Coloring Comparison: Copic, Watercolor, Intense, Distress Markers and Tombow ABT

Hi! I wanted to do up a post on the coloring comparison that I have been posting on instagram over the last few days! It was part of the Daily Marker Challenge that I have been doing, which is organised by Kathy over at TheDailyMarker. Basically, you have to color something everyday! It really is very fun! 
For my colouring comparison, I stuck with one stamp, and basically the same color scheme through. Other than the copics sample, which used a 80lb white textured cardstock by AC cardstock, I used Daler Rowney 140lb Aquafine Cold Pressed watercolour paper for the rest, since they basically all require water. 
I made up a composite of all the samples in the photo above. From the top left, clockwise: TombowABT, Derwent Inktense Pencils, Copics, Watercolor and Tim Holtz Distress Markers. 
I’ve tried to make the colors as accurate as possible, so that you can compare between the different mediums effectively. 

*In reality, the shading is better blended than in the photo. The contrast messed it up a little. The red blouse and the orange blouse doesn’t have weird looking streaks.*
I love my watercolours ever since I learn how to control and make use of the water. It is a very travel-friendly method and watercolour paintings are easier to store, since they are just pieces of paper. I used an 18 tube set by Pentel that cost less than $15SGD, nothing fancy. A good thing about using watercolour is that you can get plenty of different colors and shades by mixing the colors you have! As opposed to getting 54 markers and only having 54 colors. Watercolour is bright and the shading easy to achieved simply by varying the amount of water in your brush. 
I used Fintec gold for the earrings. It is really a very nice palette and the color is opaque. Quite nice. 
Copic Markers

My family and my boyfriend all like this one the best of all samples and it is easy to see why. Unlike the other methods, copic blending is extremely smooth and the colors are vibrant. I am not an expert at copic coloring, but it is really easy to use these markers. Unfortunately, copic markers are also expensive. I only got the Copic Ciao, and not all the colors, so some color combination are still odd. The good thing is, they last forever (they can be refilled), and they make the purchase really really worth it. Trust me.
I took out my Uniball Signo gold pen for the jewellery. It doesn’t look much different from the Fintec or the gouache (see Intense below), so I’d probably use the gold pen because it is much easier. 🙂
Derwent Inktense Pencils

So, I succumbed and got the huge 72 set of Inktense pencils because I love it so much! One important thing to note, there are no flesh color so I have to make do with a browner one and they all look a little too tanned. Lol. Unlike watercolour, Inktense Pencils are permanent once they dry, and they are more intense than watercolors. It doesn’t look bad for coloring, but I’ve other better mediums, so I think I’ll stick to drawing with these pencils. One good thing about these is that it works in a pinch. You don’t need a palette to mix the paints, just a waterbrush would do. 
*I’ve decided that I don’t like waterbrushes now that I have learn how to control the water in my brushes better. Waterbrushes make it learn to control it since the water seems to be a constant flow, without much varying allowed, even when I tried to dry it out with a towel. I now use the waterbrushes for putting water onto the palette to soften the paints.
I used Rich Gold Designers Gouache by Daler Rowney for the jewellery. I didn’t add any water. It dries pretty good, but the application is a little watery for me. 
Tim Holtz Distress Markers

I don’t often use my distress markers (I got the 49 color set) since I find it inconvenient. But that was back when I still hasn’t dabble in watercolors yet. I have now brought out my distress markers so that I’ll use it more. It has a very nice faded-washed look that is soft and delicate. I use these markers like how I use my Tombow ABT: color on blending palette, mix with different colors and use a brush with varying amounts of water for the shading. I really like the flesh color; I think I like this the best across all mediums. One thing to note: it is difficult to lift colors when I make a mistake and go out of the line. The 49 color set provides a very good range of colors at a reasonable price, but unlike the Copics, these are not refillable. 
Tombow ABT Dual Brush Pens

These are commonly used for lettering and writing, but I just wanted to see how it works as a coloring medium. I just got these two days ago before I did this sample, so I didn’t get a lot of practise beforehand. These colors look brighter than the Distress Markers, but at the same time, these are also harder to blend. The ink are more watery than the distress markers and it is easier to get splotches, as seen on the blonde’s clothes. There is also a bit of blending error on the cellphone lady’s pants, the orange isn’t blended in as well. I think I’ll use these for writing, because they are really really good for writing. 🙂
Overall, if I were to choose, I’d probably go for the more traditional method (for the scrapbooking/cardmaking crowd) of copics and distress colors because they look better and well-blended. There is a learning curve for distress markers (at least for me), where I had to learn how the markers react to water and how to pull the colors out. I’ll still break out my watercolor occasionally, since it it more convenient (it’s right next to me on my desk), but I’ll keep my Tombows and Inktense for other usage and not for coloring. 
I hope this coloring comparison helps if you’re curious about the differences between all the different types of markers and coloring mediums. I know I like to do some research before I invest in anything. There are still a couple of things I’d like to try: Zig Clean Color Brush Markers (there is a lot of hype recently. I wonder how they compare to Tombows and Distress Markers), Prismacolor pencils and Derwent Watercolor pencils. I’ll do another coloring comparison post when I get them! 🙂
Thanks for reading, 

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