Markers Archives - MarkerSupply.com Blog

A Closer Look At.. Montana ACRYLIC

Everybody here at Marker Supply has been excited about adding several new brands to our store this summer. Our most recent addition, Montana Cans, is definitely worth checking out- especially by urban artists, sign painters, muralists, mixed media composers, and designers of all kinds!

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Take a closer look at the Montana ACRYLIC paint line…

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MONTANA ACRYLIC PAINT MARKERS

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The newest line of water-based paint markers in the Marker Supply store- Montana ACRYLICS. Featuring a selection of vibrant colors modeled after the Montana GOLD spray paint line, including bold “Shock” colors, shining metallics, glowing fluorescents, earthy tones, and various grays. Empty markers and refill inks also make it possible to mix your own custom colors too!

Available in 5 tip sizes (with alternate tip styles available separately). Find super tiny tips for the finest of details, wide tips for calligraphic lettering, fine tips for outlines, jumbo tips for quick coverage of surface areas, even split tips that give a multiline effect.

See the different markers and the nibs that fit each one:
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The high-quality paints in Montana ACRYLIC markers are waterproof, lightfast, highly-pigmented, and quick-drying. They are suitable for a variety of projects and surfaces including walls, windows, wood, canvas, metal, shoes, and more! Replaceable valve-action tips give a smooth, well-controlled flow of paint so you can apply like a pro. Marker barrels are transparent so you can easily view the levels of paint left inside. When you run out of paint, just fill them back up!
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MONTANA ACRYLIC PAINT REFILLS

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Another great feature of Montana ACRYLIC that lots of other paint markers lack is that they are refillable! Use the 25ml or 180ml refills to always keep a fresh supply of paint in your markers.

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The 25ml refill bottle can also be turned into a special “dauber” tip marker with the 10mm round cloth applicator tips! See the tip pack, which includes lids, HERE.

These bottled paints don’t have to be destined for just markers either, they work well with paintbrushes and airbrushes too!

The refill paints are also where the fun of color mixing comes in. Grab a few different shades and combine them to create your own custom colors unique to your project! There are empty refill bottles, empty markers, and widemouth jars available to help with the blending process.

**TIP**
How to refill a Montana ACRYLIC marker:
1- Unscrew, to the left, the top section that holds the nib.
2- Use your fingernail to help remove the next section, with the valve system springs.
3- Add the refill paint to the open marker. Only fill the barrel 3/4 of the way full, to leave room for the valve system part.
4- Press the valve system section back in and make sure it is tight.
5- Screw the nib section back on, to the right, and make sure it is securely tightened.
6- Prime the nib by pressing up and down on a test surface.

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MONTANA ACRYLIC VARNISH GLOSS

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Montana ACRYLIC Varnish Gloss is used to further protect and seal your painted artworks by keeping them extra water-and-abrasion proof.

Varnish Gloss also enhances the visual effect of the Montana ACRYLIC paint colors, and helps to color match them with the Montana GOLD spray paint color line. It can also be used to create depth and intensify how light interacts with your designs.

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MONTANA ACRYLIC EMPTY MARKERS

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An exciting feature of the Montana ACRYLIC line- and an often-requested item that finally made its way to the Marker Supply store- empty barrel markers! Now you can create the exact color you need, diluted to the exact consistency you like, with whichever marker tip size you want.

The transparent plastic of the barrel allows you to easily see inside your markers to check paint levels and colors. They are available in 5 marker sizes, as well as empty 25ml and 180ml bottles.

**To get the best performance out of these markers, we recommend using them only with water-based acrylic paints.
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MONTANA ACRYLIC REPLACEMENT TIPS

replacementtipgroupblogIf ever you run across the issue of a dried out, worn down, or otherwise damaged marker tip- you can simply pull out the old one, and pop a new one right in its place!

