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  1. This is my first and probably last Inktober. A thirty one one day challenge to produce a piece of ink art for every day of October. And if you search social media for #inktober #inktober2017 thousands and thousands of images will appear. It's an excellent concept and popular too. I saw this an ideal opportunity to showcase a diverse range of lettering and illustration styles all visualised with nothing but fountain pen inks, bleach and the odd little extra! First off, I needed a concept to hang the whole thing together. Back in the early 1970s Top of the Pops (UK) was the must see pop program. The intro consisted of a psychedelic countdown of illustrated stills to a jazzed up version of the Led Zeppelin classic 'Whole Lotta Love'. See above. So, using this 'Countdown' idea I'm simply pulling together a range of visual subjects and styles that have been of influence to me on my art journey and showcasing them inside, and breaking out of, the thirty one numbers all of which are based around the typeface Blippa. 31. Blue Meanies - Yellow Submarine was the first animation that really hooked me. The fabulous colourful artwork by Heinz Edelman and Milton Glaser is a constant source of inspiration. Using my own four CMYK fountain pen inks I mixed the the colours and applied with a rigger brush and dip pen using a zebra G flex nib which I have used in all the examples. 3o. Art Nouveau - This is recurring them for me. I first got into the genre during my teenage years while staring glassy eyed at art posters and album sleeves by Kelly and Mouse, Roger Dean, Hipgnosis etc - a lot of their art was inspired from this source. The image I've pastiched is very much Alfons Mucha in style. Diamine have recently sent me their next batch of shimmer inks to play with so I thought it would be fun to try out Firefly with Wine Divine. 29. Heim und Hafen - I didn't fully appreciate this retro style until I worked in London at some of the bigger storyboarding studios. Pale Blue and Buttercup yellow were the standard frame background colours with confident line work drawn in brush pen. The image came from some chocolate packaging. I used some of Robert Oster Signature range here - they make excellent colour washes and dry flat. For the line work I used Dark Chocolate. I was amazed at the visual similarity to Magic Markers I achieved. It was good to break the type outline with the seagulls - adds a greater design dynamic. 28. Judge Dredd - 2000 AD was just a great comic. Scifi, violence and great art - super blended with punk rock and new wave music - what more could a teenager with creative ambition desire? Created with Quink and bleach - enough said. 'I am the Law' - Human League 27. Jack - I just fancied doing this. It looks just like a watercolour and that's just what I wanted. Using my own four CMYK fountain pen inks I mixed the the colours and applied with a rigger brush and dip pen using a zebra G flex nib which I have used in all the examples. 26. Jane Avril - Athena used to sell a large range of posters many of which ended up on my walls. The Toulouse-Lautrec classic of Jane Avril was one of them. I have always liked it. Even went to see his work at Albi. I used Diamine Sunshine Yellow, Amber and Sunset with Private Reserve Ebony for the line work. I was very pleased with this. The colours worked very well indeed. 25. Biggles - We have a massive second bookshop here in Rochester called Baggins. I often wander about looking in the Boys Own section. The vintage book covers are still a great source of happiness for me. They're not exceptionally crafted, but there's something about them. They were created quickly and all by hand, including the type. They're fun! Using my own four CMYK fountain pen inks I mixed the the colours and applied with a rigger brush and dip pen using a zebra G flex nib which I have used in all the examples. 24. It's for your own good! - Commando was another comic that I admit to reading. Some great drawing skills but in hindsight, the storylines... This was put together with Diamine Onyx and Schmincke gold dust. Works well within the type. So what have I learned? Fountain pen inks are versatile and you can certainly use them for art. I'm having fun and next week I'll describe some of my processes. I'll do my best to get the new Shimmer inks swatch tested and write up the next batch of Inktober art for next Sunday. If you'd like to know more about this project, please take a look at my profile page or visit my blog site at www.wordpress.quinkandbleach.com.
  2. Video about the Swedish illustrator Mattias Adolfsson and his instruments of choice. Neat encapsulation (at the end) of the slippery slope we all fall down. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a8ln5PIDaC0
  3. I am considering Platinum Carbon Black for use in illustrations. I have Motblanc Permanent Black, but the pigment smears very easily. Does Carbon Black also exhibit this behavior? Would you be more hesitant to use Carbon Black in a 149 than you would Permanent Black?
  4. zelmirka

