- pencils, pens, nibs, brushes, inks, paper



Pencil, it is probably the most important tool, anyway it is the first tool we think about when we start drawing :). Pencils are devided in 2 categories: H pencils and B pencils. H pencils are hard, B pencils are soft. 2B pencil is soft, 8B pencil is very soft, H pencil is hard, 5H pencil is very hard. Everybody understands the dependences. A black-lead of the pencil consists of graphite and kaoline (white clay). The more kaoline in your black-lead the harder pencil is and the line made with this pen is thinner (finer). However after erasing the sketch made with H pencils you can see many grooves on your paper left. That 's why H pencils are not recommended for cartoonists.

B pencils are the best, especially 1B, 2B, 3B. Higher numbers of B are to soft. We all know pencils with black-lead of 0,1 - 0,9mm across width. Note: these black-leads are not made from mixture of graphite and kaoline, they consists of many types of polymeres. That's why you need to pay attention what eraser you use in order to erase the drawing made with the polymere pencil. Normal eraser just blurs your drawing instead of erasing. There are special polymere erasers that should be used for this purpose and they are produced by many Japanese companies.

Pens, nibs, brushes and inks


Most of cartoonists, when the drawing is made with pencil, starts to cover it with ink. In fact it is a job for a person called inker. The sketch with pencil is made by a penciller. Most of artists do all the jobs themselves. You can do it 2 ways:

1. with the brush,

2. with the pen or a nib

or you can mix both techniques. Ink that is used needs be waterproof after drying. You should use Indian Ink or Chinese Ink. Both are known as really black. You can buy them at Art Equipment Stores everywhere. American publishers and comic syndicates do not accept cartoos made with any other techniques. Europe is different, we all know Belgian comic-strips that are made with many other techniques, they even published comic-strips made with oil-paints, pastels. However most of the cartoons, comic-strips are made with ink and the brush or the nib. When you take a closer look at any cartoon you will be able to recognize the technique. Example: Donald Duck is made with the brush, Lobo is made with the fine marker. As you see, sometimes all the techniques are allowed. The goal is to make a good cartoon and it does not matter how. It must be good. Coloring can be made with some computer software or traditionally with color inks. However the cartoon made with the brush or the nib looks better in my opinion.



You need to use good quality paper. It is best to use trusted companies. These paper sheets need to be for ink, otherwise you will not be ble to make a fine drawing with ink.

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