How to Find a Set of Markers That Last

By | 9:51 AM
Art&Graphic When shopping for a set of markers you may have a nagging thought in the back of your head wondering just how soon you will need to replace the ones you buy today. This article will be focused on finding the longest lasting design, illustration and paint markers, the kinds artists use most often. For the most part what plays the biggest role in the usable longevity of markers depends on what kind of ink is inside and the quality of the pen's hardware. Be prepared to invest $3 to $5 per pen. The rest generally comes down to proper marker storage and handling, and I will touch on some valuable bits of advice on this as well.

Caveat Emptor- Always find out what you can from the first-hand experience of other users. If you have artist pals or even an online community with a forum for sharing art product info hit them up for their advice on what to use and what to avoid. It is always best to do some research by reading reviews on specific marker sets first or even contact the product's manufacturer if you need any details clarified.

There are very many brands and types of art pens and markers out there, and the type you choose depends on your particular needs. Based on my research by talking with artists and scouring reviews I feel I can safely list these as the top three brands to give you a starting point:

1. Copic

2. Prismacolor

3. Faber-Castell

Keep in mind that the life of water-based ink is naturally shorter when deciding what kind of marker you wish to use. Water-based ink dries quickly, which can be very convenient when using them on paper or wood. However, the water-based ink will dry out from inside the pens more quickly than permanent or solvent-based ink would. Ink that contains alcohol will need to be stored in a cool area or else it will evaporate.

Be careful when you shop for art markers as sometimes they are advertised as having a refillable ink reservoir but are really not intended to be refilled. When refillable is not really refillable would be in cases where the actual ink cartridge can be replaced with new auxiliary ones that are sold separately as opposed to being able to buy a bottle of ink and pouring it into the existing ink reservoir.

Once you find the right markers, there are ways to make sure your quality tools last as long as possible. Leaky pens are a nightmare in their own right. Minimize ink spillage by storing them caps and cartridge barrels screwed tightly closed and stored in the correct position: one-sided store in an upright position, double-sided store in a flat or neutral position.

Most art markers are two-sided with a fine and a thick end. A very basic word of advice is to use both ends on each marker as equally as possible. Otherwise one end will dry out long before the other.

Always use the paper that is specific to the marker. If you use normal copy paper it will absorb the marker ink like a paper towel to water. Two examples: watercolor paper for watercolor markers, a pen sketcher pad for fine-tipped ink markers. You can even search "Marker Paper" and find a variety out there bound to suit your needs. 

So be ready to budget the amount needed for the long lasting best quality markers. Once you know what kind of marker you require, do your research and find out all you can about that particular set and see how they compare with others' reviews. From there on it is up to you to use and store them properly and get the most out of the marker set you buy. 

Copic Sketch Marker Sets Copic Sketch Marker Sets
The Copic marker offers outstanding performance in all areas of design and illustration. Two versatile tips produce a range of strokes from fine lines to wide color fills. The roll-proof flat barrel is filled with alcohol based ink for a long life. Sets range from 6—72 markers. - Bold Primaries, Set of 6

Prismacolor Premier Double-Ended Art Marker Sets, Set of 12, Primary/Secondary Colors Prismacolor Premier Double-Ended Art Marker Sets, Set of 12, Primary/Secondary Colors
Designed for detailed work, these double-ended art markers feature an advanced dye-based alcohol ink formulation that ensures rich color saturation, impressive laydown, and smooth, silky ink flow. - Set of 12, Primary/Secondary Colors

Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pens, Basic Colors, Set of 6 Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Pens, Basic Colors, Set of 6
Pigmented India Ink in multiple nib sizes and 58 colors brings great versatility to pen-and-ink drawings requiring lots of intricate details. The ink is waterproof, unsurpassably lightfast, acid-free, and pH-neutral. - Basic Colors, Set of 6

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