ZIG Kurecolor

Some facts:

  • Zig kurecolor CNKC 2200 (came in 2012 and are nowadays the only marker option they have) it has a brush tip and a fine tip 
  • Made in Japan by Kuretake
  • 135 colors + a blender
  • They are refillable and have replaceable tips (Nowadays there is four options of replacement tips: broad, soft broad, calligraphy and brush) 
  • Kuretakeshop.co.uk
  • Kuretakezig.blogspot.se
  • Kuretake founded 1902

Zig Kc 2200

The Colors
A drawing made with Kurecolor 
on Letraset marker paper
In 2012 Kurecolor expanded their color chart with 29 new colors that had been much needed before, such as caucasian skin colors. They also introduced a brush nib marker at the same time. If you like gray colors this is the marker for you. Only Copic have more grays to choose between which is no surprise since they have so many color, but Kurecolor is second best even though they only have 135 colors (+ a blender). They have the almost mandatory warm greys and cool greys but with eleven grads. Then they also have five green greys and five blue greys and at least twelve other greys. 

The ink

Kurecolor refill
The ink never gets grainy but can appear a bit flat and dull, especially on some colors from the original sets (the newer ones are better).  The older colors don´t look so transparent, some times they even look a bit opaque. There are colors, in my opinion, that look a bit strange, but a bigger problem is that some colors changes hue when they dry which makes it difficult to use them for example portraits. I always have a color chart near me for referens, which helps me decide what colors to use.  

The color system
The color system is a bit special. They divided the colors (but only the original colors, not the newer ones) into nine color groups that they call: basic, brilliant, natural, dull, pale, deep, grey colors, cool greys and warm greys. All colors has a number but the number do not hold a big mening like Copic or Winsor&Newtons Brush- and Promarkers, but the first digit gives you a color family. For example all colors that start with the number one is a yellowish color, number two is red colors, number three is blue colors and four is orangey kind of colors and so on. All colors also have names. Some of the names are a bit unusual like the Blood red, Alice blue and English rose, but most names just reflects the color.

kurecolor color chart

Kurecolor history

They used to have four different choices:

  • Zig Kurecolor kc 500 is a single tip marker with a chisel nib
  • Zig kurecolor kc1100 that is a twin marker with a chisel nib and a fine nib. The barrel is very thick and holds a lot of ink
  • Zig kurecolor kc3000 is the same as the kc1100 but slimmer barrel and holds less ink
  • Zig kurecolor CNKC 2200 (came in 2012 and are the only on left) with a brush nib and a fine nib in a long and thin barrel   

However in the end of 2017 all stores that used to carry ZIG markers have had them on sale (except for 2200) and on their website they are listed as discounted. So nowadays they only carry one kind: The 2200. But refills for all colors and many different choices of tips are stil available, if not all of them. As you can se in the picture down below, they also use to have fine nib replacement and stickers for Kc3000.  
Zig Kc 1100

Kurecolor replacement nibs
and stickers for the barrel

Zig Kc 500
Zig Kc 3000

Blick Studio

Some facts:
  • They have a broad nib and a fine nib, or you can choose one with a broad nib and a brush nib (they are new for 2015).
  • 95 colors including a blender
  • The art shop Dickblick’s own marker 
Blick Studio
The ink
This marker are not the queen of markers. The colors are dull and when you blend them they get easily patchy (depending on what paper you use). But with that said, I like how they never get grainy. The ink always has a clear appearance (when it isn´t blended).

The colors
For a marker with so few colors to choose between I am very disappointed how similar and sometimes exactly the same, two different colors can look. For an example the color “Stone” and “Latte” looks the same. Some colors changes hue (and value, but that’s more or less true for all brands) but most colors actually looks exactly the same when they are wet as well as when they have dried. A lot of the colors looks very cold. The warm greys looks more like a cold grey, almost a little bit lilac. Some colors also "dived" themselves if you cover a larger area, for an example the color "Periwinkle" gets pink traces in it. You can se what I mean in the picture below.  Most of the colors looks dull and flat. The black is one of the poorest black I have in my collections of markers. 
The color "Periwinkle", "Sand" and "Camel" all share the same problem. They "dived" themselves into two colors.  
The nibs
The chisel nib is a little bit different from other chisel nibs. It seems a little bit more flat then other chisel nibs. To get an even stroke you have to keep it upright more then what is comfortable.

The colors system 
Drawing made with Blick 
Studio on Schoellershammer paper
They don’t have a number system, they use names though and they are quite unique: like “green tomato”. They seldom use classical names. However they have a lot of not all names in common with Prismacolors marker (and pencils). They use both number and a percent system for the scale of the greys. 

Like most of Blick colors, the black is a dull and weak color.

On The Run 830 Graphic Twin Tipped Markers

- The unappreciated

Some facts:
  • They have had at least two different alcohol based markers: Graphic Twin (OTR 830) and Sketch Twin (OTR 850). The first one has a broad nib and a fine nib. The last one has a round barrel and I believe it also have a super small fine nib.
  • 132 colors
  • Have a blender
  • Made in Germany
  • On The Run makes a lot of graffiti pens and its clear that’s that is their indented audience. 
  • www.ontherun.de
  • www.ontherun.de/blog
On The Run marker
On The Run "Downtown" 
and "Uptown" set

The warm grey
These markers are hard to find nowadays. The first set I bought of these markers, where a set of twelve called “warm greys”. It is a strange set. They have warm greys from 0,5 to 9, but the number 1 and 2 are totally different from the rest. They are light yellow. 

The ink
These markers blend just fine but the colors are a bit dull. Even though it might not be the best marker ever produced I still think this marker deserves a better faith then to disappear from the market. 
On The Run drawing

On The Run drawing
OTR colors