Bic Cristal – surprisingly great


On a whim, a while back, I bought myself three Bic Cristal pens, you know, those classic cheap no-good ballpoints that´s been around forever. I bought one black, one blue and one red. And I started drawing with them.And wow! These things are pretty fantastic drawing tools!

They´ll give you super soft hardly visible values, and strong, bold colour, depending on how much pressure you put on the ball point. The ink flows surprisingly well, and it´s easy to make nice transitions between light and dark.


I have been plaing around with using the three colours together, or one or two together with my usual fountain pens with black ink, putting one colour in the foreground and another in the background, to make a clear distiction between the two. I was a bit surprised how well it works to use bright red as a background colour in the top drawing!

These drawings are from the last meetup of 2017 with Stockholm Urban Sketchers. We had lunch and listened to super cool music with South Station Stompers at a bar called Lilla Wien at Södermalm in Stockholm. Such a great environment to draw in, we stayed for hours! :)

Top drawing: 19 x 25 cm, Pilot Falcon with black DeAtramentis document ink and Bic Cristal ball point, bottom drawing: 19,5 x 16 cm, same drawing tools, only different Bic colour. Both on Stillman & Birn alpha series sketchbook pages.

3 Responses to “Bic Cristal – surprisingly great”

  1. It help is you are a seriously good sketcher Nina. Yes, ballpoints are underrated but mostly fugitive inks.


  2. egl says:

    I like sketching with a ballpoint pen in an inexpensive notebook — do what you can and move on.

  3. Limarea says:

    Fina sketcher! Det bevisar ju tydligt att man inte behöver svindyra konstnärsmaterial för att skapa. (Även om det är väldigt trevligt att botanisera bland dom ;) , alltså dom svindyra konstnärsmaterialen) :D /L

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