Friday, 16 September 2016

Gel Pens

Chatting to chum Chris Charlton and he mentioned an article in one of the magazines about using gel pens to paint detail on figures.  I was skeptical but decided I would give it a go.

I ordered a silver, a gold and a white with plans to use these to highlight the metalics and do the hat tape for tricornes.

Its early days but so far I am quite impressed with the results. 

The first figure below is a Swedish Seargent, I used the silver pen to touch the edges of his halberd after base painting it with a darker metallic, this is meant to give the impression of sharp edges to weapons.
 The second effort was on a Swedish officer. This chap also has the silver along the blade edges, I have also used the gold pen for his hat and coat lace and gorget.

 Lastly is the white, I have used this for the hat tape on the below Russian Seargent. The rest of the figure is not completed.

 Taken as a whole the results are very encouraging, its easier to do some detail than paint and quicker, for buttons you do have to be careful to make a quick dab, if you hold the pen on for any longer the ink floods the miniature. 

Taken as a whole, highly recommended, if only for certain jobs. The colours in particular are spot on.

The pens I have used are Uni-ball Signo, I have no idea if other makes are as good. These ones were about £2.80 from ebay post free. Overall a worth while investment I think.


  1. Replies
    1. £2.80 each, why not Ken, I wouldonly use them for certain jobs mind.

  2. Interesting. Did you varnish the figure first and then use the pen or varnish after? I've had issues in the past with varnishing over detail applied with pens where the ink has bled. Never quite sure whether to use acrylic or oil based varnishes with pens (the pen never says whether it's waterbased or not).

  3. These are painted and not yet varnished, I tend to varnish a few at once as I use spray. Nothing has bled yet, I think these are acrylic but cant be sure. Will bring a couple along for our game.

  4. Replies
    1. Cheers Ray, not my idea just nicked and thought I should share!

  5. Nicely done, love the Swedish officer...

    1. Cheers Phil, its a lovely sculpt and really easy to paint in the simple uniform. Happy with how the hat lace works with a gel pen given its first attempt at using it too.