Discover more from Start Bay Notebooks - Pen and Ink Sketch Journal
Tools for a Pen and Ink Sketch Journal
What I write and sketch with, and what on.
Keep it Simple
The whole point about what to use is based on the principal that less can be more. The less you have to think about what you’re using the more you can think about what you’re actually writing and sketching - keep the element of spontaneity.
Use as few things as possible and appreciate what you have. Get to know the things you use - choose things you like and that can do what you want them to.
What I write and sketch with
I prefer to use fountain pens as a rule because the nib remains true and doesn’t wear down and become unpredictable. I’m a bit heavy handed at times and I can wear through fibre tips pretty quickly. The two fountain pens that I prefer are, to say the least, one extreme to the other in terms of cost.
Lamy Safari Vista Fountain Pen - Medium Nib - I use for drawing, the nib has more flex than the Kaweco I used to use. This Lamy pen is cheap, entry level and brilliant.
Mont Blanc Meisterstück with medium (bent) nib - the bent nib is not from wear, it’s from carelessness - I dropped it. But what it means is the nib has to be used at an angle - good for writing but no good for drawing - an expensive pen but It was bought for me so that’s OK.
Noodlers Ink - the best waterproof ink I have found. I have used it for a long time as I used to add watercolour washes over it. I don’t do that now because I like everything to be done quickly and in one go but I figure the pages still get wet sometimes so I stick with it.
Pentel Brush Pen - I use this to add the bold areas of shade and highlights. It takes no prisoners, it’s a bold, thick brush line.
Faber Castell Mechanical pencil with 2mm lead - I rarely sharpen it - it makes a nice, soft line for the basic planning of an ink sketch.
Staedtler Pigment Liner 0.5 - The other thing I use for sketching and drawing on the go. The pen I can carry in my pocket with an A6 sketchbook.
What I write and sketch on
Willian Hannah A5 Discbound Notebook - I like the versatility of discbound and that way things can be rearranged
Seawhites of Brighton - I use the paper for punching to go in the discbound notebook and their A6 eco sketchbook to carry in my pocket
Currently using a Stillman and Birn sketchbook - Alpha 150gsm medium grain paper. I like the paper and the fact that they are slightly narrower (140mm) than A5 and that the paper is white
Also use a Moleskine Art sketchbook - Decent paper and slightly narrower again (130mm) but only available with off white, cream paper (I think).
This Substack is intended to expand upon the concepts of the pen and ink sketch journal, to provide examples, inspiration and ‘how to’ guides. From the simplicity of QUAD (quick and dirty) sketching to getting your thoughts and feelings out onto paper.
But that’s all for now,
All the best,
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