Saturday, April 30, 2011

Scrambled Easter Eggs --- Mixing Inks

The Goulet Pen Company has an "Ink Drop" program where they send you five fountain pen ink samples at the beginning of each month. It's a lot of fun to experiment with the inks that seem to magically appear in my mailbox every four weeks or so. In April they sent out five unnamed vials of samples as an "Easter Egg Hunt", and we were supposed to try to guess what the inks were. Great fun.

Yesterday I was looking at these five samples and it occurred to me that they might provide an nice muted, dark color that would wash easily when mixed together. So, I put one eyedropper full of each color into a vial, shook it up, and loaded up my Lamy Safari fountain pen with the resulting mixture. To test drive the result, I used photo references from the Weekend Drawing Event on the Wetcanvas website, and gave myself just a couple of minutes for each sketch, to explore the properties of the ink.

I was really surprised and pleased by how much the colors separated with the waterbrush wash after I'd done the initial drawing. The initial color was a beautiful navy blue, but it washed into shades of blue, blue-green, and violet. If you click the drawing above and take a closer look, I think you'll be able to see it. I love it when these unexpected things happen! I'll definitely be using this mixture some more. I think it might work beautifully for some architectural drawings.


  1. Wow! What fantastic fun playing with the inks! I love these charming drawings.

  2. What a neat idea! My only suggestion to anyone reading this is to set your mixed inks aside for a few hours before loading them in your pen. Some inks don't play so nicely together and could clog your pen when mixed, so just use a bit of caution. But these seem to work well together. And you did the sketches on my birthday, too! :) Also, thank you for the links.

  3. Diana, thank you so much for your comments!

    Brian, happy birthday! I hope you have a great day with Rachel and Joseph. :) Thanks for the words of caution!