A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

**WINNER: Congrats to Josh B. (Entered on Facebook). Check back next week for another awesome Monday Matchup Giveaway**

Hello, fountain pen fans, Adam here again. This week, I got to work with the TWSBI 580ALR and Robert Oster Smokescreen for my Monday Matchup. Read on to hear what I thought of this pen and ink!

I went through a lot of ideas before I finally arrived at drawing a dragon. Ever since I can remember, I have been a huge fan of high fantasy, science fiction, and role-playing games. I grew up on the Final Fantasy series of games, I’ve been playing the Elder Scrolls games since Daggerfall came out in the 90’s, and I absolutely love attending Renaissance Festivals! If I could draw anything, anything at all, and be able to do it perfectly it would be dragons.

I found an image online that I really liked and used that for inspiration. More appropriately, I looked at it and basically copied what I saw. I’m not a skilled enough of an artist to draw free-hand but having the image for inspiration gives me an idea to go from. Once I had the outline, I went in to fill in my shape. I really enjoy the look of cross-hatch work for creating light and dark spots in my work, so I experimented with that quite a bit in this drawing. For the smoke, I actually just put ink on my thumb and smeared it onto the page. Once the dragon was complete, I wrote in a collection of quotes about dragons to fill in the blank spaces.

I have to be honest, I did not care for the TWSBI 580 ALR. The pen writes and fills perfectly but it is not the pen for me. My primary turn off was the texture on the grip section. The feel of aluminum is not appealing to me, and the textured element just added to my displeasure with the tactile experience. If you’re someone who also is sensitive to textures, you might not like this pen. I also didn’t care for the filling mechanism. It works like a dream, don’t get me wrong. It’s a much better experience than using a syringe set to fill your converter. I am someone who fidgets with my pens. I like to twist my cap around. When just holding this pen, I would accidentally turn that mechanism and it would cause ink to spill into the cap. Also, when ink would burp out of the pen, it would get on the aluminum grip section. I did everything I could, within reason, to get the ink off the grip and I could not eliminate it all. I’m sorry about that for whoever receives the pen. The writing experience itself, the nib, was great. No complaints there, it was a very smooth writer.

Robert Oster Smokescreen was an interesting color. I normally don’t go for black inks at all. I just find it boring. What was fun about this black was that it went on with a bit of a purple tinge to it and got darker as it dried. I did enjoy that, and it made it easy for me to track my work as I was doing my shading. As far as black inks, I would recommend it. Seeing as it’s a black ink, I would use it for basically anything. I don’t see a situation where this combo wouldn’t work. As I said, if you’re someone who fidgets with your pen, you might have some issues with the filling mechanism.

If I were to do this piece again, I would have done more honestly. I’ve got two kids now, so drawing time only happens after bedtime. I was really pleased with what I did, and would have carried it much further had I had the time. I would have gone with a different pen as well. As soon as I touched the grip I knew it wasn’t going to be for me. I will say though that I very much enjoy and trust the TWSBI brand and would recommend them.

A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

A drawing of a dragon featuring dragon quotes made with a TWSBI 580AL-R fountain pen and Robert Oster Smokescreen ink.

You can find the TWSBI 580ALR at GouletPens.com for $60 ($65 for the 1.1mm Stub option). Robert Oster Smokescreen is available in a 50ml bottle for $17 or a 2ml sample for $1.50.

You could win this pen and ink! In an effort to make entering Monday Matchup a little easier, we’ve done away with the Rafflecopter widget and will be randomly selecting a winner from a randomly chosen platform each week. The entries methods will still be the same: Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and a blog comment, but you’ll no longer have to complete your entry through Rafflecopter.

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.
  • You can choose to enter only one way or submit up to 4 different entries if you’d like. Feel free to use the same picture for all 4 entries.
  • Here’s how to enter:

The contest is open Monday, August 20, 2018, at 12 pm EDT until Tuesday, August 21, 2018, at 12 pm EDT. One winner will be randomly selected and announced tomorrow once the contest closes. The winner must live in a country that Goulet Pens currently ships to. Click here to see the Official Contest Rules.

Write On,
Adam