Archive for the ‘Musings’ Category

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My Core Four Plus One

01/09/2014

My desk is always a disheveled mess except for my fountain pens. Those I keep tidy and at the ready for whenever the muse strikes. However, with product testing, the number of inked pens can grow well beyond anything manageable, so I’m separating the lot into two groups with my Core Four Plus One the most accessible. Others employed mostly for testing purposes have a tray in which to snooze until needed.

Core Four Plus One is a name for four of my most used fountain pens plus one mechanical pencil. The four pens are the mostly likely to get used either for the ink or the fun factor of using that particular pen. The Platinum #3776 music nib is the anchor. For now the other three pens are the Noodler’s Standard Flex, the Pilot Prera Italic and the Sheaffer Taranis Medium. Those four provide a good variety of nibs and pen sizes and changing between them is good for my hand. The inks are Diamine Sepia, Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses, Noodler’s Black and Diamine Steel Blue. Again this is a good variety for maximum appeal though all of it is subject to change on a whim.

The Autopoint mechanical pencil is the Plus One. It gets more use than any fountain pen since it doesn’t need to be uncapped, can write on any paper, and is erasable, an important benefit for a fickle writer.

When I head out with pens in tow, I have a two-pen case for an intrepid duo or a four-pen case for the whole lot. An Autopoint MP is always in my handbag along with a black Sharpie Pen so I am never caught out without writing tools. A small Rhodia pad completes the ensemble. An inkophile should be prepared, yes?

Do you have something like my Core Four Plus One? If so, what’s in your primary rotation?

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G’bye 2013 – Hello 2014

01/01/2014

Pens, inks and paper make a terrific hobby, but you already know that. Writing about them is my way of sharing the fun of using these tools. You make it worth the effort and for that I thank you.

Some names and numbers…

Thank you for the generous donations that helped keep Inkophile going last fall. My hobby has become a financial challenge. Really. Who wouldn’t want the newest colors of ink and several pricey pens every year? Sometimes retailers or manufacturers offer their newest creations or items they want to move off the shelf for review and that’s very much appreciated. When that doesn’t happen, I would like to purchase new items. Sponsorships and other sources of funding would allow me to do that. So moving forward, there will be some changes at Inkophile. Hopefully, that won’t estrange too many readers, but if you fancy an unsupported pen blog, there are plenty in the sidebar from which to choose.

As my interests have evolved, so has the content of my blog. Watercolor painting plays third fiddle to writing and using fountain pens, but painting in my journal has made it an integrated hobby. If nothing else, the addition of lively color to my wordy journal entries is a creative embellishment that is both intriguing and satisfying. More to come.

This is my favorite doodle of the year. It started as two comma shaped lines at the top and the rest was pure luck.

Copyright © 2013 Margana Maurer. All Rights Reserved.

Gene Kelly in Rose Ink

May your new year be filled with joyful dancing and colorful friends. Hello 2014!

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It’s A Hummer

12/28/2013

As incongruous as it may seem for winter, a hummingbird appeared for all of two seconds at my window this morning. It was not one of my old friends who used to perch on a camellia branch to chat for a minute or two, but a new member of the tribe without interest in a a wingless biped. It is an understandable bias that I hope she will ignore. A nest in a nearby tree would provide much appreciated entertainment and inspiration during the overcast weeks ahead.

Come back, little one, and bathe in the admiration and appreciation I will send your way.

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Even A Bird Can Enjoy A Good Ride

12/16/2013
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Just In Case You Wondered What Happened

08/22/2013

Yep, I’ve been scarce at Inkophile as well as on Twitter and Google+, but I’ve got a great excuse. No my dog didn’t eat my work! It’s worse. My 12-year-old computer finally told me to find a new mate. Heck, most marriages don’t last that long. So I’ve been working on a borrowed laptop for a few minutes each day – not enough to write a real post but enough to get off a quick one before I go back to researching budget laptops. Wish me luck!

As for fountain pens, I did a major cleaning two days ago and reduced my rotation to one lonely Pelikan M215 stub nib and Sailor Sky High ink. It feels really strange to have only one choice, although that is hardly a choice. One of the Platinum  pens will get a fill once a single ink emerges as the next one to use. It’s fun to flip through my ink book or look at the bottles on the shelf for a stand out. It is all too easy to indulge in blue. There are so many nice ones, soothing, and non-offensive. Sky High will do for that color. Ink #2 will be teal, turquoise, brown, burgundy or purple. Yes, an injection of color will be just the thing to close out the summer.

See ya when I get my new laptop up and running!

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Does your pen choice reflect the season?

08/16/2013

Someone else must be writing this. How can an inkophile have only one pen inked? At that it’s a leftover from my last review. The Pelikan M215 stub with Sailor Sky High has no use for the other residents on my desk, an Autopoint mechanical pencil and a Sharpie Pen, as slumming is quite beneath it. Unlike fountain pens that dry out quickly, summer heat has no effect on either so they are here for the duration.

Perhaps over the weekend, one of the Baoer Eight Horses will get a fill. Stipula Sepia was such a good match for the custom italic that it might be worth using during the oppressively hot weather ahead. Diamine Mediterranean Blue is gorgeous in the Platinum #3776 MU, but after six months, it’s time for something different. Any suggestions?

Sticking to one pen for the lazy days of summer does sound awfully inviting. Does your pen rotation reflect the season? If so, how?

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Another Shop Bites The Dust

08/03/2013

Yes, another longtime provider of all things pen and ink closed its doors as of 3 PM yesterday. Art Brown in New York has decided “the rent was too damned high” and ended its 90 year run. I hope the family finds another niche in the community. No doubt they will be welcomed in any capacity.

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