Arts & Crafts, Reviews

Best Paper for Copic Markers

For the marker paper comparison, I have again taken all marker brands that I had on hand. Who does not remember the marker comparison: Copic, Twin Touch, Alpha Design, Delta Redbeard, Stylefile and Molotow Basic Sketcher. Besides, I also wanted to test the paper with the Faber-Castell PITT artist pen (big brush) as a high-quality substitute for all non-alcohol based felt pens. Among the tested papers, of course, include the brands of Copic and Touch and various major paper manufacturers. But also conventional printer paper and (cheap) watercolor paper as non-marker papers, I have taken, so you have a better comparison why layout paper for markers is necessary.

Copic Marker Paper Buying Guide

What are copics exactly?

Copics are professional designer felt-tip pens. These are based on alcohol. Like all alcohol-based sticks, they have the property of drying quite quickly. This may not always be an advantage, but the fast drying causes them to blur less often than other pens. 

Designers, architects and comic artists use the Copic Markers primarily to create their sketches and storyboards and to make them more lively. Gradually, however, the Copic markers also prevailed in the manga and anime area, as they are ideal for full-fledged artwork work.

Using Copics, it is possible to achieve nearly uniform and streak-free color applications. Optionally, there are the pens with a comprehensive and highlighter similar and with a fine brush-like tip to buy. Of the various brands, there are approximately pens in almost 150 different colors and designs. So your imagination will not be limited in any way.

What are the differences between the individual copics?

Copic markersa classic – it is available with a broad and thin tip, angular shape, 214 colors, refillable, different accessoriesis similar to the Maloptik a little known Edding, with it can be both coarse and fine paint.
Copic Sketcha marker in brush shape with a broad and thin tip, oval shape, available in a total of 144 colors, different accessories.Using this copic, strikingly soft brushstrokes can be created. For this reason, he is also more popular with one or the other cartoonist than the standard Copic markers.
Copic CiaoA reasonably priced entry-level Copic has a round brush shape and is available in a total of 144 different colors.A marker in brush shape with a broad and thin tip, oval shape, available in a total of 144 colors, different accessories.
Copic WideIt has a full top and is available in a total of 35 colors. An advantage: it is refillable.This pen is perfect for coloring large areas.
Copic Various InkThere are also refill bottles for this pen. Matching the system, there are refill bottles and empty markers with which you can create your mixed colors.The bottles are refillable at least six times.

Which Copic is the best?

It’s best to try them out and decide for yourself which pen suits you best. Many drafters prefer a marker because they can create quite fine and exact lines with them. Others favor the sketch because you can paint very soft transitions and contours with this pen. And still, others like to draw with a Ciao because this pen is quite inexpensive.

Which colors do I need exactly?

What colors you need to paint is always heavily dependent on what exactly you want to represent. In principle, your choice of color depends on your taste. Specifically, the different nuances of each hue are highly dependent on personal taste, while one draftsman may find a darker red tone more beautiful, while others may see a lighter shade more pleasing.
Fortunately, a lot of paper is always left out in most stores for drawing supplies, so you can calmly search for your very own favorite color.

If you are one of the persons who can only order their markers online, it is advisable to get a catalog from a dealer. In these are usually the different color codes so that you decide at least based on the color tables, which colors you want to work later. From time to time, though, the tables are not 100 percent authentic and when you paint, you’ll end up with little “surprises.” However, this does not have to be the rule. In such a case, it makes sense to mix your colors.

One possibility would be, for example, in such a case, the color palette of Transotype the company Neopiko view.

However, do not spend too much effort on your first steps with the Copic markers. First, a set with a total of 12 markers should be entirely sufficient. This includes a basic palette of colors like yellow, red, green, etc. and black. If you are a bit more experienced with the handling of the pens, it certainly makes sense to increase your color assortment a bit. However, in most cases, this happens from artwork to artwork by itself.

If you want to draw portraits primarily, then it is recommended, as it is quite difficult for most artists to draw skin color to have always a “Milky While (E 51)” or a “Skin White (E 00)” in its range. Alternatively, a “Barely Beige (E 11)” or the darker “Brick Beige (E 31)” is perfect for skin color.

What exactly is a (colorless) blender? And how do I use this?

This is simply a colorless pen, which serves to lighten other colors and create the desired color gradients. However, the myths and legends line up for its perfect application.

If you paint with the pencil over your color you want to lighten, you dilute the color accordingly and it becomes brighter. However, the ghosts are still arguing about whether working with a colorless blender enhances a work or rather opposes the desired effect. Many drafters feel that lightening only with the Colorless Blender rather than graffiti. You recommend the following method:

1. Hold the two full ends of your a) Colorless-Blender and b) the one of your Copic-Marker next to each other and paint with the paint a few times over the Blenderspitze until it is thick with paint moistened.

