Reported by Katie Renz
Who doesn’t have a Sharpie of one shape, size, or color in their household. I’m no connoisseur, but there has always been a black Sharpie in the junk drawer and it was usually the go to pen. The first pen I am going to talk about is the new Stainless Steel Sharpie and according to their website, celebs love it!
The nice thing about this pen is that the outer casing is for the long haul. Buy it once and when the ink runs dry, just purchase a refill. Those of us that are environmentally-friendly will like this option.
So what I did was use the pen on some different papers I have around in my craft area. Overall the pen is very nice, but the size of the barrel was a bit large for me. I personally prefer a smaller pen. I also felt the tip of the pen wasn’t quite as smooth as some other sharpies that I’ve used in the past. I don’t do a lot of autograph signing, in fact I do none, but when I make to the big time, maybe I’ll have a different opinion.
The ink does feather though, and it does depend on the quality of paper too. The ink bleeds through if you let the point rest on your surface and it definitely shows on the backside.
Overall, the Stainless Steel Pen is very aesthetically pleasing and unique and does what we expect Sharpies to do.
Now onto my other samples. I received a couple of examples of Sharpie Paint Pens. I had never even heard of these or seen them before so it was all new to me. The paint pens are divided into water-based paint and oil-based paints, and come in a variety of sized tips from extra fine, to broad and chiseled. I received one large tip and several medium tips.
I have read that lots of artists use Sharpie brand pens to sketch, draw, and paint with, but since that isn’t my field, I wasn’t exactly sure what I was going to do. So, what I basically did was play with them on different surfaces that I had in my craft room and I did figure out a cute little project to make.
Both the water-based and oil-based paint markers need to be primed. If you haven’t used them before, or are unfamiliar with them, they have a ball inside them that you can hear when you shake just like cans of spray paint. I must admit, it’s kind of neat to shake them.
If you are familiar with some of the liquid glue adhesives out there, these pens are like that in that the nib is empty until you press it down and let the liquid travel down the pen.
I used the oil-based on some clear acetate that I had on hand. It went on super smooth, and what I liked about it was that it looked like paint. Same result with some glossy cardstock that I had on hand too. Plus, both oil-based and water-based were quite quick to dry.
If you notice in the background, there is a piece of 12×12 cardstock that I used the black oil-based marker on. It worked quite well and had excellent coverage. You could see the design from the back, but it didn’t bleed through and that was with good coverage.
Now, how about a wood sample. I just happened to have a wood birdhouse laying around with no purpose so I thought I’d test the bottom. The BROWN is oil based and the PURPLE is water based. The only real difference I noticed was that the water based feathered more than the oil based. What I liked about “painting” with the markers was the amount of control I had while “coloring.” You could do a lot of detail work that would be fun.
So, what would a paper crafter use Sharpie Paint Markers for? Well, this is what I did with mine. I did some altering of a clear can. This particular can used to house sateen flowers that I purchased at Michaels. I removed the paper label and washed the can. I decided I wanted to paint stripes on my clear can so I masked it to create my stripes.
I would recommend using painters tape, but I couldn’t find mine so I had to use my Eclipse Tape (gasp). My eclipse tape didn’t create the seal that I wanted, but it worked alright for my purposes. After it was all painted, I did have to do a little “clean up”, but I was able to remove the excess paint that seeped underneath my tape edges.
So in conclusion, I would have to say that I have always been a fan of Sharpie markers and will continue to be so. Can I live without the new sleek Stainless Steel pen? Yes. I will probably stick with my basic black Sharpie markers. My personal favorite is the pen with the fine point on one end and the medium tip on the other.
I did very much enjoy the Sharpie paint markers, both the oil- and water-based. These would work great for smaller projects, but are clearly not made for any large surfaces in terms of painting that is. If the need arises, I would definitely get myself some. They were fun.
- Very little odor
- Pretty good variety of colors and tip sizes
- Comfortable to hold
- Nice flow and coverage
- The overall size of the stainless was bit too big for me
- None really for the poster paints
Lots of retailers both brick and mortar as well as online carry Sharpie markers, but here are 3 online sources of the Stainless Steel Pen:
Three sources for Sharpie Paint Markers:
Retail value for the Stainless Steel pen is $8.64 (but this varies by pennies depending on which site you visit) and sale prices vary even more.
Retail value for the poster paints for both oil and water based markers depends on the size of the tip as well as if you want to purchase individually or in a package. Range being from $3.37 – $4.84 and again, sale prices all over the board.
I thought the pens (all of them) were very easy to use and did what they are supposed to do. I feel that they might be expensive initially and can’t really say how long they will last, but so far so good. From what I have gathered, artists enjoy sketching and drawing with them, but as a papercrafter, I tend to see these pens slightly differently,but I DO see lots of potential uses now that I have some experience with them and realize that they are out there.
I would rate the stainless steel marker a 6 out of 10 and the paint markers a 9 out of 10.
We’d love to hear from some of you mixed media artists or how about any illustrators out there. What do you think of the pens and how do you use them?
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!!