The graphit pencil is a very simple, but very interesting drawing tool. I love to draw my animalportraits with graphit pencils. It is possible to draw each little detail very exactly and you can work really exactly. With different shadows and lights you can get a lot of depth in the picture.
I use pencils with itensity 7H to 9B. The hard pencils I use for the light areas and for example to create hairs and with the soft pencils I can get very dark colours on the paper, for example shadows or dark areas.
Further I use for painting my petportraits eraser pencils, eraser you can knead and estompes. With the eraser to knead and the eraser pencil it is possible to put little litghts in the picture and you can light easily some parts of the drawing. With the estompe I can create soft run from light colour shades to dark colour shades.
As painting ground I use high quality drawing paper or drawing cardboard. The surface can be very smooth or a little bit rough, so as you like. I prefer paper with a very smooth surface, because there I can draw the best shadows and grey shades.