Here is a post for members of my sketch club who wanted more info about artist pens. (I am not covering fountain pens because they are a totally different critter and require their own post.). If I post something without visuals, no one will read the post, so enjoy the sketches. 😂
First rule of thumb, buy a pen that contains permanent ink or your sketch will die a slow fading death…..
Bic pens are awesome to use for sketching but as anyone who has left a post it on the wall knows….Bics can fade, especially if left out in the light. They are great fun to sketch with so I usually use them in my morning pages.
Sharpie “permanent” markers are NOT permanent, so don’t get that baseball autographed with a sharpie, let alone sell a sketch that you used a sharpie to draw a subject.
One of the better inexpensive pens is the Uni-Ball Vision Fine point…the dream pen of Tommy Kane. I was using the Copic Multiliner SP until I picked up the Uniball. They are easier to get (no long drives to Dick Blick) and you won’t have a heart attack if you lose them because they don’t cost an arm or a leg. They hold up to watercolor and Tombows.
There is also acrylic paint markers that is a niche that started small but now Liquitex and Winsor Newton and others have joined in. They aren’t cheap so keep those coupons handy! Pictured are the Liquitex and Molotow. The Molotow has been on the market for a while. Molotows are also refillable. Not a very large selection of colors but they have a divine neon orange.
Pitt Pens by Faber Castell come in a large range of colors, sizes and are permanent, lightfast and waterproof.
Copic sketch markers are dual tipped. Alcohol markers are not usually permanent so be aware of that when using these.
Uniball Signo White pen is awesome for white highlights.
Copic Multiliner SP is permanent and I used to use these all the time.
Gel pen by Jelly Roll. Lots of fun colors!
Tombow – lightfastness is questionable, but for sketches and things to be scanned, smooshing around with a waterbrush, they are fun! I might have to carry these instead of watercolors!