Fountain Pens and Cyclical Obsessions

Fountain pens: I’ve become obsessed (again). After falling down a YouTube rabbit hole, I pulled out an old pen I bought a million years ago (a Wordsworth & Smith or something, the obvious inspiration for the Amazon Basics version), from the last time I was struck with a fancy for fancy pens. And let me just say: Oh. My.

Okay so the pen is fine. It’s really nothing overly special, but the ink. The ink is where there is actually so much fun to be had.

There are so many inks you can put in a fountain pen, and writing with different colours is as fun as it was in 5th grade. I’ve also recently discovered that you can put the waterproof Platinum Carbon Ink in a fountain pen with no issues (!) so that is on my list for watercolour sketches. Ink and watercolour has become my latest medium of choice, so of course I’ve become very interested in the best tools for the job.

I’m currently salivating over a TWSBI Eco so we’ll see when I feel like I have $50 to shell out on another pen, and another $50 for the ink to go with it. I just keep having to remind myself that this is the affordable end of fountain pens, and I’m lucky there is a “cheap” plastic option that comes so highly rated.

In the meantime I’ve been using India ink quite a bit lately, with a plain old dip pen, just like I had in art school. Oh, if only I had kept everything from art school — I keep finding myself buying things I remember owning in a previous life.

The dip pen sucks, though, especially on nice paper. It’s too sharp, and I yearn for the fountain pen’s silky smoothness. One day soon, I will be sketching with a fountain pen! Unless I fall into a different obsession before then.

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