So, my desk is about eight years old, and has seen plenty of abuse in that time; various moves, stickers, and many spills have added lots of scrapes and stains. But after coloring a picture of the Pokémon Rapidash with Copic markers, I noticed something new.
When I went to pick up the paper a few hours after coloring, it seemed to stick to my desk. It pulled up without much trouble, and the paper did not rip, but underneath was a fairly subtle image of a Pokémon.
As you probably know, Copic markers are alcohol-based markers. As you might not know, alcohol, especially rubbing alcohol, can be very damaging to wood surfaces. Like an acid, it can eat through the varnishes or protective coatings on the wood. Unfortunately, I found out the hard way that heavy blending with alcohol markers can have the same effect. Ironically, I recently learned that using a small amount of rubbing alcohol is a recommended way to remove ink stains.
I’d seen a lot of YouTubers who specialize with Copics use a plastic mat or other non-wood surface between their desks and artwork. I figured they just didn’t want to get marker or paint on their actual desks. In hindsight it seems like an obvious problem, but you know what they say.
So, now I am in the market for a mat myself. I think the reason this hasn’t really happened with my other Copic works is because I always rotated them as I colored them. For Rapidash, I taped it in place so it was upright for the video. Since it was static on the desk and I seriously blended its mane with a lot of ink, it had time to soak in and make a noticeable impact.
The marks are more subtle on camera, and the reflection from the lamp and the pre-existing stain from a receipt (long story) make it harder to see. I’ve outlined it, so hopefully you can see where it is. It’s more noticeable in person.
Do you use something to protect your desk or work-surface? Let me know in the comments!