Review: Daler Rowney Calli Calligraphy Black Ink

Daler Rowney is one of UK's art materials manufacturer. The Daler Rowney's Calli is a calligraphy and India ink made in England. It's an acrylic-based ink designed specifically for calligraphy.

The Calli is actually available in different colours as well, namely Scarlet, Burgandy, Green, Blue, Scarlet, Brown and Jet Black India (the one I'm reviewing). It's also available and sold as a set of 6 colours too.

The ink is sold in a 1oz (29.5ml) glass bottle which has an opening of good size for dip pens and brushes.

This is another ink that I use quite often as an India ink because it's easily found at the art store here in Singapore. It's also sold online.


Here's the label that says it's non-clogging, pigmented and waterproof.

Since it's pigmented, I don't advise it for use in fountain pens.

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This is the ink test on cartridge paper. I've edited the exposure of the scan to leave the paper texture intact. Below are the close-ups.

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The Calli ink is an intensely black ink.

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It's able to hold a sharp edge well, as expected for a calligraphy ink.

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Daler Rowney Calli Calligraphy Black Ink - 04
It dries relatively fast and to a neutral tone.

It holds up to erasing well, but with heavy erasing some ink does come off. On a scale of 1 to 10, it's probably 9 for it's resistance to erasing.

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When dry, it has a slight sheen as opposed to matte. Areas where you use too much ink will have more sheen. And because those areas with sheen are the areas with concentrated ink, you're able rub off the ink with your fingers. If you use just the right about of ink, then it's less likely to smudge or rub off.

Compared to most other inks I use, I prefer drying to a matte surface.

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Covering strength is good and isn't too blotchy.


The Calli ink is very waterproof but some ink still comes off with water. On a scale of 1 to 10, it's probably a 9 on the waterproof scale.


Click for a bigger view

The picture above compares various brands of black ink. Top half of the square's a single layer wash and the bottom has a double layer wash.

Conclusion

The Calli ink is good performing black India ink for calligraphy work.

However, there are some caveats. First is it dries to a slight sheen. Second it's waterproof to a great extent by not 100% waterproof. Lastly, it's can rub off if you use too much ink.

I would not recommend this ink for use if you need to lay your hands on portions of the paper where you have inked over.

For calligraphy use, sure. For sketches or inking comics, I probably would not use this, and would choose inks that cannot be rubbed off by mistake.

Availability

Follow the direct links below to get the Daler Rowney's Calli ink on Amazon.com | Amazon.ca | Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr

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