by Ellie Jakeman February 02, 2021
There are many watercolour brush pens/markers on the market and a lot of them perform differently to each other, this can be somewhat confusing for the novice or beginner who would like to add them to their repertoire of art materials in their tool box! Doing your research is vital for saving time and money.
A head start with your research!
Firstly watercolour brush/markers are very different from felt tips pens, alcohol Copic pens, or alcohol Promarkers.Alcohol Brush pens/markers require an alcohol solvent blender pen to create techniques such as gradients and blending, whereasWatercolour brush pens/markers only require water! The Watercolour brush markers offer vivid colour saturation and translucency, and are very similar to traditional tube and pan watercolour paints. You can also create larger areas of washes of colours or can layer tones to create more opaque areas of your work if required. Most Watercolour Brush Pens/markers are non-toxic and do not contain any harsh chemicals and are odourless. However, always check the safety guidlines of the brand you are using.
Watercolour Brush pens or Markers have been designed for all creative specialisms such as; colourists, illustrators, cartoonists, animators, fashion illustrators, designers. They are also used by watercolour artists for themes such as landscapes, seascapes and botanical work. They are an excellent tool for the crafter, creative card and calligraphy artists, great for journaling, and mixed media pieces etc...There are many brushes and Brands out there but you must find the one that caters for all your creative needs! If you need a specific Watercolour brush pen for calligraphy for example you will need a hard to medium brush pen nib opposed to a softer watercolour brush pen used by colourists and landscape artists!
Also don’t be misled by the word BRUSH pen or BRUSH marker. They may have a brush shaped fibre tip that acts like a brush in that it delivers a lot of pigment to the paper, but the ink doesn’t always act like paint! Only the Brands that specify that it is an ‘AQUA’ or ‘Watercolour’ brush pen or‘AQUA’ or ‘Watercolour’ brush marker will allow you to add water to dilute the pigment which should then wash across your paper like traditional watercolour paints do. Using a watercolour blending brush that has a reservoir you fill with water or a traditional watercolour brush dipped in water is ideal for creating these sweeping transitions from line to wash.
A lot of watercolour brush pens/markers have dual nibs! This is such a bonus for all types of artwork or design work. Small nib for detailing and adding textural details, larger brush shaped nib for laying more pigment down for larger wash areas. They are easy to control and handle just like a pen or pencil. The most important thing to remember is the pressure you apply to the watercolour brush marker. Too much pressure will result in releasing too much pigment on the paper. It is recommended that you build up your layers with a softer touch until you reach your desired effect or tone rather than flood the paper with pigment which cannot be washed out with water. The beauty of these watercolour brush pens is that you can let areas dry, then layer up the same colour to darken an area or use other hues to create new palettes, glazes or gradients.
The pigments used in the higher end more expensive watercolour brush pens are very saturated, lightfast and similar to the pans and tubes. Most will stain the paper. However these pigments can be lifted with water to create highlights, again similar to traditional watercolours.
Always test the pens before using them in your work, ie; check colour palettes, staining qualities, mark making abilities, gradients from dark to light, blending, lifting ability, small nib and brush nibs.
Why watercolour brush pens are easier than Watercolours paints.
How to use them! Watercolour Brush/Markers Techniques;
Additional equipment you may need;
The new Albrecht Dürer artists’ watercolour marker is the modern definition of watercolour painting: a high quality drawing instrument that supports spontaneous sketching as well as painting in watercolours. The water-based ink is always ready and is excellently usable with water.
The colours follow the Faber-Castell colour system and are therefore reliably combinable with other artist pencils from Faber-Castell. The versatility of the Albrecht Dürer watercolour marker convinces above all on its travels. Whoever likes to capture impressions while on the road will reach for this pen with relish. Two nibs – a brush nib and a fibre-tip – offer the artist flexibility in the personal drawing style. The ink lends drawings and preliminary sketches a high dynamic that is intensified through painting with water.
