As a card maker, I've typically used alcohol markers - until recently, I had been using Shinhan markers. Mostly because as a Close To My Heart consultant I got a discount on them and I believe that CTMH does product testing and finds great quality products if they can't create a quality product.
This year they switched to Spectrum Noir tri-blend markers, which was a big change for me. They are designed to be different, and I totally fell in love with these new markers! I like how easily they make shading and shadowing, and I like how the markers feel in my hand. Since I've been learning a few things along the way, I thought I'd start a page where I can share what I've learned and maybe you can pick up a thing or two as well! Let me know if there's any tips or tricks you have picked up along the way, and I hope you fall in love with these markers as quickly as I did. They really have made my card artwork shine, and the markers really make it easier to make a more sophisticated & polished card.
Tip 1 - Store Markers Flat
The first thing I did, after I opened up my markers, was to put them in my fancy mason jar mug that I keep all my fancy pens in, and it turns out that was a mistake.
No matter which way you turn them, one set of marker points will be pointed the wrong way if you store them inside a beautiful jar or mug. Storing them that way will dry them out quicker, you need to store them so that the marker is lengthways. I had problems finding a good tote to store them in, but I found that my small packing cube works perfectly. The markers are long when capped so this is a good solution.
Tip 2 - Always have a sheet of paper under your paper
I learned this the hard way, always have a sheet of copy/scratch paper under what you are coloring. The markers will bleed through the paper you are using and can possibly ruin the finish of your dinner table... or whatever you are coloring on. I now just do coloring on a lapdesk, my versamat or a piece of copy paper.
Tip 3 - Make a Reference Sheet
The first thing I did was cut a sheet of cardstock (like the cardstock that I normally use for cardmaking) into 4 inch strips. Then I colored in a rectangle for each color, and created a gradient at the far side, and then I labeled every color! It was a little time consuming, but totally worth it.
I did mine in an order that made sense to me, and now I tuck my reference sheet into my bag where I keep the markers. Since I'm still pretty new with the coloring, I take it out each time so I can tell what color or tone I want before I "ruin" a stamped image.
Some people stamp a small stamp and color that in for their reference, but I want to see the edges of my colors to know what I can expect.