Basic tools for drawing
Today I thought I would share some tools that I have been using in my drawings and illustrations. If this is something that interest you keep reading...
Let's start with the basic, pencil. Charcoal pencil. Sometimes I use mechanical pencils 0.5 with HB mine. Lately I've been using pencils more. Any HB pencil is fine for me, but I have tendecy to choose the one in the picture - N2 Pencil (HB) from the brand Staedtler. Why, you might wonder, because the charcoal mine is more resisting (doesn't break as much as other brands) and also it's very easy to sharp. I prefer use a very sharp pencil, so I'm always sharping mine.
Other staple in my drawings is black markers. Specially the fine liners - which usually are either 0.05 or 0.1. Lately I've been gravitating more to the 0.1 mainly because it's more resisting to pressure. When I want thicker lines I use either 0.3 or 0.5. As for the brands - the first one that I've started to use was Staedtler (mainly because that was what was available). Later I found Micron Sakura, it's bit more affordable. As for the quality I think they are both equal. This year I've been trying other brands, such as Sharpie, Edding 1900 and Mitsubishi (Uni Pin Fine Line).
This is the Kuretake Brush Writter in Grey, Blue Grey and Light Grey. I like to used them for shading. They are also interesting to make some calligraphy, specially the darker colours (although I still have a lot to learn in that area). Note - in some countries the brand of these brush pens is Zig and in others is Pentel.
Brush Pens with Black Ink. The first two are Kuretake and they imitate the traditional Japanese brushes. The third one is the Pentel Brush Pen. Using these sort of pens to make my line art is something that I'm still learning to work with, but they create very interesting lineart.
Last are White Gel pens, the first one is from Uni-Ball (Mitsubishi Pencil) and the other one is a Gelly-Roll by Sakura. I use them to create highlights.
This small reflection led me to a thought I had before, that the best art supplies (in my opinion - from the ones I've tried and tested) are either made in Japan or Germany. What's the big difference (specially if you're an artist that it's starting building their art supplies "collection"/tools) is that the products made in Europe are more expensive than the Japanese. On the other hand, until a few years ago these Japanese brands weren't so broadly available. For example, I live in small town, I only have a stationary shop in it (at this time). It's a good stationary shop, but it doesn't have everything. Only a couple years ago it started to have the Micron Sakura markers. So far I never saw the brush pens there (I had to get mine from an online shop).
My advice though is, if you can, always try the art supplies before purchasing them. If that's not possible (because many places have them closed, or you can only find them online) research the art supplies. Read reviews. And if you still have questions, try approach other artists that used them.