Copics: How I’m figuring out where the heck to start


I don’t own Copic markers, mostly because I have no idea where I would even begin and because most of the time I can work with color mediums that I do have. The whole idea is so overwhelming. Where would you even start? My friend Sandy Allnock is not only a Copic master – but she also developed her own visual hex chart that is over the top amazing. Here is a link to her site/the hex chart. It is organized not by number, but by color so someone like me can clearly see the options in a way that is laid out in a much less overwhelming way. Today she’s got a blog hop going that I am happy to take part in – and I’m going to be sharing why I am in love with this chart as the new kid just trying to dip her toes in.


Where to start?

Before I pulled out the chart, I considered what kinds of things I most saw myself coloring with Copics. If simple coloring is all I want, Distress or watercolor (both of which I have plenty of) would be just fine. What colors and for what projects am I wishing for even more colors and options?

The answer for me was, green stuff. Trees, grass, flower stems, tree trunks… these are things I always wish I had more options color wise. Greens into browns on the visual chart sounds good to me, and that gives me a very clear and manageable place to begin a collection. Note that I am not picking out what colors are prettiest or my favorites- I will work from what colors I feel would be used the most. BIG and very important difference!

Here is a video (link to YouTube) where I take a closer look and explain more.

When it came time to pick my colors, I used the chart on my computer screen to do so. I then pulled out the hand colored chart Sandy had sent me to compare and guess what? I would have picked the same colors with it so that showed me that the colors here on my computer screen are true enough to use it as a color selector.


The eight greens I want to begin with are: yg07, yg41, g03, bg15, yg67, g29, yg63, yg95. I also know I want some good for Copics cardstock, the colorless blender pen. For browns, I was debating a bunch of 3-4 color ranges and then I noticed a set that is eg53,55,57, and 59. Now that sounds like they are right next to each other but 3 of those colors were in my top 10 brown picks, and they span a range of brown that I’m happy with so I think that will be a good place to start. Unlike most colors there aren’t many browns that I don’t want!


If you’ve got questions about my process I would be happy to answer them! Also, I’m the last stop in the hop so if you’re just joining in here and want more information you’ll want to head over to Sandy’s blog here. Of course for more information about her hex chart, to check out what other people are doing with this chart as experienced Copic users, and more you definitely want to click that link and enjoy the hop.

Many thanks to Sandy for including me – and for sharing this amazing chart with all of us! This is such a valuable resource and a really affordable price too.

105 thoughts on “Copics: How I’m figuring out where the heck to start”

  1. Thank you for the color chart explanation. The chart looks so useful and helpful. Can see how you can use it with other coloring media as well

  2. I only have a few copins , i think 20 or so, so this chart is a bit of an overkill for me, But i love how dedicated Sandy was to make it. thank you for your explanation it helps me a lot to choose which ones i want to get next to my SPectrum noirs

  3. Awesome! When using the chart I found myself thinking how handy it would have been to have when I first started using Copics. I’ve definitely been finding it useful to help deciding which colours to select for an image, so it comes in handy at any stage, but seeing colours grouped like that when choosing markers to purchase has to be a big help!

    Look forward to seeing what you do with Copics, May!

  4. Thanks so much for sharing your thought process May – i know it’s going to be really helpful to get people to think through their purchases more clearly! you rock! hugs!!!!

  5. Love your explanation of how your going to use the chart. I really like the idea of making one for all your different coloring mediums.

  6. I think you like Copics once you start to use them. I took the Online card classes Copic marker class, it really helped me as a newbie to Copics.

  7. Your explanation of copic travels is great! I have a hard time with greens and browns also! i can see how it would translate to other mediums as well.

  8. I don’t know anything about Copics. I don’t even know if you use water like with Distress. It’s not in my plans now to start, I still have lots to learn with what I have, but I’m always interested in checking something out. Thanks for the video. Enjoy your Copics. I’ll want to see what you make with them! Michelle t

  9. Yea!! I’m glad you’re dipping your toes in! You won’t regret it…’ll be so in love with copies, that you’ll wonder why you never got into it before. thanks for sharing your thoughts and being open:)

  10. May, I really enjoyed your video and found it quite interesting and helpful. I too tend to like outdoor scenes and where I don’t have any Copics yet I think that would be a good place to start. With some greens and maybe blues next. Thanks for the insight.

  11. Thanks for sharing your thought process! I’m still a relative beginner, I had some copics for over a year before I actually did anything with it! Now I’m addicted! I can’t wait to color in my chart!

  12. I wish I had this chart when I started buying copics as I have quite a few similar colors. Could of gotten others instead but couldn’t tell back then.

  13. The chart looks really useful — a great idea.

    I only have a handful of Copics — I started small, too. I tried to think of what I might most want to color and decided the answer was floral stamps to use on cards. So I bought three lovely lavender/purple ones to color my favorite Hero Arts hydrangea stamp and three pink shades to color another floral stamp, the colorless blender, and I think I might have two greens. Need at least one or two more. Now I think I want to add a grey or two for adding shadows. This makes sense for me, since I’m not currently a big colorer.

