(This is part two of a series of reviews about the new Colorverse ink line. Please refer to the overview for details about the whole collection.)
It was so hard to decide which set of Colorverse ink colors to review first so I decided to go with the colors I was most surprised about. First, I don’t actually remembering ordering a couple of these. I think I hit ink ordering mania and was just clicking on everything. But secondly, I was pleasantly surprised about the colors of these inks. They are not usually colors I gravitate towards (space pun intended!) and I actually ended up really liking them which is a good thing since I now have two bottles of each!
For an ink collection about space, #6 Space Laika, #7 Hubble Zoom and #8 Mars Curiosity (each $36 per two-bottle set) are all decidedly earthy colors. I was able to include Pantone chips for all the colors except PMS2035U for Mars Curiosity because I didn’t have it. I think the chip for Hubble Zoom is pretty close but I’m not sure the chip for Space Laika is quite right.
But the big excitement was the sheen on Mars Curiosity! It looks like the silvery dust on the surface of Mars! I am mesmerized!
Hubble Zoom does not have any sheen per se, but the color has a lot of shading and is a rich, warm mahogany color. I wouldn’t call it red or brown or burgundy. It’s lovely.
And Space Laika was a freaking Communist Revolution. Its a brown I actually like. Its a warm rich brown that doesn’t go too cool. You want that rich Chocolate Lab brown? This is it.
In writing, Mars Curiosity writes bright red and then dries darker with its signature silvery sheen. Hubble Zoom is a lighter, warmer red-brown in writing and Space Laika is that fab cocoa brown that makes me want to sing the soundtrack to Dogs in Space all day.
Finding ink swatch comparisons to Mars Curiosity was a challenge as it turns out I don’t have a lot of deep orange inks in my collection. (Over 300 inks and red-oranges aren’t amongst them!) So, what I had to reference was very limited but I also think that Mars Curiosity is in a class by itself with the silvery sheen so take that into consideration. I have Apache Sunset and its way more orange than Mars Curiosity and not even in the same field. Most of the colors I had were too orange or too red. Mars Curiosity is really a curiosity.
When it came to finding ink comparisons for Space Laika and Hubble Zoom, I faced a similar struggle finding a good range of comparison inks too. Both were different enough on the color specturm that is was more aboutfinding contrasts this time rather than similarities.
I went ahead and tried to dive a little more deeply into understanding more about ph levels today. I know its important to have a working knowledge about the acidity or alkalinity of inks but I tend to care more about staining, water solubility, fade-ability and fluidity first. My chemistry skills being what they are, I’ve always left the more technical aspects of ink reviews to people who are more savvy than I am. But since Colorverse has been so kind as to provide ph information, I decided I might as well figure out what they mean.
So, I went over to Richard Binder’s site and found out that the ph level of distilled water is 7. He worked with someone who tested a range of common inks to get a good idea of alkaline and acidic inks ranging from 1.5 to 9.7.
On the Colorverse pamphlet included with the inks, they list the ph for Space Laika at 8.4, Hubble Zoom at 9.3, and Mars Curiosity at 8.6. The Colorverse inks seems to be in the same range as Sailor and Pilot Iroshizuku. While that is not super scientific, I feel fairly confident that anything I write or draw will survive my lifetime if protected from the light and water. Beyond that… who knows?
So, those are the earthy tones from my first fourteen colors. Tomorrow….we go blue!
- Paper: Rhodia Uni-Blank No. 16 with 7mm guide sheet
- Pens: Hacked Midori dip nib holder with Zebra G titanium nib ($33.50 per 10-pack), Esterbrook #2442 nib in a Shawn Netwon custom nib holder
- Swatches: Col-o-Ring Ink Testing Cards
- Brush: Blick Synthetic Studio #0 Round
- Ink: Colorverse Mars Curiosity, Hubble Zoom & Space Laika (15ml & 50ml bottle set for $36)