Swatch Card for September

I’ve been pulling out my fountain pens filled with shimmering inks and cleaning them out. A few have been in use since May and I thought it was time to rotate the colors out and try some new inks.

I used a 4″x6″ watercolor paper post card to create my swatch card. So far, this includes 19 inky colors I am currently using for this month. These inky colors reside in my TWSBIs, Pilot, Opus 88, Nahvalur, and Indy pens. That includes about a dozen TWSBI GOs.

I am still missing a few colors like a golden yellow which I will add to my currently inked collection in the next day or so.

I keep my swatch card with me in my art bag along with my fountain pens and inks. There are times when I forget what inky colors I have ready to go for my sketches or when I’m trying to find the right inky shade for a particular sketch.

Post Card: Tumuarta Watercolor Post Card 4″x6″ 140lb/300gsm cold press

Pens: turnt pen co “Grisham 13” in Peach Agate (Bob Dupras) with Fine nib. Pilot Custom 742 with Soft Fine <SF> nib. Nahvalur Original Plus in Melacara Purple with Stub nib.

Colorverse Butterfly Nebula/NGC 6302 – Special Edition Ink!

I was late to the show with this ink color. One of my workshop attendees had shared an inky swatch she had from the Colorverse table. It was so mesmerizing to see the lovely shimmers. You know how I love a good shimmering ink and especially one from Colorverse.

After my workshops were finished for the weekend, I immediately went to the Luxury Brands table to find this lovely shimmering ink. It was sold out! All I could do was look at the lovely swatch they had on their table. I was given some information and was told they would be releasing it to the local retailers in a few weeks.

Fast forward to now and I have this lovely ink in my hands. I could not resist turning my bottle of Butterfly Nebula to see what shimmering colors would appear.

Do you see the interesting colors inside my bottle?

It looks like purple shimmers inside the bottle. When I roll the bottle to the other side, the shimmers look pink.

This Colorverse Butterfly Nebula debuted at the 2022 DC Pen Show. It’s so special that this is the first time Colorverse has released a glistening ink in a large 65ml bottle. Colorverse is also the first ink company to be put on the cover of the Pen World Magazine.

The Butterfly Nebula is packaged with the Colorverse NGC 6302 in a 15ml bottle.

I looked through my swatch cards to see if I had something similar to NGC 6302. The two colors that came close were Sydney Darling Harbour and Hail Storm. The Colorverse NGC 6302 a dusty green ink color with blue & beige underlying colors.

For Butterfly Nebula, the closest color I had was Summer Storm which happens to be much darker and leans a bit more towards pink. I would call Butterfly Nebula a dusty periwinkle (lavender blue) ink color.

This ink shows pink shimmers on my swatch card.

I ended up creating two swatches for this ink. The first one on the left came out so light in color, I ended up writing over the ink name twice. For the second swatch on the right, I let the ink settle a bit in the bottle before dipping my pens. I was able to capture a darker ink color. Once the swatch dried, I was happy to see a some green appear on the card.

Here’s another look at the two ink colors on my Stalogy paper. Now, the Butterfly Nebula is showing some green along with some blue colors as well as the pink shimmers. It’s also the same colors shown in my bottle (2nd picture above).

Both ink colors have interesting personalities and are unique compared to other inks I have in my collection.

I was surprised how light the Nebula Butterfly ink color was compared to what I saw at the pen show. I wish it was a tad bit darker for my writing purposes. The writing samples on my swatch cards and on my Stalogy paper were written with a JoWo #6 Fine nib. I will definitely try this ink in one of my pens with a stub nib.

Inks: Colorverse Butterfly Nebula (65ml) and NGC 6302 (15ml) from Federalist Pens and Paper

Follow the Butterfly

Here’s a sketch I’m working on today. This is a work in progress. I have to remind myself not to get caught up in the details and sketch loosely.

Pens: TWSBI GO with Stub 1.1 nib. TWSBI Swipe with Stub 1.1 nib. Lamy Vista Black SE with Cursive nib. Lamy Al Star Ballpoint pen.

Inks: Robert Oster Heart of Gold. Colorverse Brane. Jacques Herbin Shogun. Ferris Wheel Press Roaring Patina Black. Diamine Frosted Orchid, Pink Ice, and Starlit Sea.

Journal: Stillman & Birn Alpha Softbound A5

Sketching Around Me

This morning, I gathered a few of my fountain pens and my sketch journal and placed them in my messenger bag. I ended up at a coffee shop I’ve been meaning to visit and never had a chance to stop in. It turned out to be one of the best coffee shop and sketching experience I’ve encountered.

