Friday, August 13, 2010

Rethinking pens

pens

For the past 10 year or so, I've been using the same pen, it's a pilot gel pen called G-TEC-C4, it's not very common in the USA, in fact I only found one stores that sells them here, which is a Japanese book store, But in Israel they are pretty common as your slightly more fancy then ordinary ball point pen. They cost around 3$ in Israel, and 5$ in NY.

I always loved this pen, but in art school a teacher told me that writing pend are for writing and drawing pens are for drawings and I need to be more professional about my choice of pens. At the time, I switched to pen and ink, which has the most beautiful line, is waterproof and really messy.
Later on, I realized that in the where and when I draw, it's not a choice between a gel pen and a pen and ink, but a choice between a gel pen and a not-drawing-cause-this-is-too-much-hustle. And I went back to the G-TEC.

But, a few days ago, a friend forgot a rapidograph in our place. I remember those from my father and from high school and suddenly I kept wanting to try his pen, however, there was no ink and it was all dried out. So, on Monday, I decided to give myself a birthday present and got 2 of them. One is by Koh-I-Noor, and one by Rotring. It was sort of nice to find out that the pen design and color is still the same as it was when I last bought one of those, which was about 18 years ago.

I've used Moleskine exchange book to give the first one a try. The line is a bit thicker, which I don't mind so much (the Rotring is thinner) and the color of the ink is beautiful - super black and dark, the pen really flow nicely, though - more ink, more time to dry, and also a bit of spreading (but really just a tiny bit). The nicest thing is that unlike the G-TEC, the ink is not water soluble so when I do the painting part, the line stays as crisp which is great.

I'm still trying to decide if I like the result though I feel like the drawing I made with it is more illustrative in style and less artistic, probably because the lines are so crisp.

What do you think? can you even notice the difference?

G-TEC
balooky03
Koh-I-Noor
Ballookey0203

2 comments:

Snowberry and Lime said...

I really love the result of the Koh-I-Noor! It will probably really help with lightfastness in the long term, would be a shame for your art to fade, right?

I've never really used the rapidographs other than very little in school and I do agree that pen and ink is messy and slow... I have usually just used one of those thin fineliners (waterproof).

Jim said...

I draw everyday. I love the traditional nib and India ink pens, but I also agree about the mess and time. It's almost like a special occassion using them.

Drawing with a Koh-I-Noor Rapidograph is like driving a really, really nice car.