Review – Bic Stic Colors Pink, Purple, Lime, and Light Blue

The Bic Round Stic is an iconic pen. Not so much as the Bic Cristal, but still quite well known. It is a fairly robust pen, but usually one of few colors. The pen usually comes in the four standard colors: black and RGB. With some hunting, though, one can find more exotic colors, like the ones I will be talking about today: the pink, lime, purple, and sky blue colors.

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First up is the pink, which is a nice color. It certainly isn’t hot pink, which I despise. It covers well and writes smoothly. It’s fairly dark but still quite pink, though not a very natural pink. It’s the kind that could really only be seen from an ink like this and not anywhere else.

Next is the light (sky) blue, which writes smoothly, but has many little imperfections in the line. It just doesn’t cover well. The color is fantastic, though. It can be a bit hard to see at times but it’s quite pleasant to look at and not particularly eye straining. It is most like the colors at the edges of a clear body of water or the sky closer to the sun, so rare, but not unheard of in nature.

A bit altered in editing

A bit altered in editing, but a good representation

On to the lime, which is by far the hardest to read of the group. And it has some startup and writing problems, though when you get it working it does write smoothly. On the paper, the green is so light as to be unreadable in many cases and can cause eye strain. Though I call it lime, it really is much lighter and closer to… well, nothing that I can think of.

And finally, the purple, which is the best in terms of pen quality. It has no startup issues, writes smoothly, and covers well. It is darker than the blue but not by much, and still would require a second glance to read from far away. That being said, it is a very pleasant color to look at and is great for use when a more standard office color is not necessary. The color would be a rare one to find in the wild, though.

Overall, for writing these pens are hit and miss, and for art they are also hit and miss. The purple and blue are the best. I wouldn’t even try to use the lime. If you’re looking for some way to make your writing more unique, there are other Bic sets out there for that (like an entire box of the purple) and the same goes for any type of art that you might be making, unless it requires some very specific colors

Review – Sheaffer Calligraphy Maxi Kit Part 3 – Ink – Blue, Black, Purple, and Turquoise

Now onto the Sheaffer inks in the Sheaffer Calligraphy set, which I will do in batches as I get around to trying them out. I’ll be starting off with black, purple, blue, and turquoise.

Surprisingly Accurate Photo

Surprisingly Accurate Photo

First black, which is a plain black, really there is nothing special. It’s a cool black that is very dark, but is not as saturated as one would want a black to be most of the time. For calligraphy and drawing it is good for the most part (being non-waterproof) but I wouldn’t go painting a picture with it.

Second purple, a color that has no place in a calligraphy set (something that can be said about every color that isn’t black, in my opinion). The purple is a nice deep purple with lots of shading in wider lines, though the shading doesn’t offer a great amount of variation. I personally wouldn’t use this for calligraphy and would have a hard time finding a use for it. But it is very pleasant.

The blue, Sheaffer blue, like all pen maker blues is very simple: a dark blue without much shading that does well with writing and okay with calligraphy. It is a fairly standard blue, non-waterproof and it almost looks like a ballpoint pen. Like I said, though, it is a bit darker than some others, so you might want to look into it if you want a darker blue.

Finally turquoise, which again I don’t understand being in this set. It is a very bright, nice color. It has some shading (which I’m not too fond of) but overall is fairly bland. A nice sky or Caribbean sea color, but not one for calligraphy but for daily writing in my opinion. You wouldn’t want to color a turquoise rock with it either.

That’s it for this time, It may take a few weeks, but I’ll look at the rest of the colors sometime in the future.

Review – Papermate Inkjoy Black, Red, Blue, and Purple

In my tradition (now) of taking a look at the uses of standard office supplies in art, I’ll be looking at the Papermate Inkjoy pens and their different colors. Today will be the standard colors of black, red, blue, and purple.

inkjoy inks 2

Not Entirely Representative

Papermate tends to make standard colors, and their black is no exception. One of the deeper Papermate blacks, the Inkjoy black is nice and constant, though is a bit blue-greyish. Not quite black, but very good for a ballpoint pen.

The red is also fairly standard. It’s light, but not light enough to say it’s pinkish. It is very subdued and pleasant, not as aggressive as most reds, making it a bit more natural.

The blue is very deep, but not very saturated. In low light it still looks blue, but one wouldn’t mistake it for a sky blue. Again, like the red, the low saturation makes it look less aggressive than some other hues. It’s got a very nice, watery feel to it.

And finally the purple, which again is deep but not saturated. It is unmistakably purple but not very aggressive. Unlike the others, though, this leads to a less natural look as most natural purples are deep and aggressive or light and flowery. This one is in between, which means it would be at home on your papers but not in artwork.

Overall, Papermate did a good job with these colors for the workplace. They definitely weren’t designed for art, though they could be worked in. Not superb but good enough. We’ll see what the next four have in store.

Review – Pilot G2 Colors – Black, Blue, Red, Green, and Purple

I don’t believe I have talked about G2 Pilot gel-pens before, I will do a full review later, but first I want to talk about most of the different colors that they come in. I have collected 15, and will split them into three groups, the first of which is the “normal” colors of black, blue, red, green, and purple.

ink tests

Starting with the black: it’s black, there is literally nothing special about it. It is a bit of a warm black, and it goes on smooth. It doesn’t have any magnificent qualities, it is just an all-around black.