The selection of replacement tips also includes some that don’t come on the regular markers, such as the extra fine .5mm, the 6mm slanted chisel, and split “multiline” tips, so you can further customize your marker by changing the tip to suit your writing and drawing style.

You can also convert the 25ml paint bottles into markers by adding the 10mm rounded cloth tip.

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MONTANA BLACKBOOK A5 LANDSCAPE SKETCHBOOK

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A helpful tool for artists of all kinds, this hardcover sketchbook features 144 pages of 120G coated white paper that works with pencils and markers. Measuring only 6 x 8.5 inches, it fits easily in your workspace, and is perfect to take on-the-go for drawing out your designs wherever inspiration hits.

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We hope you enjoy the many possibilities of the Montana ACRYLIC paints and artist tools. If you have any artwork done with these markers, feel free to post your projects on our social media or tag us with #markersupply!

Keep an eye out for more brands and products being adding soon to the Marker Supply store! 🙂

 

 

$1.00 Marker Clearance Sale!

Did you know that Marker Supply has a nice variety of markers for $1.00 or less?!?

The best place to find these deals is the Marker Supply Clearance Section. Lots of pens and markers find their way here for one reason or another- whether they’ve been discontinued by the manufacturer, they’ve become overstocked, the set they’ve come from has been broken apart, or they are just being taken out of our inventory to make room for new things. Nonetheless, these are still awesome items that you can now score for an awesome price.

Some of our best dollar deals right now:

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ZIG MILLENNIUM PENS

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This colorful part of the Zig Memory System range comes in 6 fine tip sizes. Millennium pens work well for everyday writing, journaling, planners, and more!

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ZIG PAINTY OIL-BASED MARKERS

The Zig Painty markers have been known for their unique colors. Some of them have now been discontinued and we are giving you one last chance to grab these colors for just a buck each! These are oil-based markers that can be used to permanently mark on numerous surfaces.

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PRISMACOLOR ART STIX

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Art Stix are colored pencils, only they are square-shaped and have no outer wood shell! These fun tools are great for artists of all types and all ages. Use them at any angle, or trim them to mark however you like!

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ZIG WRITER

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Certain colors of the Zig Writer can be found on sale for only $0.98 each! The Writer markers have a fine tip on one end, and a medium bullet tip on the other. Nice for writing and coloring! Water-based ink won’t bleed through most papers and is safe for kids!
(Note: These colors MUST be ordered from their special sale page to get this pricing.)

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WINK OF STELLA GLITTER MARKERS
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These special pens from Zig lay down some shimmery glitter along with their colors. The fine plastic tip gives you great control over where you mark. Try them with cardmaking, or use them to add a fun look to your coloring book pages!

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KOH-I-NOOR MULTICOLORED PENCILS

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A unique pencil with a blend of 3 colors in 1 tip! These mosaic leads give your coloring a whole new look!

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ZIG FINE & CHISEL MARKERS

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These double-ended markers are perfect for colorful lettering, various papercrafting projects, and even as highlighting/underlining tools. Also available in fun season-themed sets! Another great discontinued marker, so get them before they are gone!!

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POSTERMAN CALLIGRAPHY

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A smaller, square-style chisel tip version of the popular Zig Posterman markers. Not only nice for calligraphy style writing, but works for other lettering and coloring in small spaces on chalkboards, windows, posters, and more!

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ZIG DRAWING PENS

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At just $0.75 each, these handy Drawing Pens from Zig are great tools with a range of 6 fine line tip sizes. Black pigment ink works well for sketching and writing! (Also find the Zig Artist Sketching Pens for under a dollar too!!)

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ZIG CALLIGRAPHY PENS

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Whether you are a fan of slanted chisel tips (oblique) or flat chisel tips (square), the Zig Calligraphy pens are great for multiple lettering styles and work well for beginner or advanced calligraphers!

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Find all of the above markers, and more, at markersupply.com for $1.00 or less!