2. You can continue painting with the color absorbed by the blender. So you get a whitening effect without your color smeared. Besides, you avoid using this method with ripped edges.

Unfortunately, the disadvantage of this method is that it takes a little practice before you can make a successful career.
Another method is that you, with the help of your Blenders the painting ground thick and then apply very fast your actual color. This method is also comparable to the wet in wet technique from the watercolor painting. Whether you consider a blender to be necessary remains ultimately up to your decision. Many drafters manage very well without him.

How do I replenish my copics when they are empty?

Since there are different pens, unfortunately, there are also different refill variants. Here are some to be introduced:
Marker, Sketch: Here you pull carefully with a pair of tweezers spread the tip of her shaft and carefully refill the color.

Various Ink: With this pen, you first remove the cap and lead it to the shaft and begin to fill about 3-5 ml in the Copic into it carefully. Besides, this pen has a small gauge that shows you when the pen is full again.

Comprehensive: This pen has a distinctive notch to help you refill the color into the Copic. This will save you from having to remove the full tip from the shaft, increasing the life of your advice. Besides, the pen can be refilled more evenly.

How often you can refill your marker varies greatly and is primarily dependent on the size of the tank. The frequency varies between 6-8 times.

Which paper do I need for painting?

As for most artifacts, Copic markers also have special Copic paper. This has the advantage that if you paint on it with your markers, your colors will run smoothly and not bleed. Also, it prevents the color on the underlying paper, or the corresponding surface does not pull through.

However, you should always keep in mind that you are working on the “right” side of your paper. This is still the direction in which the leaves rest on your block. After all, you recognize that you are working on the wrong side of your paper because the colors look quite pale and almost glazed.

When choosing your paper, keep in mind that these tips are only recommendations. Of course, there are no limits to your creativity and of course, you are cordially invited to do your experiments with a variety of papers. Possibly. Do you discover any effects that nobody has ever seen before you?

Type of paper to use with Copic markers

Copic markers use alcohol ink, which is water-resistant and can be painted in layers and mixed on paper and other surfaces. Available in an extremely large variety of colors, the Copic are refillable and the tips are replaceable. This means that you can also mix inks to create your own colors. Copic guarantees the markers for three years, which can also be used with colored pencils and watercolors. Avoid using photocopy paper, printer paper or newspaper as these tend to run. Many types of paperwork well with Copic markers. Test all the papers before using them to make sure the result is what you imagined.

Copic paper

Copic makes its own brand of paper specifically for use with markers. Spiral sketchbooks work well for mixed media in addition to Copic markers. Until January 2011, notebooks vary in size from 5×7 inches (12.5 x 17.5 cm) to 11×14 inches (27.5 x 35 cm). The mix card allows you to use Copic markers to stamp and make cards. The soft, almost lustrous surface keeps colors bright and acid-free. The manuscript paper comes with measurement guides for working with comic strip panels and comes in two sizes. The illustration paper also comes in two sizes and two colors, pure white and natural. The paper works well with pen or ink, in addition to markers. Pure white is more transparent and creeps proof. Natural white retains color better and is resistant to bleed. Architects and other designers appreciate the slip-resistant quality of alcohol bookmarks created for their compositions. The paper “grabs” the markers with a light tooth.

Marker papers

Glossy or coated marker papers hold the ink well and do not allow transfer to the back of the paper. Matte cards allow ink to be absorbed into the paper. In contrast, marker papers use fewer inks, but they do not respond well to color layers as colors will stagnate. Colors look different on both types of paper. Let the ink lines dry well before coloring over them so they don’t blur or run.

Watercolor papers

Copic markers work well on plain or granulated paper, or with watercolor paper. If you use paper with a slightly rough finish, be extra careful when using fine tips so as not to damage them.

Images printed on a laser printer

With Copic markers, you can color images copied by most photocopiers or printed with a laser printer. The toner merges the lines to the paper so that the markers will not alter them. Try inkjet printers before trying to color them, as each printer responds slightly differently to alcohol in the Copic.

Glossy paper and vellum

Although glossy paper and vellum are different products, they share some similarities. Both are very soft and non-absorbent. This lack of absorption means that you will use less ink and, in many cases, this will result in lighter colors. It is more difficult to mix colors in these types of paper. When working with the glossy paper you will find that it is extremely difficult to change something you have already written. You don’t have to worry about the “blur” (ink that spreads across the paper) since the lines will be very sharp. Because the vellum paper is transparent, you can mix colors using a color on one side of the paper and a different color on the opposite side.


