I’m not the type to do recaps of my past year, or my past month, or something because I’m the type to continue looking forward and not look back at what happened before. Whatever that happened in the past will remain the past. Besides, I’ve recapped them already just by writing about them on the blog, and I don’t need to repeat it over again.1
But, if I were going to recap a part of 2017, this would be it.
Doodle art with Copic Markers
I’ve always considered myself frugal and cheap when it comes to owning stuff. Me, along with other artists from around the world know, that Copic Markers are the holy grail of every artist of all mediums. These also include those who are into adult coloring, as well as working with Zen Art and doodle art. I have tried using Copic Markers before several years ago back in college during one of my art classes when our instructor brought in his set of the Sketch markers and had us make a test run. I swore to myself back then that one day when I have enough money, that I would get my own set of Copics. That was back in the late ’90s (probably late 1997-1998).
And yeah, it took me some 20 years to get to this point. But I finally did it. Finally.
Amazon Prime Day got me to invest in the Copic Ciao Doodle Kits, such as this Rainbow kit. They were having it on sale for only about $15 and it was under a time limit. I already own a set of Copic Multiliner technical pens before that anyway,2 but getting a hold of my very first five of Copic (Ciao) Markers brought me a huge smile on my face.
The first five colors in that kit? They were Robin’s Egg Blue (B02), Light Prawn (R22), Barium Yellow (Y00), Light Orange (YR02), and Spectrum Green (G02). Each of these colors has a special code indicated in them, and what the codes stand for are the base primary colors that these custom colors were created from, the first number representing the saturation level of the color. The higher the number, the less saturated it is and the color would have a subtle lightness to them. If you notice the colors I listed and their corresponding codes, their first numbers are mostly 0. This pretty much tells us that these colors are more on the pastel side. The second number indicates the shade of the color. The lower the number, the brighter the shade, the higher the number, the darker the shade. The second numbers on the colors I listed are on the very low side, again, indicating that these colors are indeed on the pastel side.
I looked around several sites and blogs regarding info and tutorials on using Copic Markers for noobs like me and I’ve gathered the following:
- There are three (four-ish) sets of Copic marker lines: Classic, Sketch, Ciao, and Wide.
- Sketch is the highest end and the most popular of all the marker lines by professional artists. It comes with a brush tip, a medium chisel broad tip, and an optional fine tip. It also has the most colors (the entire Copic color collection of 358 colors) too. And because this is the highest end, it is also the most expensive.
- Ciao is the lowest end of all the marker lines and it is also the cheapest (still expensive, but they’re the slightly more affordable ones compared to the rest of their marker lines). Ciao is also the most highly recommended set for beginners and noobs. Ciao is pretty much the same as the Sketch markers, also possessing a brush tip and a medium broad chisel tip, and that the Sketch markers have a bigger/wider ink barrel than the Ciao ink barrel. It also has the least colors (180), but this can be remedied by purchasing individual color markers from the other lines (If you like using the brush tip more often, you’d have to go for the Sketch markers).
- Classic markers are Copic’s first and original line. By default, it has a medium broad chisel tip and a fine tip, but you can also replace the nibs with other types, such as the brush nib. I love the brush tip so much that it was better for me to start off with the Ciao line first.
- The “fourth”-ish line is the Wide Marker line. It only has one nib – a giant chisel tip used to cover huge artwork such as a wall poster. They’re a lot bigger and wider than the Sharpie broad tip markers. They also hold the least number of colors in their line as well (only 35 colors).
- Copic Markers are expensive as hell but very worth it. Imagine if you run out of ink for one of your markers? If this were any other type of marker, you’d have to go out there and order another marker to replace your empty one. But with Copics, you just need to purchase the ink of that same color, refill it in your marker, and you’re good to go. The ink bottles aren’t that expensive too ($5-$8/ink bottle). You can also replace the nibs when they get worn out too ($5-$7/3 packs of brush nibs).
- You can store the markers standing up or laying them flat. According to the official Copic website, it is recommended that you lay them down flat, even though they were standing upright when you first purchase their new packs. There are also marker bags available, but I quite like the plastic case that comes with them anyway.
