If you also like to do some pen shopping, you may have gathered a lot, and you may wonder how to choose. There is no ultimate perfect pen. It’s all about your own sensitivity and the effect you are looking for. David Philips, reader of the blog showed me some illustration he did with a twig. 🙂
Below I share with you my personal impression from a Product designer point of view.
TEST: Ball point pen and Gel pen
- MUJI 0.25: One of the thinnest pen i ever tried. Great flow.
- Zeebra Z-1 S 0.7: The black ink is deep.
- Pilot Frixion Ball 0.25: Erasable ink. Awful to draw with. Doesn’t slide well on paper. The ink is grey. I use it for some detailing only.
- Pilot Frixion Ball 0.5: So promising, but disappointing for sketching (great for writing). The pen pressure is awful. The ink is grey.
- Pilot G-Tec-C 0.4: Awesome ! Perfect size of pen and tip. Nice flow of ink. The black is deep.
- Pilot Green Techpoint 5: I didn’t felt comfortable with that pen. I couldn’t draw with it with a light hand.
If you want to know some tricks about ballpoint pen, you may have a look at: Tips you should know about ballpoint Pen.
TEST: Markers and Felt pen
- Papermate FLAIR M: Classic pen that compete with Pentel
- Stabilo Stylist: Great with colour markers (popular among Product designers). Note that the tip is fragile and tend to reduce quite fast.
- Pilot Twin marker: I mostly use the thin tip. Good quality, but the ink reserve doesn’t last very long.
- Sharpie Permanent Marker Ultra thin point: The size of the tip is in between both tip of the Pilot twin marker. Just nice.
- Artline Calligraphy pen: I bought this pen for playing with the line weight. I prefer using brush.
- Kuretake: The tip react like a brush. It bend slightly with pressure. Love it ! However, it dries very slow, and I tend to make a lot of stains with my palm hand. (bought at Tokyu Hands).
My collection of toys
Just a picture of my pen collection. Honestly I don’t even use quarter of it. Most are “toys” that I often get bored with then reuse them days or months later.
Top 7 pen of the year: WINNER 🙂
- The Frixion Ball Slim 0.38: I use it for details sometime.
- Kuretake, from Fudegokochi: Love it !! This brand is not easy to find I guess. Wonder if pilot pr other established brand do something similar.
- Sharpie Permanent marker Ultra fine point: Nice flow, good pen pressure sensitivity
- Pilot G-Tec-C , Maica 0.4: Nice and constant flow, good pressure sensitivity for a gel pen. I love the tip size slightly thinner than the standard 0.5.
- Stabilo Stylist: A classic.
- Papermate FLAIR M: More reliable than markers, good medium size tip.
- Pilot Parallel Pen (Bought at Tokyu Hands): Prize of the most weirdo pen ! 🙂
That’s my Discovery of the year !
4 of the above pen are new to me. I tried new things, new styles with them just for fun. At the end I stick to the basics using pen such as the Paper Mate, Pilot Twin markers, Stabilo stylist and any ballpoint pen I could find. Only the Kuretake might become one of my basic.
If you are beginner, I do not recommend you guys to play around too much. It will just distract you and slow down your progress. Ok ? As soon as you find a nice pen, stick to it. You could even buy a pack of them on Amazon.
How about you ? What’s you favourite pen for Design sketching ?