Tools of the Trade (recommendations)

Fellow Artists: what are your recommendations for pens/inking? Mostly curious as to what others use and why, but also seeing if there is anything out there that might interest me. I first started (years and years ago) with crow quill nibs, etc. Then got frustrated, broke lots of pens. They just seemed to ‘stop’ working for me. Moved onto technical pens, like Staedtler/Korinoor (inspired by Travis Travis Charest). I’ve come to like that look, but have since moved onto disposable pens like the Micron series. The tech pens seemed like a lot of upkeep, and sometimes if I didn’t make it to my studio for long periods, then they ended up beyond repair. Bad artist, I know, but it is what it is. This may be less of an issue since moving to full time illustration, but I do like the microns still. I’ve also discovered brush pens, and like them.

Also, what with making a move to full time illustration (see Big Move blog), I’m thinking of arranging time to expand on my skill set, by trying out painting. Years and years ago, I loved oil paints, but then just stopped. I was hugely inspired by Michael Whelan, and latter by other fantasy book/RPG artists like Keith Parkinson. I am still influenced by these artists, but I don’t think I’m looking at getting into that again…not without a massive update to my studio. But I am inspired by Travis Charest (who, I believe, lists the likes of Drew Struzman, and Rockwell as some of his inspirations), and I think he uses anything from water colour pencils, to acrylics and airbrushed. I tried them a few years ago, but just couldn’t find the time to expand on it. Usually I do all my colouring on the computer, which I like well enough, and it certainly is convenient, as I only have a standard size scanner, and i haven’t mastered the art of splicing anything other than black and white art (and am ok on pencil art).

So, any recommendations, or just saying what you like and why. Or, even artists that I should look at for further inspiration.


Below are a few art pieces, all done with different pens and other mediums through time (not in order).






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