Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses Ink Review

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review

This is the first in the next batch of ink reviews (all Noodler’s again). The delay has been a little longer than expected – sorry about that. This is a shading ink, designed to show a wide range of colour variation, including the “Black Swan”. I bought this bottle in June and is the older (less purple) formulation, since it appears to be identical to a sample I bought a year ago.

There is a video on YouTube which describes both the shading and the label, so I won’t repeat that information here:

The 3oz bottle was from my favoured Ebay supplier, so I would describe the price as moderate again. The bottle and box are the usual types. The test pen was a Pilot Metropolitan Violet Leopard with a medium nib..

The was some water resistance, although the different dyes clearly have different levels of water resistance. Cleaning was easy enough, but it did have to take a little more care with the feed as there was a dark sooty deposit – the kind I associate more with many black inks. Drying time was about 30 seconds.

As this is specifically a shading ink, I tried to test this with some flex pens so that I could upload the results. However I couldn’t produce anything that adequately exhibited these properties. The Word Card sample didn’t really show it off the possible range either, so I tried playing around with a cotton bud and a Ryman Memo Block sheet, and got something that’s a bit more interesting:

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review - Shading

Rhodia Dot Pad No 16

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review - Rhodia

I’ve written before than I either like my purples to be bright and bold, or dark and brooding. This ink doesn’t really fall into either category, so it is a little bland for. The shading on this paper with this pen doesn’t really stand out either. The slightly dry behaviour tempts me to try it ink the Pilot Capless when it next needs refilling.

Ryman Memo Block 9cm x 9cm

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review - Ryman Memo

The results are very similar to Rhodia paper.

Yellow Post-It

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review - Post It

The performance was okay, but I would normally expect purple inks to stand out on a yellow Post-It – and it didn’t in this case.

Field Notes – Pitch Black

Noodler's Black Swan in Austrialian Roses - Field Notes - Ink Review

[Update 21/09/2014 – the original review incorrectly inked to a scan of Noodler’s Black Swan in English Roses – sorry about that. This has now been corrected.]

This actually wasn’t too bad at all compared to many other inks, maybe the slightly drier behaviour helped.

Mnemosyne Word Card

Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Ink Review - Word Card

The swatch clearly shows the wine coloured tint, but only hints at the shading this ink is capable of.

An updated image of the Word Card is here:
Noodler's Black Swan in Australian Roses - Word Card


Once combined with the right pen this could be a stunning ink, as shown by the shading sample. However, in a standard pen it’s a little too bland for me. The new formulation looks closer to the type of purple I like, so I may give that one a try when the opportunity arises.

2 thoughts on “Noodler’s Black Swan in Australian Roses Ink Review”

  1. Great job here, man. However, when I discovered this ink, today, I had already ordered Imperial Purple from Diamine.

    To be bought, next!

    Cheers. Keep the good work up.

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