I have a lot of ink samples and some bottles of ink that I have swatched as I receive them; consequently they are in no particular order. The dot paper is Tomoe River paper in an Endless Recorder notebook, and the plain paper is Clairfontaine (My Essential I think). I apologise for the shoddy posting- upside down, not cropped etc. I had a lot of issues trying to get these showing correctly, and in the end I realised if I kept trying to get them right I would never end up posting at all! I hope they may be of some help for comparison. I took these photos in sunlight which showed the colours most accurately- I tried under daylight globes and other lighting but these turned out the best. It gave me a new appreciation for those of you that post such good photos! It was particularly hard to show shimmer as well as the colour. Anyway, thank you to everyone who has posted ink reviews, it helps me a lot to choose what colours to get Of course, you have all cost me quite a bit and continue to do so!!
Ancient Song Winter October is almost identical to J.Herbin Emerald of Chivor, and I would say the flow is actually slightly better too if you're looking for a cheaper alternative. I think it might be called Ancient Charm is the US? Water Dragon's Song is a little watery for my liking though.
I adore Diamine Frosted Orchid and Wine Divine, some of my absolute favourites I generally run them in my Lamy Al- Stars and they flow just fine with extra fine, fine and medium nibs (I prefer finer nibs and never use broads). I also put them in my FPR ultra flex nibs which give huge shading for drawing with.
I also like the Organic Studio sheeners- although they are smudgy, you can use a water brush to bring out the blues for drawing and the red sheen really adds a dimension. I just keep a cover paper over those pages in my sketch book to cut down on ink transfer. I've never had a problem with the inks in our pens, and my fiance loves them.
De Atramentis Document Black is the best behaved waterproof ink I have used, although it is very flat. I have inked over it after with Organic Studio sheen ink which looks very cool.
R and K Scabiosa is a fabulous shader, great for drawing, and Black Swan in Australian Roses (which was suprisingly hard to get in Australia as I found out when I ran out of my sample half way through a drawing!) is also a hot favourite- it lives in my Pilot Metal Falcon. The R and K sketch inks are very good, but I wish the trade off for waterproofness wasn't such a flat ink.
I am loving some of the Troublemaker inks, so far I have ordered bottles of Copper Patina (so much love!!) and Dragonfruit.
I've been on a yellow streak this last week, and am about to order Diamine Citrus Ice (shimmer!) and Sunshine yellow ( loads of shading and beautiful clean bright yellow), as well as Akkerman French Yellow Ochre- this ink flows amazingly well (I mention this down below, sorry to repeat). I also like De Atrementis Amber Yellow Copper- it's more orange but the copper is different and a great compliment. The Heliogen Green is also worth mentioning for a darker more natural green, and the Diamine Golden Oasis is a bright clean green with gold shimmer.
I could go on but that's enough I think! Feel free to ask me anything- I haven't inked up all the colours yet but I'm trying. I can't really use shimmers at work as my pen lives upright in my pocket and our temps reach around 40 degrees celcius +. It causes a lot of hard starts.
These swatches are from the Australia pass around box generously started and predominantly supplied by A Smug Dill. My favourites so far are Akkerman French Ochre Yellow and Diamine German exclusive Robert. The Akkerman flows particularly well with my FPR Himalayan ultra flex nib. Some inks don't seem to like this nib- in particular the Robert Osters which seem reluctant to flow, almost like baby's bottom. The Citrus Black is kind of like writing in lemon juice and then ironing it- it reminds me of being a kid lol.