um, so getting back to what I was going to post… black pen test for mixed media art & art journals…

There was a question in an art journal fb group about the preferred black pens to use with mixed media and art journals. I’m a visual person, so I rounded up all the pens I have at home and did some tests to show how they work out. It’s certainly not all the ones available, but all the black pens & markers I could find at home.

I used Strathmore mixed media paper. I tested them on Golden brand gesso (creamier), Golden brand heavy gel, and Liquitex Basics gesso (rougher). The far right column was the pens directly on the paper, then (after heat-dried) washed over with a single pass of a soft brush full of water. I put the gessos and gel on fairly thick to the left side of their respective column, and thinner to the right (but only about 1.5″ wide in each column because I wasn’t thinking). It’s too humid for acrylic stuff to dry well here, so the thicker sides were still tacky when I did this. It effects the pen performance; the thinner sides took the pen better. Oh, and I did a last-minute triple-pass of matte medium over 1/2 the pen in the far left column…

The matte medium and water were used to the right of the lines in the individual examples in each column (except the one dedicated water column)…

The inc R2 & MegaBold pens are both dollar store finds…

Sadly, my favorite pen (Scarlet Lime) is no longer available. If anyone finds one that performs like that, with the same deep black, please point me in the right direction! I tried the FudeBall a while back (what was originally recommended to replace the Scarlet Lime), but it just didn’t hook me. In my opinion, it performed a lot like the dollar store pens for a much higher price. I used a friend’s at the time, so it’s not part of this test page. (I was just told that the Pilot Multiball pen and the Pilot BeGreen Recycled Permaball GellRollerball pen (UK) the same as the Scarlet Lime one… Will have to check both out.)

Does any of that even make sense? Hopefully the pics help…

If you have done something similar (or do it in the future), feel free to show & tell in the comments. If you allow, I will move your test up into the body of this post so it’s all in one place. 😉

 

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