Review: Ecoline Liquid Watercolor Brush Pen Set Of 5

Hi! Today I will like to share with you more about the Ecoline Liquid Watercolor Brush Pen Set.

There are 5 liquid watercolor brush-pens of different colors in this set. (The pen caps do not come with clips).

The 5 different colors are:

  • Black
  • Sky Blue (Cyan)
  • Magenta
  • Green
  • Lemon Yellow (Primary)

The Ecoline Brush Pen product line has 29 colours in total. There's also a colourless blender. You can get the pens separately or in sets of 5 or 10, 15, 20 and 30.

The back of the package has a short introduction of these brush-pens. The brush pens conform to ASTM D 4236 - which in short, means that the 'Standard Practice for Labeling Art Materials for Chronic Health Hazards' has been adhered to.

At first glance, the tips of these brush-pens resemble those of markers. These brush-pen tips are however, not inflexible like the tips of most markers.

Press on the tip of a brush-pen, and you can see the pliable tip bending flexibly just like a brush tip. (Of course do not apply too much pressure as more ink will flow out - and you won't want to be wasting the ink)

Below are some hand-letterings, written on Daler Rowney's Aquafine Watercolour Paper.

Written with the Lemon Yellow Brush-Pen

Same lettering as above, with a touch of green from the Green Brush-Pen

Written with the Magenta Brush-Pen

Written with the Green Brush-Pen

Same lettering as above, with a touch of blue from the Sky Blue (Cyan) Brush-Pen

Written with both the Green and Sky Blue (Cyan) Brush-Pens

It was a delightful pleasure to write, draw and paint with these tips - which are very juicy with ink. Ink flow is smooth and good!

However, the ink dries up very quickly. This is a double-edged sword I guess. Drying up quickly is good if you wish to draw or paint another color over a layer of different color fast, without the two different colors mixing and blending. Another reason I like that the ink dries fast is that I do not have to worry too much about causing smudges (unlike previous incidents when I unintentionally touched on my drawings which haven't dried completely, causing unsightly smudges).

The downside of the ink drying up fast arises if you are seeking to mix and blend inks of different colors - in order to blend well these inks should be wet. Because the ink of these brush-pens dries up quickly, it is relatively challenging to blend inks of different colors well, if at all, without re-wetting the dried ink with some water. And the good news is that the inks from these brush-pens re-wets easily! I have used Caran D'ache water brush to facilitate the blending of inks of different colors, and this water brush works just great -- it is easy to re-wet the dried ink, blend with ink of another color or simply just dilute the ink with water from this water-brush.

Alternatively, you may also wish to check out Ecoline's Liquid Watercolor Brush Pen Blender (which was designed to compliment the Ecoline Liquid Watercolor Brush Pens).

Below are some examples of the inks being blended (and for a change, I decided to try working on Bristol Paper):

Notice how the Magenta and Lemon Yellow inks don't actually blend well on the 2nd segment at the bottom? I had painted the Magenta ink over the first layer of Lemon Yellow ink.

This is what I got after blending with the water-brush

I can't help but notice some of the paper fiber that came off the Bristol paper after blending. I guess Bristol Paper isn't great for layering or blending colors. But of course, this issue can be easily resolved - gently scrub a brush over the flakes of paper fiber.

Magenta ink on the left, Sky Blue ink on the right, and in the middle - I have painted the Sky Blue ink over the first layer of Magenta ink

This is what I got after blending with the water-brush. More consistent blending

This is a result of blending the inks from the Green and Sky Blue Brush Pens with the water-brush.

I love the fact that the fine point tips of these brush-pens easily allow me to draw either very fine or precise strokes and color with precision extremely small areas. And if I wish to create thicker strokes or color over a large area, I will just need to adjust the angle of the tip and amount of pressure applied on the tip.

Below is a painting of 'Dory' - whereby I have used all 5 colors to paint:

The different shades of blue were achieved by layering the colours.


These are great brush-pens to work with - the colors are vibrant and ink flow is consistently smooth and above all, this set is very affordable! The inks are dye based so don't expect the colours to be lightfast. If you work in sketchbooks, the colours should last longer.


Find more reviews at Dick Blick Art Materials (US) | Jackson's Art (UK)


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