Saturday, March 28, 2009

The Quest for the Perfect Pen

I have been looking for the perfect black pen. With a really fine tip to do some fine details that has good quality ink and that can last through anything. I decided to test my pens and see which one is the best. Here are the results.

First up, the Uniball Vision, fine:
The tip is way too big for me. And it spreads a big amount of ink. I can actually go back on the stroke and spread the extra ink with my quill. I use it to cover medium-sized areas that I want completely black.

There is also the Uniball Vision, micro:
but the tip is still way to big.

Now for the Staedtler:
So I tried different sizes from 0.5 to 0.1
I am pretty happy with these pens
And 0,1 is my favority of all the pens tested
The ink is dark, the tip is really fine. They are waterproof and pretty tough compare to the Sakuras. The only problem is that since they have a felt-tip they have a tendency to dry up when they get in contact with gouache or other mediums. In my illustrations, I use a lot white gouache and when I want to redraw on it with my pen most felt-tip dry up.
But still the Staedtler are still my favorites.

Sakura micron:
A lot of artists use these pen. The tip is really fine no complaints there. I use mostly the 0.05. But I have big durability issues with these pens. The tip gets broken easily and they dry up super fast. And if they get in contact with my gouache... it's instant death. That's why I don't use the 0.01. It had a very fine tip and did a nice thin stroke. I was so happy when I first got it... but it lasted 2 weeks and now it barely writes and the stroke is inconsistent.

Dollarstore pen:
I have to mention this pen. My boyfriend got it at the dollar store and gave it to me because he hated the pen. but I love it. It has a medium fine tip. It's supposed to be a 0.5 but feels more like a 0.3. I have lost the cap to this pen a while ago and it's still working wonders. And I can use it on gouache and it doesn't have any problem with it. It just keeps on going.

I am still looking for the perfect pen. So please send me your suggestions.
I'll test them and see what works best.


harlequin said...

the uniball pens you suggested are great pens, but I only use them for writing, i enjoy how smooth they are. And i'm left handed so then way i hold my pens are unusual. I hold them so that the pen is writing at perfect 90 degree angle, and then pen doesnt bleed as much, it almost acts as a bic.

Anyway, my favorite fineliners are these
I started using them when i was still a student, and have kept steady with them ever since.

I find they last a really long time and jet black in color. Every try these? You can get them at any Omer Desserre.

Karö Design said...

I haven't try them yet. But I'll be sure to get a them on my next visit to omer deserres ( Deserre, their new name) I am a big fan of faber castel and I never been disappointed by their products. So these should be good

Anonymous said...

good blog idea!
can you do an update on the perfect pen? i'm interested in knowing what the dollarstore pen looks like!

Sweet Grognasse said...

les rapidographes sont encore les meilleurs... cher à l'achat mais bien entretenus ils durent toute la vie!

S. Joanna said...

I would also like an update on the favorite pens entry. I want to see the dollar store one! Today i went to Dick Blick looking for watercolor pens and they really didn't have what I was looking for(not the colored pencils that you can wash water over to get a watercolor effect).
So i found a new product online Bienfang watercolor brush pens... ever use those?
If so, what do you think.