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  1. I collect urushi and maki-e pens some of which are from India. Here is my Urushi Studio India Goldfish pen impressions and comparisons. First, I show below photos of the pen by itself then photos alongside Japanese pens with the same theme. 398CB59A-8CF7-4757-86E2-23AC7032FC21 by Ja Ja, on Flickr DDD9A3DA-A5A4-482E-87B8-EB2F9251CDF4 by Ja Ja, on Flickr 0AB601B8-1C2D-4B71-8201-AAB972792F21 by Ja Ja, on Flickr 2BE10825-8A09-4EE9-AE61-0F210CF727A9 by Ja Ja, on Flickr D0113742-49BC-4DC8-B125-F1D9C168B868 by Ja Ja, on Flickr Overall, the Urushi Studio India pen is an attractive and unique take on the traditional kingyo (goldfish) theme. The blue base color is remarkable for both the seeming obviousness of using blue when the Japanese use black, and for the difficulty of producing blue urushi. The rocks and goldfish are pleasantly raised urushi especially so the goldfish—the technique is subtle reminding one of the shishiai-togidashi maki-e oft used by Japanese artists when painting kingyo. Comparing the work to three examples of kingyo theme pens from Japanese manufacturers provides some informative contrasts. The three Japanese works are a Danitrio Hyotan by Yusai, a Stylo Art pen featuring Wajima-nuri, and a Namiki Emperor by Seiki. In ascending order of retail price the pens are Urushi Studio India, Stylo Art, Danitrio, and Namiki. The Stylo Art pen is priced only about 15% more than the Urushi Studio India pen whereas the Danitrio is ~2-fold the price and the Namiki tops the scales at nearly 10-fold. 1ED931C6-FA40-4F1A-B873-B8AC7EBE52B5 by Ja Ja, on Flickr The base color of all three Japanese pens is black, that is, polished black oil-free urushi (kuro roiro). The polished black base is highly traditional, glossy, and has a preternatural sense of depth. The Danitrio pen makes this finish a feature, which works well with the curvy shape of the pen, showcasing the perfection of the finish. The other two Japanese pens make use of the black surface more as backdrop for subsequent maki-e work. The black contrasts with the colorful maki-e work but being black does so equally for all colors. Black and gold can also combine to look brown-ish or form a stunningly rich contrast. The polished blue of the Indian pen immediately signals a non-traditional approach while the glossiness of the finish advances its quality. It is said that obtaining consistent blue urushi finishes are difficult so those in the know may appreciate some added difficulty in the preparing the base finish. There are, however, spots of inconsistency in color/gloss speed throughout the blue base coat that are apparent on close inspection. The blue color suggests a realistic depiction of an underwater scene although a more naturalistic color scheme would make use muted earth tones. Being opposite on the color wheel from orange the blue base forms a strong color contrast with the colors used on the goldfish. This is simultaneously attractive and sharply obvious. 21646BA8-3343-4208-9435-A29197FC664D by Ja Ja, on Flickr A bed of rocks are key elements on both the Urushi Studio India pen and the Namiki Emperor. On the Namiki the results are splendid with a multilayered, multicolored believably realistic depiction of a rocky bottom interspersed with foliage. Many maki-e techniques are on display including raised and polished work, multiple metal powder gradients, colored urushi, nashiji, and kirigane (inlaid gold foils). The Urushi Studio India pen also uses multi layered maki-e to depict the rocks yet has a comparative lack of details. The rocks are thickly layered rendered in black with a simple gradient of silver metal particles the texture of which can still be felt. The Namiki better integrates foliage amongst the rock and extends the subsurface to the very end of the pen with nashiji whereas the Urushi Studio India pen leaves a tip of blue at the end of the pen. 2A355D6C-A762-4827-8F2D-92AFAD973A7B by Ja Ja, on Flickr All four pens employ depictions of aquatic plants with the Namiki and Danitrio elevating the work to the highest levels. This is especially so on the Namiki but the clever placement of the plants on the Danitrio along with the the thickness of the lines as well as their subtle color shifts indicate high quality workmanship. The plants are more two dimensional on the