Inside the shop I saw lots of open space with plenty of tables and chairs. Lots of folks wandered in and out of the shop and grabbed their coffees to go. A few folks, who sat towards the back of the shop, were busy working on their laptops. I was receiving positive vibes here.

I sat at a table in the middle of the coffee shop and started sketching what was immediately in front of me: my cup of coffee and my sugary treat. Then I looked around and saw the display cabinet at the back of the shop. There were colorful cups and bags of coffee on display. I felt a challenge hit me and I started sketching the back wall.

When I stopped to see my progress, I felt there was something missing in my sketch. I looked around and saw a vase with some blue and yellow flowers on the counter and I thought adding a floral scene would be a perfect way to finish my sketch.

I’ve been seeing lots of self improvements over the last few weeks. I am no longer hiding at the back table and sketching. My art supplies are spread out across the table for everyone to see. I’m becoming more efficient with my observations and sketching less which results in less lines to erase. It could be I’m getting better at memorizing what I see. Also, I find myself smiling more while I’m creating my artwork.

Pens used: TWSBI GOs with Stub 1.1 nibs. Pilot Prera with CM nib. Faber-Castell Hexo with Medium nib. Lamy Al Star with Cursive nib. Copic Multiliner with 0.1mm tip (permanent ink).

Inks: Van Dieman’s Ink Morning Frost and Hail Storm. Robert Oster Heart of Gold, Melon Tea, and Thunderstorm. Diamine Pink Glitz, Golden Ivy, Enchanted Ocean, Seize the Night, and All the Best.

Journal: Stillman & Birn Alpha Softbound A5

My Garden Gnome

It’s been amazing to see our gardens turn colorful in the last two weeks. Lots of “sticks” now have green buds and leaves. Many of our perennial plants have flowers on them. This was a great opportunity for me to take my camera outside and capture what was in our garden. A future blog post will be forthcoming with plenty of pictures.

In the meantime, I thought it would be appropriate to sketch a garden gnome.

Have I mentioned how much I’ve been enjoying the Diamine shimmering inks? Gorgeous ink colors and they are working beautifully in my pen & ink sketches.

Speaking of Diamine inks, the online retailers are starting to carry the larger bottles of ink from the Diamine Red Inkvent calendar. So, run to your fave fountain pen & ink retailer and grab your bottles of ink. No need to wait for me to make my purchase as I have to put my ink purchases on hold for a bit. I had an emergency to take care of this week which resulted in my priorities being rearranged.

Okay, back to my garden gnome showing lots of shimmering goodness. I liked how well my Golden Ivy and Starlit Sea colors worked together in my sketch.

I believe this is the first time, I’ve managed to have a dozen of my TWSBI GOs filled with shimmering ink colors. Minus one pen which is primarily filled with Thunderstorm. I use Thunderstorm for my shadows and that ink color has been used in most of my sketches.

Remember to take some time and enjoy the beauty around you.

Pens: Uni Pin Fine Line pen in 0.5mm and 0.1mm tip. TWSBI GOs with Stub 1.1 nibs.

Inks: Van Dieman’s Ink Morning Frost. Colorverse Brane. Robert Oster Heart of Gold and Thunderstorm. Diamine Red Lustre, Brandy Dazzle, Frosted Orchid, Golden Ivy, and Starlit Sea.

Journal: Stillman & Birn Alpha 4″ x 6″ Hardcover

My BUJO (Bullet Journal)

I have a BUJO that I use on a daily basis. I started this back in August 2020. I would do a page a day of my to-do lists, reminders to drink water, exercise, declutter, organize, run errands, etc. I would decorate each day with stickers and add thin strips of washi tape around the edges of the paper.

That lasted a week. As my days got busier, I had less time for decorating. My detailed lists became brief and shorter.

As time went on, I continued to create my daily pages and tried out different formats that made more sense to me and my lifestyle.

My monthly calendar page changed from pre-printed calendars to a two page spread that I drew out with my fountain pens and inks.

My daily pages were a waste of space and I was able to come up with another configuration of putting all seven days across a two page spread. That made a huge difference in my ability to see the whole week at a time.

It was back in early 2021 that I started this monthly and weekly configuration you see here from the two pictures. As I have limited space, no stickers or washi tapes are used. I might occasionally sneak in a sketch or two.

The little red cups I sketched out are reminders to drink water throughout the morning and afternoon.

I also record the weather outside (sunny, cloudy, rainy) and the temperature for the day. This activity allows me to do a bit of sketching in my daily BUJO.

