…do I have an arsenal or just a piddling handful of rusty weapons?
When I was in high school, my dad enlisted me to help a Korean maker of pen and paper products break into the local market. I attended a focus group discussion with a few other young people, and we talked about using gel pens, which were still somewhat new in terms of pen technology at the time.
Maybe that’s where my attitude towards pens with excessively fine points / nibs comes from, because, yeah, tiny handwriting looks pretty great with fine points, but I have never mastered that skill. So I’m not a big fan. I like my ball-point pens to lay down thick lines, thanks.
After they were successfully introduced into the Philippine market, colorful gel-ink pens became very popular at schools, for art projects, and even in offices where they could be used to organize notes and lists and similar things.
(Not even my mom is immune to the lure of colorful gel pens.)
As for the fountain pen thing…I guess I’ll just wind up blaming a combination of Wikipedia and my friends? All I know is, I wound up asking for a calligraphy pen for Christmas one year, and then after that, I felt like I’d started falling down that endless rabbit hole.
You can see my pens in the photo above. When I noticed that I had two or three fountain pens to carry around I decided to buy something more proper to place them in. The flat case I have is for paintbrushes and art supplies, but — hey, my pens fit in the slots, and it didn’t cost much, so win-win.
I favor medium to broad nibs in my fountain pens, which are on the left side in the photo. Like I said, I like pens that lay thicker lines. Even the gel pens on the right side in the photo have fairly thick points. I like their sparkly inks.
The leftmost pen in the photo is a Japanese fountain pen. Apparently people in Japan favor pens with very fine points or nibs, and that’s partly because of the paper that they write on, but primarily because of their various alphabets. I bought that one on a lark, and actually like the color of the ink. I might convert it into an eyedropper pen in the future.
One thing I’ve noticed is that I probably have very weird penmanship. I’m left-handed, but I have never used fountain pen nibs that are specially made for left-handers. But my pens write well in my hands, except for the occasional skip and scratch. I do have to deal with the traditional ink-stains on the side of my hand, though.
(Maybe I should try to write something down, and then take a picture of it and post it here, and then you’ll see what my handwriting looks like. That’s an idea for the future. I’ll put a pin in it.)
Yes, I’m planning to buy a fountain pen when I go to Singapore. I can’t pass up on the chance.
Why are fountain pens sorta pricey in my part of the world, I gotta ask….