There are a lot acrylic paint pens and markers available (Posca, Molotow, Krink, Montana, Sharpie, etc) but the Archer & Olive Acrylograph water-based acrylic markers ($35, the set I bought is currently sold out but this link will take you to the page where the other sets are available) have been created and marketed specifically for the bullet journal and planner market. While that shouldn’t matter, there are certain types of art (and/or craft) supplies that just don’t make it to consumers who don’t have knowledge or access to art supply stores.
The Archer & Olive Acrylograph collect a set of curated colors of water-based acrylic marker pens into a beautifully presented set with inspiring (or maybe aspirational) graphics and instructions for use. If you’ve never tried acrylic paint pens before, these Archer & Olive Acrylograph pens are a great way to start.
I got the Warm Fall Collection which included eight colors plus an opaque white and an empty pen for blending. The set cost $35 (about $3.80 per pen). There are several other sets available including sets that feature a finer 0.7mm tip which I think would be an interesting option.
The package included a couple extra tips should the tips get frayed or bent. To switch tips, use a pair of tweezers or pliers to keep your hands from getting too messy.
Like with all paint pens, they need to be shaken to get the paint properly mixed and then to get the paint to flow, use a scrap sheet of paper and press the tip down until it retracts into the pen. Don’t worry about damaging the pen. As long as you are pushing just hard enough to retract the point and pushing straight down, you will not damage the tip. Once the tip is fully coated with the paint color, it should be good to go. Repeat this process with each pen.
The package included an empty pen for blending but I was not savvy enough to figure out how to blend colors. I think that the paint dried too quickly to blend. To be honest, I think it would be difficult to blend colors in a smooth way with these relatively fine paint pen.
I tested the colors on a sheet of Maruman Sketch 100gsm paper first to get the pens moving and just to see the colors.
It’s really fun to make dots with these pens!
There was no show through on the reverse side of the Maruman paper which is not particularly thick which is a good sign.
I used a sheet of paper from a Flow Paper magazine to test to see how opaque these pens were. The colors were reasonably opaque. If I layered them or applied a few more coats of color, they probably would be more opaque.
I really liked the colors though for a fall color collection, I would have liked more green but that is just me.
Overall, I think these pens are a good introduction into using acrylic paint pens. The colors are rich, opaque and dense. They can be layered when dry and can bee applied to a lot of different kinds of surfaces which is great if you like to do collage or paint on other surfaces (wood, cardboard, plastic, etc).
DISCLAIMER: Some items included in this review were provided free of charge by JetPens for the purpose of review. The Acrylograph pens were purchased with my own funds. Please see the About page for more details.
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I know next to nothing about this, but I’m guessing to use the blending pen, you might need to touch the blender’s point with a pen and let capillary action pull paint into the tip, then do it again, without having used the pen yet, with another color. Then, when you use the blender pen, you color with the last paint you applied, and it continues to put out color, eventually blending the two and ending with the first color you applied to the blender’s tip?
I don’t know if this works with acrylics…but they ARE water-based, so why not? You ought to be able to pull the tip and wash it out if it doesn’t work, right?