In the last year or so I’ve been trying cheaper art supplies. Of course, we all cut back in one way or another since the economy went south. I declared a moratorium on buying more paints last year, one which I kept until July when Jerry’s Art-a-Rama had a sale. But I behaved after that. I’ve also stopped buying as much when I actually do shop at Kinokuniya Bookstore, one of my FAVORITE places to buy pens. I haven’t visited JetPens.com in quite a while. I’ve tried to behave myself.
In this age of enlightenment, I’ve discovered that pricier doesn’t mean better. One of my favorite tools to use in my journals lately are the Crayola Pip Squeaks. I LOVE to use Tombow markers, but they’re difficult for me to find. And yes, I know I can buy them online, but I like to buy markers IN PERSON. This way I can try them out beforehand. Those little colored caps can be misleading.
The other day, I compared Tombow and the Pip Squeaks on one of my pages. Here is what I found:
The heart, the square with the number, and the word "Clean" are all colored in with a red Pip Squeak.
The word “cheered” (on the right) is colored over with a Tombow red marker. The word “waiting” (on the left) is colored over with the Pip Squeak. Both are pretty close in color and shade. But the Pip Squeak wins for TRUER color over the painted background. The Tombows ALWAYS change in shade when I use them over painted pages. The Pip Squeaks, NEVER. I love the way they work on my pages. They’re inexpensive and readily available. And they have GREAT color names like Inchworm Green, Mini Magenta, Cherry Tomato, and Chocolate Chip. They don’t stink and they don’t bleed through the page. They also have a great watercolor-like quality.
So the next time you’re thinking about more expensive supplies for your art journal because you think they’re better, STOP. Try cheaper supplies and SAMPLE the more expensive, ESPECIALLY if you’re just starting out. You’ll get more bang for your buck in the long run.