Tuesday, March 31, 2009

One of those days…


Ever have one of those days?

I wrote in a previous post about how I tried crow quill pens for drawing and absolutely loved them. Earlier this week I went back to my local Art store and bought another couple of nibs. They're absolutely awesome, but they tend to wear out fairly easily. I also read that about one in ten nibs are broken before they ever leave the factory.

So, after Sunny left for work, despite the fact that the nib I had in my pen still had plenty of life in it, I decided to replace it with one of my new ones…I told myself I just wanted to 'try out' the new ones.

I destroyed the perfectly good nib trying to get it out of the holder. Dried ink was acting like glue, holding it in the handle…and I crushed the very fragile nib trying to remove it. No problem, I thought, I have two brand spanking new ones.

So I draw something, and I really, really like it. This is extremely rare. Then a few very bad things happen.

Stupidly, I ink directly onto my original pencils. Even more stupidly, I go straight to inking without testing out the new nib.


The nib just shits the ink onto the page, leaving behind a massive inkblot. When I finally stop cursing and take a close look at the nib, I see the split is off center…apparently I have one of the 'one in ten' defective nibs. I swap it out for the other one.

About a half hour later and the new nib starts misbehaving. So I take it to the sink and to clean it off…then, using my thumb to scrub off a particularly stubborn bit of ink, the nib pings out of the holder, falls into the sink and drops down the plug hole.

I curse again.

In less than an hour I manage to destroy a perfectly good nib to replace it with a broken one, and then drop my one remaining working nib down the plughole.

'Luckily' I have other nibs. They're not the #102 crow quills that I really like, and most of them are just plain useless for drawing, but I have some #107's that, while being far stiffer than the #102's, I can still use.

At this point I'm working on my background and I grab my ruler because I need a long, straight line…

I have this trick. If you put your ruler up on a couple of pennies, you can draw a line with a crow quill pen and the ruler won't drag the ink across the page when you try to remove it.

Guess what I forgot to do!

I draw my line, move the ruler and drag ink all over my drawing, effectively ruining it. Did I mention that this was the first time
ever that I decided to draw directly onto (expensive) Bristol board instead of in my sketchbook or printer paper?

So I wrecked a nib, half ruined a drawing with a defective one, lost the one good one I had left, wrecked a drawing I'd spent four hours on and wasted a perfectly good sheet of Bristol.