Ultimate Water Colour Performance now in a marker for precision.
Introducing Winsor & Newton WaterColour Markers, an outstanding range of highly pigmented water-based markers which deliver Winsor & Newton’s superb colour performance with added precision. Dedicated to providing artists with new ways to explore the expanse of their creativity, the new Watercolour Markers are one of our latest innovations, adding a new dimension to working with watercolour.
Expertly crafted with a twin tip, the new markers enable artists to achieve unrivalled definition and control with watercolours. Each marker has a fine point on one end and a flexible brush nib on the opposite, helping you create a variety of stunning, sweeping line thicknesses and superior detailing. The colour is easily blended with water to create soft and vibrant watercolor washes.
The new markers have been specially formulated using fine quality artists’ pigments. They not only offer incomparable vibrancy, flow and blending ability, but they also provide excellent permanence and durability far superior to their dye-based marker equivalents.
Winsor & Newton Watercolour Markers are available in a balanced spectrum of 36 brilliant colours and are fully intermixable with traditional water colours and mediums. For optimum results, use them with the new Winsor & Newton Watercolour Marker paper, which provides excellent lifting properties to further enhance the blending abilities and flow of the markers.
Delivering impressive precision combined with our expert colour performance, the new Winsor & Newton Watercolour markers are an indispensable addition to the watercolour artists’ palette. Trying is believing, so start using the markers today and experience their wonders for yourself.
Set of 12 includes:
Cadmium Yellow Hue | Alizarin Crimson Hue | Prussian Blue Hue | Sap Green | Yellow Ochre | Ivory Black | Burnt Umber | Hookers Green Dark | Cerulean Blue Hue | Dioxazime Violet | Cadmium Red Hue | Lemon Yellow Hue
Ultimate Water Colour Performance now in a marker for precision.
Set of 6 includes:
Highly pigmented lightfast watercolour. Flexible brush-tip and fine point. Use watercolour paper. Store horizontally.
This entry level set of value watercolour brush pens is perfect for beginners, crafters, journal artists, calligraphy artists, illustrators, the young and more experienced students of art.
Versatile pens that feature a synthetic bristle brush tip similar to a paint brush and can be used for precise controlled work or expressive free flowing brush marks. They make for an ideal introductory set to discover new and exciting techniques and creative colour palettes, use them for quick illustrations, then sketch and wash, use for expressive brush calligraphy and mixed media techniques.
This set contains 48 watercolour brush pens and 2 refillable Water Brush pens in a plastic case.
This set combines fine lines with broader brush strokes in a single, double-ended pen, and then throws a hundred different water-based colours into the mix for good measure.
The fibre tip is ideal for detailed work and hatching, whereas the flexible felt brush tip is ideal for washes and variable line thickness. That's a lot of flexibility for animators, calligraphers, designers and illustrators, crafters and hobbyists.
These double ended watercolour brush pens come in sets of 18 or 36. Can be used dry or diluted to create a variety of watercolour effects. The colours are easy to blend together with a watercolour blending brush or a soft traditional watercolour brush dipped in water. They are highly pigmented when used wet or dry. The colours transition well to create smooth gradients and blend well to create new tones. The colour can be lifted with water to create highlights in your work. Great for Calligraphy artists, watercolour artists, designers, urban sketchers, fashion designers, crafters and hobbyists.
I have had a strong interest in the visual and creative arts since a very early age. I completed with great success ‘A’ level Fine Art, Textile and Embroidery City and Guilds, Foundation Diploma in Fine Art, (BA hons) Degree in Embroidery and Textiles from Manchester Metropolitan University and a PGCE from the University of Huddersfield. I have taught Art and Design, Fashion and Textiles, Textile design and Fine Art print and Illustration for over 20 years. Before teaching I was a freelance artist and illustrator and decided 4 years ago I would return to freelance and commissioned work. I have created many domestic and commercial murals for hospitals and hospices. I work part time for ARTdiscount as a content creator and product tester.
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