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Old 06-15-2008, 06:55 AM   #1
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Question What is the Difference between Tombow/Marvy Le Plume and the new Copic Markers?

Ok So I have over 150 Tombow & Marvy LePlume II Markers.. which you know are about $3.00 a piece... and I am wondering what the big draw is to these new Copic Markers... and is it worth it to invest more money in markers when I already have great Tombow & Marvy LePlume II Markers.... Just Wondering... let the debate begin.. lol
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Old 06-15-2008, 10:33 AM   #2
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They are two different types of markers. The ones you have are water/dye based. The copics are alcohol based. A few of the differences:

Water based: cheaper, usually do not bleed through cardstock; aren't made to refill.

Copic: much more expensive, but can refill and the tips stay in good shape; will bleed through; need particular inks to work with it -- memento and adirondack are two that work; others bleed.

A lot of folks love the copics or other alcohol markers because they say that they blend better. You can take a clear alcohol marker and touch the tip of a colored marker, pick up the color and work with it. Then the clear marker will not be stained. You can also color other things with copics, such as ribbons and other embellishments.

There are a lot of blogs with a lot of experts on copics. If you look in the tool and product forum there are many discussions of the pros and cons and links to lots of blogs.
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Old 06-15-2008, 09:44 PM   #3
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And you can't use them with all paper. From what I was told you can't use SU cardstock or those other kind. I am just going to try using Rangers Alcohol ink with blending solution in a water pen. Much cheaper if you ask me

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Old 06-15-2008, 10:00 PM   #4
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It's more a question of what their capabilities are, vs. the capabilities of other markers, and the desired results of the artist.

Water-based markers, such as SU! and Tombow, are wonderful, high quality markers that work well for water-color type techniques and for coloring directly onto the rubber stamp, making it easy to omit parts of an image, or multi-color different parts of the image, such as a solid one (as opposed to an outline), prior to stamping.

The softness of the brush tip makes it easy to color right over thermal embossed lines, without causing damage to the image; the embossing repels the water-based ink, and if there is any residual ink on the embossing lines from coloring over them, you can quickly blot that way with a tissue.

They are not fade-resistant, will bleed out when moistened, and if your finger tips have any moisture on them at all (from lotion, natural skin oils, etc.), it can re-activate the marker ink, and you may end up with undesirable transfer to other areas of your project.

Because they are water-based and most papers are not designed to withstand water-based mediums (except for watercolor paper, etc.), if you repeatedly color over a section, it can deteriorate and break down the paper fibers, resulting in what is referred to as "pilling".

The same thing can occur if using a blender pen (designed for use with water-based markers), in conjunction with the markers.

They are designed to be disposable, and the nibs cannot be replaced; therefore they are much less expensive. Some folks do refill them when they run dry, using matching dye-based ink pad reinker. I've never tried this personally, so I do not know how effective it is.

Copic markers are alcohol-based. Richly saturated in color, but, because of the alcohol content, it evaporates almost instantaneously; no wet finger transfer issues to worry about.

They are blendable and you can achieve beautiful shaded effects using two, sometimes 3 colors, or in conjunction with good quality colored pencils, too! Many artists combine them together to achieve stunning results. The Copic "blender" pen is somewhat of a misnomer; it works more for pushing color around or "extracting" or "bleaching" out color--kinda like an eraser, altho if you used a mid to dark color, you may not be able to "erase" all of it from the paper surface.

The alcohol ink tends to bleed through most papers, unless you are using Alcohol Marker Pad Paper, so Copic colored images are best matted/layered, as opposed to single-layer cards. Water-based would be preferred for single-layer cards, because it *typically* (not always, tho) won't bleed through the paper, unless you are heavy-handed with the coloring.

Copics can be used on metal (I use them to tint my brads and other hardware), and other non-porous surfaces such as plastic, but it is best to test first, to see if you will achieve the results desired.

