Review by Tina Koyama
I’ve tried many so-called waterproof inks that turned out not to be, so I was skeptical about the DeAtramentis Document series. Available in 19 waterproof colors, it gives writers and sketchers a good range of color alternatives to black (my favorite waterproof ink is Platinum Carbon Black) – but are the Document inks truly waterproof? They are – which makes them very useful.
Of the three colors in the series that I reviewed, Fog Grey is the only one I chose more for sketching than writing. The other gray inks in my collection are water-soluble, so a waterproof option is definitely welcome. It’s a very cool gray – so cool, in fact, that I would go ahead and call it blue. The closest gray I have is Iroshizuku Fuyu-syogun, and it’s not nearly as blue. (Another gray in the series, Urban Grey, is more neutral.)
I tested the all-important waterproof factor after one minute and after 10 minutes (scribbles at the bottom of the swatch card). Both tests showed no trace of bleeding, even with the heavy ink application where I washed the scribbles. It’s a reliable waterproof formula.
For my writing sample, I used my Franklin-Christoph Model 20 Marietta with a juicy fude nib and an old Hobonichi Techo. The ink flows nicely and dries fast enough for this lefty. As with other Document inks I reviewed, no sheen or shading is visible.
The final test, for me, is to take it out on the road (literally) for a sketch. Parked in a nearby neighborhood, I sketched this street scene. If you look closely at the windshields of the two near vehicles, you’ll see the marks I made on them; I then shaded the windshields with a marker. With water-soluble inks, the marker would have smeared them, but these ink lines remained crisp and permanent. Although the color is neither gray nor evocative of fog, for a chilly December scene, Fog Grey is ideal.
- Papers: Writing sample: Hobonichi A6 Techo A6 2016 planner ($33); sketch sample: Canson XL 140 lb. watercolor paper (30-sheet pad $5.89)
- Pen: Franklin-Christoph Model 20 Marietta with fude nib ($165; specialty nib extra)
- Swatches: Col-o-Ring Ink Testing Cards ($10)
- Brush: Weber Prima round 6 ($4.99)
- Ink: DeAtramentis Document Fog Grey (19.95)
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