Ink Marker Lightfast Test

January 10, 2010

Well, this is interesting. About 3 months ago I decided to start a personal lightfast test of various ink markers I had on hand. I often test my paints this way by taping a sample sheet on acid-free paper or canvas to a South-facing window in direct sunlight for 6-12 months to see how well the pigments perform. I thought I’d do the same here with the markers to see how they held up. This is 100% cotton rag paper about 8 x 8 inches.

Marker lightfast sheet

I was almost certain the Y&C Fabricmate marker would fade right away since it’s labeled as a dye, and likely that the Prismacolor Premier layout marker would also (bottom left,) but after comparing these to an identical sheet made at the same time that had been placed in a drawer, I can see no signs of fading in any of these. I have some old sketches and concept boards made with Prismacolor markers that are very faded, so perhaps they’ve improved them since then. A bit surprising but good to see. I’ll continue to monitor this for a few more months.

One comment

  1. Update: the ink of the Prismacolor layout marker hasn’t lasted. This sheet of ink samples has been in a drawer for the last couple years and the ink marks of the layout marker (lower left corner) have almost disappeared. It took longer than I expected, but it did eventually fade. Note that this marker wasn’t labled as being “archival” either. All the others, however, appear the same.

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