Guest Review by Julia van der Wyk
Intro and general comments
Bungbox Happiness ($39 per 50ml bottle) ink was made to replicate the color of happiness, in the guise of a cheerful, yet unassuming green. Do we think they succeeded? Well, the
bunny fox on the label is so happy it can’t even handle how happy it is. Let’s find out why!
For this ink’s review, I filled some inadvertently matching pens:
Parker Vacumatic with fine nib, Pelikan M400 with extra fine nib, though for the purposes of this review it works as a medium, and another personal favorite, the Franklin Christoph pocket 20 with the fine cursive italic nib.
The Pelikan is my “stream of consciousness” journal pen, so got lots of use. My current journal is a Confidant, and the ink performed well enough so I was only aware of it’s smooth flow and pretty color. Green, the color of my thoughts. The Parker Vac and FC italic saw more action in my daily schedule Hobonichi pages. Of course, it was a delight tracking my day to day mundane actions with these tools. I never had to coax the feeds with this ink, even with the Parker cap that is not air tight. For standard fountain pen use, this ink is a go!
Paper tests for Fps
Shading galore in the two round nibs. The color was more even using the italic, which is also tuned to be crisp, so no surprise there. I do not detect sheen with this ink. No bleed, show through or feathering, just juicy bright color!
I don’t see as much shading here, just darker to lighter as the nibs get smaller. Nice variety of tones with the brush, and is that sheen I see on the swatch edge?
All three nibs show shading here, with nary a mark to be seen on the other side of the paper. Well done, ink and paper combination.
Baron Fig Confidant
Consistent again across all nibs, deep color and shading all the way round. No feathering, bleed or show through.
Inky Fingers Currently Inked
Color of the ink appears lighter here, but still can see shading from the round nibs. No feathering, bleed or show through.
Daiso “Word” Card
No big surprise, ink appears flatter on this more textured and uncoated paper, but performs well.
Cheap copy paper
Here’s the fun part: feathering, show through and some bleed on this multi-purpose, economical paper. You can tell it’s meant for an entirely different kind of ink. Oh well.
Ink wash and dip nib calligraphy on SOHO sketch paper. Since this ink is a bright medium hue, I expected a clear limit on the variety of values it would produce. But here I was happily surprised! Working directly with brush and ink, I could layer and build deepness. Thinning with water I could go as light and ephemeral as I pleased. I added more layers onto the dry ink and the tones changed from there as well. In summary: this ink is pretty amazing as an art supply. Of course, the amount of depth and darkness is dependent upon the delivery system at hand: the brush, champ though it is, cannot compete with a fully saturated dip calligraphy nib. Here we see the full range of tones and shading, especially with the Speedball C-3 nib. The Zebra G flex nib did not want to hold onto the ink, which was expected as fountain pen inks are not made for this style of ink. If one were to embark on a lettering project with this nib, I recommend mixing with a thickening agent (ed. note: a drop or two of liquid gum arabic added to a separate container, not directly into the bottle) to lengthen the stroke capacity. Priming the nib will not be enough to overcome the thinness of the ink.
Conclusion and wrap-up
I know why the
bunny fox is happy. I love the color, and yes, greens are my favorite, but still, this is a great one. The ink performs well in all scenarios from fountain pens to art experimentation. It flows well in longer writing sessions, and is ready to go for short jots. Bungbox Happiness is outstanding.
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Julia is an artist, classical musician, knitter, and lover of the outdoors. She resides in Santa Cruz, California, where she can draw Pelicans with Pelikans, and brag about the weather. Follow her adventures on Instagram @juliavdw or Twitter @juliavdw.
5 comments / Add your comment below
Hi Julia, excellent review! Nice illustration, photos, and very well written. I’m really liking this color too, a bottle will make its way into my collection.
Lovely review! The deep green you were able to produce is really exciting!!!! Early on in my ink collecting I was looking for that perfect shade of green for um… harry potter hogwarts letter and I think this comes close!
p.s. it’s a BunguFox not a bunny 🙂
On the older vase bottle, it said “BungFox by BungBox” which makes it kind of irresistible.
Doh! I can’t believe I missed that detail. If I had looked closer at the bottle, I would have noticed that it in fact does say: BunguFox and has a fox tail to boot. Ok, that bunny is so happy it’s a fox! Thanks for the tip. 🙂
Oh, you had me at green! That is just a lovely color and a great review. Thanks!
Have been curious about this ink since seeing a swatch online. Thanks for sating it with this thorough review!