"We will develop and cultivate the liberation of mind by lovingkindness -- make it our vehicle, make it our basis, stabilize it, exercise ourselves in it, and fully perfect it." The Buddha

Thursday, February 20, 2020

My Favorite Fountain Pen

My Namiki Emperor Chinkin Tiger fountain pen on blank pages, ready for ink

Although I write professionally with a keyboard on the computer, I love to write with a fountain pen whenever I can.

I have been collecting fountain pens since 1996. Initially I collected all sorts of fountain pens, but my collection has been refined to practically one daily workhorse: my Namiki Emperor Chinkin Tiger. Namiki is the manufacturer. Emperor is the model. Chinkin is the art style. Tiger is the design.

You can learn more about the incredible chinkin artistic process used on my fountain pen here:


Fountain pen manufacturers come out with new models all the time but I have yet come across a pen I like more than my Namiki Emperor fountain pen, regardless of price range. I have been writing with this pen for over 10 years. That is why I think it's safe to say it is my favorite fountain pen, and probably always will be.

The ink I use is the Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-ryoku. Pilot is the manufacturer. Iroshizuku is the line of ink. Shin-ryoku is the color (forest green). I use this dark green ink to make my words stand out, but in a subtle way. The Pilot ink works seamlessly with my Namiki pen because they are both made by the same company, the Pilot Corporation.

Written with Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-ryoku ink and with much love

If I need to use black ink -- which is rare -- I use Aurora Black, which is among the deepest black inks you'll find. Aurora is the manufacturer.

Some people think fountain pens are outdated. In fact, fountain pens are the latest technology for what they aim to do: non-stop writing. A ballpoint pen or pencil will give you sore hands if you write too long. A roller ball pen cannot be reused and thus is wasteful. Only a fountain pen can glide through a piece of paper effortlessly. When I run out of ink, I simply refill the barrel instead of throwing the entire pen away.

My second favorite fountain pen is the Waterman Serenite Tiger. It's curved like a samurai sword. The design is so different and innovative. Below is a photo of my Serenite pen with some natural tarnish from lack of use because I mainly use my Emperor pen:

My Waterman Serenite fountain pen on a Go board to highlight its curve

Of course I can use any fountain pen that works but I want to write with something that I personally can appreciate. I take pride in my writing. My Namiki Emperor Chinkin Tiger is essentially a functional work of art. It is a beautiful writing tool that inspires me to express what's in my heart. ๐Ÿ’›

Tiger, tiger burning bright. My top two favorite fountain pens together.

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"Irrigators channel waters; fletchers straighten arrows; carpenters shape wood; the wise master themselves." The Buddha