I became a pen nerd so that you don't have to.
Recommended for widest range of colors (350) and no smearing whatsoever. They're a delight to use and I specifically recommend Sketch Markers because of the brush tip.
Recommended for great range of colors (150) and they very rarely smear. They're my personal favorite for coloring on canvas and also work really well for on the prints.
Recommended for how widely available they are and lower cost. Fine Tip can smear at times, but Brush Tip does not, which is why I prefer them. Special edition sets offer more colors.
Map your progress like a champ by taking a few things into consideration before you start coloring.
Creative Progress Maps come on either museum-quality print or satin-finish canvas. So when it comes to coloring, your options are two very different materials. Ink from the same pen will not look the same on print as it does on canvas. Generally speaking, it looks darker on the print. That's why I offer a Color Tester for prints. To test colors on canvas, use the border on back.
Getting the look you want is more than just the pen color you choose; it’s also the pen itself and the appearance of the color on your print or canvas. Mainly, I’m talking opacity and how obvious the brushstrokes are. But also, how rich the colors appear. Some of us love the bold colors, while others prefer a more subtle pastel look. Choose pens that will give you the look you want.
While lots of folks may be happy with 12 colors, there are those of us that would just rather have like 150. Or 352. That's why I recommend a few different brands that offer a variety of color ranges. If you have a local art store, it's a great place to go and check colors out, try pens, and chat up the artsy employees who can help you find the right thing for coloring in your map aka work of art.
Some mappers will choose colors because they hold special meaning or they’re trying to match their map to their decor, etc. There’s no wrong way to do this. If you are excited about the idea of matching colors, go for it. If you don’t care and just want to color without thinking of these things, play ball. But if you do love the idea of choosing colors for a specific purpose, read on.