Sakura Gelly Roll User Guide

This is a user guide for Sakura Gelly Rolls, with color charts, identification & examples. You'll find them on my list of favorite pens for doodling & drawing.

Sakura Gelly Roll User Guide

Gelly Rolls are perfectly engineered. The two things I like best about them? The ink flow and the luscious colors. The pens last a long time and are inexpensive. I have loved Gelly Rolls since I first tried them in about 2008. They write smoothly, effortlessly and consistently. The ink is permanent and waterproof after a few minutes. I've found Gelly Rolls to be reliable go-to pens and they are always in my travel bag too. There are so many different types of Gelly Rolls that I thought it would be helpful to go through and photograph each type and find examples from within my work so that you can see the way the lines look. 

Stardust

Sakura Gelly Roll Stardust Pen. The stardust pen draws a .5mm line.  The line is translucent + sparkly on white paper. 12 colors plus clear. Identification: Stardust pens have a shooting star on the transparent lid and on the body of the pen. There's a dot of the ink color in the inside of the lid. The bodies are transparent so you can see the color of the ink and how much is left.

Mandala doodles in black Gelly Roll fine point and Sakura Glaze, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

Mandala doodles in black Gelly Roll fine point and Sakura Glaze, artwork by Tammy Garcia.

Gelly Roll Stardust.

Gelly Roll Stardust.

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Sakura Glaze pens.

Sakura Glaze pens.

Sakura Glaze

These are categorized as Glaze rather than Gelly Rolls but I'm grouping them together for this guide.  Glaze pens are translucent, bright and cheerful, witha .7mm raised, shiny, translucent line. The ink stays wet the longest of all of the pens in this review and the ink is puddly if you hold in the same spot and just move a little bit. The tip is precise and these are great for coloring in detailed doodles. The ink dries in about a minute but stays a bit tacky for about 10 minutes so these can be easy to accidentally smudge. Identification:  Glaze pens have translucent lids and "Glaze" on the body of the pen. I've only seen them sold in sets of 10. There are actually about 18 colors but some of the colors are very similar.

Sakura Glaze pens.

Sakura Glaze pens.

Black Gelly Roll fine point and Sakura Glaze pens.

Black Gelly Roll fine point and Sakura Glaze pens.

Fine & Medium

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Black Gelly Roll fine point, colored with Gelly Roll moonlight pens.

Black Gelly Roll fine point, colored with Gelly Roll moonlight pens.

Gelly Roll fine.

Gelly Roll fine.

Gelly Roll medium.

Gelly Roll medium.

Sakura Gelly Roll Fine. Think of these as neon Gelly Rolls; they don't glow in the dark but they are super groovy. Draws a .3mm line (from a .6mm roller ball tip) and writes in a thin opaque line. Ink is semi-opaque over black PITT pen. The ink takes a few seconds to dry. Identification:  Fine tip pens have "FINE" on the body of the pen and opaque lids. They come in 6 colors including black. 

Sakura Gelly Roll Medium. Draws a 4mm line (.8 roller ball nib). Ink is semi-opaque over black pitt pen. The white Gelly Roll is beloved by art journalists and doodlers alike. Identification:  They have "MED" on the body of the pen and most have sparkly translucent lids. They come in 11 colors including black.

At the center, white Gelly Roll medium point.

At the center, white Gelly Roll medium point.

Black Gelly Roll fine point.

Black Gelly Roll fine point.

White Gelly Roll medium point on acrylic paint.

White Gelly Roll medium point on acrylic paint.

Metallic + Moonlight

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Gelly Roll metallic.

Gelly Roll metallic.

Sakura Gelly Roll Metallic. Draws a .4mm line. The lines from the metallics are thin and shiny with muted colors. The ink is semi-opaque. They look gorgeous on black or white paper. Identification: Metallic pens say "Metallic" on the body of the pen and lids are sparkly and translucent. They come in 10 colors and you can buy them in sets or individually.

Gelly Roll moonlight.

Gelly Roll moonlight.

Gelly Roll moonlight.

Gelly Roll moonlight.

Sakura Gelly Roll Moonlight. Draws a .5mm line. The moonlight writes in "luminous gel ink that glows under black light" {per Blick}, opaque on black or white paper. The ink is opaque over black PITT pen. Identification: Each pen has a moon imprint on the lid and the body of the pen. These pens come in 10 colors, half are fluorescent.

Drawing on Black Paper or Acrylic Paint

What works best? For black paper or dark colored acrylic paint, I would suggest the metallic, medium, moonlight, some of the Stardust. What doesn't show up? Glaze {transparent}, Fine and some of the Stardust. 

Gelly Rolls on black paper.

Gelly Rolls on black paper.

Journaling in fine tip, medium tip and moonlight Gelly Rolls on an acrylic background.

Journaling in fine tip, medium tip and moonlight Gelly Rolls on an acrylic background.