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Posts Tagged ‘J Herbin’

I am leaving this part of the country on Friday. All monsters are packed and the amazing carpet is safely stoved away and will remain so for a while til I find somewhere more permanent to live. I have my books, clothes and some steampunk gear packed in the car and I am bringing approximately 25% of all my drawing supplies. Yes, only a quarter. Yes, it was very hard to choose what to bring. No, I am not finished yet.

I have, as usual when moving, ceremonially decided to never move (this far) again, come hell, high water or an apocalypse. I am really quite finished with moving around and I doubt I’ll change my mind anytime soon.

Now, I have still had time to draw, write and read these past couple of weeks. Thankfully, or I’d have gone insane.

I have written very little of the project I am thinking about making and selling on RPGnow. Put simple, it is a way for me to hopefully spread my work a bit, at the same time giving the opportunity for various smaller RPG companies/people/game masters to use art at a bargain price.

Pen: Parker 51 EF
Ink: J Herbin Perle Noir (not satisfying, too little pigment to make a good black)
Paper: Seawhite of Brighton
Verdict: The idea? Borders. Borders, walls, separators and other stuff to reign in text. B&W linedrawings that work digitally and IRL. Below are drolleries. The finished work will be much more detailed and larger in size. I plan at least seven different themes to begin with. Below are freehand drolleries of the first one and a tiny bit of inspiration for the second.

BordersFirst

Please excuse the abhorrent image quality. My scanner is in a box somewhere so I had to use my digital camera and tried somewhat unsucessfully to clean the images up in PhotoShop in various ways too tedious to recount here.

DrolleryDetail

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Tresvansdrake

Title: An unfinished Three-tailed dragon.
Size: 18 cm from eartip to end-of-middle-tail (Well, the left-most tail if you follow them closely).
Computer alteration: None.
Paper: Clairefontaine 90 g.
Inspiration: This three-tailed dragon have been giving me the sad eye for several months now, hanging out in the very front of my notebook and making me feel guilty for not completing him. It started with an idea of a faerie-dragon with a plait of three tails (what would YOU do if you had three tails? Plait them, of course!).
Notes: I decided to do things in the proper order and made a graphite sketch (I really, really dislike the word “sketch”. “Graphite” is pretty, though). Filled it out some with the Parker EF (now with J Herbin Perle Noir, which isn’t as black as I’d wish, but annoyingly the first black ink that works very well in the capricious piece of pen). Added the purple (Diamine Damson) shadowing on a (severely misguided) whim. Now I/he is stuck. So, I thought I’d give him some notoriety and see if anything happened.
Upcoming: I am not quite sure. RPGnow-project developing nicely, as is Life in general.

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Sockbird 13

Title: The Gourmand Apprentice
Size: reduced from A5
Equipment: Thrice damned new annoying Parker 51 EF with Pelikan Black. Parker 51 Fantasy Kullock (demonstrator) with J Herbin Gris Nuage (so smooth, like drawing with a brush). Washed partly with water, partly with the grey ink.
Computer alteration:Scanned, slightly brightened and heightened contrast.
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: This is obviously an apprentice to the Grey Gourmand. Younger, just as stuffed with sock and just as miserable. I am almost getting a bad conscience here. Next grey sockbird will be happier.
Important notice: The linework (line-work?) on this bird is a bit dodgy. This is how it looks like when your pen is not cooperating fully with you. I miss my old Parker 51 EF so much. The new one does not like any ink I have tried in it so far and it is not possible to write with the nib upside down with it. I am actually contemplating drawing with my Lamy Safari EF for a while. It lays down a way too thick line, but if you use it with the nib upside down you get a thin line that unfortunately is a bit oblique, which I do not like. It’s hard to be a perfectionist.
Today’s Learning Experience: publishing something I am not happy with, partially to demonstrate how this particular problem looks like and partially to keep me humble 😉
In Other News: I am very satisfied with my latest creative endavours. Upcoming is my own coat of arms, more sockbirds and sneak peeks at the boardgame currently in developement. Some more ceramics. I have also made a character drollery for Schedim, drawn freehand while waiting for takeoff at Heathrow in May. Better scan possibly coming soon. It is a musically inclined goblin with a penchant for spiders.