Like water-based, they are not fade-resistant, and whatever is in the alcohol ink tends to "eat off" any thermal embossed lines, so don't color over the embossed lines, but, within them, to avoid that happening.

Copics are refillable, and the nibs can be interchanged/swapped out and/or replaced when worn, making them a "life-time" marker; you will never have to throw the pen itself away, just purchase reinkers or new nibs when needed.

Copic Original and Sketch are designed to work with the Copic Airbrush system, and while I haven't tried it yet, personally, some awesome affects can be achieved with it.

Because they are alcohol-based, you can color over and re-work/blend any area of the paper repeatedly, and it will not deteriorate or break down the paper fibers!

So, it's not a matter of Copic markers being "better" than other markers, but, what kind of application you are needing, and which best serves that application.

HTH!
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Old 06-15-2008, 11:32 PM   #5
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Excellent explanation everyone - thank you so much!!
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:57 AM   #6
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Talking Tombow/LePlume II vs Copic Markers

THANK YOU SO MUCH EVERYONE THIS HAS HELPED ME SO MUCH...

Well guess I'm off to invest some more money into markers.. LOL

Happy Stamping!
Jaime
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:17 AM   #7
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Default leplume alcohol

I'm seeing the LePlume are coming out or came out with alcohol pens. Has anyone used them. How to they compare with copics? I can't seem to find a price for them either.
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Old 08-12-2011, 10:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tachris100 View Post
And you can't use them with all paper. From what I was told you can't use SU cardstock or those other kind. I am just going to try using Rangers Alcohol ink with blending solution in a water pen. Much cheaper if you ask me

TA
That's not true. I color on SU!'s Whisper White all the time! It does bleed through, but when you're layering it on another layer of cardstock, who cares?

You just wouldn't want to color an image with Copics on a single layer of cardstock (except maybe Gina K's Pure Luxury) otherwise it will show the bleed through on the back.
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Old 08-12-2011, 11:16 AM   #9
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Quote:
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That's not true. I color on SU!'s Whisper White all the time! It does bleed through, but when you're layering it on another layer of cardstock, who cares?

You just wouldn't want to color an image with Copics on a single layer of cardstock (except maybe Gina K's Pure Luxury) otherwise it will show the bleed through on the back.
I believe the reason people say you can't use SU! Whisper White cardstock is because it is coated. The coating on SU Whisper White can create a gunk on your Copic Marker Nibs and you will need to replace the nibs overtime.
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Old 08-12-2011, 12:33 PM   #10
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Great info from everyone already but just as an aside, Copics are not new as your thread title suggests. They've been used for many years by graphic designers (I believe they were first available in the late 1980s), it's just that it's fairly recent they've spread to the stamping/craft world. So if you're looking to invest in something with a proven track record, Copic probably fits the bill!
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Old 10-12-2011, 08:09 AM   #11
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What about Le Plume Alcohol markers. Do we know anything about them and how to buy them to get the best set.
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Old 10-12-2011, 09:06 AM   #12
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JulieHRR-

That was the best, most succinct explanation I have ever seen of the difference between water-based and alcohol markers, listing both pros and cons. Thank you for taking the time to write it!
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Old 10-12-2011, 02:35 PM   #13
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Thanks for the advice. I am new to the alcohol markers and only have 3 copics. 144 colors sounds like plenty for me. I think I will give them a try.

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Old 10-12-2011, 03:32 PM   #14
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Another thank you to Julie HRR - I learned a thing or two!
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Old 10-13-2011, 02:32 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blueheron View Post
JulieHRR-