Keep in mind with these discontinued items that availability of certain colors will become limited. And once we run out, they’ll be gone! So hurry and grab your favorites while ya can!

Keep your eye on the super sale section to find more great deals as they come!

Sparkle Sparkle! A closer look at.. Glitter Pens

As we wrap up our Pen Pal contest, (thanks again to everyone who has written to us!!) we’ve noticed a TON of folks that love to use glitter pens and markers on their envelopes, cards, and letters… as well as mentioning to us that these shimmering tools are their favorite to use in journals, coloring books, scrapbooks, and other paper & fabric crafts.

So we decided to do a little highlight blog that gives you a closer look at different types of glitter pens we have here at Marker Supply!

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SAKURA GELLY ROLL STARDUST

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Gelly Roll pens.. Everyone’s favorite, right? These roller ball tip pens use a smooth-flowing pigment gel ink. The Gelly Roll Stardust is a special line of these popular pens that packs an incredible punch in the glitter department. And just like other types of Gelly Rolls, they are able to add fun effects to both light AND dark papers:

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ZIG WINK OF STELLA

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The Wink of Stella markers have become very well known for their ability to add a fun glittery look along with their color. Water-based ink is safe for kids to use too!
They are available in a variety of colors both in a sleek marker with a fine plastic tip– great for writing and outlining, and also in a bigger marker with a squeezable body and bristle brush tip– for brush lettering styles and coloring larger areas and backgrounds quickly.

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POSCA PC-3ML

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The same great Posca paint you love- only these pens have glitter particles mixed in too! Posca markers use an acrylic type water-based paint (different from the other pens that use an INK) that works on a million surfaces- from paper, to chalkboards, to plastic, to glass. Plus, it washes off non-porous surfaces with standard household cleaner- so it’s great for temporarily decorating things like mirrors and windows!

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MARVY DECO JUST GLITTER

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The Marvy Deco Just Glitter pens are exactly that.. just glitter! For when you want to add some sparkle to paper OR fabric crafts! Find these markers with gold, silver, or multicolor glitter- a mix of red, green, and silver.

MARVY DECO JUST GLITTER PREMIUM

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The Marvy Deco Just Glitter Premium markers have the same properties (no color in the paint, just colored glitter) but are available in 6 sparkling colors! The rounded bullet tips give you nice control over the amazing laydown of glittery color. Works great on light and dark surfaces.

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MARVY DECOFABRIC

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The Marvy Decofabric Glitter Markers have a 3mm fine valve-action tip so you can always access fresh paint to add some special shine to your clothes, backpacks and purses, shoes, hats, doilies and placemats- anything fabric, whether it’s light or dark!

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OTHER PENS TO USE FOR ADDING GLITTER..

ZIG EMBOSSING PENS

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If you like to use glittery embossing powders, check out the various embossing markers we carry- all featuring different tips that work great for lettering, adding details and borders, and more!

Embossing markers write with an almost invisible ink that is slightly adhesive. Embossing powder is sprinkled on top, sticking to the ink marks. When heated with a heat tool, the powder melts and fuses to the paper- leaving a slightly raised design that looks amazing!

Read more about these markers and how to emboss in our blog post:
SPECIAL MARKERS TO USE WITH A HEAT TOOL

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SAKURA QUICKIE GLUE

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Sakura Quickie Glue comes in a roller ball style pen. It lets you add glue in the form of letters as you write, designs as you draw, or in teeny tiny spaces. The super fine point makes sure that the glitter sticks only in the places you want it to! These pens also work well for adding other kinds of small papercraft embellishments like jewels or sequins.

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What’s your favorite type of glitter pen?

Let us know, and feel free to share your sparkling projects too, on our social media pages!

www.facebook.com/MarkerSupply

Instagram #MarkerSupply @MarkerSupply

www.twitter.com/MarkerSupply

 

 

National Letterwriting Month

April is here and so is “National Letterwriting Month”!!!

