I do not claim to be any kind of expert on Copics. I've just had mine for a little while and finally got around to playing with them last week! But last night I did some testing...
So, you've probably all read all sorts of tips and tricks from the JulieHRR and Ellen Hutston about these wonderful markers. IMHO, these markers are fabulous. I didn't realize I would love them so much. I have a lot of marker sets and this is by far by favorite.
I've read all sorts of stuff about them and the main thing I found is that you need to let your ink sit for a while to dry before coloring it in OR heat set it with your heat gun and then color. Hmm. Those ideas don't work too well for me - the lazy stamper.
Let's talk about lazy for a second. I'm a simple stamper. If it takes too long to do or too much to get setup, etc. then I won't do it. Don't get me wrong, I love to emboss, etc. but I prep once and then make a ton of stuff that way. This doesn't work well in a classroom environment like my A Muse classes. Also, as you know, I have 2 small boys. Well, I don't keep the door to my studio closed and I rarely put stuff away in there. My boys are very good at not going in there and messing with my stuff (knock on wood!). There are some things I don't leave laying around though like scissors, especially the pointy ones, and my heat gun. I don't leave it plugged in and it's actually not even out (it resides in a drawer next to my work space). So, getting it out to heat set my black ink to color something is just not going to happen.
Ah, so began my quest to find the right ink (if there is such a thing) that will work with these markers and not have to be heat set. I read and read and talked and talked to people. Well, the other day, I'm chatting with kasevers online and I knew she's a Copic user (that sounds bad, doesn't it?! ;)). She tells me that she uses Adirondack by Ranger and that she read this article on Ellen Hutson's blog. WHAT? How did I miss that? Well, it was back in August. I wasn't paying attention to Copics then. Yeah, that's my excuse.
So, of course, I decided that I needed to do the test myself with A Muse images and with A Muse white card stock. And if you're still reading this, here's what I found...
I tested 6 black inks on A Muse white card stock with 4 Copic Originals and with Boris (and I purposely went over the lines a bit to see what happened):
*Adirondack pitch black
*Versafine onyx black
*Palette noir black
*Archival Ink jet black
*Stazon jet black
*Brilliance graphite black
Now, I know that those 6 pads are all different (dye, pigment, solvent) but I wanted to try all that I had (except the Stampin' Up! Black - which mine is purple :( ).
I stamped each individually, did NOT heat set, colored with Copics as fast as I could and sat back and analyzed ;).
*Adirondack pitch black - did not bleed, feather, run or anything; Perfection!
*Versafine onyx black - almost worked but the black in Boris' hair ran a bit when the Copic went over it
*Palette noir black - black in Boris' hair ran a bit when the Copic went over it
*Archival Ink jet black - ick
*Stazon jet black - yuck
*Brilliance graphite black - oh, heavens no
Again, I'm not claiming that this is the end-all-be-all, there are many more experienced people out there than I but I do think I found my solution! Hope this helps.