Cardboard is somewhat more versatile than other types of paper. It is absorbent and, the thicker the paper, the more absorbent it will be, and you will see a greater blur in your artistic work. The cardboard for Copic markers is usually thin and soft with tight fibers. Use this type of paper to mix and make layers of colors and to apply advanced coloring techniques. Copic markers will drip through the back of most cards, which could be bad or good, depending on your preferences.


The bristol might work well for illustrators who prefer paper that is heavy and soft. Fine and thin art paper, such as acrylic paper, may result in brighter colors than other papers but absorbs too much for detailed work. You can use Copic markers on a variety of different surfaces; however, it is not recommended to use them on fabrics that will be used. In addition, you can use cheap paper, such as ordinary printing paper, if you are able to draw taking into consideration how much it will drip and how much it will blur.

Do I draw my outlines with a normal Copic Marker?

Since many drafters also work with Outlines when painting with Copic markers, individual Copic Multi lines have been developed. These are special copics with a total of 6 different weights, which are available with two brush sticks.
The advantage of these pens is that they do not bleed even if they are painted over several times and do not smudge at all.

So if you want to design your artworks with the help of Outlines, then it is advisable to add Copic-Multiliner in the line thicknesses of 0.05 mm and 0.1 mm. You can just as well as the standard Copic markers in the shades Sepia and black, received at virtually every sign supply store. Sepia is especially suitable if your outlines are later to be kept very inconspicuous.

Another way of designing your outlines is to use a pen with ink or ink pen Radiograph. In this case, you should allow the ink to dry thoroughly before you continue to paint. Otherwise, it will smudge.

The disadvantage of this method, however, is that ink, on the one hand, is deep black and on the other side, the thin spring scratched now and then beautiful crack in the paper. Do you want your Outlines to remove it later, this is not so easy due to the cracks. Therefore, you should always pay attention, if you prefer the inking process, that you use an S-spring while drawing.

Radiographs are best suited for the inking process. With them, you can draw very fine. However, the pins are also expensive.

How do I paint with my copics?

In the end, you have to find out for yourself how to best achieve the effects you prefer with your copics. But in the following you will be given two methods as a small entry help:

A simple but paper-wearing way

1. Draw your picture on Copic-paper with a pencil.
2. Retrieve the desired outlines with a Multiliner or a pen.
3. Erase your pencil sketch out of the image as carefully as possible.
4. Finally, color your picture with your copics.

More complicated but without erasing

1. First, draw your picture on plain paper.
2. Now lay over the painted image tracing paper.
3. Now follow the outlines with a Multiliner or a pen.
4. Finally, break your Outlines on the appropriate Copic paper.
5. Finally, color the corresponding parts with your Copic markers.

It is still more complicated, but smear-free

1. Draw first your picture on regular paper
2. Put now transparent paper over your sketch
3. Ink your Outlines on Copic paper after
4. Copy your image with your Outlines in a copy shop directly on your Copic paper.
5. Now complete your drawing with your Copic markers.

Achieve different effects

Achieve a uniform application of color

If you want to achieve the most uniform possible application of paint, it is advisable to use the broad side of the copics to make small but rather rapid circular movements when painting.

Paint ceilings and shadows with the color Copic

If you want to darken specific areas of your image, you have to paint over the corresponding places in different layers with your Copic. So you increase the opacity and the overall color looks darker. This method is especially useful if you want to create shadows.

Bring shine to your drawing

If it is your goal to achieve three-dimensional effects using highlights, painting can be done using a white opaque or a similar pencil. Especially with round surfaces, this method is quite impressive.

What prices do I have to expect for Copic markers?

Of course, the prices vary according to the quality of the different Copic markers. Almost all are available in various sign and art supply stores. You can buy your Copics individually or in a set. You are just faced with the problem of the agony of choosing between one of the corresponding online shops. Enclosed a small price list so that you can estimate the resulting cost factor a little better.

modelPrice/pen in Dollarcomment
Copic Marker Copic Sketchabout 3,50 – 6, – Dollars per penSome dealers also offer appropriate volume discounts.
Copic Ciaoabout 2,50 – 4, – Dollars per pen
Copic Wideabout 5.50 – 8, – Dollars per pen
Various Inkabout 6, – – 9, – Dollars
Copic Multiliner:Line widths (0.05 to 1.0 mm): between 2.30 to 3, – Dollars per pen, Brush widths (Brush M and S): approx. 2.80 – 3.50 Dollars
Copic paperDIN A4 block about 5, – Dollars, Din A3 block about 10, –

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