Over the years I have experienced many pencils and markers and liners and chalk and paint,… It can get a bit confusing.
A good illustration material is as essential for an illustrator as food for the body. You can’t get wrong with it. Of course mistakes are part of the path, but good material can save your life. Well at least your drawing.
When you start with new material, you always need to train with it first, like a new muscle. What I like to do is take a blank page and try it, exercise with it, see how the material responds and behaves on different papers. This is a step I recommend doing so when you put on the pencil or pen on the final illustration, you are confident! For more information on color arrangement, check out my previous post!
-The first essential tool for an illustrator is a good sketching pen. For a long time I stuck to the basic grey pencil. However, after a few years I decided to invest in the best: PRISMACOLOR COL ERASE pencils. Problem: you have to order it from the US. Nevertheless, the result is worth it: the pencil is soft and subtle and gives the best gradients. This is what makes it the best sketching pencil, you can start by giving shape with soft lines and use harsher lines for the details. It is also very easy to erase when making mistakes or changing the drawing.
-The second essential tool for an illustrator is a liner. I use mine to give my illustrations more definition. In the world of liners you have two types: fine liner and brush liners. Fine liners make it impossible for you to miss. They give great results for lining small details or small illustrations. Brush liners require more control but they are great to give style to the drawing, thus making it perfect for the big outlines.
My two favorites in this category are: the FABER CASTELL PITT ARTIST PEN in S for fine liners and the COPIC MUTLI LINER BLACK in Brush S for brush liners.
-Then comes coloring. When it comes to coloring, I have never changed my markers from the beginning. The LETRASET PROMARKERS and WINSOR&NEWTON MARKERS are the spinal cord of my illustrations. With two ends, one fine for lining and a thicker one for filling, they are perfect for coloring any illustration. A plus is the amazing varied range of colors they offer.
-Once you have finished applying colors with the markers, you may feel you want more variations or need finer coloring tools. When such case presents itself, I like using FABER CASTELL POLYCHROMOS coloring pencils. What differentiates them from the other coloring pencils is how buildable they are. You can go from soft to harsh colors with only one pencil.
-Finally, the last step to an illustration is highlights. To give sharp highlights, the best tool to use is just a white pen. I enjoy using the UNI PAINT MARKER in white. However, you can use any type of white pen you can find. In this case, no need to be demanding.
And here you are! Totally prepared to rock on your next illustration!
Hope this helps! 🙂