Watercolor purists may disagree, but using a white pen to add details to your watercolor painting can open up a whole new world of expression that allows you to be as free as possible when creating artwork.
There are so many ways to use white pens for watercolor. You can use watercolor as a background and draw in the details using a white pen. You can paint with watercolor and use a white pen to add outlines, highlights, and other finishing touches. The possibilities are quite endless when you spend enough time experimenting.
So, what are the best white pens for watercolor? The best white pens for watercolor will be highly pigmented, won’t fade into your color or bleed, and will be waterproof for the best results. This way, the white will stand out and stay put in the right place.
Not every type of white pen will work well with watercolor, and you can risk ruining your masterpiece if you don’t use the right tools. In this article, we will help you find the best white pens for watercolor.
What to Know About White Pens for Watercolor
Before you run to the nearest stationery store and buy the first white pen you see, you should know that not every white pen is suitable to use with watercolor. Here are a few things that you should consider before buying a white pen for your watercolor.
You will want your pen to be waterproof when you intend to use it with watercolor. This is pretty much common sense, but if your ink isn’t waterproof, it will smudge when the ink touches your watercolor. Unless you want that effect for your artwork, we recommend looking for a pen with waterproof ink.
You don’t want your ink to be water-soluble. Water-solubility sounds like something you learn in high school chemistry, but it only means the ink is diluted in water, which means when you use it with watercolor, the ink will instantly run when it touches the wet watercolor on your painting.
Unless you want that effect for your watercolor painting, you should stay away from pens that say they have water-soluble ink. However, if you let your artwork dry completely before adding these details, it won’t be as big of an issue.
The pigment is made up of small color particles that can’t be diluted in water, which means the color will show up well on your watercolor painting. Pigmented ink also tends to be waterproof and works well with watercolor, so when you look for the perfect pen to use for watercolor, look for “pigmented ink” on the label.
Most waterproof pens dry completely after a couple of hours, but if you are using a white pen to outline your piece before coloring it in with watercolor, you want to make sure the ink is completely dry before applying watercolor, ideally after 24 hours, so that the watercolor won’t smudge the ink.
Drying time is really a matter of personal preference, so depending on your technique, you can opt for a fast-drying pen or a pen with a regular drying time.
How to Use Ink Pens With Watercolor
There’s really no “correct” way to use ink pens with watercolor. Some artists prefer outlining the shapes first before coloring them in, and some others love drawing abstract shapes with watercolor first before adding the finishing touches with an ink pen.
Both of these methods can help you create impressive artworks, each with its own style and distinct look. Some artists love to use the pen to outline the shapes on the paper first because the pen simply glides easily on the page, and it will give the artwork a structured look with defined shapes.
However, other artists love the abstract effect of watercolor, so they will draw abstract shapes with watercolor first before adding shapes and finishing touches to the artwork with a white pen. The colors may not stay within the lines, but they will give the painting an expressive look.
Whatever you choose, you need to remember to let the ink or watercolor completely dry off before applying the next layer so that there are no smudges or bleeding between the layers.
Best White Pens for Watercolor
If you want to experiment more with white pens on watercolor, let’s take a look at some of the best options below.
|1.||Art-n-Fly Fine Point White Gel Pen||Archival ink, fast-drying, waterproof|
|2.||Yizemay Acrylic Paint Pens Waterproof||Acrylic paint, waterproof, fast-drying|
|3.||Sakura of America Sakura Rollerball Gel Pen||Archival ink, waterproof, medium tip|
|4.||Uni-Ball Broad Point Gel Pen||Waterproof, acid-free, smooth glide|
|5.||Overseas White Paint Markers Pens||Fast-drying, fade-resistant, thick tip|
1. Art-n-Fly Fine Point White Gel Pen
There are so many reasons why this pen is beloved by many artists who work with watercolor, and we will talk about its superior features and designs.