That was the best, most succinct explanation I have ever seen of the difference between water-based and alcohol markers, listing both pros and cons. Thank you for taking the time to write it!
You are most welcome!
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Old 10-13-2011, 02:37 PM   #16
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julie, thank you! that was beautifully put...hugs!
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Old 10-14-2011, 06:54 AM   #17
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@Julie....
That was the best explanation of markers I have seen in the last 24 hours. All I have done in the last24 hours is research markers to help me make a decision that to buy. You nailed down every point I was trying to figure out!!
I have made my decision that I want an alcohol based marker that has a fine tip and a brush tip(not a chisel tip). So now, my question what other markers fit these criteria but are not Copics???
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Old 10-15-2011, 10:25 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuck@home View Post
@Julie....
That was the best explanation of markers I have seen in the last 24 hours. All I have done in the last24 hours is research markers to help me make a decision that to buy. You nailed down every point I was trying to figure out!!
I have made my decision that I want an alcohol based marker that has a fine tip and a brush tip(not a chisel tip). So now, my question what other markers fit these criteria but are not Copics???
I'm glad it was helpful.

I've always been happy with the Copic Ciao & Sketch, but haven't used any other brand of alcohol marker besides them and Prismacolor. I like them over Prismacolor because Prismas have a bullet and chisel, but no option for a brush nib, and they aren't refillable.

But, one of the beauties of Copics is that you can swap in nibs. Refer to their website for more information on this:

Sketch Nibs: Sketch | COPICMARKER.COM

Ciao Nibs:Ciao | COPICMARKER.COM

Original Nibs: Copic | COPICMARKER.COM

HTH!
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Old 10-15-2011, 10:25 AM   #19
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julie, thank you! that was beautifully put...hugs!
Hugs back, girlie!
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Old 10-15-2011, 11:11 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stuck@home View Post
@Julie....
That was the best explanation of markers I have seen in the last 24 hours. All I have done in the last24 hours is research markers to help me make a decision that to buy. You nailed down every point I was trying to figure out!!
I have made my decision that I want an alcohol based marker that has a fine tip and a brush tip(not a chisel tip). So now, my question what other markers fit these criteria but are not Copics???
Shinhan Touch Twin markers are an excellent alternative to Copics. They are true artist quality markers and have been around for awhile but not marketed so much in America. They work well with all brands of cardstock (I use smooth bristol, which is a type of art cardstock, not a brand). They have just introduced refillable chisel and bullet/fine tip nib style and also refillable brush style.

Touch markers are $2 - $3 less than Copics per marker, which is a substantial savings. They personally are my favorite.

There also is Promarkers and Tria's, which are both made my Letraset and have the same alcohol ink. The Promarkers are a very good value. They are not refillable but hold much more ink that other markers and last time I purchased one, it was less than $2 per marker. They are coming out with new styles and accessories. Tria's have 3 tips - brush, fine/bullet and chisel and have replaceable ink cartridges. Letra's inks are very nice. Like Touch, these have been around in other countries but are becoming more popular in the US as they increase their marketing.

In reality, I have found that there isn't a need for every color of my marker stash to be refillable. These inks have a super long life as long as they are stored correctly and there are colors I rarely use. I have some first generation alcohol ink markers called Design2 (stink like you can't believe) and they are over 15 years old and most of them STILL work. But I have to have open windows to use them.

Prismacolor has alcohol type markers, but I don't have any experience with these so I can't really comment. I am not sure if these are true alcohol or a solvent based but I believe they work the same as alcohol ink markers.

Dick Blick (Dickblick.com) is a large art supplier and they have their own brand of alcohol ink markers. They are OK overall but some of the ink goes down an odd color but then dries to the color it's supposed to be. I have a medium pink which goes down flourescent but dries the color it is supposed to be. I find it difficult to work with because of the color change.

I have all of these markers except the Prisma's and I use them all together. All alcohol markers work exactly the same - techniques are really alcohol ink techniques, they are not unique to just one brand of marker.

Here is a link to Touch Twin markers challenge blog you can check out. Challenge winners (by random drawing) are winning the new markers!!

Also, don't be afraid of the chisel or bullet nibs! Bullet or fine nibs are actually easier for fine detail than brush nibs and can blend the same way as brush. Brush is excellent for that painterly effect of varying width lines in large artwork or writing. Chisel is wonderful for laying down a lot of color and also for blending. It all just takes practice!

I hope this helps!

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