Tag Archives | Sharpie Sharpie Paint Markers

Event | Art Supply Warehouse Fine Arts Weekend

Reported by Maria Del Pinto

I am always on the look out for new ways to expose my kids to the fine arts, in a fun and enjoyable manner.  I was lucky to find out that the local Art Supply Warehouse store was hosting a fine arts event on their property.  It was free to the public, which was a major boost to my pocket book.  Additionally, they encouraged children and adults of all ages to participate (which meant they would have workshops that were child-friendly).
The “Fine Arts Event” was a three-day event that offered several different workshops to choose from on  each day.  There were also hourly demonstrations put on by a variety of artists.  The event also offered an opportunity to create a piece of art through the “Remaster The Masters” event to display on the Catalyst art class space wall.
We anticipated that we would probably spend the day at the event, so my kids packed a light lunch and off we went to the “Fine Arts Weekend Event”.  The first stop was at the store, so we could stock up on the art supplies we were low on.  The Art Supply Warehouse offers a 25% sale at least two times a year and this year it was timed at the same time as the fine arts event.  We have learned to shop first because at those prices they tend to run out of the things we need very quickly.
Once the shopping was completed, we went to the first demonstration which was sponsored by Strathmore.
This was a mixed media workshop where the kind folks at Strathmore provided each participant with one of their new mixed media pads to test out with watercolors, charcoals and pastels.
There were students of all ages taking this workshop.
If you are into junk journals, art journals, mixed media pieces, etc., you may find that these pads are great.  The instructor had samples of different materials that she used on these pads.  The first one was a page from her Strathmore Mixed Media Pad showing the use of Pan Pastels and Stencils.
The second was her Strathmore Mixed Media Pad showing the use of Golden’s Acrylic and hot sticks.
The third was a sample of air brushing on the same pad.
The fourth was an actual in class project by one of the students using watercolor sticks put down in layers to get vibrant colors.  She used a lot of water and still the paper did not buckle, which I think is a plus.
The next workshop we attended was soft pastels workshop which was presented by Lon Dekkers and sponsored by Rembrandt.
You may wonder what is so special about these pastels, for us it is that they do not contain any heavy metals (such as cadmium, lead, and cobalt).  My daughter has certain allergies and these did not cause any reaction.  The colors are also very rich and easy to work with.
Lon showed how to use the side of the pastel to fill in larger areas in the drawing.
He also went over several different ways to use the pastels to create depth and light.
Lon Dekkers demonstrating the Rembrandt Soft Pastels
He was very patent with my teenager, and happily answered all her questions.  She asked him to do a whole apple without smudging the colors on the apple,
so she could better understand how the use of particular colors brought light and depth into the apple drawing.
My daughter’s apple drawing
Her apple drawing came out really well.  Unfortunately, my apple turned into pumpkin (thank goodness that I do not have to rely on my own drawing skills to create cards).
My pumpkin.
My daughters definitely loved this workshop and I am sure I will see a set of these soft pastels added to their Christmas wish lists.
The next workshop we attended was an oil painting workshop which featured paints from the Jack Richeson Oil Paint – Shiva Collection.
The teacher, Jeff Morrow, for this workshop was a very patent artist.  Teaching oil painting to a group of individuals of varied ages and experience is no easy task.
  He taught us how to combine colors, use the various tools and some different painting techniques.
He also shared tips with the students, one of which is to think about perspective when working on a painting. This was helpful, since many of the students had never used oil paints before and were feeling bit nervous about working with them.
Oil Painting without a frame.
Another fun tip was that he showed us how the right frame can change how a painting looks.  The above the painting is great.  However, when you add a frame…
Oil Painting with a white frame.
…it definitely changes the way the finished painting looks.
 Another fun workshop we were able to attend was an “Artist Trading Card” workshop.   In this workshop we had the opportunity to try out the Daler Rowney’s FW Acrylic Inks.
This workshop was taught by calligraphy artist and author, Lisa Engelbrecht,
who taught us some fun techniques for creating our own Artist Trading Cards.
I am a big fan of making Artist Trading Cards because of their size.   I find that Artist Trading Cards are a manageable craft project and allow me to try out a variety of textiles, materials, etc. on them within a short time span.
Lisa Engelbrecht Artist Trading Card Projects
Here are samples of some of the ones made by the workshop attendees.
and some by Lisa.
The “Fine Arts Event” also had a very cool “Remaster the Masters” project.  Where we got to create our t-shirts master pieces with the new Sharpie paint colors.  The store provided us with a fun t-shirt to paint.
They had all the pens out and the colors were fabulous.  Below are just a few examples of some of the shirts people created.
My daughter drew her version of “Nyan Cat” which apparently is a popular cartoon cat with a “pop toasty” body.
Nyan Cat drawn by one of the kids
The event lasted three days and offered many more workshops than we were able to attend.  My family and I appreciate stores like Art Supply Warehouse who give us a chance to try out different artistic media and provide these fun educational opportunities.  If you are interested in similar events,  I highly recommend checking out the online calendar of local art stores and museums who often sponsor similar events in your area.
We would love to know what types of events our readers enjoy reading about.  Please take a moment to share some of your favorites with us.

