Review by Tina Koyama
Last Inktober, I got a new brush pen (previewed here) – the Pentel Pigment Ink Brush Pen with extra-fine tip ($7; many similar brush pens are available; this one has the model number XFP5F). Although I’d be the first to admit that yet another brush pen is the last thing I need, I still had fun with it then – and I’m still having fun with it now!
The black pigment ink is nearly completely waterproof (heavy applications of ink might require waiting several minutes). The test scribble shown below, made on a Col-o-Ring Oversize page, was swiped with a wet brush after about 10 minutes. Only a trace of washed ink is visible. (Refills are available in other colors, but only the pigment option is waterproof.)
To push ink in the reservoir toward the brush, simply squeeze the center of the plastic barrel. Ink advances fairly fast, so don’t hold the brush over your work as you squeeze in case it drips.
Similar to most reservoir brush pens of this type, it has nylon bristles that taper to a point. The extra-fine Pentel, however, has a point that is about one hair width wide – making it the finest-tip brush pen I own.
I enjoy using this Pentel to see how minimal I can make my daily hand sketches while still evoking a hand. (My mom was a sumi-e painter, so I like to think I am channeling her with these attempts.) You can see that by using the very tippy-tip hairs, I can make a darn fine mark. I also like the dry-brush look I get just before the barrel needs a squeeze.
This Pentel is a worthy addition to my (admittedly vast) collection for its exceptionally fine point. The waterproof ink is a bonus.