  14. Thank you so much for going into more details on how the hex chart works!!!

  15. I love hearing how you thought about your color choices, and I’m not going to buy any more markers until I get this chart in my hands.

  16. I like your thought process. I also think it’s smart to use the chart for other coloring mediums. Thanks for sharing.

  17. Thanks for sharing your insights on Copic markers. Using Copics to compliment your other coloring mediums is a wonderful idea. I can’t wait to see what you create.

  18. wonderful explanation of how you use the chart, maybe I will get it after all. I have Spectrum Noir because they are more affordable, but also love colored pencil and watercolor. I suppose the chart will be helpful with those too. Thanks.

  19. I’m new to Copics, too, so I’m excited to have this hex chart to help me build my marker supply in a smart way! I used to work in a print shop, so I know it’s impossible to get a true-to-color digital print and I also know from my graphic design background that even colors on screen are different from one computer screen to the next. Also, The colors on a computer screen are Rgb rather than what you get in printing with cmyk. I’m not familiar with marker manufacturing, but I’m betting the colors might even vary slightly from one batch to the next even though they strive to get it as close as possible. That being said, I’d love to get my hands on one of the pre-colored charts from sandy, because that Is really the only way to see what you are going to get.

  20. I, too, am just starting my copic collection. This chart will be so helpful in choosing them.

  21. This is definitely something I wish was out two years ago when I made my first copic purchase. I definitely think that it will be a HUGE help to everyone and I’m so glad she created it! Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this!

  22. I wish that I had had such a chart before I started ordering my Copics. Now that I have about 2/3rds of them, I will use it to fill in the blanks instead.

  23. I love the idea of using the chart to compare the colors of my other mediums. That is brilliant!

  24. thanks for your wonderful explanation on how you chose your copic markers. Sincerely, Elaine Rico

  25. Thanks so much for showing other ways to use the charts for those of us that don’t have all the Copics.

  26. what a fresh perspective you bring to this hop as someone who doesn’t already color with Copics! I love how this chart is going to give you a better understanding of how to build your collection and what blending families to start with. Such a great tip is to start with colors that you gravitate toward.

  27. Thanks for sharing your perspective on the copics. I am a beginner and have trouble trying to pick and choose colors as I do want them all he he. Every bit of information and thoughts help 🙂

  28. Thanks for the video, May. My first three copic colors were E50 53 & 55.I wanted to color hair with those. I have viewed soooooo many videos on coloring with copics. I still watch them. The Hex chart is great.

    I noticed a lot of y’all were wearing blue nail polish today. And I saw a few with band aids. All that coloring wears a blister on you. LOL. I hope you start to Copic color again. You’ll really love it when you get the hang of it and know which colors to start buying.

  29. Copics are new to me too, so this was a great intro. Like how you planned out what you wanted.

  30. I look forward to sharing your new journey with Copics. I have a basic 36 piece set and I know that I need so much more. Love them.


  32. Good explanation of Sandy’s chart. I would love to have more copics and become a better color artist.

  33. May, I love your explanation of the hex chart and the way you are using it to get started with copics!! This will be super helpful as I continue to build my collection! Especially now that I realize that I don’t need EVERY single one! My budget will also appreciate this chart! Thanks for sharing!

  34. Great thoughts! This will also help me know where to expand and fill in my Copic markers.

  35. I’m very glad to know I wasnt the last one to jump on the Copic bandwagon! haha. Thanks for the great explanation of the chart!

  36. what you said was so true for me too. I walked into a store and picked out the colors I wanted… LOL, then of course, I found myself wondering how do i make this work. fast forward, to a serious copic addiction and I still find myself stuck with the color charts. This new hex chart will do the trick for me . thank

  37. Appreciate your explanations on how to use Sandy’s Hex chart. Thank you.

  38. This card and video are awesome and lovin’ the chart!
    ~God bless~

  39. Great ideas for ways to use the chart. It is hard to figure out where to start.

  40. Thank you so much for explaining the hex chart and how to use it… especially if you are pretty new to copics or just don’t know how to go about purchasing more copics.

  41. Looking forward to using the chart. I like how you said to get the colors you know you will use most! It will be a great way to get started

  42. Thanks for your thoughts on the chart, I for one don’t have a lot of copics but the chart will help me figure out which ones work together that i do have. Sandy is a very talented gal.