Now for the blue, which is a fairly dark but basically standard blue, very similar to the black. It is probably one of the darkest standard blue pens available, and it is a fairly cool blue, like a deep lake. Again, though, it has nothing particularly special to offer.

The red is a medium red, which is a bit different. Most companies go for either an eye-bleedingly light red, or a deep red that is much more pleasant. As far as reds go this is in the middle, but it certainly isn’t neutral. It has no tint of pink, and is most definitively, starkly, red.

The green is surprisingly dark for a standard green. It’s almost a grassy color, and not the light, lime-ish color most other companies associate with green (it’s like the cherry flavor of pens). It is definitely green, but is unoffensive and pleasant. It sticks out, though, making it seem like one of those “replace red because it hurts people’s feelings on grades” pens (I’m no psychologist, so I know nothing about whether that is good or bad, it’s just what I thought of). I think it’s nice.

And finally the purple, which is the black sheep of the normal colors. It is a light, almost violet or deep rose color. It is warm and goes on a bit less smoothly than the other colors here. I really don’t like it, it’s just far too light, and it doesn’t go with the deep other colors at all. It really won’t stick out on a paper either, so it’s just kind of there, it has no natural color akin to it, so it has limited art utility as well.

Overall these are a very good set of office colors, and if you’re just looking for some smooth-writing different colors that aren’t too wacky, I’d look here first. But they do all have limited art potential, so you may want to delve further to get just the right color in that case.

 

 

Review – Sharpie Pen Colors

I have reviewed the Sharpie pen before. And the ink in that pen was a bit of a muted black. Now it’s time to look at some more of the Sharpie pen color palette: the blue, red, green, purple, and orange pens.

pen comparison sharpie 2

Colors not exact representations.

Starting off with the blue, which is a typical blue, if a bit washed-out looking. It is a subdued blue that would be appropriate in most work environments. They say that all of the colors are water-proof and smear resistant. I will say that is mostly true unless under extreme circumstances, but don’t expect them to be as all-around useful as their marker cousins. They also dry fairly fast and are supposed to be non-toxic, but I’m not checking that.

Now to the red, which is the most disappointing of the bunch. It is faded and looks almost pinkish. It’s hard to tell it’s really a red and it certainly lacks the intensity most look for in a red ink. That being said, it is subdued and will work better in a work or school environment where one would want a less aggressive color.

The green is, say it with me, subdued. It is undeniably green, and being as laid back as it is almost intensifies it. It’s the hardest to read out of the bunch and is almost eye hurting after a while. Strangely it is almost identical to Micron green.

The purple is flat, but deep. It is easily the darkest and most readable of the bunch. It is also fairly close to a Micron purple and provides a nice, neutral color, that is still quite different.

Now finally the orange. The orange is the only intense color out of the bunch, and even then for orange it is fairly flat. It does jump off the page and provide the kick one would expect from a nice orange. I’d say it’s probably the best color of the bunch.

So there are a few colors. Aside from looking almost identical to Micron colors I’d say they’re good. I haven’t the foggiest as to why that is but it is a bonus in my book. Anyway, if you like Sharpie pens, and want some nice, pleasant colors for work or some such, I’d take a closer look at these. And due to their subtlety they also look much more natural in drawings than standard, intense colors.

Review – Micron Red, Blue, Purple, and Green colors

I have reviewed several Micron pens in the past. But in case you were wondering if they could add a little more color to your life, here are some Micron Colors in .05.

It is an eight-pen set of colors from Micron that I’m looking at. It includes black so that’s out. The first four colors I will look at are what I call the ‘standard’ colors. They are red, blue, green, and purple.

I have already talked about the blue and the red so I’ll cover those quickly first. These pens are larger than the ones I reviewed previously so the ink is a bit more saturated. They aren’t as glaringly red and blue as before, but they are still some of the brightest and most vibrant of their colors on the market, aside from the awful nano-liner. Getting this large also makes them more prone to bleed-through, of which there is a slight hint in the blue.

Next we have the purple, which, in the Micron style, is a very aggressive purple. It is very deep, and in low lighting could be mistaken for black. It is very highly saturated, and changes little to none when applying pressure for some time to just tapping it on the paper. Amazingly at this darkness it isn’t very prone to bleed-through.

Finally the green. This is, surprisingly, a fairly sedate green, falling in the middle of forest and lime. It is unmistakably green, but rather unremarkable. It doesn’t jump like the other inks in this set. It just sits there, making it rather like greens in real life which you have to look closely to appreciate. Again, surprisingly enough this color is the most prone to bleed-through in the entire set, even writing fairly fast it leaves dots on the other side of fairly thin paper.

micron color test 1.1

So overall the ‘standard’ colors in this Micron package are great. They’re not really the best for sketches of nature or the outside world, but for labeling and organizing they are great. For example, different color parts in a schematic. It’s nice to have colored pens around and these hold up the Micron standard. I can definitely find a use for them.