I knew I wanted to do this combo from the moment that I heard Nathan was making new Neponsets with a Civil War theme. I thought it would be so cool to use the pen named for the battle to depict a map of the battleground. Shiloh was the pen I liked the most, color wise, so I went with that one. I chose Golden Brown for my ink because it has such great shading and color that I knew I could get an old timey look to make the map look aged, while still being able to get a dark color to make the line work of the map stand out.
Before I started drawing, I took some time to research. I wanted to understand all the details of the battle so I didn’t get anything wrong. Then, I found a map of the battle small enough for me to recreate and printed it to use as a template. I knew I wanted to create an old looking map so I started with a light golden brown base and added texture over it. I took my paintbrush and dipped it in the cap of the ink, then into water to dilute the color. I brushed the ink on a few different pieces of paper so I had options to chose from when they dried. I wanted to add some more texture so when the first ink had dried, I dabbed a little more ink on my brush and swept it overtop of the first ink wash to create a rustic, old look. Ink always ends up drying differently than you expect so it was good to have multiple options to choose from.
After they dried, I picked my favorite and started on the map. I sketched the borders to make sure my scale matched up, and then added the rivers. To distinguish these landmarks, I grabbed my brush pen filled with water and blurred the lines a bit to make them hazy. Then I added the roads as little dots and the railroads as line with X’s over top to distinguish them. I added the names of the railroads in plain print and the names of the rivers in cursive to identify and distinguish them. I used thicker, more pronounced lines to mark state lines as well. Once I finished the map, I added a nice border to frame the map. Underneath I wrote “the history behind the pen,” which was my inspiration for the whole project. I think the variation between the lines and words gave the piece a fun look and referenced the antique feel I was going for.
While the pen itself was a bit heavy for my small hands, I am absolutely in love with this nib. It is amazing and was the perfect nib to show off this ink. The flex allowed the pen to get the deep, dark hues of the ink because it laid down a lot of ink with little pressure and showed the lighter hues when I applied just a little pressure. It showcased all the shading and variation you can get out of this ink and that is exactly why I chose this combo.
I love wet writers and this music nib may have been the wettest writer I’ve ever used. From the thinnest of thins to the thickest of thicks, this nib allowed me to get everything I was looking for without having to go back in and color in the lines. It is very wet and takes a very long time to dry. This pen is a gusher even when not going for line variation. I think it would be best for artists who like to use pens as instruments for art. The pen is made for thick, gushing ink and thin detail work. It’s the best of both words.
If I had to change anything about this work, I would only say that I should probably try and make sure the ink was completely dry before placing my hand over top of the piece. I made so many smudges and drawing errors because the ink took a long time to dry. I loved the pen and ink combo so I wouldn’t change that. I might have tried to get a little more variation in my writing. I tend to have a heavier hand so some of the writing came out thicker than I had intended. Overall, I am very happy with how this piece turned out though and I’m so glad I got to work with this pen and ink.
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How to enter Monday Matchup Giveaway:
- Match a pen and ink together. They don’t have to match in color, any fountain pen and ink works.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway
The contest is open Monday, October 3, 2016 at 12pm EDT until Tuesday, October 4, 2016 at 12pm EDT. One
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