A Brief Introduction to Using Acrylic Pens

07th May 2021

You're onto your next arts and crafts project but want something new. You're used to creating art pieces with acrylic paints, but you want something less messy with the same effects—cleaning your brushes and pallets starts to get old after a while.

But, what if there were a solution? Have you heard of acrylic pens and markers? If you haven't, no worries. Whether you're an artist or a beginner at acrylic painting, these relatively new tools will make the process more fun and less of a hassle.

Here's a guide on acrylic pens and markers and how to use them. But first, let's outline the differences between traditional acrylic paint and acrylic pens.

Traditional Acrylic Paint

Acrylic paint is a popular and versatile medium of choice for artists. Its water-soluble and fast-drying properties make it ideal for abstract motifs, detailed portraits, landscapes, and more.

Acrylic paint is commonly used on durable surfaces including paper, canvas, wood, cloth, and more. It can be thinned like watercolour paints. While it can be a sturdy and reliable form of paint, too much water mixed in with it can cause the acrylic paint to break down, leaving noticeable spots in the paint.

Acrylic Pens and Markers

Acrylic pens and markers are also water-based and serve a similar function as regular acrylic paint. They are not to be mistaken for "paint pens" like sharpies. The major difference here is that acrylic pens are paint-based whereas sharpies are ink-based.

Acrylic paint pens and markers come in highly pigmented ink and different degrees of coverage. You can choose pens that will appear more opaque or transparent.

They often come in a variety of different colours, so the options to create a vibrant art piece are unlimited.

Acrylic pens can be used on practically any surface. This includes paper, canvas, hard surfaces like wood or rocks, glossy surfaces like glass or ceramic, cloth, and fabric.

If you want both a thin and fluid look for your next art piece, acrylic pens and markers are your best bet.

The Main Benefits of Acrylic Pens

There are several reasons to use acrylic pens whether you're a seasoned artist, an amateur or if it's for your kids. Here are four benefits:

1. Easy to Use

Most people find it easier to use an acrylic pen, simply because it mimics writing or colouring with pencils, pens, and regular markers. The gestures and motions are similar and give anyone using it better control over a paintbrush.

The best part about using these markers is that it reduces mess and clean up time. After using them, there is no need to clean any brushes, pallets, or pots. You also don't have to worry about any paint being wasted.

2. Safe for Kids

Acrylic markers and pens are suitable for all ages, including kids ages 3 and up. They provide a no-fuss environment for children to be creative without getting too messy. While the pens are permanent, they are simple to wash off with some soap and water.

They are the perfect addition to your list of fun craft ideas for you and your kids or friends.

3. Dry Quickly

A prominent feature of acrylic pens is that they are permanent. However, there are exceptions. On porous surfaces like paper, rocks, or fabric, the paint dries quickly.

On less porous surfaces like glass or ceramic, the paint will take longer to dry and will not be permanent because the surface is too glossy.

4. Techniques

Just like with regular acrylic paintbrushes, the quality and size of the tip of the brush play a significant role in creating the desired effect.

Acrylic paint pens often have different-sized stroke nibs and widths to accomplish different painting techniques.

These adjustable nibs allow artists to blend, layer and outline their art pieces in similar ways to regular acrylic painting.

How to Use Your Acrylic Pens

Now that you know the differences between acrylic paint and acrylic pens (and their benefits), here's a short guide on how to use them. There are two things you want to do to activate your pen:

First, shake the pen until you hear the mixing balls inside the pen rattling. Remove the cap afterwards.

Second, to fill the nib of the pen, hold the pen at an angle and pump the tip up and down until you see the paint. The best practice is to pump and shake horizontally. Do not pump vertically.

After the nib is filled with paint, it is ready for use.

How to Replace the Nib of the Pen

If your marker runs out of paint, has dried out, or is damaged, you can replace the nib in just a few steps.

First, grab your marker and hold it with the nib facing upward. Take a tissue or paper towel and pull the old marker nib out of the mouthpiece.

Second, place the new nib into the mouthpiece of the marker and repeat the activation steps above.

Get Started With Edding Acrylic Pens

If you're looking for an easy and hassle-free path to painting, acrylic pens are the way to go.

Try out Edding's new line of acrylic markers.

Their four new products offer 26 colours and a variety of unique features to execute your desired effect. Whether you're looking for a 3D effect or broad strokes, these water-based and highly pigmented markers will get the job done.

Replace your acrylic paint with acrylic markers for less mess, less stress, and a beautiful work of art.

Join the fun and add the new Edding acrylic range to your arts and crafts toolbox.