Are you thinking of giving drawing a try with a fountain pen? Perhaps you are already an artist who is curious about using a fountain pen for your work.
Or maybe you are simply looking for a new and different way to draw. Whatever the case may be, you are probably wondering if are fountain pens good for drawing.
Drawing with a fountain pen has always been a popular option among artists (and the rest of us alike)! Fountain pens are fantastic for sketching, small details, and even watercolors. You’ll have to learn a few certain techniques to make it work, but fountain pens are certainly fun to draw with.
Fountain pens offer a great way to practice drawing since they have a smaller footprint and leave less of an impression on paper than standard ballpoints or felt tips. This makes them ideal for situations where something more permanent might otherwise be left behind.
But are these pens good for drawing? In this article, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of using your fountain pen and some recommendations for which pens are the best for that purpose.
Fountain Pens For Drawing: A Brief Introduction
If you’re not familiar with fountain pens, they are a type of pen that uses a refillable reservoir to supply ink to the nib. The ink is fed to the nib through a small hole in the pen’s barrel.
Fountain pens have been around for centuries and were once the go-to type of pen for everyone from kings and queens to everyday people. Today, they are often seen as a more sophisticated alternative to the standard ballpoint or felt tip pen.
(and more fun, more expensive hobby for sure)
Are Fountain Pens Good For Drawing?
YES, fountain pens work really well for drawing and sketching!
Drawing with a fountain pen has many advantages over the other methods, including the fact that it produces thicker lines and leaves less of an impression on paper, as well as the fact that you can basically use fountain pen ink for watercolors.
You can use a simple brush for that, or pick up a water brush.
Drawing with a fountain pen can also be more fluid than pencil or ink-based drawing methods. The type of ink that is used in fountain pens is also thicker than the ink used in ballpoint pens, but thinner than that used in fountain pens. This makes it great for use with watercolor or other mediums that require thick, yet watery ink. Other drawing pens also come with different types of ink cartridges that can be changed depending on the desired effect.
FYI–fountain pens are absolutely great for general, everyday use.
Benefits Of Drawing With A Fountain Pen
Thick Lines (or at least better control over ink flow)
This is one of the reasons why people use fountain pens for drawing. Bold nibs produce thick, bold lines that are excellent for artistic purposes and can be used with watercolor and other paint mediums.
Or, you can go with a fine (or extrafine “EF”) nib to do more intricate drawings.
And you can even purchase these nibs separately and interchange them with the same pen!
More Fluid And Natural Lines
Another reason for using a fountain pen for drawing is the fact that the ink is less likely to smudge or bleed than other types of pens. This means that you can produce more fluid and natural lines with your drawings. The ink in fountain pens is also less likely to dry out than in other types of pens, so you can be sure that your drawings will always look fresh and new.
Ability To Change Ink Colors
There are a TON of bottled inks (and cartridges) available in a wide variety of colors and sheens.
As we mentioned earlier, fountain pens come with different types of ink cartridges that can be changed depending on the desired effect. This means that you can easily change the color of your ink without having to purchase a new pen.
Better For Small Details
Fountain pens are also excellent for drawing small details and are often used by artists who work in mixed media. The small tip of the pen allows you to draw very fine lines that would be difficult to achieve with other types of pens.
Convenient And Easy To Use
Fountain pens are also very convenient and easy to use. They are refillable, so you don’t have to keep buying new pens, and they are also very portable. You can easily take your fountain pen with you wherever you go, making it the perfect tool for on-the-go drawing.
Disadvantages Of Drawing With A Fountain Pen
Smudging And Bleeding
Although fountain pens are less likely to smudge and bleed than other types of pens, they are not completely immune to these problems. If you are using a water-based medium, such as watercolor, the ink can still smudge and bleed.
Be sure to always use thick enough paper! Anything above 80gsm will be fine for fountain pens, though 100-120gsm will be even better.
Ink Runs Out Quickly
Another downside of fountain pens is that the ink can run out quickly. This is because the pens are constantly being used to draw and the ink is being absorbed into the paper. If you are using a lot of ink, you may find that you need to refill your pen more often than you would like.
The good news is that ink is actually pretty cheap. $8 for a premium bottled ink will actually go a long way.
They Can Be Expensive
Fountain pens can also be quite expensive, especially if you are looking for a high-quality pen. This is because the pens are made with special materials and often come with a gold or silver nib.
Here are some start pens that don’t cost quite as much:
- Lamy Safari (available in tons of colors)
- TWSBI Eco (the next step up, the Diamond 580, is great too)
- Kaweco Sport (also available in tons of colors and materials!)
Things To Consider Before Buying A Fountain Pen
Now that you know some of the pros and cons of using a fountain pen for drawing, you may be wondering if one is right for you. Here are a few things to consider before making your purchase:
Fountain pens can be quite expensive, so it is important to consider your budget before making a purchase. If you are just starting out, you may want to look for a cheaper pen that will still allow you to produce good-quality drawings.
The Type Of Ink You Want to Use
As we mentioned earlier, fountain pens come with different types of ink cartridges that can be changed depending on the desired effect. If you are planning on using a water-based medium, such as watercolor, make sure to choose a pen that uses an ink cartridge that is compatible with this type of medium.
Type Of Pen You Need
There are many different types of fountain pens on the market, so it is important to choose the one that is right for you. If you are looking for a pen that is easy to use and refill, a cartridge-based pen may be a good option. If you are looking for a more traditional pen, a piston-filler pen may be a better choice.
You might also consider a “dip pen,” which doesn’t actually hold the ink inside the pen. This allows you to change colors easily!
Nib Of The Fountain Pen
The nib is the part of the pen that comes in contact with the paper. Fountain pens come with different types of nibs, such as fine, medium, and broad. The type of nib you choose will depend on your personal preference and the type of drawings you plan on creating.
Final Thoughts on Drawing with Fountain Pens
If you are a serious artist or just enjoy drawing as a hobby, investing in a fountain pen may be a good idea. Fountain pens are less likely to smudge and bleed, are easy to use and refill, and can provide you with many different options when it comes to ink colors. However, before making your purchase, be sure to consider your budget and the type of pen you need.