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The world we live in today has become more and more centered around technology and digital communication. Emails, texting, instant messaging, and social media are a common part of daily life, but can you remember the last time you received a handwritten letter? The instant relay of a message can be convenient for sure, but the personal touch of a physical letter can be a powerful thing.

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The 30 Letters in 30 Days Challenge

There are numerous organizations and blogs that celebrate this holiday by giving you “Letter-a-day” challenges, hosting things like “letterwriting to active military personnel” events, and more. The Postal Service even creates special stamps and sometimes kits for the occasion!

Last year we became aware of the #write_on campaign (sponsored by Sakura, the company that brings you great pens like Gelly Rolls and Microns) that challenges you to write a letter to someone every day of the month. We are so excited to participate and help to spread the idea that you should pick up some pens and markers and CREATE your messages on paper rather than using your phone or computer.

Taking the time to hand write a letter (or even to create a custom card or decorate an envelope) gives the recipient an extra sign that you care about them. And it sure is a good change from the usual mix of bills and junk mail that can often flood mailboxes.

All throughout the month of April, we encourage you to do some letterwriting. Whether it be a multiple page letter or a few sentences in a card, send a special person in your life something handwritten by you. It can brighten their day more than you could imagine! 🙂

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Send us your snail mail!

We LOVE getting “marker fan mail” here at Marker Supply!

See our blog post about this month’s contest HERE and find out how sending us something in the mail can enter you to win a giant set of Gelly Roll pens!

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Stay tuned this month for some writing/cardmaking product spotlights, special sales, and more!!

Check out www.markersupply.com to find some great tools to help you add even more special touches to your snail mail!

WHERE’S THE WHITE??

Here at the Marker Supply warehouse, one of the most common things people come looking for are opaque white ink pens for writing on paper.

Unfortunately, we always have to say that these types of pens are still practically non-existent.

The main reason?
The type of ink required to make a functional white ink pen has been very difficult to produce. It would need to be both thin enough to flow through a pen tip AND thick enough to stay a visible white once it’s marked onto paper.

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Pigments vs. Dyes

There’s a little illustration we’ve heard that can help explain a big difference between two types of ink- Pigments and Dyes:

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First, take 2 glasses of water.

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In one glass, pour in some sugar.
In the other glass, pour in some dirt.

Both begin to cloud the water as you stir them up.
But notice what happens after just a minute when they settle..

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The sugar is still there, but has fully dissolved into the water
and everything returns to a totally liquid state.
The glass with the dirt still has solid particles everywhere
and a thick layer of mud has collected on the bottom.

 

Most pen inks are colored with dyes (like the water example with the sugar), which are either liquid, or in a solid form that quickly dissolves, and then can easily flow through the pen. However, this property can also cause the ink to either leak through the pen tip too quickly, and/or soak completely into porous surfaces like paper and become transparent- meaning that this type of white ink won’t be seen because the ink isn’t thick enough to keep its color visible on top of an absorbent surface.

What helps some colors to show up the best when making ink is to use pigment. Pigments (like the water example with the dirt) are dense, finely ground particles that stay solid as they add their color. They don’t dissolve into fluid, but are rather just suspended in it. To get a good, opaque white, you need a LOT of pigment. When you try and put too much into a pen however, it won’t flow through the tip like a normal ink without clogging or drying up.

(Fun Fact: The most common pigment used to create the color white is Titanium Dioxide.)

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Gel Ink

The marking pen world made a big step in the creation of white pens with the invention of Gel Ink. Originally marketed in 1984 by Japanese company Sakura, it finally allows a roller ball pen to use a white ink.

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(Fun Fact: As researchers worked to develop gel ink, they tried a wide variety of materials to get the consistency just right, including yams and egg whites!
For some more great history on the invention of Sakura’s Gelly Roll pens, read this interesting article:
https://www.gellyroll.com/history)

Gel ink is not quite the same as ordinary pen ink, as it is a lot thicker- causing issues like needing to move the pen more slowly as you write, and the marks taking longer to dry. Also, the roller ball tips still can occasionally clog. (If this happens, rolling the pen tip over a wet paper towel may help.) Despite their issues, we are still very happy to have them as an option for white ink!