    Drawing With Plants

    Hello! I am very happy discovering this group and site of magical things! I just make documentation about ink recipes for writing a post to our common blog - with Illustrators Club from Romania. This summer I coordonated a virtual workshop with ten book-illustrator about drawing/painting/writing with colours and inks obtained from plans. The theme of the workshop was investigating our personal childhood. We named the workshop ”Childhood.Illustrated Fieldwork”. Although the workshop ended in september - and now we prepare an exposition - we decided to repeat this workshop every summer with children and with adults also. Studying and investigating colours and inks of plants, making handmade instruments fro writing was very captivating and it seems endless! If you would like to visit our blog - our recipes, techniques, drawings- you can see here https://www.facebook.com/illustrated.fieldwork?ref=bookmarks http://ro.pinterest.com/childhoodi/ http://illustratedchildhood.wordpress.com/ Hope you will like our works. Thank you for the very good content and very rich information! Szabo Zelmira, book illustrator (...and I share with you a childhood autoportret, I used only plant-juices and home made indian ink)
  5. Greetings from the Bay Area! I have now been living in the Bay Area for three years, relocating from my home town of Seattle. I became an enthusiast of fountain pens (and writing instruments in general) through the study of graphic design. I learned about the tools of the trade; the fountain pen was one of them. Several of my peers had used fountain pens and technical pens for illustrations, and I slowly became interested in them. I procured inexpensive Rotring models to start off and learned how to use them. Later, as I progressed into Graphic Design, I found work at a family owned stationery store, Sab-Tec Stationers- owned by Sabah and Liesel Al-Haddad, that let me grow in my knowledge in fine writing instruments. I started selling art supplies and office products, but began to gravitate towards the Fine Writing Instruments. Soon I became extensively knowledgeable on all the writing instruments and became one of the top sales associates of fine pens in the store. I presented all the pens we had with enthusiasm- Cross, Parker, Waterman, Sheaffer, Namiki, Visconti, Lamy, Rotring, Aurora, and Recife- and many other brands and models. I purchased my own, as well as was rewarded with well-regarded fountain pens. When I left to advance my career and education, my interest in fountain pens did not wane. I had inherited my father's and grandfather's pens, which were tucked away with their belongings. For a brief time, I drew with my father's Parker 51, but after a while, I decided to get my own pens to draw with for my own personal satisfaction. Thus my collecting resume. I bought an assortment of inexpensive and expensive fountain pens through the years, each being used for various projects and writing. Parker, Pilot/Namiki, and Sheaffer pens can usually be found on my person or on my desk, along with the many, many pens that I have accumulated from vendors and suppliers- roller balls, ball-points, mechanical pencils, etc. I joined this network to touch base with the community and glean knowledge about products, opinions, and to fill in the gaps of my knowledge on fountain pen lore. I want to expand my knowledge on ink, paper, handwriting, calligraphy, and techniques. I would like to learn a bit on maintenance and repair as well. I hope to share the bits of knowledge I have on Fine Writing Instruments as well. Thank you all for letting me be part of the forum!
  6. TwelveDrawings

    Is Phileas Well Suited For Drawing?

