Thought I'd share a couple more samples of what I was able to create using Tria markers (instead of Copics). I am just very happy with the detail I can get from them, and the shading I am able to do with them. They are working great for me!
It seems like stampers are busy coloring in images these days with their Copic markers. Copic markers are quality professional markers that come in three styles (original, sketch, and caio), and come with a hefty price tag attached.
Frankly, I wasn't sure I would even like the results of coloring with markers, when there are so many other better techniques (in my opinion). Before I layed out a significant amount of money for any markers, I first wanted to see how coloring with markers compared to other coloring techniques such as the Magic Pencil technique, watercolor painting, pastels, etc. I bought a handful of Copic markers on sale at Hobby Lobby so that I could experiment with them.
samples - first picture is colored with Tria markers; second photo is watercolor paints.
I found that I "liked" (but didn't "love") the results markers gave compared to other techniques. The one thing I learned about using markers was that I would have to have the ability to blend colors ... which for me meant having alot of colors/shades available. I couldn't color something in using just one shade. This was going to be another expensive addition to my ever growing art studio if I went forward with this purchase.
Everyone gets so caught up in brand names, and having to have what everyone else has. I didn't feel that way about Copic markers at all. Once I decided that I liked the coloring technique enough, I just wanted to find out what worked best for me. Like I once read, if you can draw (or color), it doesn't matter what tool you use. In other words, the brand of marker you are using isn't going to make your art look any better than the talent that is behind that pen.
I went in search of a way I could purchase professional markers as economically as possible. I read alot of online information and reviews. Mostly, I found information about Copic markers, and not so much about other brands. From what I saw and read I was really quite curious about Tria markers from Letraset (NOT to be confused with Triart Markers). Tria professional markers have been around for many years. Recently they revamped their pens. They were changed from a refillable barrel design to a changeable ink cartridge design. Personally, I like the cartridge concept better than having to buy reinkers for all of the heavily used colors. Supposedly the ink has been reformulated, but I don't see where that is negative or positive for me. Tria markers offer 3 nibs ... fine, brush and chisel ... IN ONE PEN. The best of all worlds. You don't get 3 nibs on any other pens. This was a big plus in my book, as I use all three for different things.
The end result is that I purchased 40 Tria markers. Instead of paying upwards of $6.00 for a single Copic marker, I paid $2.95 for individual Tria markers. (I purchased my Tria markers from Carpediem). I could of gotten a greater deal had I purchased them in a set (as you would with Copic too). Although there were many beautiful sets available, the trouble with larger sets is that you usually get too many gray markers. A couple of "grays" are necessary, but I just don't use that wide of a variety of them. So, I chose to get just the colors I wanted, making sure I got blendable shades.
I have only had the Tria markers for about a week now, but I thought I'd share my first results with them. The flower above, and these two cards, are the first images that I colored. The photos are not the best , but I hope you can see the results I had with the Tria markers. They worked very nicely!
Besides having the 3 nibs in one pen, the other thing I like about the Trias over the Copic is the brush nib. The Copic brush nib (sketh marker) is quite flexible. Almost too flexible for me. The Tria is a bit stiffer and I find that easier to work with. To me, the ink in both markers apply the same. In the end, I found that the Tria markers truly don't look any different than the Copics. I found them very easy to work with. I am very happy with my purchase. I can see adding more colors to my Tria collection in the future. I feel like I got good results at a great value.
Update to this blog post - March 4th, 2009
I've owned my Tria markers for just about one year now. I find that I am not using them as much as I should, with lack of time being the issue. Recently I went to use the markers and found that many of my markers had dried up or were in the process of drying up. I couldn't believe it! I hadn't used some of my colors and the others had not been used much. The caps appeared to be on securely.
I remembered reading something when I was first doing research prior to buying the redesigned markers, about a batch of defective pens. I remember it had something to do with the caps. So, I thought "what have I got to lose". I contacted CarpeDiem (where I purchased the markers online). I told them I had 20 markers that were dried/drying up for no apparent reason. CarpeDiem immediately contacted me and told me there had been defective pens/caps at about the time I purchased my markers. All stock had been replaced by Tria since.
A representative from Lettraset contacted me and was very apologetic and explained what had happened with the markers. He asked for a list of the bad markers. That was on February 24th. Today I received replacement markers ... all 20 ... plus a very nice letter, a set of 6 additional primary colored markers, and a sleeve of fine point nibs. Now, I call that excellent customer service!!! The box came from the UK in just over 1 week. That is impressive in my opinion. I still recommend the pens, and definitely the company that stands behind them.
One thing that I figured out, was that the original markers that went "bad" had clear labels (or no label) on the sides of them. The remaining "good" markers had silver labels. All of the new replacement markers have the silver labels. If you purchased any markers about a year ago, and are having similar problems... check to see what kind of labels they have on the side. If they aren't silver, they may be defective like mine were. And, don't hesitate to contact Letraset.
Here are two Easter cards I made using the same stamped image. Both images were colored using pastel pencils. The first card is colored in peachy tones, and the second in pink tones. Both background papers are the same pattern, just in two different color palettes. This shows how slight color changes cn change a look of a card.
My niece Mandi recently got engaged and will be having an outdoor wedding in early fall. She has chosen persimmon and brown as the colors of her wedding. A beautiful choice of colors for a beautiful time of year.
As a gift, I decided to personalize a 2-tier cupcake standfromGlue, Art & Paper Studio for her. Hopefully, she can use it at her bridal shower or some other pre-wedding event.
It wasn't difficult to make this stand, although it had a lot of "drying" time involved. I first gave the stand 2 coats of cream colored paint . After that, I cut two circles of printed paper to be used on the surfaces of the stand. I adhered this paper to the stand using a gel medium. Next, I gave the entire stand two coats of a glazing medium . This gave the stand a nice finish.
I also took a 4.5" round box with lid, and painted it a chocolate brown color. I wrapped a strip of brown patterned paper around the box and adhered it. I also coated the box with the glaze medium.
Note - make sure you let each coat of paint/adhesive/glaze dry thoroughly before moving on.
Once the basics were finished, I moved on to the fun part... personalizing the cupcake stand.
I first took the persimmon colored rayon ribbon and "wrapped" the box like a gift. I wrapped the ribbon on the box and lid ... separately (making sure the ribbon on the lid and box lined up). After gluing the lid onto the box, I then wrapped the narrower brown ribbon over the rayon ribbon. I attached multiple loops and streamers of rayon ribbon to the top of the box.
Next, I attached the box to the center of the cupcake stand. I glued a dark persimmon flower, leaves, and cream colored roses to the top of the box. I added a couple of flower buds and loose petals around the base of the box. This was like putting icing on the cake.
I added a strong double sided tape to the back of the brown ribbon and carefully applied the ribbon around the edges of both levels of the cupcake stand, making sure it was perfectly straight. I also wrapped a cream colored satin ribbon around the center pole giving the cupcake stand a final finishing touch.
Finishing touches are most important to me, whether it be the way the ribbons are finished off at the ends, or the way in which pieces are lined up. I feel that how an item is "finished" either makes or breaks an art piece.
Anyway, I hope my niece enjoys her special cupcake stand. Congratulations Mandi.