Jul 26, 20161450 views

Inks for journal writing

I think a lot of us who are into fountain pens are also into journaling our daily lives. Those who are into this can probably relate to my situation when the flow of thoughts and writing are coming too fast but we have to wait for our FP inks to dry before we can continue writing on the next page. Even using a Midori Traveler's Notebook which is FP-friendly, there is something like a lag time when it comes to ink. Sure, we can use a ballpoint or other writing instrument but we love fountain pens and there's nothing like journaling with a fountain pen. Initially I used J. Herben Cafe des Iles and my Visconti Rembrandt calligraphy set (I only use the fine nib) for my journal but while writing a long entry last night, I decided I couldn't make do with how watery the ink is and how long it dries. So I immediately purchased Diamine Ox Blood and Iroshizuku Tsukushi to see if they will work better with journal writing. I also decided to change to the Remdrandt Italic nib. Well it ended up in disaster and my journal looks like a scene of a crime.

Changing to Italic nib with my tiny penmanship is a wrong move. I haven't tried Diamine on a F or EF nib so I don't know if its ink dries fast. I switched back to the Rembrandt F nib and used the Tsukushi and everything is okay again although I noticed that the ink didn't try faster than J. Herbin's. I do like the sheen though.
Sorry for the lengthy post but please suggest a fast-drying ink that would look great with my Camel Midori (shades of brown). I feel bad for messing up my new journal but I guess I have to take it as lesson learned.
ltopper, Tatu, and 8 others

Paper is where it all begins. No point in worrying about the right ink (or pen) unless you have a reliable foundation to work with. One of the best I've ever found (paper/notebook) is also one of the least known. They can be a little difficult to find, so buy three when you do. I haven't found *any* ink that presents any sort of problem with this paper. And did I mention each notebook comes with 300 sheets?! Here's a link: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00V54FUX2/_encoding=UTF8?coliid=I3UIAJZS6J5Z1P&colid=21RKWGO5IVGJ9&psc=0
I have a few suggestions: (1) fountain pen friendly paper usually means it is a smoother (less absorbing) surface. so you can try writing on cheaper paper! (2) try carrying a sheet of absorbent paper as a blotting paper eg. cheap copy paper or cheap watercolor paper -- in my own journalling which is an A5 booklet that I carry everywhere, I often bring along a sheet of paper which I have printed with ruled grid or lines since I prefer blank pages. This has the added bonus of being a blotting paper and a random note scratcher which I replace when it gets too messy looking. (3) someone else's post about slow drying ink suggested that diluting his problem inks actually improved drying time dramatically - of course, use only distilled or boiled water - not straight from the tap. I also do this but more for increasing the beautiful shading from an ink.
Two suggestions... For ink, look into some of the Noodler "Bullet Proof" inks.
You might want to look into Baron Fig "Confidant" journals as well.
I use both Lamy and Parker Quink inks for my journaling when I use FP. Since I live in the soggy Pacific Northwest, I have to be sure my inks are fairly resistant to water as occasionally I get caught in a rain shower. Some of the no-name-brand FP ink in Ebay has been horrid for water resistance. I once mistakenly set a beer bottle wet with condensation on a page (thankfully not a journal page) and watched the ink flow away even though the writing was several months old. Thankfully, it was in a part I had already transferred to digital.

