Friday, November 11, 2011

Sailor Brush Calligraphy Pen... and Hippies!

I have to recommend the Sailor Sailor Brush Stroke Calligraphy Fountain. It's got an unusual shaped nib that lays down a wonderful line; thick to thin, with the feeling of a brush. It's designed to write Japanese calligraphy and is an awesome drawing tool. This was one item from a haul at Jet Pens and I'm glad tried it.
Parkman Bandstand in Boston Common, MA

I had it along with me during a trip to Boston. I have other drawings from the "Freedom Trail" that I will post soon.
This is a 55 degree nib, there's also a 45 degree that makes an even bolder line (I have both). I must admit, it takes some getting used to, but it's really great. This is not the most luxurious pen you'll find, but for under seventeen dollars, it's a great buy.
The barrel is long; 7 1/2" with the cap posted, which is great because you can store an extra ink cartridge and the Sailor cartridges are pretty big, so you can store quite a bit of ink.
 You can see the Sailor in comparison to the length of a Sharpie and a Lamy Vista. The cartridges come 12 to a box; not sure if there is a converter that will fit these pens.
These are some hippies I sketched at a recent "Hippie Shop" benefit concert. I have more drawings from the night, but these are the ones that I used my Sailor Brush pen.

Looking forward to drawing a lot more with these great pens!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Higgin's Eternal and King Arthur.

This new edition of Sir Thomas Malory's LE MORTE D'ARTHUR was a terrific project to work on. Penguin USA wanted a new cover and type treatment for this classic.
My tools of choice for this project was my old Speedball nibs and handles, a bamboo reed pen and sumi brush with Higgin's Eternal ink.

Working from my thumbnails, I knew bold rough marks were needed to go with the broken gothic mix of typography I had in mind.
This 140 lb Lanaquarelle watercolor paper is terrific stuff. Really tough and can take the roughest, scratchiest marks without feathering. Washes are a breeze. I got this large 113/4" x 15 3/4" from Legion Paper; a fantastic company for quality art paper.

My roughs for King Arthur started...well... rough; dunno why I started on a white legal pad. I used a Sheaffer NoNonsense fountain, Pentel brush pen, Faber Castell Pitt brush pen and a Sharpie.
My Sharpie is contained in this snazzy Sherpa pen shell. A great holder for Sharpies and other pens; they come in different colors and designs. I picked it up at Fountain Pen Hospital.

As usual, the thumbnail process sets the tone for the whole project.

After the project was completed, I thought it would be great to make woodblock prints of the approved and alternate cover designs. I'll have a future post of the finished blocks and prints along with the details of the tools and material that I use from McClain's Printmaking Supplies.
This Shina Polywood cuts like butter.
A completed block, before printing.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Pilot Envelope Address Gel Ink Pen

These Pilot Envelope Address Writing Gel Ink Pens were a great find at Jet Pens. They are designed specifically for kanji writing for postcards and letters during holiday time in Japan. It has an oil based, waterproof ink that dries fast and works without smearing. I tried them out with Pitt Brush Markers in a Moleskine sketch.

They draw really smooth with a nice dark wet line and come in three sizes Fine, Extra Fine and Broad. And for two bucks each they're not a bad buy.

 They're great for quick sketches on location, like capturing this dancing hippie.