Of aits and meadows: A short review of J Herbin Vert Pré ink

A bit of french style n'est pas?
A bit of french style n’est pas?

I began to think that I couldn’t see the wood for the trees… That’s what I felt when writing with this premium ‘green meadow’ ink from the french ink manufacturer J Herbin. What I mean by that is that one can be come too analytical when sharing thoughts about an ink, sometimes it’s better to sit down and just enjoy… That’s the main lesson I’ve learned from using this ink; relax and enjoy!

Presentation: This series of ink come in rather quirky but pleasing boxes and even more quirky but pleasing bottles. Once out of the box the first thing that strikes you is the size of the bottle. The bottle is small, the ink being sold in mere 30ml volumes. They are aesthetically pleasing however with the added feature of an indentation on the front that functions as a pen rest. As I said quirky but pleasing.

See the shading?
See the shading?

On Test: This bright green ink stormed across the paper. Almost immediately I began to worry, “where would I use this ink, isn’t it just too bright” Then I noticed the odd phenomenon which I am going to call backwash. The ink appeared to wash back into the letters as I wrote and for a while this distracted me. One thing I could not fail to notice was the great colour variance exhibited by this ink. From an almost flourescent lime to a mid pea green the shading this ink provides is phenomenal. The dry-time achieved on my stock 80gsm Rhodia test paper was acceptable at around 30-40 seconds and the dried ink retains it brightness and colour variation well hardly darkening at all.

Go on, you know you want to...
Go on, you know you want to…

Summary: Herbin’s Vert Pré ink certainly brightens up a mid-winter day, and in the bleak North west of england in January that’s a good thing. It is very much a burst of summer streaking across the ice white page and though it may not be the most utilitarian ink I’ve ever used, it is certainly one of the brightest and the most cheery. It’s only real shortfall is the fact that it only comes in 30ml bottles but I guess I can learn to live with that.




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