Tracking down the colors
Copic also has a mobile app for both iOS and Android, which helps you create a checklist of all the colors and types of markers you already own. However, I have an Android phone with a very small internal hard drive and a small capacity SD card and I would have to get rid of one of my apps for me to install this one, so instead, I purchased a swatch book.
The book has clear, uncolored rectangles that have the color code and the name of the color. The purpose of the swatch book is for you to use it as your own checklist. You color the rectangles with the corresponding color code and name to indicate that you already own this color. Anything that’s not colored means that you would have to purchase that color individually, and once you get that marker, you can color the box.
After I purchased the Rainbow Doodle Kit, I also proceeded to purchase the People Doodle Kit and the Nature Doodle Kit. Sometime in early December, I got lucky when I saw lightning deals on the 72-pack Ciao markers. I got lucky that I saved enough money for them, and purchased both of them. I already received Set A. I’m only waiting for Set B to arrive.3
I am aware that the Doodle Kit Ciaos would be duplicates of some of the colors included in both Set A and Set B, but if there are really 180 colors (The combined 72-color sets are only 144 colors total) then I may need empty versions of the Ciao markers (if there are any available, if not, empty Sketch markers) to include the missing color or even mix the inks together to create my very own custom color. I’m going to organize the doodle kit markers as is and I don’t intend on mixing them with the rest of the Ciaos I own.
Card Captor Sakura x Copic 30th Anniversary Marker Set
As some of you may know, I am a forever fangirl of one of CLAMP’s most successful series, Card Captor Sakura. A brand-new sequel to the manga was released last year and its anime series just started earlier this week, both in Japan (NHK) and here in the U.S. (Crunchyroll subscription). And to commemorate Copic’s 30-year anniversary, CLAMP compiled the colors that they used to create the CCS beloved characters and sell them as a 24-color bundle for… 😲 gasp $95-$97-ish USD (9800 Yen).
Because I’m on a roll with my Copic Marker collecting, there’s no way in hell I’m going to purchase that entire set. What I did though to be able to achieve that set without losing the weight of my wallet is I made the list of all the colors included and put them in a bullet journal-style checklist.
I highlighted the ones that are missing from my current collection. I’m waiting for Set B to arrive anyway, and when it arrives, I’m going to be updating this checklist.4 Whatever is leftover will be the ones I would have to hit Amazon or Michaels or some other art shop to see if they carry those missing colors.
The swatch book also has indicators next to the colors that tell us if that color is available in that particular marker line. Looking through the swatch book and eliminating the ones I don’t have but are definitely available on Set B, I would be able to compile the entire CCS Copic Marker palette for probably less than $55-$60.5 I listed the ones that aren’t available on the Ciao line and out of the 24 colors in the CCS palette, I only need 6.
(UPDATE) I ordered all the missing 6 colors for the CCS Copic set for only $40.
One thing that I will be missing from the CCS Copic Set would be the Sakura Kinomoto line art and instructions on how to color it using the marker set. Well darn. 😪
My new doodle art… coming soon!
I’ve created some doodle art/Zen art and posted a few of them here. I know, I have been busy, and that I haven’t created any doodle art/Zen Art for over a year now (I got none in 2017! 😯), but one of my 2018 goals is to make more art.6 Even though you can use any marker or medium that you like, all of the markers I own (before the Copics) were water-based. I wanted something permanent while saving money at the same time. I gambled for Copics— expensive but a money saver— and so far I’ve succeeded. 😅
Most likely, the art will be posted in The NINPOJineous instead of here, unless from out of the whim that I decided to open up another site just for the art gallery alone.7
- Besides, I don’t get that many readers/visitors to the blog, so there really isn’t much point repeating what I’ve written in the past, you know? [↩]
- black and sepia, different sizes, they were sold pretty cheap at Michaels, but I find the Sakura Microns a lot smoother on the paper than the Copic Multiliners [↩]
- most likely late this week or early next week [↩]
- the highlighter that I used is erasable, so I can just erase the highlighter on the ones included in Set B [↩]
- One Sketch marker costs about $7-$8 each. [↩]
- hopefully, I can finally sit down and take some time to refresh and improve my anime/manga-style art… [↩]
- I really don’t want to though… 😥 [↩]