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How to Organize Markers?

how to organize markers

If you have been using color markers for quite a while now, then you probably have already built a sizable collection. Collecting markers is almost like an addiction. You can never get enough color markers. If your marker collection has gotten quite out of hand, here is how to organize markers properly.

If you have been having trouble finding the right colors that you need for your current projects, here are some ways to make your workspace more organized. By having a more organized color marker collection, you will be surprised at how much better your art pieces will look.

Effective Methods for Organizing Markers

If you have a drawer full of different kinds of markers, it will only make your art projects needlessly stressful. In addition, you will often make the mistake of buying extra marker colors that they already have but just cannot seem to find.

To make life easier for you, here are some methods on how you can organize your markers.

Organizing by the Letter

Most color marker brands classify their colors using an alpha-numeric system. An example is the case of Copic markers where R stands for red and YR is yellow-red. Most of the time, the color markers you buy will contain a combination of colors from different color families.

Check your marker collection and then segregate them by their color families. After you divide the markers into their respective groups, lay the groups about their positions on the color wheel. This arrangement will make it easier for you to use color theory basics.

Organizing by Theme

organizing by the letter of markers

What kind of drawings do you usually do? Depending on the type of work you usually do, you may need to arrange your markers into more nuanced groups. For example, if you usually do portraits, you have to segregate a group of skin tone colors.

You may think that skin tone colors are just different shades of brown but there are other colors used for undertones as well, like reds, blues, yellows, and even greens. Other potential color theme groupings include shades of foliage, human hair, and earth tones. You can separate markers into groups of colors that you often use in your work.

Organizing by Usage

methods for organizing markers

If you do not use any particular color themes in your work, there are likely colors that you tend to gravitate toward with every drawing that you make. Think about the colors that you usually use as a base. Also, think of the markers you often use for highlights and shadows.

Instead of having to scrounge through your drawer full of markers for your frequently used pens, separate them from the pile and place them in their group. After that, you can arrange the other markers based on their color families.

If you cannot recall the colors that you usually use at the moment, here’s a useful tip. Place an empty jar on your table before you start working. Now, after every session, put the markers that you used inside the jar.

Over time, you will be able to see which markers get the most use. Once you do, remove the markers that are not getting that much use and place them into your choice of marker organizers.

This is also a great way for you to figure out what color ink refills or markers you have to stock up on so you will not run out at the most inopportune time.

Tips for Appropriate Marker Storage

organizing by usage of markers

It is not enough that you know how to organize markers by color. It is also important to know how to store them properly. This way, you can prevent them from drying out and make them last much longer.

Store double-tipped markers on their sides

If you have a set of double-tipped color markers, you should always keep them lying on their sides. This prevents the ink from settling on just one end of the marker, thereby ensuring that both nibs have equal exposure to the ink inside the barrel.

Store single-tipped markers upside-down

On the other hand, if you have single-tipped markers, you should always store them nib-side down. Doing this will let the ink settle on the end where you can find the nib. Because the nibs are always exposed to ink, it is very unlikely that the pens would dry out without every bit of ink being used.

Always store your markers with the cap on

This may seem obvious but you will be surprised at how many artists just leave the caps off their markers. Remember, the seal that the caps make is the only barrier that is protecting the ink in the nibs from the outside air.

Make it a point to always replace the caps on the markers after every use, even if you know that you will be using the same color later.

Invest in a good color marker storage system

You might find a lot of tutorials for DIY marker storage systems, but they pale in comparison to actual retail products. Sure, it may look cute and rustic to use old tin cans as makeshift storage space for your markers, but practically speaking, the commercially available ones work a whole lot better.


If you find yourself always wasting a lot of time just searching for color markers instead of drawing, then you have to learn how to organize markers right away. There are many methods that you can employ when you want to keep your marker collection organized, so choose the one that works for you the best.

You will be surprised at how easier your life would be if your markers are in the “right” positions all the time.