Albatrii Attack!

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Well the “Konrad” fountain pen arrived from the folks at The Goulet Pen Company, carefully packed and full of many “down home” touches, like a personal note in one of their other ink colors on the reciept and an unexpected tootsie pop attached inside the box ( I ate it right away).  After carefully watching the video on filling the pen, had a bit of a road trip and brought the sketch pad and pen along to try it out.  Calligraphy is not my thing but I have three distinct memories about ink pens.  The first was the old fountain pen set in the marble base on my dad’s desk ( not to be messed with), the second was a set of calligraphy pens made specifically for left handed people (me) that barely made it out of the package (good idea but my penmanship sucks!).  The third was what any tired old architect remembers which was my set of rapidograph pens used for drafting on mylar.  Much clogging, much cleaning, etc etc.

From the first stroke the flex tip foutain pen has been a joy.  We have gotten so used to the compromise that comes with the convenience of felt tip pens that are inconsistent or tips that get crushed that I was amazed at how light a touch produced a clean crisp line with the fountain pen.  Being able to lean a bit more on the tip and get a thicker line is the same functionality on my blue tooth ipad stylus so it was interesting to see the same result in an actual fountain pen.  After messing around on the road trip this morning I was ready to give it a try on an appropriately themed sketch for this blog.

I did a pencil sketch first of an Albatros DIII, just light line to get the proportions right. Then I inked over it to get the overall lines, trying to keep it loose and not look like a trace job.  I erased the pencil and started adding detail. Again the goal here is not to do an absolute photographic ink drawing, but to get the feel of a field sketch, something you could do in an hour or so.  Here is the result.

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I was really pleased with the feel of it, still cartoony but reasonably accurate.  Of course once you’ve drawn it once, a shame to not play with it a bit, so I scanned the image, and started looking for a stormy sky.  I wanted a more surreal feel so I filtered a good image I found online to make it more abstract.  I clipped the sketch and turned it into flight of three Alabatrii.  I made each smaller image slightly transparent to give a feeling of depth.  Also added a shadow around the clipped image that makes no sense other than to give it a more collage feel.  I really liked the result, not to far off from what you might see in a graphic novel.

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In the end I grabbed the image as my desk top, and with two monitors it looks like a full on attack!!!  Too much fun, more experimenting to come in the future.

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Thanks again to The Goulet Pen Company folks for luring me into the world of fountain pens!

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