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Find these white gel pens at Marker Supply:
Uni-ball Signo Gel Impact
Sakura Gelly Roll Classic Medium Tip
Marvy Gel Reminisce

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White ink comparisons on black paper

Other than gel pens, you can also find good white marking tools for paper when you look into pencils, oil-pastels, even correction pens! There are also valve-action markers that use more of a “paint” than an “ink”. Although paint markers tend to show up better on non-porous surfaces, such as glass or metal, some have been known to work adequately for certain paper projects.

Have a look at this comparison chart showing several white marking tools on plain black paper to see the ones that may work best for you! Find them all at MarkerSupply.com.

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As experiments continue in the pen industry, white ink is getting closer and closer to becoming more common!

But as for now, which white pen/marker have you found works best for you??

Let us know and feel free to share your white marker artwork on our social media pages!
www.facebook.com/markersupply
Instagram #MarkerSupply
Twitter @MarkerSupply

Some Metallic Markers We Love!

 

 

This month’s focus on metallic markers had us rounding up some of our favorites!
Here’s a closer look at some of our go-to metallic picks:

*Pebeo 4Artist Copper Marker*

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An impressive metallic marker that we fell in love with instantly. This oil-based copper paint pen makes smooth and shiny marks that look just like a melted penny! These markers can be used on multiple surfaces and give any craft a real WOW factor.

*Fabricolor Fine Tip Gold & Silver*

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When asked what our recommendation is for autographs or other markings on black/dark fabrics, our best pick is the Zig Fabricolor Fine Tip marker in silver. Its super light ink appears almost white but gives a brighter, slightly shiny appearance that really stands out. The Zig Fabricolor Fine Tip gold marker is a deep, almost bronze-like gold, with bright gold specks blended in that looks beautiful on all types of fabrics!

*Fudebiyori Metallic Brush Markers*
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With their soft and flexible brush tip, the Fudebiyori (Foo-dee-bee-your-ee) markers work very well for lettering as well as making other designs, borders, and more. The ink flows super smoothly from the tip, and brings incredible metallic colors to light or dark papers.

*Wink of Stella Glitter Brush Pens*
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Glitter can be added to SO many things, making them stand out with a sparkle. The amount of glitter that these pens lay down along with their color is pretty amazing! They are available in a variety of different colors, and can be used alone or over the top of other colored areas. Plus, this pen is easily controllable with a squeezable barrel and real bristle-type brush.

*Gelly Roll Shadow*

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A special type of Gelly Roll, the “Shadow” roller ball gel pens have the unique feature of writing with a color that quickly turns into a metallic color (gold or silver) and leaves just a hint of the other color on the edges for a fun effect as you write!

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Have a look at these great markers and more at www.markersupply.com!

Coloring Book Markers: Alcohol-Based Markers

The new craze of coloring books has people searching for the best tools to bring color and life to their pages. There are so many kinds to choose from! Marker Supply is focusing several blogs on markers and more that are perfect for use in coloring!

See Part 1: Zig Double-Ended Markers

See Part 2: Pens & Pencils

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Part 3: Alcohol-Based Markers

One of the most common tools we’ve seen that people like to use in their coloring books are markers with alcohol-based ink. This type of ink usually has bold color properties and flows onto paper “as smooth as butter”. These markers may also have unique properties such as being refillable, having interchangeable nibs, and more.

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A word of warning about markers with alcohol ink

This ink is usually very strong and can easily bleed through paper!

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Make sure you use single-sided coloring pages (with some kind of backboard underneath to catch any ink that soaks through) and/or use paper that is thick enough to handle alcohol inks!
The contents of this type of ink are also usually not kid-friendly, so be sure to use them age-appropriately.