Vendor Spotlight: Sharpie

Reported by Suzy Haghighi

Since 1964 Sharpie Markers by Sanford Corp have been a staple in homes and offices around the world. Moms use them to label children’s clothing and backpacks, students scribble with them on countless CDs, even celebs use them to sign autographs. President Bush used Sharpies personalized with his signature exclusively in the White House.

Sharpies now come in 39 colors and seven varieties, ranging in tip size from Ultra Fine to Magnum. Rather than messing with the success of what goes into their flagship product, the Permanent Marker, Sharpie has designed a sleek, modern and ultra cool casing for their utilitarian fine tip marker. The Stainless Steel Sharpie has it’s name and logo engraved onto the body, has a great comfortable grip despite the larger size, and is so pretty you won’t want to hide it in the tool drawer. It retails for about $7 US as opposed to the $1.79 for the regular Sharpie. I took this pretty pen on a craft spin to see how I would like it.

Cards made with Magnolia Stamps using Sharpie Permanent and Water Based Markers

I discovered that my favorite ways to use the Permanent markers are for outlining or coloring on acetate. Sharpie Permanent Markers adhere to most surfaces and contains pigments and dyes that are almost impossible to remove (depending upon the surface written on). Glossy surfaces are notorious for not allowing ink to stick to it – it either beads or wipes away. Not with these babies.

The permanent nature of the pen and the wonderful way it bonds to surfaces makes it hard to shade and blend in coloring. Sharpie knows and capitalizes on this in their advertising: The strong, bold ink serves as muse for the company’s slogan Write Out Loud.

While I use Copic Alcohol Markers to color, I love using Sharpies on my cards when I want a really strong, bold ink for accenting. I used the Ultra Fine Tip to create faux stitching on one card, and the Stainless Steel Sharpie with its traditional fine tip to create polka dots on an acetate card, red pencils, and a painted wooden ladybug. The marker was also used over my Copics to color in the polka dots. The ink looks great on all of my projects; the ultra fine did not bleed into my paper or slip on the paint or pencils. It dried quickly on the acetate and the pencil coating; it did however pool a bit on the acetate (see pic below).

Please note a fine tip is rather wide for card making purposes. It could not be used for journaling or writing small letters, however, the Ultra Fine could. The solvent in Sharpie Permanent Markers does contain Propanol so they are not considered acid-free. While I would not use these for archival craft work such as scrapbooking, I have no problem using them on cards.

The Sharpie Water Based Extra Fine Paint Pens in White is also great for accenting over my Copic Marker work and is archival quality and acid-free. I used it here to highlight hair and the ladybug’s face. White is an almost impossible color to formulate without using pigment (as opposed to dye-based inks). These skip less than my white gel pens while remaining about 50% opaque (see picture above). The white is bright which makes them great for accent work or dotting snow on cards, but you do have to be careful of the valve-action tip. While the point is extra fine, the ink is rather watery and seeps out of the valve-action tip when pressed. To avoid problems I press and release the valve over copy paper then do my accenting.

I am not sure if Sharpie Oil Based Paint Pens are acid-free, but they do state that they are xylene-free. They are more opaque than the Water Based Paint Pens, write better, and can be used on any surface. The ink was not watery at all and the color seemed bolder to me.

Besides being useful, Sharpies are also economical and long lasting: someone did a rather scientific measurement to see how long a Sharpie lasts and estimated the total writing distance to be 1800 feet, which is quite impressive. That person is much more organized than I am — I can honestly say I have never run out of ink on my own before I lose them. They need to make a Sharpie with GPS.


