When doing our very own illustrations, we prefer the simpler, cheaper materials (with alot of computer editing afterwards). Since we work in a slick style, Smooth Plate Bristol with Pilot Ultra-Fine pens give us the best look (Archival safe, baby). This gives you a smooth, uninterrupted line with a crisp, bleed-free surface. Also easy on the wallet. For big black areas, I usually fill in later on the computer. But if a cilent wants an original, I use a Mircron Graphic 2. Soild enough for blacks, but small enough to be controllable.