How to Preserve Graphite Drawings
- Use a Workable Fixative like Krylon. ...
- Once a drawing has been sprayed, the graphite underneath will NOT erase. ...
- Use proper ventilation. ...
- Shake the can before spraying and test on a scrap piece of paper away from your drawing.
Easy Ways on How to Preserve a Pencil Drawing
- Protect it With a Fixative Spray.
- Use Glassine Interleaving Paper.
- Use Parchment or Wax Paper as Page Inserts.
- Frame your Pencil Drawing.
- Lay your Pencil Artwork Flat.
Protect your charcoal, chalk, graphite, and pastel drawings, and more, by using a fixative spray. Although even the best will result in some degree of color shift, these sprays are valued for their ability to keep surfaces from smudging, fading, flaking, and discoloring.
Hairspray can be useful even outside the beauty parlor. Though professional art fixatives are always a better option, hairspray works in a pinch to protect your pencil drawings from erasing and smudges.
The properties of hair spray as a fixative for pastel and charcoal on paper. Many artists who create drawings with friable or powdery media, such as chalk, pastel and charcoal, choose to use hairspray as an inexpensive alternative to commercially available art fixatives.
Winsor & Newton Professional Workable Fixative
Winsor & Newton is probably the best fixative spray to preserve your pencil drawings for the long term, or momentarily to prevent smudges while working. It is colorless and can be applied to not only pencils but also charcoal, pastel, pencil and chalk.
Since graphite is water soluble, the MSA and Archival Varnishes may be the better option, since they are less likely to smear and tend to adhere better to graphite than the water based Isolation Coat and Polymer Varnish.
Even a light coat of fixative or varnish will provide protection for your colored pencil drawing. Environmental dirt, dust, and other similar substances will come to rest on the varnish instead of on the drawing itself. A light dusting with a duster or dry clothe is all that's necessary to remove the dust.
A spray fixative is used to "fix" the drawing material (usually graphite or pastel) so that it does not smear as easily. A varnish is used to change the sheen of the artwork and protect it from absorbing pollutants from the environment.It often is available in a variety of finishes including gloss, satin and matte.
Graphite has a maximum lightfast rating that prevents it from fading when exposed to light overtime. With a maximum lightfast rating, pencil drawings are expected to last for more than 100 years. That said, it's important to protect pencil drawings from other harms, such as smudging.
To protect and preserve your artwork, you can use an Art Fixative, and you can spray the fixative on your pencil drawing. You can also keep the pencil drawing in glassine, interleaving paper so that it does not get touched accidentally.
The most effective way to prevent smudges is to spray your drawings with a fixative spray once they are completed. Other methods include hairspray, using a hardbound sketchbook, drawing with H-grade pencils or ink, placing wax paper between each page, and placing rubber bands around your sketchbook.
Use acid-free packaging such as tissue paper or glassine. You can bubble wrap your artwork for storage and transportation but leave it slightly open so it can breathe. Store your paintings vertically, rather than horizontally and do not stack them.
- Parchment paper
This translucent waxy paper is one of your best allies when it comes to preserving your graphite drawings. Although parchment paper is the optimal choice—the graphite will keep better in place—you can also put a white sheet of paper on the drawing to protect it.
Like anything else that can be copyrighted, artwork is protected by copyright when the art is affixed in a tangible form (such as a painting, sculpture, or drawing). You have to register your copyright with the US Copyright Office if you want to be able to take infringers to court and be awarded damages.
If you have many small loose drawings or sketches, it's often easiest to store them in a portfolio or folder. You should choose an art folder with no acidic plastic sleeves and put only one drawing in each sleeve to avoid transfer or smudging.
If you are varnishing a drawing on paper, you will probably need to use a spray varnish. When varnishing a drawing on paper, the varnish will absorb into the fibers of the paper and into the various drawing materials.
Rather than use a brush-on varnish (which would smear the charcoal anyway), you should use a spray varnish such as Golden Archival Spray Varnish or Lascaux UV Protect.
Make and Use Fixate
You can make your own fixate by adding about one tbsp. of white shellac (which is actually clear) to four ounces of isopropyl alcohol in a paper cup. You can stir the preparation with anything, then pour it into a plastic spray bottle. You must always spray fixer solutions onto a charcoal drawing.