You may recall this little bit of posting I did earlier this year:
"I no longer like Distress Markers....I will just use up what I've got and not invest in any more."
Umm, yeah...about that...
I think I may have changed my mind.
At the beginning of the year, I was really hating my Distress Markers. They only seemed to work well on watercolor paper with water. I admit that I blamed the markers. In fact, it was User Error and high expectations. It was also my paper.
Let me back up a bit. (beep, beep, beep)
I was making a pocket letter for my niece and decided to color in a stamped image that I was going to fussy cut. So I grabbed a piece of scrap paper that I have in a small pile. I never really know what kind of paper/cardstock I'll grab. I grabbed something marvelous. This amazing scrap of paper allowed my Distress Markers to blend almost seamlessly with each other and with no added water or blender pen. No streaky lines or fast drying. The marker ink seemed to hesitate on the surface just before slowly sinking away. In fact, I smudged it. Honestly, I have only ever smudged a Distress Marker when I've used it on glossy cardstock.
I was amazed and truly excited. Eureka!!! What the heck kind of paper was this? I frantically dove into all my hoarded white cardstock. I pulled out everything I could think of and nothing matched it. OH NO! Was this little scrap of paper the last of some cut up card base? Was this all there was left and I can't figure out what it is? Finally, it came to me. Bristol. I had bought a pad of Bristol paper not long ago to try out with my new Zig markers. (The Zig markers that were going to replace these old Distress ones.) Yup, the papers matched...the amazing paper/cardstock was Bristol.
I had been watching a video by Kristina Werner when she mentioned her great success with Bristol paper and Zig markers. So I bought a pad of it to use with my Zigs. I don't know why I was so surprised that Distress markers worked so well, too. But I honestly think the Distress markers worked better on Bristol paper than my current watercolor paper!
So my next step was to swatch out my Distress and Zig markers on a variety of cardstocks that I have accumulated. I bought several varieties for different purposes and I'm now regretting it. I want only 2 white cardstocks, a watercolor cardstock, black and kraft cardstock, then a few colors for fun. I don't want to have 4 white cardstocks and not remember which one works with what supplies.
So if you're interested in my results, read on. If not (or if this is not news to you, I'm sure this is something that veteran colorists know already!), feel free to skip to the end.
I'm using three colors of blues. From Zig: 036 Light Blue, 030 Blue, 038 Peacock blue. These colors aren't great for blending together, so I decided to use 2 sets of blues from the Distress line. One set blends pretty easily and the other...not so much. I used: Tumbled Glass, Broken China, and Mermaid Lagoon for the lighter blue set and Weathered Wood, Faded Jeans, and Chipped Sapphire for the darker set.
So overall, here's what I learned:
1. Bristol paper rocks for coloring. Both Zig and Distress markers work great on it.
2. Zig markers outperformed Distress markers on all papers when it came to blending the inks. Even on the crappiest of paper, some ink from a Zig can be pulled out of it's spot. Not so with Distress markers.
3. I have crappy watercolor paper. I'm fairly sure that my watercolor paper is not an artist quality paper. I found it very surprising that I couldn't get better results.
4. I'm astounded that Coredinations cardstock worked equally as well as watercolor paper. And for the Zig markers, it was a definite win.
So what am I going to do with this information?
I'm going to renig on my initial statement at the beginning of the year. I will probably not retire my Distress markers. In fact, I may get more. Even though the Zig markers blended better overall, on the Bristol paper, the differences were non-existant. They performed equally well. So if I invest in Bristol paper for coloring, I can use Distress markers in the way that I like. I LIKE the Distress line palette of colors. The Zig markers are bright and bold or dark and deep. But the Distress line is a line of muted colors...colors with a touch of brown or gray. They are more true to the things I color, like plants and animals, scenes and water. The recent additions of colors to the Distress line fill in gaps and allow for better blending.
Overall, I'm happy to report that I'm sticking with the Distress colors and adding in the Zig for simple coloring and whimsical images. I find myself thinking in Distress colors and that is why I'm so excited that I tried the Bristol paper. This paper has saved my Distress markers from the junk bin!
Thanks for sticking to the end of this long post.
Perhaps this information will save some of your markers, too!
"I dream in color and paint what I see."