One Squiggly Line Blog

Hand-drawn pictures can make things clear, simple, and fun in blogs, too!

Visual Thinking Supplies: Prismacolor Markers


When choosing the best drawing supplies, you've gotta keep the end goal in mind. If you're drawing to think, you can use pretty much anything. If you're drawing to create great art, you've gotta use something that will last.

I've been using Prismacolor markers since high school. I never use them for live graphic recording, though. I have a special set of supplies set aside just for live graphic recording work. But I do use Prismacolor markers for studio work sometimes.

Prismacolor markers are art markers. You'll need to go to an art store to get them or order online. So they're more expensive than Crayola or Mr. Sketch markers. Way more expensive. But they do go on sale sometimes, usually around the start of the school year.  They occasionally offer pretty big rebates, too. And Prismacolor markers do last a long time.

I like the broad range of colors offered. Also, because they're permanent, they don't smear. You can color over things drawn with non-permament markers without smearing. And there's nothing worse than outlining a drawing only to have it smear when you color it in!

Unfortunately, they do bleed through paper. And they do smell a little. But they are nontoxic, so they're safe. 

To see a sample of some work done with Prismacolor markers, go to this blog post.

Visual Thinking & Drawing: There's Power in Numbers!


This is by no means the most exciting drawing out there. But it's a great example of how simple shapes and lines can turn into something far more powerful.

The entire city is made of rectangles. Simple lines make up the windows. The stars in the sky are just the letter x. That's it!

The way everything is put together is what makes those simple lines and rectangles turn into a city. They fill the page. That creates far more impact than one building alone. And the dark colors make it clear it's night time.

Next time you want to make a simple drawing more powerful, try filling the page with the simple things you do know how to draw.


Sketching: Quick and Simple



Elaborate drawings are great but not everyone has the time or skills to create one. Often, a quick sketch can get the message across just as well. Especially if you're brainstorming and looking for as many ideas as possible. When you choose an idea to flesh out, the sketch can then be fleshed out, too, if you want.

The sketch above was one of several done to convey a coaching session, done with a Sharpie marker. Sketching with a bold marker makes it much easier to share online. And if you you want to use that sketch at some point, you're ready to go - no redrawing necessary.