If you’re someone who is into arts and crafts and like to make posters, cards or T-shirts based on your own design, Silhouette products are a must-have for you. For those of you who are unfamiliar with their products, Silhouette is an American brand that produces cutters, sketch pens, software, and kits to produce DIY art. With several cutters such as Silhouette Cameo, Curio, and Portrait – the Silhouette cutters can be used to cut and trim vinyl, foam, cards, paper and other materials to produce a wide range of shapes, pictures, and texts. For example. The Silhouette Cameo 3 fits onto your work desk like a printer, and cut and draw over 100 different materials.
Silhouette products are not only good at cutting. Silhouette also makes additional tools that allow you to use your machine for sketching, engraving and etching designs into your preferred material. One of these tools is the Silhouette sketch pens, which come in several packs sold separately from the machines, and can be used to draw, sketch and color your homemade cards, posters and sketches.
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Silhouette Sketch Pens: A Solution for Designers
Product Design of Silhouette Sketch Pens
The Silhouette pens may look unimpressive at first, with their short and squat structure. But don’t be fooled with their looks. They come in different colors, including 24 standard ones, 4 glitter, 4 metallic and 4 for black and white sketches. If you design your art online but want it to have a hand-drawn look, these sketch pens are perfect. They can be used for designing posters, T-shirts, stamps, logos, invitation cards or even simple wall arts – the pens will work exactly the same.
The pens are designed to be easy to use. In order to use them with your Silhouette machine, you do not require any special pen holders. All you have to do is remove the blade from your machine, and lock your preferred sketch pen into place. They will fit in snugly, and engrave and color the appropriate spots as set by the Silhouette software. If you own one of the later Silhouette products such as Silhouette Cameo 3, you do not even need to remove the blade as it supports Dual Carriage. This means that the machine can cut and engrave at the same time, allowing you to use both the blade and the sketch pen.
The pens are also ballpoint and permanent ink. This means that they would produce lovely concise strokes when working with the cutter.
Silhouette Sketch Pen’s Performance
The real beauty of using these sketch pens is that they come with a lot of ink. And by a lot, it means A LOT! It’s hard to run out of ink when using these pens. Silhouette underwent an overhaul recently, and these pens are now filled with twice as much as ink as before. Even if you’re working on something as hectic as wedding invites that require making cards for hundreds of people, one pack of sketch pens is sure to be more than enough.
However, the sketch pens are not problem-free. A big issue with the original sketch pens was that they would skip often, which would mean some strokes would be less visible and vibrant than others. Whilst the new design does provide more coherent strokes for your design, there is still some skipping, which can be a hassle if you’re printing out a large number of designs.
One way to fix the issue would be by re-sketching parts of the design skipped with your Silhouette machine. However, this does not solve the issue perfectly. Even if you never moved the paper or your pen, there are chances that the pen would not sketch the exact same area, leaving you with double strokes.
A second problem comes with the use of 4-pack black and white pens. This pack consists of 3 black pens and 1 white pen. The black pens work perfectly, with a strong vivid color. However, the white pen is not exactly “white”. When used in black paper, the white looks more of a light grey when dried. A bright elegant white color would earn these sketch pens some bonus points, which are otherwise perfect. On the other hand, the metallic and the glitter packs work brilliantly – giving off the sparkly shining look that you want to go for.
On the plus side, whether you use card stock, fabric, construction paper or regular paper, these pens do not bleed at all. Although they are ball-point pens with permanent ink, they work just like a gel pen, producing sophisticated sketches and designs.
Also, sketch pens are very easy to use. Even if you’re new to Silhouette products, their usage is almost intuitive. Even if you struggle, there are plenty of YouTube videos available that teach you how to use these pens within minutes.
Depending on your preference and usage, these sketch pens can be a great way to produce handmade crafts quickly. Whilst the Silhouette machine blade allows you to cut and trim your material to your desired shape, the sketch pens can sketch and color your design to give it a perfect look. If you’re mass producing invitation cards or T-shirts, these sketch pens can be great as it takes a long time for them to dry out. On the other hand, if you require precision in your designs, the fact these pens skip sometimes may be a good reason for you to look for other options.
although there are some issues with these silhouette sketch pens, they can be a wonderful way for you to create art. They are concise, small and easy to use, making them perfect for artists who want to save some time but still maintain control.