So this is kind of a follow-up to the post I did on brushes a few years ago – except that I’ll be talking more about felt tips. This is a mix of brushes I keep a constant stock on and some that I just tried because… well, because other people were using them (because we give into peer pressure like that).
The felt tip is a gift from heaven. When I first got my hands on one, it was absolute playtime. It allows you to experiment and even practice the pressure-release muscle memory without the mess of inks and nibs, without the worry of snagging and spattering. It takes a bit of practice to get the correct “handling” of the brush, but it can help you discover new styles and add freshness to your letters.
Out of all the brush pens I have, the Tombow is the one I’ve had the longest. I keep a constant stock of it. The tip is bendy, gives great variation, and holds well even with multiple pages of sketching (at least for me). I also love that it’s available in many shades of colors because I like layering sketches.
I read somewhere that the Copic Sketch was a brushpen more preferred than artists vs. the Tombow. So I went ahead and got myself one. It’s a good thing I only got one because I couldn’t manage the tip at all!
The tip of the Copic is on another planet of bendy. It’s like a bouncy toddler on cake icing. I watch videos of other people writing with it and there seems to be this “flick” action that I could never get. I’ve also stopped using it because unlike the other pens, it’s alcohol-based so it smells funny and eats into paper (you’ll need thicker paper for it because the ink seeps through). Also unsafe with the kids around. Not Fozzy-mommy approved. Lol.
New into the Philippine market is this dual pen from Tokyo Finds. It’s like the baby version of the Tombow Dual Tip. Not because it’s smaller, but because it’s less developed. It would be suitable for people who want to get an introductory feel on how felt brushes bend, but I think the tip is too sensitive for the abuse of practice if you want to hone the skill. I’d recommend these for coloring or loose sketching because the tip tends to fray (bye-bye hairlines). The monoline tip can accomplish small details, the brush for big, bold strokes.
I love Zig Philippines for bringing these beauties into our shores! The felt tip is very responsive to changes to pressure and it takes a whole lot of writing before it frays or loosens up. And they have metallic colors – who can say no to gold?!? The Fudebiyori color range is not as wide as Tombow or Copic, but the Zig brand also has the Scroll and Brush line if you want more hues. Since it’s available locally, it’s just great for beginners as well as for established… umm, hoarders.
These are some of the smaller felt tips that I have. I actually do own a bit more but they are in Japanese so I can’t understand the labels (hee). My favorites would be the Bimoji and the Pentel Touch. The Bimoji line has a range from Extra Fine to Large – I absolutely loooove the EF (sorry that I don’t have it now for a writing sample though). The Cocoiro is a cute little thing because you can get an array of color refills and just swap barrels if you want to change. The EF tip also allows me to write closest to my pointed pen hand, may it be freehand or classic copperplate. This flexibility actually goes the same for the Zig Bimoji EF and the Pentel Touch.
The Zig Mangaka is available in F and M tips and the Tombow Fudenosuke comes in Soft, Medium and Hard. These pens take a bit more effort to get variations, but are great workhorses when you get it down. These are my go-to brushes (alongside the Bimoji M) when I want to write subheads or smaller text and lay it out together with the bigger tips.
So there you have it! I hope this helps you as you hunt (or hoard) for your next brush pen purchase!
Kuretake Zig Pens are available at Scribe Writing Essentials, Swirls and Strokes PH, Craft Central, Craft Carrot and The Common Room | Tokyo Finds Pens are available at Fully Booked Bookstores | Tombow Dual Brush Pens are not distributed locally but can be ordered through Pens-Galore.com
All photos taken by a Huawei P8.