Ask the Desk: Sheening Black Ink

My good friend Father Kyle recently asked if I could recommend a good sheening black ink.

The only black ink (and I don’t use a ton of black ink so my knowledge here is relatively limited) I could think of was Kyo-No-Oto No. 1 Nurebairo ($28). It has more shine than sheen on most of the papers that I’ve tested it on but Lisa Vanness backed me up on my claim that it was the most likely sheening black.

I dug around on FPN for more recommendations and found a few threads dating back years that suggested that there were other possibilities as well like Private Reserve Velvet Black, Pilot Black, and Kaweco Pearl Black (which I used as an example as a flat black below so I heartily disagree there!).

From the swatch, its clear there is some blue in the Kyo-No-Oto black which probably helps to give the ink some depth and richness compared to the Kaweco Black which in the light areas is evidently a neutral grey undertone.

If anyone has other recommendations for a sheening black, please leave a comment. Black ink seldom gets the attention and accolades and attention that blues and its more colorful brethren do.

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3 comments / Add your comment below

  1. Aurora Black has a decent amount of gold-copper sheen. Some people get some sheen out of Montblanc Ultra Black but I haven’t been able to. Pelikan Fount India and Sailor Kiwaguro have a silver sheen to them. Blackstone Black Stump has a little copper sheen. I’d be surprised if some of Kobe’s blacks didn’t sheen as well.

    The best though is Sailor Kingdom Note Dorcus Hopei Binodulosus which has a green sheen on Tomoe River: https://www.instagram.com/p/BRr4ChmhQGF/

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