  • Economical
  • Long lasting
  • Strong, bold ink color
  • Writes on many surfaces
  • Multipurpose types for all craft needs
  • Great for use with acetate or other smooth surfaces


  • Limited color variety
  • Bold, strong ink is not good for blending, line marks
  • The lids do not really match the inks so it is best to make a color chart
  • Tips tend to dry quickly
  • Permanent marker bleeds through thin and fibrous papers, fabrics and cloth
  • Paint Marker ink clogs a bit or leaks from valve, can also “spit” ink onto your work

Where to Buy:
Wal-Mart (Sharpie Permanent Marker in assorted colors for $14.88 US)
Office Supply Stores such as Office Depot (12 pack of Permanent Fine Point Black for $7.79) (Stainless Steel Sharpie Permanent Marker for $5.99)
Wallack’s (Sharpie Paint Extra Fine Oil Based Marker in White for $3.47)

In conclusion I give the Sharpie Permanent Markers a 9/10 and Sharpie Paint Markers a 7/10 overall. As a card maker, Sharpies will not replace my beloved (and much more expensive) Copics, but they are fantastic for certain uses on my cards that make them an indispensable tool that belongs in everyone’s craft room. They are fantastic on acetate or plastic products – the color stays bright and bold, and does not budge once put on a surface. On paper they are bad for blending, but great for pops of permanent color. How do YOU use Sharpies in the craft room?

Follow up: There was a comment in one of our articles about the Sharpie Water Based pens no longer being available. I am happy to announce from our contact with Sharpie that they are continuing to be made, there was only a packaging change. So go get some today!!

Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!

Vendor Spotlight: Sharpie

Reported by Jo-Anne te Raa

I am a huge Sharpie fan. It’s not a pen we can buy here in Holland so it’s the FIRST thing in my cart when I visit Target! If you understand my Sharpie love then you will know what I thought when this little beauty fell through my door:

In a sleek stainless steel casing, to all intents and purposes it looks like a VERY expensive pen. It looks cool in my bag and funky in my scrap tote! I can’t really judge, from a pricing perspective as to me most things craft wise are cheaper in the USA compared to where I live. Priced at $6.99 and the refills at $1.99, I do think it’s competitive. I do love the idea that it’s refillable, giving the “green” amongst us another reason to buy!

To test it out I decided to go back to my roots – scrapbooking. I started using the Sharpie range, originally, because of my love for photo altering. It’s a great pen to use when you want to put a pen through a little more than you average black marker can handle.

For this layout I scratched the background of my photo away, using a Tonic tool (this works better on cheaper photo prints). I then added color with water-soluble, pastel crayons.
With a baby wipe I smeared the color into the scratches, creating a perfect journaling background. After letting this dry and settle I added my journaling.

The rest of my layout was all based on my “blue” journaled photo.

What I really like about this pen is the amazing ease at which it flowed across, what is in fact a very difficult background. My regular Sharpie wouldn’t struggle but would need a great deal more manipulating and time. I expected that this pen, being a thicker nib, would take longer to dry but it really didn’t. It’s a pen I would order via the internet to have here in Holland. I really have taken to this pen and have used it in a million different scrapbooking tasks. I do hope it comes in different nib sizes as I would like some finer pens too, to use daily at work. This one is too thick for that as it does soak through the paper.
Overall I would give this pen an 11 out of 10!

I also got to play with the paint pens. Well I got to take the lid off!
I was covered in “paint.” So was my table and a layout I was working on. I don’t want to give this a bad review as it might have been the shipping of my pens or even that these were new samples. But I was not happy. I think the review of these, out of commercial fairness I should leave to a fellow reporter!

So based purely on my stainless steel Sharpie:


  • Beautiful casing, sleek, trendy and enviable.
  • Refillable
  • Not your regular Sharpie, so I do think its competitively priced.
  • High performance and long lasting finish.
  • Perfect for altered journaling techniques
  • Efficient and seems to last forever!


  • I hope it comes in more tip sizes
  • It’s so attractive you will need to guard it…..someone may try to steal it!
  • Some might find the price a little steep

Overall I loved this product and was very impressed. It is definitely on my “need to refill” list!

Try it out and let us know what you think! Visit the Sharpie Blog, it’s a great way to keep up with all the new releases….have fun!!!!

Follow up: There was a comment in one of our articles about the Sharpie Water Based pens no longer being available. I am happy to announce from our contact with Sharpie that they are continuing to be made, there was only a packaging change. So go get some today!!
Click on the link at the top of the page to visit Craft Critique for comments, giveaways and more!