Stylo Art pen but the shapes and colors are in keeping with the Namiki and Danitrio pens. The Urushi Studio India pen takes some liberties with its depiction of aquatic plants. The centerpiece looks more like a coral than a freshwater species and the overall color scheme is not as cohesive. The plant colors include silver, red, green, pink, and yellow that lack a sense of being clearly freshwater species that live in the same environment. Two of the pens use bubbles to enhance the underwater scene whereas the other two use gold particles. The bubbles on the Danitrio are rendered with raden, which adds to the visual and textural complexity. On the Urushi Studio India pen the bubbles are silver circles. Rendering the bubbles on the Danitrio is both a higher skill and a more time consuming process. On the Stylo Art and Namiki pens gold particles are used to indicate sand, texture, particles suspended in the water column, and light (the Namiki adds silver particles to enhance the sense of light). The maki-e work on these two pens adds a great deal of dimensionality and dynamism to the scene that is lacking on the less complex pens. 5A787263-2B46-4780-836B-A4F92E5238E5 by Ja Ja, on Flickr Now for the main attraction, the goldfish or kingyo. These pens depict Wakin kingyo, which is the most common kind of Japanese goldfish and the one that forms the basis for all the other types. Kingyo traditionally symbolize wealth, prosperity, and abundance. The red and shimmering gold colors of the goldfish are Summer colors as is green and blue. All four pens offer different depictions of the goldfish. Namiki’s is the most complex visually and artistically. The color scheme of the Danitrio goldfish matches that of the Namiki, and the artwork is similarly delicately raised but the overall approach on the Danitrio is less involved. The fish on the Stylo Art and Urushi Studio India pen are similar to each other although the Stylo Art proves the richer and more complex execution. FF8D6A9A-7FBF-4C15-8031-14E482642850 by Ja Ja, on Flickr Focusing just on the Urushi Studio India pen the goldfish are not shiny as they are on the other three pens. At the risk of anthropomorphizing the goldfish the expression is a frown on the Urushi Studio India pen whereas the others have a neutral expression. The scale lines and the lines on the fins are not regular, which affects the flow of the design causing the eye to wander. The Japanese work is typified by precise, regular, and delicate line work. The micro surface of the Urushi Studio India fish is uneven, which contrasts with the smoothly polished surface of the fish on the other pens. Diffuse and gradient gold particles are used on the Japanese pens to give texture and increase the color depth of the fish. The Urushi Studio India pen does not make use of gold particles except on the lines. The delicate flow of the goldfishes fins are rendered splendidly on the Namiki pen followed closely in effect by the Danitrio then the Stylo Art. The Urushi Studio India pen gives a large surface area to the fins, which is in keeping with the Namiki design but lacks the textural complexity and wispy sense of motion imparted by the Namiki and Danitrio depictions. Uniquely, the Stylo Art pen uses raden for the goldfish eyes, which is an inspired choice that elevates the artwork that otherwise lacks some of the complexity shown by the Danitrio and Namiki fish. In summary, Danitrio goes for simplicity and executes to perfection. Namiki uses complexity and executes to perfection. Neither are easy to accomplish. The Stylo Art and Urushi Studio India pens are in between those extremes although in design terms the Stylo Art is most akin to the Namiki whereas the Dantirio and the Urushi Studio India take a similar similar approach. That the Urushi Studio India pen can comfortably sit beside the Japanese works is impressive. Taken on its own, and seen with the eye not an unrelenting macro lens, the Urushi Studio India pen is a vibrant joy to behold. It has all the visual and textural appeal of good raised maki-e. Given time and increased experience no doubt the relative unevenness in design and execution will improve. It is exciting to see the development of new urushi and maki-e artists outside Japan that are creating new works in their own styles using these traditional techniques.
  2. jandrese

