Alcohol based markers, such as Copic or Promarkers, are great for blending colors. When it comes to shapes and shades I love this kind of markers, especially since I do lots of faces and I can blend different shades of colors to make skin look as good as possible. They also have a blender which is a clear marker that allows you to have an even greater blend between shades. I also like the fact that they have different tips which lets me have better control.
I use Chinese ink and Staedtler pigment liner pens for fine dark detail. I've tried several pens and I think Staedtler pigment liner pens are the perfect ones to use with alcohol based markers, since you can apply the marker on top of them without bleeding (which many others do). I love to use brushes. Chinese ink allows me to do so in this kind of work (In some way sometimes I feel more comfortable using the brush to do certain things).
Here is some of my work I've done this past year: