With this blog series planned, I didn’t want to attempt Inktober this year. But I did want to include it somehow. So I decided I’d see if I could do one piece with as many prompts as possible.
I also decided that I’d do something that’s been on my to do list for months, and sort out my box of writing inks. Then I could do the Inktober piece in actual ink. My box of inks has been a bit neglected…
But I took everything out, dealt with the small spill at the bottom, and sorted the inks. I have a few actual bottles in there, but mostly it’s samples. Lots and lots of samples. Most of them have already been tested – but a couple haven’t. We’re just going to ignore the fact that I have a long list of samples I want to get as well.
Okay, for this project we’re going to need to use proper tools. I used my Rhodia pad of paper, and a pretty glass nib pen.
Step one – swatch all my samples. I only swatched the ones I haven’t tested yet.
The little asterisks denote inks that are supposed to have a shiny or shimmer effect that doesn’t really show up. For instance, Diamine Majestic Blue (third down on the second page) is supposed to look like this..
To really show off the beauty of these inks I pulled out another notebook. This is a little book I made of Tomoe River paper. It is a very very smooth paper and it is excellent for pen ink, but it is super expensive. I bought some sample sheets years ago and made a little notebook to do this in:
So I did that with all the other samples that had specialness to them.
There is another notation on my swatch sheets. Some of the Diamine inks have an X across the start of the name. This is because there is none of that sample left. Here’s why.
Now, this particular style of sample bottle really really sucks.
None of the places online that I’ve bought samples from use them. They’re wiser than I and use water-tight tubes. These are a type that I bought a batch of when Cayden and I first started getting into fountain pens and inks, and I used them for samples he’d give me when he’d buy something new. I have 7 samples in those containers. So I figured I’d use them for my Inktober piece, and not have to deal with the containers and their mess.
(There are only 6 Diamine inks crossed off my swatch list because I now own a bottle of Purple Pizzazz, so it’s not a sample anymore.)
I emptied the little not-water-tight samples into a palette – which for some reason I didn’t photograph – and then I swatched what I’d be using for Inktober.
I’ve just noticed that on the sample swatch sheet I wrote Shimmering Seas and on that swatch sheet I wrote Shimmering Sky. (There’s a lot of S in that sentence.) The ink is actually called Shimmering Seas.
I did some doodles, to test drawing with pen, and used up a couple of prompts while I did it.
And then I started sketching. I even sketched in ink. I knew I definitely wanted to do a dragon, so I started with that. I liked my initial sketch, but the face was too round and didn’t really look right.
I decided that I was going to use the following prompts though: dragon, freeze, enchanted, pattern, snow, legend, treasure, ring (in the treasure), and injured (I was going to put a bandage on his leg.)
I started the proper piece – but I messed up the face again.
On my third try I got it right. Ish. I think if I used pencil to sketch, and then markers, I could do a much better job. But considering I didn’t have a sketch, and that it’s using a medium and an implement I’m not used to, it’s pretty good.
However, there was a lot of ink left over. I would have transferred them into more leak-proof bottles, but I didn’t have any. So I did this…
When everything was dry, I got out a lining pen, a white gel pen and a metallic marker, and I turned them into monsters.
I also did this.
I’m not sure what it is, but I don’t think it’s finished. At some point I’m going to swatch my bottles of ink, and I’ll probably add more shapes to this random piece then.