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PRISMACOLOR BRUSH & FINE

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A great coloring marker with tips that are perfect for coloring books that feature small spaces, the Prismacolor Premier Brush & Fine is a double-ended marker with a fine tip opposite a flexible, rubber brush tip. (You can also find the same marker with Chisel & Fine tips). The silky smooth ink flow leaves your pages with nice, even color. Available in 195 colors and multicolor sets of all sizes!

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ZIG KURECOLOR

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Our equivalent to the Copic markers, the Zig Kurecolor markers have all the same features you love- they are double-ended, refillable, have a variety of tips to choose from, and are available in OVER 100 colors!! Often used by graphic artists and other professionals, Kurecolors contain high-quality permanent inks. Choose from the Kurecolor Twin– with a larger, easy-to-grip barrel- and the Kurecolor Twin S– with a slimmer, square barrel, so it won’t roll off the table!

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CHAMELEON COLOR TONE PENS

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One of the newest markers here at Marker Supply, the Chameleon Color Tone Pens have a very unique ability.
Each marker fits together into 2 parts. One part can be used alone as a regular double-ended coloring marker with alcohol-based ink. OR, if you take out the small section in the middle, you can place the colored tip into the second part of the marker- which has a tip filled with a clear blending solution.
Let the clear blender tip soak for a moment into the colored tip. Then take the colored section of the marker back out, color with it, and watch what happens! The color will start super faint, then gradually darken all on its own as you color! These markers make it VERY easy to color in a seamless gradation- letting you apply some awesome effects to your coloring pages!

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Hop on our social media pages and hashtag #MarkerSupply to let us know which markers you like to use!

Happy coloring, everyone!!

 

Coloring Book Markers: Zig Double-Ended

The new craze of coloring books has people searching for the best tools to bring color and life to their pages. There are so many kinds to choose from! Marker Supply is focusing several blogs on markers and more that are perfect for use in coloring!

See Part 2: Pens & Pencils

See Part 3: Alcohol-Based Markers

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 PART 1: ZIG DOUBLE-ENDED MARKERS

We love dual tip markers because it’s like getting 2 pens in 1! And these water-based markers make great choices for coloring books, because the ink tends to not bleed through most papers- a great benefit if you have double-sided pages!

ZIG BRUSHABLES

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The Brushables are dual brush tip markers that feature a solid color on one end, and a 50% lighter shade of that color on the other end- making it super easy to color in two matching tones. The rubber brush tip works in larger spaces and all those super tiny spots as well!

Find them in color sets or a complete set of 24!

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ZIG WRITER

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The Zig Writer is a great marker for general writing and paper crafting purposes, but also has nice basic tips for coloring. On one side, find a rounded bullet tip, and on the other, a fine plastic tip. Comes in 48 colors!

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These markers also come in metallic and chalk pastel colors, great for both light AND dark coloring pages!

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ZIG FINE & CHISEL

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Another marker with great tips for coloring, the “Fine & Chisel” describes itself perfectly. You get a fine plastic tip on one side, and a slanted chisel tip on the other. Chisel tips give you nice control over how you color- the same tip covers both broad and narrow spaces!

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Have a look at some special “seasonal” sets featuring fun color groups of the Fine & Chisel markers!

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ZIG ART & GRAPHIC

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Although not found in the “Zig Memory System” like the other Zig dual tip markers, the Art & Graphic is one of our favorite dual tip pens. Comparable to the Tombow dual brush pen, it has a fine tip opposite a flexible rubber brush tip, making it great for many things- including coloring!
If you have coloring pages thick enough to handle it, the Art & Graphics blend like watercolor when used with a water brush like the Zig BrusH20, which makes for some awesome effects!
Try them in some brand new Art & Graphic color sets or find a large range of 80 colors individually!

