I’ve heard great things though, and will probably have to invest in some at some point 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A great first crack at using the pencils Jo. I wonder if there’s some colour enhancement in the video to get such rich colours.

    Liked by 1 person

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