A gem of an ink: Monteverde Fire Opal

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Satan’s own ink. No wait, that would be Diamine Oxblood.

I’m a sucker for shading orange/red inks. One of my all-time favourites is Diamine Ancient Copper. Another is Diamine Autumn Oak. This ink, Monteverde Fire Opal, falls smack in between them.

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I’m not sure how I ended up with so many inks.

It’s a relatively new ink, and until now wasn’t available in the UK. I’m heading out to California in a couple of weeks and was going to bring some back with me, but it popped up on Cult Pens late last week and I ordered some. I’m bad at waiting.

Fire Opal is part of Monteverde’s new gemstone range. The community is quietly getting excited about them. Charoite is a lovely purple; Olivine a delicate green; all seem well saturated with unusual colours, decent shading, and a lubricating additive that by all accounts actually works.

But, like I said, what suckered me in on Fire Opal is the colour. It’s perfect, in my opinion. Dark enough to be usable, bright enough to be interesting, a good shader, and so far well behaved. It’s a bit pricey compared to its Diamine rivals — a 30ml glass bottle runs £8, compared to less than £3 for a Diamine plastic bottle of equal capacity. On the plus side, the Monteverde bottle has a nice wide rim, and if you’re keen on better value you can get a 90ml bottle for about £15. Of course, prices are lower in the US.

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Nice rim job. Snigger.

Naturally, I wanted to get Fire Opal looking as gem-like as I could. So I tried it out on tracing paper. With a backlight it’s quite magical.

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Tracing paper is FUN.

This is the first Monteverde ink I’ve tried. I’m really having to sit on my hands not to order a couple more of the gemstone range.

9 thoughts on “A gem of an ink: Monteverde Fire Opal

  1. I just received samples of Fireopal and Ancient Copper and they are both wonderful inks. It’s going to be tough to decide between them! Thanks for this review, and that backlight photo is really cool.


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  4. I see Montevideo is also bringing out a range of ‘noir’ inks. In images, the Copper Noir seems very close to Fire Opal (which I have and now use as my standard ink). Has anyone compared the two? O


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