Hey there, fountain pen friends! Madigan here, bringing you my latest (and dare I say greatest?) Monday Matchup! This week I paired a Delta Journal Matte Blue with Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts ink to create this happy piece. I’m really pleased with the results, despite struggling with certain aspects of the combo. Read on to discover more!

I’ve had my eye on this pen since it came out. Since so many fountain pens run toward the glossy, the matte finish on this pen was intriguing. The gorgeous blue marbling doesn’t hurt either! Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts is one of our more popular inks because of its almost blue/black hue and permanent qualities. I had only used it a time or two, and thought it’d be interesting to try in a piece of art.

The inspiration for this piece came from a poem by Naomi Shihab Nye called So Much Happiness. I really enjoy this time of year, the days getting shorter, the trees bursting with color, cool mornings, warm tea, and fuzzy socks… you name it, I like it! I take a lot of walks with my dogs and my husband this time of year, and it’s easy to be happy. I felt like a pair of holding hands really demonstrated the feelings expressed in the poem

To start this work, I took a Rhodia pad and sketched out the hands with a pencil. It was tricky to get the finger placement right and make it look real and not awkward. Once I had it right, I practiced writing the words so that they fit in the V the hands made. This took a couple of times- erasing and rewriting to get the spacing correct. Once that was done, I took a sheet of Tomoé River Paper in White and a brush pen. I placed the Tomoé River Paper over the sketch I’d done and dipping the brush pen into the cap of the ink, I started layering in ink. However, since 54th Massachusetts is water resistant, it was tricky to get the right colors. I adjusted the water to ink ratio to help with how saturated the color was, but it definitely didn’t have as much give as other regular inks. Once I had layered in the color, I went over the lines with the the pen so that there were clean lines.  Finally, I traced the quote on the Tomoé paper. Voilà!

While I really liked this pen, the combination left a lot to be desired. I found 54th Massachusetts to be super dry and it didn’t have consistent flow when paired with this nib. If I were to do this again, I’d probably either go with a larger nib or with a different ink. I much prefer wet inks to dry ones.

I can see this pen and ink being fantastic in a professional setting. It’s lively enough to give you a little personality, but not so outrageous as to be distracting. It would be great for journaling, letter writing, you name it!

You can find the Delta Journal Matte Blue at GouletPens.com for $120. Noodler’s 54th Massachusetts is offered in a 3oz bottle for $12.50 or a 2ml ink sample for $1.25.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway

The contest is open Monday, November 11, 2016 at 12pm EST until Tuesday, November 15, 2016 at 12pm EST. One
winner will be randomly selected and announced tomorrow once the contest
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Write on,