    Sasha Royale, Hmm. What an interesting question—one I can answer only for my own experience creating www.TwelveDrawings.com Fountain pens are much more closely associated with writing than with drawing. In fact, I don't personally know any artists who use a fountain pen. I am pleased to find artists here on the Fountain Pen Network, but I think fountain pen usage is probably rare in the general population of artists. WHY NOT USE PENCIL? First, I should explain why I prefer using pen and ink vs a pencil. I can and do use pencil for sketching but have always preferred the demands and rewards of pen and ink. I would compare pencil use with skydiving, where there is real excitement involved but also ample room for correcting minor errors. Pen and ink is more like B.A.S.E. jumping which is very unforgiving of even the smallest mistake. (Not that I am brave enough to actually try either dangerous sport for real). Every mark or motion made by a pen will remain visible in the final drawing, so there is a bit of risktaking in each new stroke of a pen. WHY NOT USE A CALIGRAPHY PEN? This one you already know. The chisel-shaped nib required to make those wonderful letter forms is not well-suited for my style of illustration. WHY NOT USE A TECHNICAL PEN? Most pen and ink artists I know are fond of Rapidograph technical pens https://d2npbuaakacvlz.cloudfront.net/images/uploaded/large-present/2012/7/13/rapidograph-pens-1342201371.jpg These unique pens were used worldwide for creating architectural blueprints and engineering drawing. They come in an astonishing array of nib widths, but are must be held almost perpendicular to the page, rather than in an oblique handwriting position. Although I love Rapidographs, I prefer a pen that lets me use a relaxed handwriting grip.....thus, I use a Phileas. WHY NOT A MORE EXPENSIVE FOUNTAIN PEN THAN PHILEAS? Here I must declare a tiny bit of Divine intervention. I had only a brief interest in fountain pen as a child. Then, in middle age, I came across a display of Phileas pens in the Staples office supply store. I was mostly an idle doodler at that time, so I'm not sure why I suddenly wanted to own the Phileas. Its $50 price tag seemed absurdly high since my favorite drawing pen at the time was a $1.49 Pilot RazorPoint felt-tip pen. I took the plunge and bought what for me was an exorbidant luxury item. (Only much, much later did I learn that the Phileas is viewed by connoisseurs as a low-end "economy model" pen.) I was mesmerized by the very things that Waterman had purposely included...nostalgic Art Deco styling, glossy black enamel, and gleaming gold details. I don't usually collect "bling", but I liked owning this one particular bit of dazzle. WHY NOT A LESS EXPENSIVE PEN? I have formed a loyal bond with the Phileas. My devotion is not entirely rational, but it harms no one that I don't seek out less-expensive alternatives. WHAT'S TO LIKE ABOUT THE PHILEAS? • FEEL: Looks aside, I found the Phileas to have an excellent "feel" when writing or drawing. Other than my one childhood pen (a Sheaffer?), I have no basis for comparison. Today, I realize I was not alone in admiring the smooth performance of Phileas. The high-end Waterman designers seem to done a remarkable job when they created this low-end pen. It writes cleanly, delivers ink reliably, is physically rugged (when the cap is firmly on), and very easy to maintain. • CONSISTENCY: Like most ink illustrators, I primarily use dots (stippling) and lines (hatching) in my illustrations. A typical fountain pen is meant to create handwriting, but there are plenty of dots and lines in that. However, when I am drawing, I work very very fast. My Phileas must deliver up to 200+ dots per minute—that's averages 12,000 strokes per hour. Multiply that by 2 to 8 hours per drawing, times 70+ drawings and you'll see I am putting my Phileas through torture-test conditions. I have never "worn out" a Phileas pen. I have lost one and ruined two (accidentally dropping them nose-down onto concrete), but they work as well when old as they did new. • DIVERSITY: The afore-mentioned Rapidograph technical pens deliver a consistent, near-perfect round ink dot with each tap. That's why so many artists love them. When I draw, I am improvising constantly and do not want to see a perfect uniformity in my pen marks. The Phileas is capable of drawing very neatly, but it can also deliver scratchy, sloppy, and even wild lines given the right drawing technique. When I examine my stippling under a mangnifier, I am amazed that no two dots look alike. That would drive perfectionists crazy, perhaps, but I like it in a jazzy improvisational sort of way. Thank you for asking a very interesting question, Sasha Royale. I had never given any of the above much thought before. I know there are many much-finer pens in the world. But by Divine intervention or just plain luck, I found the right one for me (and my budget) on the first try. Since I am a pen user, not a collector, I am contented to stop with what I've got. I am curious how other fountain pen artists would answer your question. TweveDrawings
  7. Goodmorning! I would like to share recent YouTube videos of an artwork using a Montblanc 149 with a nib grind by Michael Masuyama. The needle-like tip is just perfect for the type of detail work that I enjoy. The ink used for this artwork was Cafe Des Iles by J. Herbin. The paper is an 11 inches by 17 inches Strathmore 2-ply Smooth Bristol board. The pencil used for the initial sketch was a Blackwing pencil by Palomino Brands. At the last stage of the process--from mid to end portion of Video Part 4--the MB 149 pen was turned into a quick airbrush/atomizer tool using a simple soda straw to create fine mist sprays for soft shading and blending, as well as coarse spatter ink sprays for texture work. Video Part 1 of 4 - [Note: When I began this recording, I didn't think I would upload it publicly on YouTube. As such, this first part was recorded at a local restaurant and my friends at the table convinced me to share the entire process. The other three videos were recorded privately in my art studio]: Video Part 2 of 4: Video Part 3 of 4: Video Part 4 of 4: Below are links to the video. Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Thank you letting me share this post with you... and best regards, Ced

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