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ZIG PHOTO TWIN

zig-photo-twin-markers-38Just one of the great finds in our Clearance Section– the Photo Twin markers are what we use in coloring books for just a little tint of color. Designed for adding color to B&W photos, a lot of the Photo Twin colors are on the pale side, while still giving a nice look! The large brush tip and smaller brush tip are perfect for those coloring books with tiny spaces. There are limited quantities of these markers left, so get ’em while you can!

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Stay tuned to the Marker Supply Blog for more coloring book marker highlights!

Hop on our social media pages and hashtag #MarkerSupply to let us know which markers you like to use!

Happy coloring, everyone!!

New Contest: The Coloring Book Craze!

We’ve seen them everywhere- COLORING BOOKS are all the rage lately! Kids have always enjoyed them, and we are happy to see adults joining in the fun too!

This month, Marker Supply is highlighting markers that we love using for coloring books. Check out the Coloring Book Section on our website, and stay tuned for more blogs about the different types of coloring tools we have- including water-based markers, alcohol-based markers, and pencils!

WIN SOME COLORING BOOK MARKERS IN OUR NEW CONTEST!

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Our current contest has several ways you can enter from now until August 17th. One grand prize winner to receive a complete set of all 24 Zig Brushables Markers! These double-ended markers have a solid color on one end, and a 50% lighter shade of that color on the other end. So in all, this set gives you 48 colors!! The durable, “rubber” brush tip makes it very easy to color larger spaces AND super tiny spaces as well. Zig Brushables are water-based, so they won’t bleed through your coloring book pages, and they are non-toxic- so kids can use them too!

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When the contest has ended, we will randomly draw ONE grand prize winner to receive the Brushables set. We’ll also pick THREE runners-up who will win an assorted coloring book marker pack! We will notify the winners via email, so make sure to check your inbox (and the spam folder too, in case it gets filtered into there!)

WAYS TO ENTER THE CONTEST:

You have a chance to earn multiple entries for our Coloring Book Contest, each by a different action.

*Sign up for our email newsletter!
Marker Supply sends out emails every now and then to let you know about new products, special offers, store closings, and more. Submit your email address and earn a contest entry! (Note: If you are already signed up for our newsletter- thanks! You can still submit your email address in that section and use it as an entry for this contest.)

*Tell us what you like to use in your coloring books!
Which markers do you like to color with? Check your favorites from off the list and earn a contest entry.

*Show us a page from your coloring book!
We love to see what your markers have made! Upload a photo of a page from your coloring book that you’ve colored to a social media website (Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter) with the hashtag #markersupply and then pair that photo with this entry option on the contest page.

Start earning your entries on our contest page HERE. Good luck! 🙂

Featured Artist: @SignJay

We’re wrapping up chalk markers and chalkboard month at Marker Supply with another featured artist!!

Aside from party boards (as featured in our blog about LA Sign Design), and the countless chalk marker projects you can do at home (some of which highlighted in our last blog), another big area that you may notice the art of chalkboard signs is in stores and restaurants! Windows, displays, grocery departments, event posters, menus, and more can have such a nice appeal to customers after they’ve been decorated with chalk markers!!

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We Markerland folks are always very impressed by the talented people behind those signs, and we are excited to feature a chalkboard sign artist who is very active in doing store display and event poster chalkboards!

post7signsSome amazing work done by Rachel- a.k.a. @SignJay

Rachel Humiston is from Richmond, VA and has been doing professional chalkboard signs since 2008.

“I got a job as a sign artist at Trader Joe’s. I didn’t have any experience- I actually had just graduated with a math degree, but I wanted to do well so I threw all my energy into practicing and improving. I didn’t know at the time I would make a career of it, but it is a practical kind of art form and in retrospect- that fits my personality perfectly!

