I’M NOT FINDING pen and Indian ink a responsive medium as I draw these Kingcups by the pond. If I don’t press heavily enough on the paper I don’t get a mark but if I press too hard on the springy nib the pressure builds up for a moment and then – whizz! – the nib sets off and draws a straighter line than I’d intended!

Surely, if I keep at it, I can exercise some relaxed control over the recalcitrant medium. The ink soon goes claggy and even during this short session of drawing I have to pause to clean the coagulating Winsor & Newton black ink from the nib.

Is it the beautifully sunny but not sultry weather that’s drying the ink too quickly or is it the shrill excited scream every five seconds of next door’s children playing happily on a trampoline a few yards away that’s putting me off my stroke?

I think that I’ve been spoilt by the predictably flowing combination of ArtPen and Noodler’s ink. It’s second nature to draw with that combination, but I would like to experiment with different mediums, which create different marks.

Anyway, time to admit defeat, perhaps I’ll add some colour later when it’s a bit quieter!

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  1. I’d say the squeals would interfere a little with my concentration, but in real life I guess we can’t always have silence while we do our art. 🙂 (I LOVE silence; it’s just hard to come by!) I love what you’ve done here, but I know we are usually our own worst critic. I use plain old Pigma Micron or Pilot Precise V7 pens that I purchase in the office supply department of Wal-Mart! I’m kind of glad that pen and ink is going in the direction of less expensive, easier to use pens. The nib pens have always been a bit of a mystery to me and look difficult to use. They probably add an element of challenge to your drawing experience?

    1. I remember that drawing in the tropical house at the London Zoo was almost impossible for me because they had a South American Bellbird – that was much worse than trampolening children!

      The Pigma Micron sounds vaguely familiar but I’ve never come across the Pilot Precise V7, so I’ll look out for that. I look at the wonderful drawings that Van Gogh could produce with nothing more than a cornstalk and a bottle of ink and feel that I should be more adventurous. On the other hand it’s good not to worry about the medium at all and just get immersed in the process of drawing from nature.

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