My Stalogy journal holds a lot of pages and can get chunky as a result of all the washi tape and sticker applications. It’s a lovely journal I can leave open on my desk and the pages lay flat.

Pens: TWSBI Swipe in Pear Green with Stub 1.1 nib. Narwhal Voyage in New Orleans with Fine nib. Pilot Prera Red with Calligraphy Medium (CM) nib.

Inks: Colorverse Brane. Jacques Herbin Vert Atlantide. Diamine Pink Glitz.

Journal: Stalogy 365 Editor in B6 with Navie Travels Journal cover

My Mushroom House

In my creative art experiences I enjoy experimenting with different types of art paper. Using fountain pens and inks allows me to use a variety from mixed media to watercolor type papers. When I come across a perfect pen & ink & paper combination I experience a lot of joy in creating my artwork. Here is one of them.

I had cleaned out some of my TWSBIs and filled them with more shimmering ink colors. I made a mistake in my swatch sample on the back of this post card paper. Apparently in my excitement I picked up the wrong GO pen that had Enchanted Ocean ink. That blue color is not in my sketch. Oooops!

There are so many shimmering particles in my sketch.

Pens: TWSBI Swipe in Pear Green with Stub 1.1 nib. TWSBI GO with Stub 1.1 nib.

Inks: Colorverse Brane. Robert Oster Heart of Gold and Thunderstorm. Diamine Red Lustre, Brandy Dazzle, and Cocoa Shimmer.

Paper: Strathmore Watercolor Postcard 4″x 6″

A Garden Table?

Is it a door? Is it a chair? Is it a garden table?

I started with a pencil sketch and drew in the major lines or outlines of the various objects. I used my Copic fine line pen (0.7mm) and went over the main areas I wanted to include in my sketch. I used my Copic fine line pen (0.1mm) to add in some details and also to create some shadows.

By the time I’m finished my initial sketch, I had an idea which ink colors I wanted to use in my final sketch.

I’ve enjoyed using Winter Spice and I’ve had my pen filled with this ink color since last December when I was doing my daily Inkvent marathon of colors. Right now, the ink color is a bit too dark for my current sketching style. It was time to retire this color and clean out my pen. Finally!

It appears I have used too much Winter Spice in my sketch. I went overboard with this color, but look at the amazing green sheen. I should have left a bit more white on the paper. Lessons learned. I can always do another sketch using brighter colors.

Pens: Copic Multiliner SP in 0.1 and 0.7mm. TWSBI GOs with Stub 1.1 nibs.

Inks: Colorverse Brane. Van Dieman’s Ink Morning Frost. Robert Oster Blood Rose, Heart of Gold, and Thunderstorm. Diamine Cocoa Shimmer and Winter Spice.

Journal: Stillman & Birn Alpha Hardcover 4″x6″

Happy Easter Weekend!

I created my own version of Easter eggs!

Pens: Uni Pin Fine Line pen in 0.3mm. TWSBI Swipe in Pear Green with Stub 1.1 nib. TWSBI GO with Stub 1.1 nib.

Inks: Colorverse Brane. Jacques Herbin Cornaline d’Egypte. Kaweco Summer Purple. Robert Oster Heart of Gold and Thunderstorm. Diamine Pink Glitz, Subzero, and Starlit Sea.

Journal: Stillman & Birn Alpha Hardcover 4″x6″

My Inky Vials

Here’s a quick pen & ink sketch I created this morning. I’m in the midst of testing out some art papers for a project I’m working on and I drew a blank on what to sketch. I saw a few vials of ink sitting in a small glass jar and I thought this would be something quick and easy to complete.

I was wrong. I sketched the first vial on the left and had to leave to take my mom out and run a few errands. Four hours later I attempted to finish my sketch. My other vials were looking a bit out of proportion.

Did I mention we had lunch at Cava’s and I thoroughly enjoyed my meal? Maybe my happy tummy was making me feel a bit lethargic. Hahaha!

One thing about shooting a picture straight on is the lack of sparkly details. I had to take another picture from a different angle.

Pens: Copic Multiliner SP 0.1mm. Pilot Prera Red with Calligraphy Medium (CM) nib. TWSBI Swipe in Pear Green with Stub 1.1 nib. TWSBI GOs with Stub 1.1 nibs.

Inks: Colorverse Brane. Van Dieman’s Ink Morning Frost. Robert Oster Heart of Gold and Thunderstorm. Diamine Pink Glitz, Cocoa Shimmer, Vintage Copper, and Starlit Sea.

Paper: Hahnemuhle Watercolor Postcards 230g/m (105lbs) 4.1″x5.8″ cold press