I hope you enjoyed yesterday’s triple release. It was a long time coming and I really wanted to reward your amazing patience and understanding. I wanted to quickly let you guys know that I have started a second blog. This one will be focused on photography and I will be using it to showcase my photography as well as any experimental shots. There will not be any stationary/pen photography on it as this is my designated spot for all that. However, if you’re interested in my both my life and photography, then please check it out as I will be really trying different styles and going out of my comfort zone. I hope to capture some amazing shots and show them to you all. Don’t worry, this blog will not affect my review posting schedule at all and will only be updated occasionally as I don’t plan to institute a set schedule. The photos I post will only be ones I feel best reflect my personal style. Come on over, drop a like or comment to let me know if you liked it. Here’s the link.
Anchit, The Passionate Penman
After running through my Sweet Tooth and Unexposed Editions, I was searching for another Field Notes edition, except this one was for a specific purpose. Recently, I’ve really delved into the world of photography and wanted a pocket notebook for quick descriptions of some of my favorite shots on campus. On some select weekends, when I had the luxury of free time and weather permitting conditions, I’ve ventured outside to take some pictures around my campus.
Spanning nearly 1,933 acres, the campus of Indiana University at Bloomington is expansive and full of places to get some amazing shots. So far, I’ve stuck to the various buildings I usually walk by on the weekdays and seek to view them from a different perspective. On many occasions, I was walking to class or back home and I suddenly stopped after seeing a scene that would make a well composed photo. So to keep it in my head, I whip out my trusty Field Notes notebook and quickly jot down my location and what exactly I was looking at. If I didn’t have this, I would’ve actually forgotten some really nice locations by the my weekend morning photo walk.
The cover of this edition looks stunning and glints in the sunlight. The embossing of the Field Notes Logo on the front page looks like it has been machined onto sheet metal rather than just shiny paper stock. I found on one of my photo walks that the cover could also be used as a light reflector that helped illuminate some of my darker macro shots.
The paper they used for this edition is the Finch Fine Smooth 70# paper with gray line rulings and orange on top (Field Notes website). The thing that really excited me into getting this specific edition is the fact that this is Field Note’s very first non-staple-bound notebook. These notebooks are actually PUR-bound and Field Notes made an awesome video showcasing the process. The paper withstood almost everything I threw at it other than the Iroshizuku Shin-Kai that spread out a bit on the paper. Maybe if I had a finer nib, then it would be alright, but as far as the Lamy 2000 medium nib, it is a bit too juicy for the Field Notes to handle. I don’t need to harp on about how good Field Notes notebooks are as well as the convenience they afford. They have already established themselves and their brand in the market and my only input would be to get this edition to not only get a cool notebook, but also see Field Notes innovation first hand with the binding.
Thanks for reading and being so patient with my slightly erratic posting schedule. I expect my workload to drop down back to normal once my first exam week passes. Then I’ll be able to get back to a regular once every 2 weeks review schedule. I’ll see you all near the end of February. Until then, write on, my friends.
I remember a while back when I published the first oblique holder review on my blog and featured a Huy Hoang Dao holder that I had bought nearly a year back. Since then, I had a bit of an accident. While trying to adjust my flange, the glue gave in and the flange popped right out of the holder. Worried about the integrity of the wood, I promptly emailed Hoang about it and inquired what I could possibly do to revive it. As my first holder, it holds a lot of sentimental value that I just couldn’t get myself to let go of. Hoang got back to me and recommended me to get it fixed by Chris Yoke, given that I was based in Indiana now.
In a completely surprising twist of events, he told me that since I had last ordered, his pen making skills had gone through considerable improvement and that I deserve a better pen, so he would send me one for free. He really didn’t need to and it wasn’t necessary, but Hoang took matters into his own hands and decided to send me a new one for free(!). It was amazing to see how sincere he is towards his customers and his passion towards his craft. I was absolutely inspired by him to really pursue my practice with more gusto than I thought I was capable of. So for the last couple months practicing exclusively with the one he sent.
The very first thing I noticed were the beautiful contours of the holder. While the shape was very similar to my previous one, the thin profile really made it seem much more delicate and refined. If put right next to each other, one can see a quantum leap in the lines of the wood and how thorough Hoang was with the respective processes that made this pen look and feel absolutely stunning in my hand. All around another stunning holder by Hoang and something that I will be using for a long time. Hoang is putting some amazing holders up for sale and I would advise anyone in the market for a tastefully designed, well-made oblique holder at a price that won’t make your wallet cry, check out his online store.
Disclaimer: I have not been compensated in any way for my review and have written my impartial observations and thoughts for your reading pleasure.
I’m so sorry with the late posts guys. With my first exams coming up for multiple classes, the veritable deluge of work I was assigned had me burning the midnight oil for many days on end. It was very difficult for me to dedicate time to write reviews and I could only write them in pieces with the limited amount of free time I had. So for today, I decided to finish all 3 reviews that I owed. 2 for January and 1 so far. Here’s review 1/3, enjoy. The next review is on its way.
This is an ink that I’ve been using for nearly 2 years now. I initially picked it up at the 2015 LA Pen Show and barely used it. Due to it being one of the more expensive fountain pen inks I occasionally treated myself to, I didn’t want to use it up too quickly. My reticence to its use contributed to the unjust wait it had to go through at the bottom of my ink drawer. Before I transferred, I decided that I would take an entire day to just clear out my desk and drawers to sift through everything and decide whether it had to be taken with me. I found the bottle covered in dust and took it out, wondering what ink this was. The moment I saw the glint of gold lettering, I knew it had to be something good. Needless to say, I wasn’t wrong. A full bottle of Sailor Kiwa Guro Black just waiting for me to use it. I immediately packed it in my suitcase with my other inks and left.
Fast forward 4 months and it has become a mainstay of my ink collection. Blacker than the black and extremely well-behaved, I ended up using it in almost all of my pens that I brought to Indiana. Whether it be my Pilot Custom 823 to my new Lamy 2000, it performed virtually the same without any hiccups. In fact, I wrote a good 80% of all my notes for my classes with this ink. It’s just that good.
I figured out shortly that shading isn’t exactly its strong suit, but the amazing smoothness accompanied by the quick dry time helped settle this as my current go-to black ink. If I honestly had to recommend someone a quality black ink at this point in time, I would unhesitatingly tell them to go with Sailor Kiwa Guro. Although the price is a bit more on the premium side, even more expensive than the Iroshizuku line, it provides the most consistent and utilitarian purpose as a simple black ink. Throw in a decent bit of water resistance and the price seems just about right. I encourage anyone to acquire a sample of this through your favorite retailer and give it a go in a daily use pen, I can assure you that you will be adding a bottle of it to your shopping cart sooner or later. Thank you all for reading this review. Another one is coming right up.