InkSwatch.com

About Us

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Chris Saenz

Hi pen friends! I'm Chris. I first encountered fountain pens in the 1970s when I got a Sheaffer cartridge fountain pen just like the one my Mom had. My hope was that I'd be able to write as beautifully as she did. That never happened but I did have a lot fun with that pen and with Sheaffer calligraphy pens throughout high school. Two things frustrated me back then: limited ink color selection and problems involving pen maintenance and lack of know how on my part.

Fast forward to 2016 – I rediscovered fountain pens when I started learning how to bullet journal and I found Brian Goulet's Fountain Pen 101 series through Boho Berry (Kara Benz on You Tube). I dove head first down the rabbit hole of fountain pens and especially fountain pen inks immediately. I found out that the fountain pen world was more interesting and accessible than ever! My enthusiasm for the hobby and for the awesome pen community led me to start my You Tube channel in September of 2017. I quickly gravitated toward ink studies and from the beginning I made 3x3” ink tiles (on water color paper) so that I could compare the colors and study the way the inks react to water. Having enjoyed art lessons and journaling the previous summer, I was motivated to find out which inks would tolerate water colors – and also which ones might be stable enough to highlight or use to address an envelope. I also enjoyed seeing the chromatography and complexity come out of some of the inks when water is added. It was Ink Journal's #30inks30days challenge in September of 2018 that really launched my "ink profiling".

When Matt approached me with his idea for a web site to compare ink swatches I was all in! Organizing and filing several hundred ink tiles analog style can be a big challenge but with technology working for us it's a game changer! I'm very enthusiastic about this project because I think it's a great way to have access to hundreds of ink swatches and compare colors, brands, and water resistance. The more input (tiles) we are able to get from other pen & ink enthusiasts the more inks we all will be able to compare.

I currently live in Texas with my husband of 35 years, Manuel, and our 3 cats. Besides fountain pens, I enjoy spiritual & philosophy studies and practice, sewing, crocheting, reading, and especially writing & journaling.

Photo of Matt in 2019

Matt Woznicki

Hi there to everyone in the fountain pen community! I'm Matt! I think I have always had a hidden interest in using fountain pens and I remember as a kid asking my mom to buy one for me every time we visited a Hallmark which, at the time, carried very cheap, disposable fountain pens. Occasionally, my mom would oblige and I would enjoy the pen while it worked, enjoying writing with something that was different and which felt fancy. After some time, Hallmark stopped carrying these pens, and I forgot about them entirely.

I fell backward into the fountain pen hobby once again in the winter of 2014 when the host of a video podcast I follow opened up a box from Amazon with two Pelikan Edelstein inks inside live on the air. The bottles looked so cool and the idea of writing with liquid ink was intriguing, so some searching on the internet ensued and down the rabbit hole I went. Like many others, I found the videos on YouTube posted by Stephen Brown (SBREBrown) and Brian Goulet (The Goulet Pen Company). I watched as many of them as I could before buying some Pilot Varsity pens and a Jinhao x750. I was hooked. Fast forward to the present and I now have around 50 bottles of ink, a bunch of ink samples, roughly 25 knock-about pens, and about 25 nice pens which I rotate through using regularly.

In about 2018, I found Chris' YouTube channel and began to watch her videos and reviews. I particularly enjoyed following Chris' journey through the 30 inks 30 days challenges and was fascinated by the color comparison tiles Chris was making. It seemed so useful to be able to compare colors using these tiles which, in addition to showing the color of the ink, also showed elements of chromatography and water resistence. At some point, the idea of being able to display these swatches on a website to make comparisons easy for everyone in the fountain pen community came to me, but the idea sat on the back burner until Spring of 2020. Upon finding myself with some additional free time and an itch to work on a projet, I finally sent a message to Chris asking if she'd be interested in collaborating to build the website you're looking at now.

I'm a teacher by trade and currently teach high school level Math and Spanish classes. I love being able to share my interest in fountain pens with my students when they express an interest. I also enjoy learning about technology and do some computer programming as a hobby in my spare time. It's out of this hobby and the fantastic collaboration with Chris that this website came to be. I'm also passionate about music, orchestral music in particular, and I play several instruments (clarinet, piano, and organ - organ is my favorite to play).

Photo of Maria

Maria Eugenia Larregola

Hi, my name is Maria and I live in Madrid (Spain). I love fountain pens, inks, papers, clips, ... a stationery shop is like heaven for me, you know what I mean. I received a sample of Robert Oster Crocodile Green ink at the beginning of 2020 and it got me wondering how many inks were inspired by animal colours so I started a small database with inks' names. I discovered many brands I've never heard of, inks inspired by poems, seasons, streets, personalities, beverages, anything! Many, many, many hours later the database is not small anymore. I was told about InkSwatch.com, got in contact with Matt and here we are! Thanks Matt for a great collaboration!

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Enter the name of an ink to search InkSwatch.com. Up to 10 results will be displayed below. Clicking on a result will take you to the comparison page for that ink.