20130523-164446

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I have finally found my scanner. Here we go, the first of two grey sockbirds. I got the idea of sockbirds specialized in woolen socks since I bought grey-striped knitted (knit?) socks at a Christmas market last December.

Sockbird 12

Title: The Grey Gourmand
Size: cut from A5.
Equipment: Parker 51 EF with Pelikan Black. Parker 51 Fantasy Kullock (demonstrator) with J Herbin Gris Nuage (so smooth, like drawing with a brush). Washed partly with water, partly with the grey ink. So, many shades of grey, came out quite well. For comparison, I have added a copy converted to greyscale behind the cut. To illustrate the many shades of “dirty” grey coming out in mixes/shades with other colours.
Computer alteration: Scanned, slightly brightened and heightened contrast. Removed a couple of spots of unknown inky origin. An ink drollery on the back of this drawing shone through (sic), which led to a need for a bit more brightening than I would have liked. I like texture. Proper, IRL texture. Part of the reason I have yet to go digital.
Important notice: since the grey sockbirds haven’t got any colours (really, even if there are hues of other colours), they have the diagonally striped feathers in black and white (or: my excuse for getting to draw the near-ubiquitous striped bands I like. See background, top right, for example).
Paper: Clairefontaine 90g.
Inspiration: Lost socks and the birds responsible.
Notes: Well, obviously this bird isn’t comfortable. In fact, he looks rather miserable. This made me able to identify him as a gourmand. Woolen socks are obviously a bit harder to digest than standard striped socks. Since we see only one sock in the picture, the other is likely swallowed and making trouble already.
Upcoming: another member of the grey gang. Also, a couple of general updates. I am also working in clay again.

Behind the cut: the same image, in greyscale.
(more…)

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A while ago I ordered samples of different greys from Goulet Pens. I really like the opportunity to compare inks. If shipping to Sweden weren’t so expensive, I’d order more often. My favourite grays were J Herbin Gris Nuage and Noodlers Lexington Gray. J Herbin is more blueish, without wandering too far into blue territory. I found the full bottle of ink at Sandbergs Pappershandel in Umeå, where I passed through for a job interview a week or so ago. Great little independent shop with knowledge of fountain pens and ink, but no homepage.

My new EF Parker 51 I bought via Ebay to replace the one that broke has a slightly different personality than the original one. It is drier and doesn’t like Noodler’s black. I tried Pelikan Black, which works a lot better in the pen, but for drawing I still like Noodler’s Black better. Maybe I’ll try J Herbin Perle Noir or some other black ink in the upcoming months. Noodler’s does have a couple of different blacks as well, I might try Borealis Black if it still exists. Have to look that up. Finding the right black is very important.

Sockbird Teaser

A proper Drawer of Sockbirds post is upcoming, as soon as my scanner arrives. This is just a teaser of the next group of sockbirds, the Grey Gang. The Grey Gang specialise in wool socks. The pens are my new “Birger” black extra fine with a gold-filled cap and the other a translucent fantasy Parker 51 demonstrator from the Argentinian seller Kullock on Ebay. The latter pen has a broad, wet nib and I used it for the Gris Nuage ink. The brush is series 7 W&N, I have forgotten the size. It is small, perhaps a 2? A great brush. Also, I really like the design on the Clairefontaine sketch pads, I am glad I picked one up on looks alone. Fortunately the inside matched the outside in terms of quality.