    Namiki Emperor Chinkin Dragon

    Shooting the Sailor Bespoke KOP Chinkin Owl for Dromgoole’s inspired me to pull out my Namiki Emperor Chinkin Dragon and run it through the focus stacked macro ringer. I’d say it availed itself. F8B88398-F81A-4B6A-A5F5-C981F315526F by Ja Ja, on Flickr EE178EB1-23E4-4056-B7BB-80B3EDD2E062 by Ja Ja, on Flickr
  3. Here is the mighty No. 50 size Namiki Emperor in the 2021 Limited Edition Coral maki-e. Words cannot express the amazingly superlative incredibleness of this pen. I have some pretty awesome macros I can share in a followup post if anybody is interested. IMG_8256 by Ja Ja, on Flickr
  4. Hello, I am looking for a specific pen, a Namiki Nobori Ryu. It was an anniversary pen for Namiki awhile back, and it's a challenge to find. I am willing to be patient, but I don't even know where to start looking... Other than Ebay, can anyone suggest some resources to find a rare Namiki pen? Thank you, Maya
  5. Mayacamas

    Pen Cases For Oversized Pens

    Hello, I have a question: I just purchased a Namiki emperor and I am having a devil of a time finding a case for it. Any suggestions? Thank you, Maya
  6. Hello, I have been lurking for a few years, and have a small collection of German and Italian pens that I use daily-- Im a writer. I have become increasingly convinced that I need a Namiki pen and have looked at both the Emperor and the Yukari Royale line. May I get advice on: 1. Useablity-- which one is a better daily use pen 2. Good places to find a used pen (besides Ebay) at a fair price 3. Best vendors if I chose to purchase a new pen 4. What else I need to know Thank you, Maya
  7. Any thoughts or opinions on the Namiki Emperor Vermillion or Montblanc 149 silver rings celluloid? These are obviously stupidly expensive pens so I can be happy if I never buy either but I came across decent deals on each and am considering getting one of them. They are very different pens (except for their prices which are relatively similar) and each are appealing in their own way. I already have a small 149 collection so I am probably leaning towards the Namiki but the 149 is rarer and part of fountain pen history. Are there any other similar pens I should consider?
  8. I'm relatively new to collecting fountain pens, but having now rotated through 'collecting' other things over the years (and I, like most people, actually hoard rather than collect, in the true sense of the word), I know how things ultimately play out. Whether it be camera equipment, watches, even vacuums, always the same process, so now I like to get right to the punch line and be efficient with my spend and my learning investment with new hobbies. Start with the beginner unit, work up to a really solid performing 'value' unit that punches above it's weight, then get a VERY NICE ​unit that becomes one's daily driver even following the hobby immersion, then top it off with THE GRAIL... then on to the next hobby, but keep ties to this one, without the incessant urges to buy, Buy, BUY! Some people spend 40 years wandering in the desert to get to this place (its about the journey, right?)... others, perhaps a matter of months. The whole while, immersing oneself into forums, online shopping feedback, professional written reviews and You Tube videos soaking in knowledge and sharing about the hobby and its equipment. One gets very familiar with the technology of the hobby, the key brands and their traits, the temperament of that collecting universe, etc... And hopefully along the way, if involved long enough, develop some enthusiast contacts and share that enthusiasm of the hobby virtually. My learning over the years is that until one finally buys the Big Kahuna grail collectable, one ends up with a lot of equipment and a lot of money spent, most of which goes underutilized, the whole while feeling compelled to buy the next thing. Or there is the (uncomfortable for me) process of offloading of equipment (for pennies on the dollar, more times than not) through the 'sales corner' of the forum. Anyway, I've got my meager 3 pen collection, and the remaining 'grail' must be purchased. I know for my GRAIL, I want a BIG pen, but one that functions very well. I spent a number of hours researching European big pens and am very concerned about the fickle nature of their quality and usability. There are some horror stories out there about the Pelikan M1000 (specific to nib performance) and not consistent adoring reviews of the MB149 either. I personally enjoy my Asian pens, with crisp writing output and not sloppy wet. They all seem to punch above their weight. Which is why when I am looking at a $1K-$2K Asian pen, I can only imagine what I would actually feel about it in my hand. I've really become attracted to vermillion Urushi from a color/material standpoint. I know the Emperor is honking huge... but this a grail so really should be over the top. I understand it is well balanced and writes well. Meanwhile the Custom Urushi just looks really tight and I love the two-tone nib. Does anyone have any actual knowledge of which one writes better? Which has the best fit and finish? Which is just more awesome? Right now I'm finding the Emperor at ~ a 50% premium over the Custom. Assuming money is no object, which is more awesome, and why? What are the concerns with each? Anyone own both?
  9. Drawing61

