Birmingham has a new lineup of amazing inks, the Crisp Formula Inks.
I know, I usual write about inks as an artist, but these inks are made to be
compatible with inexpensive everyday papers, without bleed and feathering, which is excellent news for anyone who uses their pens in an office setting with lots of cheap paper.
I’ve put two of them through their paces on everyday papers around the studio this week, above, and am amazed at how well they write on Post-its and cheap yellow legal pads.
The Blackberry Jam was placed in a wet fude pen and there was NO bleed on any paper.
The Black Olive is in a fairly wet writer and it ghosted heavily on post-its
but not on other papers, and no feathering in either.
The inks dry quickly and flowed nicely in the Pilot Metropolitans and Jinhaos I filled.
In my Hahnemühle Nostalgie journal they also flowed nicely on watercolor paper.
When scrubbed with water after drying, there is some water resistance in many colors.
No sheen that I could produce, but several produce nice shading.
Below, the colors I tested on both smooth sketch paper (left) and on watercolor paper (right)… any slight color distortion is in the lighting. In general, the colors shown brilliant in the smoother Hahnemühle journal than on the watercolor paper, which is more absorbent.
Note the last testing, the Black Olive, which puddled on the paper on the right, above? Even there, the ink did nto bleed through the watercolor paper, which most other Birmingham (and many other) inks would do. These inks are very well-behaved!
Remember that others review these inks just for writing;
I am also usually interested in how they are used for ink-painting!
MOST water soluble ink companies do not pay attention to lightfast qualities
and Birmingham is no different in this line of inks.
Most artists who use ink are making prints of their work —
But ink-painting is becoming more interesting so maybe it is time!
I like what Birmingham says on their website
about their company:
“We started Birmingham Pen Co. in 2012 in the Southside of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The region of Pittsburgh where we began once called “Little Birmingham” due to the area’s prolific manufacturing industry in the early 1900’s. The Birmingham moniker was derived from Birmingham, UK – a manufacturing hub that specialized in, among other things, pen and nib manufacturing with thousands of craftspeople employed in the industry. We chose the name Birmingham Pen Company to share this little known piece of history and
continue in the traditions behind the name.”
Birmingham’s bottles are glass, and functional
even in the small sizes. I like glass bottles;
they feel like they will last longer.
Birmingham also turns their own pens,
which I’ve noticed often sell out as fast as they make them!
*I LOVE my Model-A Demonstrator, Violet Beauregarde!*
This is a small family business run by four people! The brothers, Nick and Josh;
Dad is the chief pen machinist; and Mom does one of the coolest things about Birmingham, which is their amazing historic names!
Disclosure, I was gifted with these sample inks from Birmingham.
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