Colored Pencils vs. Markers: Which One is Better?

Colored Pencils vs. Markers:

The debate between the superiority of colored pencils and markers has been of a kind that never seems to come to a resolution. Both colored pencils and markers are instruments of artistic expression that have a considerable amount of supporters. Artists who are on the side of colored markers claim that this tool provides them with unparalleled exactness and methodicalness which have lower chances of being achievable with markers.

On the other hand, artists who vouch for the efficacy of markers as a tool for the artistic application would disagree with that claim and have a theory of their own. They believe that markers are of higher quality when it comes to factors pertaining to speed and multiple layering. However, there is something about colored pencils that seems to outclass markers when it comes to smooth application and blend-ability.

When judging the effectiveness and performance of colored pencils and markers, it is crucial to keep in mind that both instruments come with their own set of perks and setbacks. As an artist or just as someone who’s getting into art lately, the best thing you can do is to keep testing and experimenting with different methods and tools to find out what works best for your approach to improve your art.

If you consider yourself a novice in this department, your best shot is to focus on your present knowledge and limitations when it comes to the subject. Be open to experiment with a variety of colored pencils and markers and expect to consistently fail in the process. Grab whatever is available to you and don’t worry about the manufacturer of the product or the kind of techniques you should be using on the product.

Once you’ve started playing with a bunch of colored pencils and markers, it will help you get accustomed to the products and will allow you to make better decisions when thinking of buying art tools for yourself next time. You might discover that you agree with artists who prefer colored pencils over markers, or even vice versa. It is also possible that you realize you work best by incorporating the use of both mediums in your art.

Colored Pencils vs. Markers

Markers don’t provide the user with a lot of room for mistakes and experimenting. Because markers are deficient in this domain, it makes it difficult for the artist to produce a more blended and cohesive look in the end. That is where colored pencils come in to save the day. Colored pencils are very easy to control and offer effortless precision when it comes to mixing. This medium is also a great way to focus on embellishing the tiny details in your drawing to create a more three-dimensional look.

This article aims to capture and focus on all the great and innovative ways colored pencils can be used in place of markers to bring out the best in your drawings.

You May Also Like: Top 5 Sargent Art Colored Pencils

How Are Colored Pencils Different From Markers?

Colored pencils and markers have a couple of differences between them which will be covered in this article. Unlike markers, colored pencils don’t use ink to produce a mark. Instead, colored pencils comprise a firm base in the form of a colored pigment and a protective casing made out of wood.

Pencils in general are made up of a core consisting of graphite and clay, and similarly, colored pencils also constitute the two along with wax, pigments, additives, and binding agents. The way colored pencils and markers are designed explains why some people would prefer one over the other. Moreover, markers depend on using ink as their primary medium, which makes it suitable for a more semifluid application.

On the contrary, colored pencils are a more versatile medium in terms of utilization. Colored pencils primarily fall under the category of a dry medium, but they also have a separate department that caters to the needs of artists who’d like to use colored pencils for a more fluid application. That is where watercolor pencils come in.

As an artist, it is impossible to remain a single trick pony if you want to take your art up a notch and explore new horizons. You have to experiment and focus on what medium brings out the best in you as an artist.

To do that you have to be mindful of the kind of colored pencils on the market and the type that are made to cater to your artistic needs. You have to adopt an open mind when looking for colored pencils because you will never know when a product might end up surpassing your expectations.

Working with colored pencils also grants you more room to do things the unconventional way. In art, there are no specific rules per se but you need to be careful when going out of your comfort zone and taking risks with it. Colored pencils make it quite easy to accomplish this by giving you the option to incorporate different kinds of techniques without going too overboard as a beginner. This flexibility and scope to make mistakes is something that is not easily achievable with markers.

Colored Pencils vs. Markers:
Colored Pencils

What makes an artist successful and talented is their ability to intelligently incorporate different mediums or even bring out the best results using a single medium. When you start working your way with colored pencils, make sure you keep in mind a few helpful tips and theories concerning the medium. This will allow you to use colored pencils to their best potential and help you take your art to the next level.

What Are the Benefits of Using Colored Pencils?

Colored pencils take the first spot when it comes to seamless blending and creating painting-like effects without the need for actual paints or markers. The pigmented effect produced by using colored pencils is relatively more vibrant and full of liveliness to other artistic mediums. They also come in handy because of their versatile and user-oriented nature.

Artists can easily get a hang of working with colored pencils and start producing beautiful art. Colored pencils are also an incredible medium for little children who’re just starting on creating their art. Colored pencils that are of the highest quality grant you a more picturesque effect because of the greater saturation and intensity of the pigment.

Colored pencils are also available in ink-based pencils and watercolor pencils and can be utilized accordingly to create a more painterly effect with your art. With colored pencils, no matter the type of pencils you’re using, it will not affect precision and control.

Some of The Top Colored Pencils

Here is a list of some of the top colored pencils that you may want to consider:

Colored Pencils Are Great For Precision and Accuracy

If your preference as an artist is to focus on sharp details and dramatic precision, then colored pencils might be the best option for you. Markers are not a very fruitful option in this case if you plan to go for a more detailed and painting-like result.

Colored pencils also offer artists a more controlled motion and help in making preparations for any possible mistakes. Because of markers’ higher chances of bleeding into other parts of the paper, it makes it hard to be precise with them because of their incalculability.

Colored Pencils Are Your Best Bet for Color Concentration

Colored Pencils vs. Markers:
Colored Pencils

Colored pencils have garnered a considerable amount of popularity when it comes to color pigmentation and saturation in all the right areas. This perk goes along really well with colored pencils’ ability to provide great precision and accuracy.

After you’ve found the colored pencils which work best for you, you can use them to color in areas where you want to add more ornamentation and details to give a more three-dimensional effect.

To color into areas where other mediums such as markers can’t reach, you can apply a little amount of pressure with your hand movements to adjust the level of saturation you want to achieve with the color pigment. You can also use this technique to create multiple layers to give a more concentrated appearance, or just stick to light strokes to give more of a washed-out look.

Colored Pencils Have a Wider Range of Color Gradients

Colored pencils can be used to create a variety of different gradients of a single color. Using markers is not the best option when it comes to this department because they tend to bleed easily. If you are someone who likes to have different shades of a single color in your drawings, then colored pencils will do that job for you.

This can be done by utilizing varying pressures on the paper to control the saturation of the color. Moreover, colored pencils also allow users to mix different colors to create a new color. You can work with the intensity of the color to create a light or dark look. Controlling the intensity of colors is greatly reduced when you’re using markers.


Colored pencils provide artists with a multitude of perks when it comes to experimenting and taking risks with their art. This wide range of options includes maximized control of precision and accuracy, a high degree of color pigmentation, a good amount of saturation, and a high level of blend-ability.

Moreover, colored pencils are also available in ink-based pencils and watercolor pencils in case you’re looking for something specific. They are cost-effective, easy to use, offer more control, and don’t bleed, unlike markers. They are also very convenient and can be easily adopted by artists at any level.

We hope this article “Colored Pencils vs. Markers: Which One is Better?” will help you make a better decision about which one is better for you.

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