  43. Hi May, Thanks for the video. I love my copic’s, I have almost every color now. I have been using them for about 2 yrs now and I still can not get the blending part down, I am terrible at that and I use my copic’s at least 4 to 5 times a week. I love your style, I think you are very talented, so I am hoping once you get started using the copic’s you will love them like we all do and hopefully you will do an online class for us on coloring and most importantly blending with copic’s, now that would be so cool. So start coloring and blending May, I am waiting !!, LOL

  44. Love how you are using the Hex chart. I would probably call myself a mid-level copic user but your ideas have expanded how I will use the chart

  45. Like the way you think. Listening to you has made start to think about my markers etc and where I need to go. TFS

  46. can’t wait to use the hex chart. Amazed someone hasn’t created one sooner : )

  47. May, I did the same thing! I was at Blick’s in Chicago and saw the Copic sketch markers. It was so overwhelming that I figured I’d get 3 (pink, green & blue) to start with. Of course it was a total fail. Years later I found out how Copics are used and I started adding to my puny collection. The browns and grays were low on the list until I realized how valuable they are for coloring and shading. You definitely will want some grays.

    Sandy’s chart is an enormous help for deciding which colors to buy! Good luck on your Copic journey.

  48. Yay, a newbie like i am. Thanks for sharing a video. Love the idea of using the blank hex chart for noting which colors i want to buy.
    hmm… caps does not work on site; no worries. Can’t scream at anyone. LOL

  49. I love your thought process with the new Hex Chart! I have been slowly growing my collection and I could have used this chart a long time ago! haha I hope it works for you and I love your idea about filling in the chart with other mediums that you already own. Very cool.

  50. have bought my chart & only wish I had it before I started collecting Copics! Would have been so helpful.

  51. Looking forward to filling out my chart and figure out if my collection as I think is pretty good and a bit heavy in some colors than others. But in general have blending options or is there a gap a single marker would help fill? Good luck!

  52. Great explanation. Thanks for that. and Sandy did such a great job with her Hex chart. It absoltuely amazes me.

  53. Love your thought planning, hopefully it won’t be two in the morning and you need a floral Color to finish a card, that’s how the madness begins. It was a joy to pop into your blog today, I will be back! I would love a hand coloured hex chart!

  54. Really enjoyed your video…I have a lot of Copics and even taught a few classes so kudos for an excellent beginner’s tutorial. I purchased Sandy’s Hex chart and started filling it in…it’s a must have!

  55. Thanks for all the helpful information. I wish had had the Hex chart when I first started buying my copic markers.

  56. thanks FOR YOUR INSIGHT ON cOPIC MARKERS AND Sandy’s CHART. like SO MANY OF us I WOULD HAVE LOVED TO HAVE HAD THIS CHART WHEN I FIRST STARTED COLLECTING COLORS. I’m STARTING TO COLOR IN THE CHART NOW. I KNOW THERE WILL BE “HOLES” and maybe one day they will get filled in. (Sorry for no capital letters. I’m not sure what’s going on with my keyboard.)

  57. Thanks for sharing your insight. I agree starting out with Copics is daunting. But hopefully this awesome hex chart will help alleviate some of the stress. It really is a great coloring medium. I think you’ll be addicted once you start!

  58. welcome to the world of copics! I am a relative newbie to copics myself and am totally loving them!

  59. Thanks, May! Your video was a great addition to the Hex chart hop! Good luck with your purchases! Isn’t it funny how you want all the browns? It seems like the most boring color, but I find I feel the same!

  60. Thank you for a different take on the chart. I think it is helpful for those of us with just a few markers looking to add to our copic collection. Sorry, for some reason I cannot use capital letters…

  61. Great to hear your take on using the chart! Im eager to fill mine in to see how close my colors are.

  62. I have been “collecting” Copics for the past several years, I put them on my “wish list” for BD, Christmas etc. I’ve even taken a weekend seminar and have been playing with them. I wasn’t sure about this new chart, but your comments pointed out how helpful it will be. No, I don’t have all the colors nor do I ever intend to get all of them, but I certainly now have “enough”. I’ve started combining them with other things, realizing it’s ok to mix water color, distress, texture mediums etc with copics. Hang in there, you will get this. What I like you can make things quick or you can spend extra time and care to make things perfect. The best thing to do is play, and see how just adding a shadow or blending an edge can make a world of difference Thanks for your great comments!

  63. Your video was very helpful, full of great info. Looking forward to using this great tool!!!

  64. Wow ! Has this HexChart helped me see the possibilities I already had in my Copic Pallet, a real boost to your creativity. I only wish I would have taken May’s approach, it would have been far more cost effective

  65. Well I think this is the best tool that has been invented, thanks to Sandy, I have ordered after watching all the videos and it’s now on in my box to print out. WooHoo! I have taken several classes using the old chart and learned something each time, but I think this is going to be a Winner.

  66. While I have been collecting markers for awhile, I still feel like a newbie! I think the chart will be a great resource.

  67. I am just getting started with Copics too and just like you said this chart would help me decide what colors I want first and help to alleviate duplicates or even colors that are so much alike. Thanks for the great ideas for using the chart in other ways too.

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