From around the web:
Fueled By Clouds and Coffee is just about my favourite site about drawing. Tina posts a sketch every day and her drive to always draw and to always improve her craft, not to mention her talent, is inspirational. Tina’s just started a series looking at fountain pens with variable line widths, called Epic Pen Search and Discovery, Part 1 of which is here.
The Pen Addict: Three Questions With Thomas Hall Great interview with a top bloke.
Gorgeous Ink A new website from another top bloke, Paul Joynes, that is all about… gorgeous ink!
From the site:
J. Herbin Vert Empire Ink Review
Ti2 TechLiner Gel Ink Pen Review
The One and Only Fizzy (sketch)
Palomino HB Pencil Review
I’ve seen some reviews of this ink that have been less than positive but I quite like it. It needs a broader nib to bring out the best of it (as do many J. Herbin inks) but, as its name suggests, this is a very stately green.
Here I am doodling the Inkling.
You can find some more reviews of J. Herbin Vert Empire on Pennaquod.
The Ti2 TechLiner is a machined metal pen available direct from the manufacturer for between $60 and $125. It comes with the Uni Signo 207 gel ink refill and will also take a Jetstream hybrid ink ballpoint. It will no doubt take others too. It’s available made from titanium, brass, copper or bronze in a range of finishes. There are two lengths – the shorty (5”) and the standard (5.75”). My version is the acid-washed brass shorty and costs $60 (although I got it for less by backing it on Kickstarter). It’s possible to buy a clip as an added extra.
The unusual feature of the TechLiner is the use of magnets to hold the cap on either end, to cap the pen or post the cap. These are fun: I love to watch the magnet suck the cap into place. They’re also very functional, easily being strong enough to hold the cap in place. I thought it would be gimmicky before I tried it but the functionality makes it feel like simply a very good idea. The pen is well thought through from start to finish and has been expertly made.
The refill is great and the fact that it takes the wonderful Jetstream refill as well is a significant plus. There is a slight amount of play in the tip, a consequence of it extending as much as it does. It isn’t noticeable when writing.
Being brass this is a heavy pen. I find it a comfortable weight, particularly as I prefer my pens on the heavier side. The weight is generally the second thing that people say about the pen, though.
The first thing that people say about this pen is, “Wow, that’s beautiful.” (Actually, no-one I know anyone in real life says that about pens. What people really say is, “That looks nice,” but I interpret it as above.) They are right, of course. It’s a stunning pen.
This is by far my favourite non-fountain pen. It’s lovely to write with, it has a character all to itself, and it’s beautiful.
You can find some more reviews of the Ti2 TechLiner on Pennaquod.
By happy coincidence Mike Dudek is running a giveaway of a gorgeous black Ti2 TechLiner over on Clicky Post. It runs until the end of Friday 30th January. Head on over and try your luck! Whilst you’re there, be sure to read Mike’s reviews of several Ti2 pens.
Here our cat Fizzy is looking magnificent. I’ve never known a cat with so much personality.
Copic Mulitliners, Uniball Signo white, Clairefontaine sketchpad
The Palomino HB is a wooden pencil available in orange or blue. It costs about a dollar and is made in Japan.
This pencil’s made from incense cedar, which is a good thing. It smells great and it sharpens well. Much like the Palomino Graphite Drawing Pencils, which I suspect are the same pencil only without an eraser tip, it’s a good thing that it sharpens well because you’ll be doing it often. Point retention is not great.
I’m not a fan of the pencil writes, either. It’s smooth and dark but too soft for an HB grade. It doesn’t feel right, to me. Picking this up again after using the General’s Cedar Pointe for a while really brought this home: the Cedar Pointe is smooth yet firm and will write forever; the Palomino HB is more like a crayon.
The finish is high quality. No bar code, crisp lettering and a neat gold ring near the ferrule. The white eraser rubs out quite well and, unlike the lead, doesn’t disappear too fast.
This isn’t a terrible pencil but it’s not that good, either, particularly when you can get much better pencils (the aforementioned Cedar Pointe, Staedtler Noris, Field Notes No. 2, to name but a few) for less money.