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Just revisiting this topic - ( evil eye @SeadonkeyLove ). I thought I’d share a small something that I find works well for me. Granted, I am not writing a book or journaling my daily events.. both would be a very dull read. Thinking about the permanence or lack of with most inks... I thought I’d share what works for me. I have found that using Noodler’s Lexington Gray with color inks does help make the mixture pretty water tolerable. I won’t go so far as to say it isn’t at all affected by water, but it stands up to water drop/smear really well. Not to mention that you can get some terrific colors specific to your liking. I mix Lexington Gray with blues, reds, greens, browns .. the possibilities are endless. The two I use most often mixing it with blue and purple inks. A perfect blue-black and a deep, dusky purple. They make beautiful, water resistant inks that show excellent shading and character. @pharaonis did a great review of Diamine’s Sepia ink and mentioned thinking sepia would be a darker brown. I haven’t tried that particular ink, but I think sepia mixed with Lex-Gray would make a very unique color with some improved permanence. I have used Lex-Gray with DeAtramentis Gold and made a beautiful golden brown.. that isn’t going to completely wash away. I can do a water test with them if anyone is interested... or, not. I’ll just drop that tid bit right here and tip toe off.... Forgot to add that Noodler’s describes Lexington Gray as Bullet Proof. The Jet Pens tests sallen shared indicated it was Highly Water Resistant.
Very interesting!
Dementia aka Karen - Have you tried the Diamine Ancient Copper.. it's really nice and since Fall is around the corner.. I like the fall colors... I also like the Diamine Terracotta, smooth and dries quickly on Tomoe, Rhodia, bagasse. Finally, I really LOVE the Noodler's Army Green , a olive'ish green. Check out the reviews on Goulet Pen Co. looks like many good reviews specific to journal use...
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So... I went back and read this a couple times now and you definitely answered her original question for ink suggestions. (Shrugs, I don’t know man, haha)
I would suggest using a blotter paper as a "notebook mark" . They are used to absorb ink and in this way you can use whatever ink you want.
Have you considered using a blotter? The SevenSeas notebooks come with a blotter sheet but you can also buy them separately from Nanami. There are J Herbin Blotter pages available on Amazon. And if it really comes down to it I've used copy paper as a quick blotter - but I'm not sure if that would be absorbent enough to not smear the thick lines from an Italic nib. It works fine though for my Japanese Fine and Medium nibs. Even on Tomoe Paper.
Great suggestion. I'm considering buying J Herbin Blotter papers
If you don't mind cleaning your pens a bit more often I would suggest an iron gall ink. Many modern IG inks dry very quickly and offer a great deal of water resistance. They tend to write a bit on the dry side so using them in a calligraphy nib should be perfect. I would look into Diamine Registrars, Rohrer & Klingner Salix or Sciabosa, or the old (2015 and prior) Montblanc Midnight Blue. KWZI also makes some very interesting IG inks although I am not too familiar with the drying properties so you might want run a quick search -- the nice thing about KWZI is they offer a great range of color options.
If you'd rather change the paper to avoid the long dry times, Franklin Christoph Sugar Cane paper is quite fountain pen friendly and really cuts down on dry time. Keep in mind that Tomoe River is awesome paper but it is also probably the longest dry time paper -- Rhodia is also extremely long. So to offset this you will need to choose a quick drying ink or invest in some good blotting paper.
Thanks for the ink and paper suggestions! So far my Iroshuzuki ink is doing okay on Tomoe River paper
Goulet has a list of fast drying inks here: http://www.gouletpens.com/ink-sample-package-quick-drying-inks/p/ISP-QuickDry
You could try those. You could also search on the Fountain Pen Network for threads on fast drying inks. There will be suggestions there.
Thanks for the link
One paper I've had a great experience with as far as accelerated dry time with FPs is the sugar cane paper in the Franklin-Christoph Firma-Flex and notepads. I've fond that the same pens will dry faster on this paper than glossier Clairefontaine, Rhodia, and the famous Tomoe River paper. I just wish they offered more journal formats!
Have you tried using flex nib on it? Apica is really nice but sucks with flex.
Have you thought about changing the paper you use? A less ink resistant paper will speed up drying time more than the ink in many cases. I like levenger paper for quick notes as it soaks up ink just fast enough for me without sacrificing shading.
The pilot inks are quick drying, so if you really want to swap inks, they may be your best shot. However, a wetter ink is going to have better shading properties, so it'll be a trade off.
Also, be careful using a red-pigmented Diamine ink like oxblood or ancient copper, if you let the pen sit even for a little bit it can dry up and get dried crud everywhere in your pen. Total disaster to properly clean.
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We have a few choices in the Philippines so it's either Tomoe or Rhodia for me. I don't think there are loose leaf Rhodias. I decided I'll just make my own Tomoe inserts and maybe even sell them.
Oh,your from the Philippines? Umm,do you know any places in the philippines to get FP and Inks?Maybe around Manila or Bulacan?
The current journal I use is a Seven Seas "Writer" from Nanami Paper that is also filled with Tomoe River paper. I usually pair this with my Pilot Namiki Falcon which has an extra fine soft nib, so ink may not be as big of an issue for me in this situation as it is to others. Except for Private Reserve--haven't had the greatest experience with that so far (kind of a smiliar situation to what you posted, but with Blue Suede instead). I like the Iroshizuku inks right now because they come in great colors, dry relatively quickly (~10 seconds tops for me), and will even write pretty well for me on regular printer paper. When you used them, was the dry time for the J. Herbin much quicker than the Iroshizuku?
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. Hopefully you can see it. Might try adding a touch more red. 12 parts red and 3 parts black (Parker, speedball, touch Pelican blue)
It's great!