Who knew that such a small object could bring this much satisfaction?

Perhaps when one has suffered for a long, long time with an inferior tool, the appreciation of the improved tool is that much greater.  And believe me, I’ve had some real pencil sharpener duds.  Admittedly, the first sharpener I used when started drawing again was one that I’d found at the bottom of a junk drawer, probably a remnant of the last time I used a number 2 pencil back in school.  So maybe it’s not fair to count that one.

But my next pencil sharpener was a perfectly reputable General’s All Art handheld, and it should have done the trick.  But each time I would try to sharpen, my pencil would either break or sharpen in a totally lopsided way, so that I could really only use one side of the pencil.  I’d try to repair the damage with my sandpaper block, but it never worked quite right, and I found that I was subconsciously avoiding sharpening my pencil altogether!  I’d put it off until the last possible moment and then, when I was at the absolute end of my rope and had no choice but to sharpen it, there I was again stuck with a some new, misshapen pencil monster, and I’d have to adjust my technique to compensate for the pencil problems.  The angst!

When I looked around at Blick’s site, I found that this Alvin Brass Bullet had a lot of good reviews and only cost $4, so I decided to give it a try.

Now I’m in pencil sharpener heaven!  Its grip makes it easy to grasp, the pencil rotates smoothly, and it delivers a beautifully long, sleek point every time.  I don’t have to learn how to draw all over again each time I sharpen my pencil, and I really feel like my work is going to be better for it!