I picked these flowers from around my property before the Hurricane Irene hit, and painted them out on the patio after the storm departed. Even the mug is a remnant from a former time; it was left in a cabinet by previous owners of the house!
I got a delivery of some new inks last week, and used this opportunity to break out my brand new bottle of Noodler's Kung Te-Cheng. I used it for both the journal writing and the sketch above. For awhile, I was most interested in inks that would wash for my ink and wash sketches. But lately I've been yearning for more colors that will stay put. They are more useful in combination with watercolors, since they don't bleed and dirty the color. I've also been thinking that if I were to ever spill water on one of my journals by accident, all the text would bleed if the ink wasn't waterproof. I tried a small sample of Kung Te-Cheng six months or so ago, and loved the color, which is midway between blue and violet, and muted enough to not be overpowering. Perhaps the biggest surprise came when I did lightfastness tests of 13 inks. Many of them faded a lot within just a few weeks, but Kung Te-Cheng hung tough and easily outperformed all the others in terms of lightfastness. So, I knew it was just a matter of time before I treated myself to a bottle! It's only available in a 4.5oz size, but comes with an eyedropper-converted Platinum Preppy fountain pen and a brush pen to use with the ink! You can get it from one of my favorite suppliers, Goulet Pen Company. If you don't want to order this huge bottle without trying it first, you can order a sample of it. More ink reviews are on the way in the very near future!