Guest Blog Post by Design Team member Pat Mathes
Comments in italics from Deb
Greetings on this cold wintery day!
I love pens! Anyone who knows me knows that I am always buying a new pen to try. In the Zentangle® world (Pat is a CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher), we normally use Micron Pigma pens. You notice I say “normally”. I actually use whatever suits my fancy that day. Of course, that is when I am creating Zentangle Inspired Art. I still use Microns with Zentangle tiles. But I digress….
Deb gave me six silver pens to review for you. Oh wow did that make me happy! So I played and played and thought I had a favorite, then I would pick up another and have a new favorite. So I decided all were good for different purposes. After I played with them, I did go on line to read any other details on the pens (you will see some of that in the descriptions of the pens). I also wanted to see if there were reviews on the pens, and found everything was pretty comparable to my findings. (all of these pens come in different colors too)
The first pen is the Y&C gel Xtreme 0.7 from Yasutomo . These pens feature high quality, water based, acid free and non-toxic pigment gel ink. It is a 0.7 millimeter tipped pen, so a nice fine line. It would be great for detail work as it flows very fine. It has a shimmery metallic effect. I think it works well on both the white and black paper. It would be great for journaling, as it is easy to read the writing.
Next up is the Uniball gel impact silver 1.0 mm. It flows very smooth. It has a bold 1.0 mm tip and a contemporary barrel design with a rubber grip. There is a visible ink supply and it is permanent ink. I really like the Uniball pen, but I confess a lot of times I do Zentangle drawings with a Uniball black fine pen. Uniball pens are so smooth on the paper. My favorite white pen is a Uniball Signo. This silver Uniball really stands out on the black paper, as well as the white, and maintains a shimmery metallic sheen. Again, it would be great for journaling because of the ease of writing.
Then we have the Faber Castell Metallic Pitt artist pen. It has a broad tip – not a nib or gell roller tip, more like a micron graphic 1 or Sharpie pen. It is an India ink base. It has a very smooth style. I like Pitt pens. I like the way they write. The only drawback for me with this one is that it dries more of a flat grayish silver. It doesn’t have a sheen. When I use a silver or gold pen, I like the sheen. It is one that actually looks better on the white paper rather than the black. It would work in journals – just a flatter silver color.
The Derwent Graphik line painter is an opaque pigment ink with a 0.5 mm Japanese nib. It is a very fine line and would do great detail work. Like the Pitt Artist Pen, the Graphik line painter shows more of a flat silver gray on paper and looks better on white paper. Because of the fine linework, it would be good in journaling. I did see some reviews for this line painter of issues with blobbing ink or bubbling ink. It does have a see through cartridge, and I do see bubbles in the cartridge. But I had no issues.
The Molotow One4All acrylic paint pen has a 2.0 round tip. It flows very smoothly. It is refillable and you can also replace tips. I don’t think it would be too difficult. The tip screws onto the cartridge. I actually had to go on line to read about this one – there wasn’t a whole lot of information on the pen and it was such tiny print, it was hard to read. It got good reviews – I like the effect – it would make some great framing borders or whimsical lettering on a journal page.
Last, but not least, is the Sakura Pen-Touch 2.0 mm. This is a permanent paint marker with opaque color. It is archival ink and goes on really smooth. It does cover an area very quickly and doesn’t streak. Like the Molotow, it would be great in doing journal work and lettering projects.
I tried all of these pens on a white mixed media 90 lb. journal page and on an Artagain black 100 lb. page. None of the pens bled through the paper. They all show very nicely on the black paper – on the white they are not as dramatic. I switched to a 60# drawing pad and the Molotow and PenTouch came real close to bleeding through.
All of them dry pretty quickly which was a surprise, especially with the Molotow and Sakura, and they are all waterproof. About 20 minutes after I did the pages I took a water brush to the pages and none of the inks smeared at all. With a lot of pigment and India ink type pens, you need to allow some setting time or they will smear a bit. For instance, a Micron pigment pen almost needs to set for 24 hours or use a heat drying method to be able to use water over it.
I have started doing some journal work and can see potential in all six of the pens to use in journaling. I could use any of them in Zentangle Inspired Art. I actually took the Uniball and applied it over an alcohol ink piece I did and liked that too. Great pens, and all are available at Blue Twig Studio. Check them out.
Thanks Pat for an awesome review. I love pens and markers too and am always on the lookout for new and wonderful pens. Of course, we have lots of pens in the shop. I apologize if the full selection isn’t available on the website, but you can always ask me about products and I can send you an invoice for them.
Let Your Inner Artist out to Play
Blue Twig Studio – 5039 N Academy Blvd – Colorado Springs, CO 80918