Friday, May 10, 2013

Free Prismacolor Markers

I've been an artist since I was 5 years old, in this time I wanted to share 5 ways I have gotten myself FREE PRISMACOLOR markers.

Before we start, I want to mention that each story below I talk about ways I have gotten free prismacolor markers, and these are not something that is guaranteed to work for everyone, nor necessarily advised. But these markers are awesome and expensive, so often times it does not hurt to try. Being a resourceful artist is often a good way to collect supplies.

Sample my Free Prismacolor Marker
When I was first introduced to artist grade markers like Prismacolor, I fell in love. I quickly realized my meager allowance was not going to afford me the ability to buy enough colors to have the arsenal I needed to attack my drawings. I decided to send Prismacolor a letter, telling them my story as a young budding artist, and my interest in trying their product. The cool thing about this, is that they sent me a small sample kit of 5 markers but also told me about different events in my state (Minnesota at the time) where I could go and pick up more free samples of the markers. I spent that summer visiting all kinds of art festivals and fairs to pick up my free prismacolor markers!

Art Store Defects
The free samples I had gotten were quickly drained with all the super heroes and monsters I was drawing. Being as broke as a Van Gogh, I had to resort to a new strategy. I would visit all the local art stores and ask if they had any defective markers. Often times I would find prismacolor markers that were missing labels, damaged or bleeding. A few stores were happy to donate them to me as long as I was buying other things. One store in particular would save them for me, and was happy to support a young enthusiastic artist. It worked out for the store and for prismacolor themselves, because I spent a lot of money at that store afterwards paying them back for their kindness.

Adopt a Marker
Artists usually have artist friends. Sometimes those friends have prismacolor markers. Sometimes those friends no longer use their markers. Instead of asking my friends for their markers what I do is usually complain about how worn out my markers are and add them to my giant list of markers that need replacing. My good hearted friend often feel good giving my their collection markers to me for free. Strategy here is to simply use the markers in front of as many people as possible: coffee shops, galleries, art walk, ect.

Free Prismacolor Markers on Craigslist
In a desperate situation sometimes I ask for markers on Craigslist. It usually looks like this, "Artist needs unused art markers". You would be surprised who responds, especially if you show them the project you need them for. When I was creating my daily web comic I went through markers like water, and I had to reach out to my community. Random strangers came through and I netted about 60 new markers from 3 different local supporters. It never hurts to ask.  I did trade some free art prints to the helpers to rewards those who helped me.

When I do larger project involving prismacolor markers I always ask my mailing list, and my facebook fan page if anyone wants to donate to the marker fund. Often times people will throw down a $3 donation to help me get a few markers and dominate my current project. People have been very supportive that way, and helped me get free prismacolor markers. It is a great way to ask people for help, and get something great for it.

I hope you enjoy hearing all 5 ways I have gotten free markers in the last decade! If you have any "free prismacolor marker" stories, leave them in the comments below!

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