This pen uses archival ink, which is a specialist long-lasting ink that is fast-drying and waterproof, making it perfect to use with watercolor.
The ink is non-toxic and dries very quickly, so there is less risk of smudging in between the layers. Since it is waterproof, your drawings will look quite defined on the page, creating a sharp and polished effect.
You’ll enjoy working with this pen, thanks to the ballpoint design and smooth gel application. It will feel comfortable whether you are using it directly on the paper or over a layer of watercolor. The application will feel smooth and effortless, allowing you to create freely and expressively without any issues.
The ballpoint is 0.7mm, which is a fine tip that allows you to create small details and be highly precise with the application. This is as thin as a writing pen, so you can even use it to write on black paper.
The pen has an ergonomic design with a rubber grip, making it feel quite comfortable in your hand. You will be able to use it for hours without cramping up, and you’ll be able to create some interesting watercolor pieces with this pen.
2. Yizemay Acrylic Paint Pens Waterproof
These fine tip acrylic paint pens are also excellent if you are looking for a white market to work with watercolor.
These acrylic paint pens are waterproof that feel similar to permanent markers, making it easy to apply on various surfaces and excellent when paired with watercolor.
These acrylic paint pens also have a 0.7mm fine tip, so you should have no issues using them.
The acrylic paint is not only waterproof but also highly pigmented and fast-drying, which speeds up the painting process for you. The paint is non-toxic and quite durable, which means the color will last and won’t smudge at all after drying.
The pen is designed with a clear plastic body that allows you to see the ink capsule inside. Each pen has a steel ball in the ink tube that allows the ink to be applied more evenly on the page, helping you create whatever you can imagine.
3. Sakura of America Sakura Rollerball Gel Pen
This Sakura Rollerball Gel Pen is quite well-known in the art world and is a staple in many artists’ supplies, thanks to its reliable quality.
If you are looking for something dependable that gets the job done, this is surely the option for you.
This pen uses a non-toxic archival-quality ink that is waterproof, so the color will stay and won’t smudge whether you use it before or after the watercolor layer. You will be able to create precise lines and defined shapes thanks to the pen’s design and the ink’s performance.
This pen has a rollerball medium tip that creates a smooth application, whether on paper or on a watercolor layer. The medium tip means that the pen will be easy to control and will appear more pronounced when applied directly on a watercolor surface.
4. Uni-Ball Broad Point Gel Pen
This Uni-Ball pen is another ballpoint gel pen option that will be lovely on your watercolor artwork. The quality is similar to the Sakura Gel Pen, with only some minor differences.
The ink is waterproof and acid-free, which gives it a consistent quality that allows it to be used with watercolor. Thanks to the ballpoint design, the ink flows very smoothly; it feels almost silky when you apply pen to paper.
The pen distributes more ink than other types of paint pens, however, so you will need to practice to get the hang of it before creating your artwork. The ink has a slightly longer drying time compared to the other pens, which means you will have to wait longer if you want to apply another layer of watercolor on top.
The pen tip is 1.0 mm, which is bigger than other types of ballpoint pens out there. This size is suitable if you want to create large, defined shapes, but once again, you will need to test it out before using it in your artwork.
The pen’s ergonomic design, complete with a rubber grip, means you can hold it for a while without experiencing fatigue. This pen is a great option that allows you to create bold lines and details on your watercolor paintings.
5. Overseas White Paint Markers Pens
This is another paint marker option if you are looking for something fast-drying with a stable performance. The ink is an oil-based paint that is highly pigmented and water-resistant. Once dry, the ink will also be fade-resistant with consistent color quality.
This ink is non-toxic, acid-free, and environmentally friendly, so it’s perfect for even children to use. If you are teaching young kids how to use watercolor and white pens, these markers are definitely the right option.
These pens have 5 mm tips with a 2 mm line thickness, which allow you to create very thick and pronounced lines. The fine round tips make application easy and precise, so you can be creative and guide the pen to bring your imagination to life.