This is Rachel’s first video! She really took interest in the Pilot Parallels, and what drew her into it was the unique design of the pens. Particularly, the emphasis on being able to kiss two pens together to transfer mixable ink colors to get a gradation effect!

The pen comes in a package with two ink cartridges, one red, one black. There’s a converter (that’s only used for cleaning, it doesn’t fit snug enough to ink up the pen with it), a nib cleaning doohickey (that’s the technical term), and an instruction sheet on basic calligraphy.

Rather than a conventional nib, the nib for the Parallels is made up of two straight (parallel) plates that are sandwiched together. There are 4 different nib sizes available for the Parallels, a 1.5mm, 2.4mm, 3.8m, and a whopping 6.0mm:

You might wonder if this type of nib is scratchy or uncomfortable to write with, but I promise you, it’s surprisingly smooth. It’s not the fanciest pen out there, but it performs well and is a great pen for the money (around $10!). It’s probably not practical for an everyday writing pen, perhaps the 1.5mm could be, if you like wide italic nibs. The others will all be too big for daily use, unless your daily use consists of calligraphy and drawing, that is!

Now for the cool part, the gradation. Keep in mind, Rachel is just learning how to play with these pens, so our demonstration isn’t polished. You will likely be able to achieve what we’re showing here with relatively little practice, and you’ll only get better over time. Rachel shows you how she does the gradation in the video, it’s quite simple.

You aren’t limited to using Pilot (proprietary) ink cartridges with these pens, they will accept a Pilot Con-40 converter (not included with the pen) so you can use whatever bottled ink you like.

We haven’t yet experimented to see if you can use the Parallels to gradate inks of other brands besides the Pilot mixable inks that are made for these pens, but we are told from experienced users that you can.

What’s your impression/experience with the Pilot Parallels?

Write On,
Rachel Goulet