This is my fourth and final part of the Iroshizuku Inks And Their Meanings series of reviews, where I reviewed 6 Iroshizuku inks per part. In this last instalment, I will review the remaining 6 inks: Murasaki-shikibu, Chiku-rin, Ina-ho, Ama-iro, Take-sumi, and Shin-kai. To read about how I log my inks, click on this article. It may be helpful for you to read that to understand some of the terms and references that I make in my post below. Iroshizuku Murasaki-shikibu Murasaki-shikibu (紫式部) has a couple of meanings. Most call it “beauty berry” but Murasaki Shikibu is also the nickname of a famous Japanese poet/novelist from the Heian period. She was from the Imperial Court in Japan and served as a lady-in-waiting to the Empress then. In fact, when I asked my Japanese colleague about the meaning of “murasaki-shikibu”, this lady was the first to cross his mind. Other than that, the Japanese beautyberry (Callicarpa japonica) is a tree that has purple berry fruits, a plant native to Japan. Ink Characteristics This is the only purple ink in the whole Iroshizuku series, a bit of a pity because I love purple inks myself and hope that there might have been more purple options. But at times, […]
This is the third instalment of my Iroshizuku ink review series, where I talk about Iroshizuku inks and their meanings, and also observe their characteristics. Here I will review Fuyu-gaki, Kiri-same, Fuyu-syogun, Tsukushi, Yama-guri, and Kosumosu. For a brief on how I log my inks, read this article. It may be helpful for you to understand some of the terms and references that I make in my post below. Iroshizuku Fuyu-gaki Fuyu-gaki (冬柿) translates to “winter persimmon”, which is an orange fruit that can be found worldwide, but mostly in China, Japan, and Korea. These fruits turn ripe and are ready for harvest in autumn, and most of the persimmons that are available at the end of the year are of the fuyugaki type, with softer and juicier flesh (as opposed to the jirogaki, which has a harder and crunchier flesh). Ink Characteristics As expected from the name, the ink is a bright orange colour, the colour of fresh, ripe persimmons. It’s a very attractive orange, especially when the first layer of ink is swabbed on the paper. Interestingly, when the second layer of ink was laid down (refer to the top half of the swab area), the colour turns into a duller […]
Welcome to Part 2 of my Iroshizuku Ink review series. This time I will be looking at Shin-ryoku, Tsuki-yo, Yu-yake, Yama-budo, Ku-jaku, and Syo-ro. For a brief of how I do my ink logging, have a look at my write-up here. It may help to understand some of the references I make and the terms I use. Iroshizuku Shin-ryoku Shin-ryoku (深緑) means “dark green”. I can’t find a direct reference to a part of the Japanese culture from the name of this ink, although I noticed that some online sources mention this as a “forest green”. I have also found out that a certain type of Japanese green tea is called “Sencha Shinryoku”. It may be related, or not. Ink Characteristics Looking at this green ink, it feels to me like a very solid, typical green colour. I would call it a primary green. I tend not to like greens very much, and this is a less interesting green to me. This ink is quite a saturated and wet ink, but some sheen can be observed while writing. It doesn’t do well with water resistance, but you can see it either ways – the yellow parts of the ink […]
Pilot has launched their Iroshizuku range of fountain pen inks for some time now, and it is a very popular range among fountain pen enthusiasts and collectors of inks. Following the success of their 50mL glass bottled Iroshizuku inks, Pilot has recently launched the Mini Iroshizuku inks that come 3 in a set. Each mini glass bottle contains 15mL of an ink, and you can mix and match your preferred colours for each set. I decided to dive in and let myself be tempted by the inks, as I had held back from buying them long enough to jump onto the opportunity to buy all 24 colours when the Mini Iroshizuku inks came out. I didn’t need 24 bottles x 50mL of inks, as I was sure I wouldn’t have been able to finish them all! So when the 15mL were out, it was perfect for me. All 24 bottles fit into a little box which I tucked away nicely in my cabinet. Iroshizuku inks are named in Japanese, so while I found it exotic and attractive, it was really quite difficult to remember. I haven’t found a way to remember the ink names yet, but I have decided to take […]
Everyone does ink logging in different ways. I have come across a variety of interesting ways that people record their inks. Some techniques may be good representations of ink being laid down on paper when writing with a fountain pen, some may not. For me, my method is not perfect, but I like it anyway. Here’s sharing with you the procedure by which I log my inks. Materials used: Memo word cards, 90mm x 38mm Round paper stickers (Sun Flower Brand Labels, #1013) Cotton swabs Kitchen towel, cut to desired size (mine is about 25mm x 50mm) Plastic dropper/pipette (for inks and water) Inks (here I am using the Rohrer & Klingner Viridian Green) Water Dip nib holder and dip nib (I use a WM Mitchell Pedigree Fleetwing #0528) The Process Step 1: Dip the cotton swab into the ink and let it soak for 5 seconds or so. This is to ensure that the cotton is well saturated with ink. If you do not soak it well enough, the swab may turn out paler than what it’s supposed to be. Step 2: Perform your swabbing on the word card. I do it from left to right and trying not […]
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