MAKE:TNT Tools 'n' Tips

Pentel Pocket Brush

Tool photo.

I was introduced to the Pentel Pocket Brush by a comicker friend, and though pricey for poor students, it truly makes drawing with ink a joy again. Unlike felt-tip brush pens, the Pocket Brush has actual bristles and an ink that dries quickly and is less apt to wash with water. The tip is amazingly fine, allowing deft hands to get line widths that vary from fat and chunky to almost a hair's breadth, and on thick absorbent paper, it's an amazing tactile experience. It's so much fun to hand the Pocket Brush and my sketchbook to people who are afraid to draw, and see them take to it like a child to finger paints.

Don't take my word for it, though; all sorts of artists swear by it.

Some art stores and Japanese supermarkets have them or similar pens, but if you're willing to wait for shipping, you can also find them online: Prices range from around $15 to around $20. (You'll probably pay more once you factor in shipping.) Those in Minneapolis can probably see if Zander Cannon has any to sell: