Illustrations are typically commercial and designed for eventual reproduction. These artistic renderings are often done on illustration board, paper or similar substrates, most likely using thin paint, inks or dyes.
An illustrator like Michael Cacy uses the CM-B or CM-SB for the finest detail work since they perform well at extremely low air pressures. The CM-C, HP-B Plus and HP-SB Plus can be used for detail and general rendering purposes, while the HP-C Plus is good for some detail and background coverage. These models are all good for working on small- to medium-sized work, which is typical for illustration.
Professional illustrators often rely on powerful, yet silent compressors with air-storage tanks for consistent and uninterrupted airflow like the Power Jet and Shark compressors.
* High detail, for more experienced artists
** gives the flatest pattern, most important when using transparent colors
*** ability to control specific airpressure
“The Eclipse CS is a dynamite airbrush for over-painting oil-based colors over the top of my illustrations. Using a rubout or pick-up technique with a kneaded eraser lifts up the oils, revealing the under painting. This technique adds another dimension to my work. Once airbrushed on, you can control the drying time, meaning that you can start rubbing out an area almost immediately. Also, by airbrushing you have more control because you can gauge the value ? it can be more subtle or pronounced than it would be if it were brushed over.
I use the Iwata Custom Micron for all critical work, such as precise detail. The Iwata HP-C Plus is without a doubt the best all-around illustrator’s airbrush ever!”
– Michael Cacy