Three Questions With David Brennan

David Brennan takes his fountain pens and inks seriously. More specifically, his Pelikan pens, and he has the database to prove it. If you want to work on rotating through all the pens and inks in your collection you could learn a lot from what David does. My thanks to him for answering Three Questions.

1. What role do analog tools such as pens, pencils, and paper play in your day to day life?

Analogue tools allow me to strike a balance in my life. I work in IT for a large transport company and could easily spend all of my time in a purely digital world, however I chose not too. At home I write in a journal daily, keep paper lists and choose to post hand-written birthday cards to friends and relatives. At the office I tend to print out documents to do my revisions rather than on the screen and I enjoy nothing more than sketching out a process flow with a good pen onto Rhodia grid paper. My work colleges think I am strange for using fountain pens and paper and they might be right.

2. What are your favorite products you are currently using?

I have so many favourites but here are five:

  • Apple MacBook Air 11" - I consider this the best portable laptop available, it hosts my Filemaker Pro fountain pen database and all my other digital guff.

  • Canon EOS 6D DSLR with a 100mm F2.8L Macro lens - my first choice when taking close-ups of pens, nibs and inks for my blog.

  • Franklin-Christoph Penevelope Six leather pen case - I own two of these cases, one in Brown boot leather, one in black, they keep six fountain pens safe and secure.

  • Topo Mini Mountain bag in Duck Camo - This current work bag whilst quite compact it is large enough for my MacBook Air and Franklin Christoph P6 case.

  • Rhodia products - their paperstock works so well with fountain pen ink that I use it for all my blog writing samples and for general use both at home and the office. I will nominate their elasti book and the 80 year anniversary range of Ice pads as my current favourites.

3. What is your perfect Pelikan pen, nib, and ink combo?

I actually laughed out loud when I read this question - how do I pick between my 38 lovely 'birds'?

Actually my fountain pen database's next proposed combo into rotation turned out to be as good as any I could think of myself.

The pen is the M800 Tortoiseshell Brown Special Edition - the 2013 release that gave us Pelikan fans a chance to own the pen we could only dream about. (This size, pattern and colour was only previously available as a Spanish only limited edition, so was rare and expensive) The nib proposed by the database is one of my many custom grind nibs from Mr Richard Binder, it is a Medium nib ground into a 0.7mm cursive italic. Like many of my Binder CIs this is quite crisp and with that comes good line variation - it makes my average handwriting look decent. Sadly (for me) Richard seems to have now closed his online pen business but I hear he still does grinds and nib adjustment at selected pen shows.

My database selected one of my long time favourite inks, Kon-peki, the beautiful blue ink from PIlot Iroshizuku to be used with this combo. This ink normally shades but not much from this fairly fine CI. I think I would be happy to use this combo everyday if I had too.

Posted on March 14, 2015 and filed under Three Questions.