    Murder Often, Divorce Never

    Hello and I trust you all had a Merry Christmas. My husband pulled a surprise on me today. After the last of our house guests left he gave me my Christmas present, a 2017 Namiki Emperor Dragon. He made it clear the gift was for Christmas and our 50th anniversary. I am still a bit shell-shocked. The reference in topic tags I heard for the first time when Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy were asked in a TV interview if they had ever considered divorce. Their answer is the secret to a long and happy and bumpy but never dull marriage.
  10. Iguana Sell

    New Namiki Emperor Dragon

    We are delighted to announce a new Namiki Emperor will launch this November 2016. The dragon, is one of Asia's most important mythical creatures and it will be the one to adorn this new version of Namiki Emperor fountain pen. Endowed with supernatural powers, this creature is usually linked to water. This is why we can see one on the fountain pen's cap supposed to go up to attract rain on spring and avoid floods on the fall, thanks to its magic ball also known as Cintamani, a sacred stone that gives power and makes its possessor's wishes come true. The dragon is also known a symbol of fertility, wealth and success. The artist, Mamoru, has used the Taka Maki-e technique to accentuate the awesome presence of the two auspicious dragons which are carefully drawn on this fountain pen. Waves and clouds are treated with silver Taka Maki-e creating the perfect contrast with these golden dragons. Behind them, on the background, we can spot Togidashi and Raden Maki-e with a black lacquer studded with multicolored glitter particles. The Raden technique highlights the sacred ball that the dragon holds on the hood. As we have mentioned, this new Emperor will be available this November. For further information or pre-orders, do not hesitate to contact us through info@iguanasell.com Enjoy a sneak-peak at this beautiful fountain pen below!
  11. jmccarty3

    Alert--Stolen Namiki Emperors

    Three Emperor pens have been stolen from Aesthetic Bay in Singapore: http://onfountainpens.com/2015/10/stolen-namiki-pens-please-help/#comment-6117
  12. I had both the pens inked on my desk and decided to take some pictures, Both pens are designed to be ED filled, from the same company, but what a wide gulf separates them, it is mind boggling to think of what Pilot have achieved as a pen company. For those who might be unfamiliar, the bigger pen is a Namiki Emperor and the smaller pen is a Pilot NSF pen. http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/EmperorVsNSF/IMG_0359.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/EmperorVsNSF/IMG_0360.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/EmperorVsNSF/IMG_0361.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/EmperorVsNSF/IMG_0362.jpg Best, Hari
  13. I feel the Namiki Emperor is the ultimate eyedropper pen. Huge, so huge that other big pens start looking tiny in front of it. Positively huge nib, yet the pen is very comfortable to use. Some pics with a Vermillion Dani Trio Mikado and a black Sho Genkai. The maki-e pattern on this Emperor is called the "Pavilion". http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/Namiki%20Emperor%20Pavilion/IMG_0198.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/Namiki%20Emperor%20Pavilion/IMG_0199.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/Namiki%20Emperor%20Pavilion/IMG_0200.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/Namiki%20Emperor%20Pavilion/IMG_0203.jpg http://i991.photobucket.com/albums/af39/hari3171/Namiki%20Emperor%20Pavilion/IMG_0201.jpg Cheers! Hari
  14. holygrail

    284 B






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