When you try to draw the realistic drawing, blending is a great way to help you achieve the lifeful and velvety effect.
What is blending? Using different blending media to soften or lighten the surface of the drawing. The purpose of blending is to create an even layer and fill out the tiny white areas on paper which graphite or charcoal cannot access.
(i)Blending Stump: It is made of tightly rolled paper. The blending stumps are pointy and sharpened on both sides. It is bulkier than tortillon.
(ii)Tortillon: It is made of rolled paper. It usually comes in one pointy side. It is thinner and harder than a stump.
(iii)Art Brush: It could be synthetic or natural. The brush should be soft and stiff no matter round tips or flat tips because harsh brushes could destroy the paper texture.
(iv)Chamois: It is made of thin and soft leather, mostly from sheepskin or lambskin. It’s ideal for charcoal and pastel.
The blending results are varied based on different paper texture.
Different tools create different texture and effect.
As you could see, brushes give off the smooth texture even on a linear textured paper. Blending with brushes is lighter than Q-tip. Stumps are suitable for smooth paper because the graphite is hard to get into the gaps on the paper.
Blending or not blending? This is the question. It totally is personal and your style. You can create your styles without blending.