Kiruna Church

Last but not least, an image from the very last evening I spent above the Arctic Circle (unfortunately not with Aurora Borealis). The building is the church of Kiruna, a very special building you can read more about here. I now reside down south, soon signing the contract for the upcoming position I have accepted in a small coastal town in the south of Sweden, by the Baltic Sea. I begin in August. In the months that remain until I start working again, I plan to read, make a lot of art and hopefully travel to Colorado, Gotland and Köln. Of all places. 🙂

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Ever since starting this blog I have hinted on a post focusing on me finding a grail pen in the wild. I have never seen one of these on Ebay and never really anywhere else either. I have seen some similar Watermans and Mabie Todds. But never an Edward Todd BHR clipless, silver overlay pen. I am going to make a post about this pen on FPN as well, so we’ll see if I get any interesting comments or more information (please comment if you have any information!).

I found this pen in a truly sumgai way, maybe not technically in the wild since it was on the Swedish equivalent of Ebay. The main item of the auction was an extremely ugly and broken (!) ceramic pen stand glazed in a hideous beige-light brown-grey colour, “some pens included”. The pens were huddled in a miserable heap in the shadow of the monstrous pen stand. I took a chance and made a bid. I won the whole lot for less than 20 dollars (shipping included). Amazing, I can hardly believe it myself.

The metal is slightly discoloured at the breathing holes (two in the cap) resistant to polish. The BHR has become brown/olive with age. I did polish the silver (marked sterling on the cap). The pen is not marked except for STERLING printed on the barrel.

Here is a writing sample in my own bastardized Spencerian/Copperplate/nonsense scribble…

Yes! I misspelled “whiskey’s”, due to making a jumble of the last three letters…

Pen: Edward Todd silver overlay pen. Nib no 2. I dare claim this is a wet noodle. It does railroad sometimes, but not in writing the sample above. It is (of course) an eyedropper.
Computer manipulation: Exposure +0.25. Removal of stuff from left hand corner and top middle (not engaging the text).
Ink: J Herbin Cacao du Bresil. I love the shading.
Room for Improvement: I could still use some practise to perfect the readability and the flourish detailing. I would also like to have more continuity in my lines and lettering, making the end result more orderly. On the other hand, I do like a little irregularity and whimsiness as well.
Verdict: Instant feeling of I-am-not-worthy-ness and joy.

Close-up on the nib (click on the image to see it REALLY big).

One more pic (just because it is so wonderfully gorgeous) (more…)

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When I was in 6th grade I decided to learn the Morse-code. About a year later, my school decided that all students should be obliged to write journals (that would be left in the classroom during the school year). The teachers told us that the journals would be private for each student, that nobody besides ourselves would read them. I did not trust the teachers. In a silent protest I wrote my entries in Morse-code. I got told off for it, especially after sweetly asking why they cared which alphabet I was using if they weren’t sneaking looks at what I wrote. Thankfully, I changed schools a short time after this incident. As an adult, I wonder what in the world the teachers, just a little older than I am right now, were thinking assigning this “journal-project” and handling my protest the way they did.

Like many other bullied little kids without any friends I had an active fantasy life and read a LOT. Of course I had read Tolkien, repeatedly, by 6th grade. What changed everything was a book named ”The Languages of Middle-Earth” that I got my hands on a year or so after I moved. Tengwar, Tolkiens elvish alphabet, among several of his constructed languages and a bit general lingustics if I remember correctly. For me aged 13-14ish it was an epiphany. I promptly got inspired by ways to shorten the longish morse code characters and invent ways to shorten words and sentences. I also made a foray into various shorthands. (Still looking for a good book about shorthands, any tips?).
What you see is the rather impractical but somewhat pretty result. Unfortunately it takes too long to write to be practical for everyday use. Sometime I use it to remember codes or initials that I don’t want others to see, like when noting passwords etc. I’d like to work with it more. There are more advanced versions as well, I might post some in the future.

Note the flourishes that indicate capital character and punctuation. Also, the Tengwar-inspired diacritics. The ink is J. Herbin Cacao du Bresil, the pen is the Edward Todd Wet Noodle. A great combination, I love the greyish brown.
In the detail below (from another writing example) you can see the nice shading of this ink and the almost magical flex capabilities of the pen.

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