The first piece I ever did was a 24 x 41 inch display for roasted red pepper and tomato soup and some crackers at Trader Joe’s. I still remember sitting on the floor drawing and re-writing the layout trying to make all of the information fit. It took days but thankfully I had a very patient boss who had faith and I got the hang of it. Eight years later we are still a team and I’m very grateful!”

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RACHEL’S RECENT WORKS

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“I actually finished the largest piece I have done to date just this week! It was a series of different size frames covering an area of approximately 11 x 12 feet for an event called Creative Marketplace where local artists and makers come together to connect and share their wares with the community. I’ve done a couple murals that were physically larger but this was the largest typography design thus far.”

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 SOME CHALKBOARD ART TIPS FROM RACHEL

“The projects I take on usually require a lot of information in a relatively small space, so the toughest part of the process is finding creative solutions to dividing up the text so it is both easy to read and also beautiful.
Once I have a good design, the rest is pure fun!”

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Getting started:
“I typically start by looking at my source materials- packaging, logos, etc. and visualize some ideas in my head first. Then I will do 2 or 3 very loose thumbnail sketches, to make sure I have enough room for all of my elements, and select the best layout. The sketches are comically simple because I’ve found that fine-tuning is best done on the actual board. I’ll then do the sketch on the board and move things around as necessary- this way I can see the design to scale. The exception is when you work menus- you need mathematical precision, so those sketches are much more in-depth.”

Correcting mistakes:
“If it’s a small mistake, I can correct it when I add the background color, outlines, and shadows by simply drawing over it. If it is something that needs to be completely changed, I use 91% isopropyl alcohol to clean the area. That sounds technical but it’s just the stuff you find in first aid kits. You can buy it just about anywhere- it’s inexpensive and works well. “

Working on chalkboards vs. glass:
“Chalkboards have some grit to them that helps to slow down the marker and gives more control. The smoothness of glass means the marker moves fast and loose. It also affects how I hold the pen- on chalkboards I rest my arm and wrist on the board for stability, but with glass the marker is the only thing that can touch. The surface I prefer working on is chalk boards, but if I’m working on glass I will lean towards script fonts- as their flow is more conducive to the surface.”

Spacing tips:
“Draw rectangles around the rounded letters like “O” or “D”- it makes it easier to compare the corners to see if they are even. Invest in a clear drafting ruler that is divided into grid- it will change your life!”

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CHALK MARKERS : RACHEL’S PICKS
(and some suggestions from us!)

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“I am a huge Woodcraft marker devotee- the opacity, vibrancy, and ease with which you can do multiple coats cannot be beat! They are incredibly versatile and can be used on so many surfaces. I use a ton of Gardenia, a lovely warm white. I use the chisel tip and the Big & Broad size in equal measure.
The Woodcraft markers are actually quite permanent even without sealing them. I have interior signs that have been up for 8 years under fluorescent lighting and they have not faded, chipped, or cracked!

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More recently I’ve expanded to the Uni Poscas in the 1, 3 and 5m sizes because they are perfect for crisping up the edges of the letters, great for outlining, and they work great over or under the Woodcraft markers.”

If you are looking to do some art for a store, restaurant, etc., we have what you need at Marker Supply! Try these special sets that might help you get started:


chalk markersZig Posterman Starter Sets come in 3 different sizes and each feature Zig Posterman markers in a variety of colors and tip sizes for you to try, as well as a great chalkboard cleaning tool- the Scrubs do-it-all wipes!

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Perfect little starter packs of the Zig Woodcraft Markers, the Food Menu Sets feature colors specifically picked to match a different food group theme!

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Thanks again to Rachel for sharing your work and advice with us!
Check out Rachel’s Instagram to see more of her amazing chalk marker art!!

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**ALL CHALK ART PHOTOS ON THIS BLOG ARE COPYRIGHT TO RACHEL HUMISTON and we are thankful for her letting us use them to show off her talent! 🙂

Have any chalk marker artwork that you’d like to share? Tag us #MarkerSupply – we’d love to see!!!