Air and ink.

We used to do it in art class: plop a blob of watercolor on oslo paper, lean forward, and blow. The watercolor traveled on paper with every energetic exhalation, looking like rivulets or branches or skeletal fingers.

Yesterday I had a lens blower on my table. I also had a notebook and a pen. And then the question in my head formed, the one that always gets me into trouble. “Why not?”

“The cessation of earthly sounds.” J. Herbin 1670 ink in a Mottishawed Omas Milord Arco. I twisted the piston knob just a little bit to let a drop fall from the nib.

J. Herbin 1670

From a single blob, I went to four. The lens blower and I went in all directions. Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses, Noodler’s Dragon’s Napalm, J. Herbin 1670, PR Chocolat.

More ink

I thought, let’s put a couple of words back in there. I wrote with a glass pen, rinsing in between ink colors with water. Noodler’s Dragon’s Napalm and Black Swan in Australian Roses.

Collision of clouds

I tried using the lens blower on ink that had almost completely dried. Extra-fine spraylets happened. (This image, like the others, is clickable to bring up more detail.) The ink is J. Herbin 1670 in a Wahl 5, and it looks like that because I forgot to shake the bottle and the pen sucked up all the gold bits at the bottom.

Who's going to pay for this mess?

Ink bottles were all over my desk by this time. J. Herbin Vert Empire, Noodler’s Golden Brown, Caran d’Ache Caribbean Sea, glass pen.

Silence followed her all the way to the sea

Noodler’s Golden Brown and Caran d’Ache Caribbean Sea work very well together, and combine into a beautiful green.

Upset upset upset

Not content with writing, I moved on to doodling. “Woman in robe” is Caran d’Ache Caribbean Sea, Noodler’s Golden Brown and PR Shoreline Gold.

Woman in robe

Here’s a closer look at the ink sprays near her eye.

A detail of her face

Another lady appeared, wearing Pilot Iroshizuku tsukushi, shin-ryoku and PR Shoreline Gold.

Woman walking away

She decided to come in and sit down. PR Shoreline Gold, Noodler’s Antietam, J. Herbin Vert Empire.


Just before I packed away the ink bottles and the lens blower, she arrived. I said, you’re the last visitor for today. She said, that’s fine, I was leaving anyway. Noodler’s Antietam, PR Shoreline Gold.

Red on the right