2017 Resolutions

My 2017 Stationery Resolutions Reviewed

At the beginning of this year I decided to make some stationery related resolutions. I am never normally a fan of new years resolutions because I always break them, and I don’t think a new year is the only time to make resolutions. But I did assume stationery resolutions would be easier to keep. So in today’s post, the final day of 2017, I will look at how I fared under each one.

Resolution 1: Learn Brush Lettering.

This one I think I have done pretty well. The goal here was simply to try brush lettering, find and improve on my style and do it as much as I possibly could. During this venture I have tested out several different tools some of which I reviewed in this post. I think my preferred brush pen at the moment is the Tombow Fudenosuke pens, both the firm and soft tips. These pens are really nice to handle and give some great line variation. I am in no way a master brush letterer but I think I can tick this resolution off as achieved.

Resolution: Achieved.

Practicing brush lettering styles for a New Baby card.

Practicing brush lettering styles for a New Baby card.

Resolution 2: Sketch.

This is an easy fail. I have intermittently drawn throughout the year, I have watched thousands of urban sketchers on YouTube but I have never found a way to be consistent with my own sketching and I am disappointed with not meeting this resolution. I have tested and bought a number of tools to help me to sketch but I’ve been very bad at the doing part. Going into 2018 I really want to make this a habit, sketching daily and borrowing from master urban sketcher Liz Steel sketching an everyday item each and every day. I just have to settle on the right object.

Resolution: Fail.

A sketch from August, which has numerous flaws, the biggest being poor watercolour technique. 

A sketch from August, which has numerous flaws, the biggest being poor watercolour technique. 

Resolution 3: Consume more.

I have made a conscious effort to consume more of the items I have. I have fought the urge to buy the new limited edition items, mainly pocket notebooks, working my way through the stash I have on hand.

The majority of this years used pocket notebooks in a very hand gift box  

The majority of this years used pocket notebooks in a very hand gift box  

Looking at other stationery items I have been rotating pens and using more pencils. For my [first NaNoWriMo challenge][0] this year I wrote everything out by hand to consume some of the notebooks and ink I had.

As always I think I could have done more to consume the stationery I have, but I am an addict and I always end up being lured in by something pretty.

Resolution: Partial achievement.

Resolution 4: Use a bottle of fountain pen ink.

This was almost a joke resolution and does sit within the resolution to consume more. I took the idea from Brad on [The Pen Addict podcast][1]. I have failed miserably at this task during the year but as I have been consuming more in general I have noticed my ink levels in various bottles has gone down. Full bottles are almost half empty. I haven’t changed inks in my fountain pens as regularly but rather refilled and refilled time and time again.

Resolution: Partial achievement.

Ink levels are going down

Ink levels are going down

What does 2018 hold?

Probably much of the same. I want to continue consuming more of the stationery I own. This has been a good 2017 resolution. Most of the stationery I bought because its something I like and therefore it makes sense to use more of it. Maybe this year I’ll actually finish off one of these ink bottles, or maybe that is just one of those resolutions that can never be achieved.

2018 will be the year that I actually start sketching. For this to be achievable I have to make this a daily habit, not a pipe dream that I am scared of attempting. Fear shouldn’t stop me from sketching.

Does anyone else have any resolutions for 2018? Will these be set in stone? Will you be committing to them?

This year I am going simpler, below are my 2018 resolutions written with a Baron Fig School Set Archer pencil in an Ambition edition Field Notes.

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My Modest Ink Collection

   A few of my ink bottles

 

A few of my ink bottles

I am a little stumped at the moment with reviews for the site so todays post is slightly different. One of my aims for this year is to finish a whole bottle of ink. With this in mind I thought I would share my modest collection of bottled ink. This exercise is hopefully interesting to you, but should also shed some light on my ink buying habits.

The complete list:

Ink swabs

Ink swabs

Writing out a list of the bottled ink I own highlights some obvious points. I gravitate to a number of ink brands, predominantly Pilot Iroshizuku ink. Once I’ve tried a manufacturer that I like I tend to go through the ink colours and buy several more. I’ve done this again recently with KWZ.

My choice of colours is very limited. I seem to sway to the blue and blue/green shades. This is a little disappointing, its like the school mentality of blue ink has followed me into adult life. I need more colour!

My Noodlers Black ink is the only anomaly in this list. This ink is waterproof and therefore great to address envelops and for sketching. I have been using this ink a lot in recent months as I try to improve my sketching skills. I doubt this will be the ink I’ll finish this year with an impressive 90ml of it, but I should deplete my stock pretty well.

All of the inks in this list are essentially full bottles. I never make it far before being distracted by a new colour which means I have a lot of ink to hand. If I am to finish a full bottle this year it will likely be the Pilot Iroshizuku Shin-Kai even though this is one of the larger bottles. I really enjoy using this ink and usually have it in one or two fountain pens. It’s a year round ink choice for me.