I already posted a quick introduction to Anderillium Inks, but here’s a bit more detail about each of the colours, and most importantly, a few comparisons so you can judge what you’re getting against some more familiar inks.
Each of the inks is pH neutral, water-based and water-soluble, and hand-made in-house in Florida. The colours are unique, custom formulated by Anderillium. The glass bottles are 1.5 oz and seal securely.
I found each of Anderillium’s inks to be a wet writer, some more than others. Although I haven’t used them enough yet to judge staining, they seem pretty well behaved with no strong smells or unusual behaviour.
As you’ll see on the swatch cards below, I experienced some feathering — only on Stalogy and the Col-o-Ring cards, though, not at all on Tomoe. You might want to think twice if you plan to use these inks in wet pens on bad paper.
No plastics are used in manufacture or packaging, and no animal products in any part of the process, including the glue for the label on the bottle.
You can buy each ink individually from here at $14.50 per bottle, or you can pick up all eight inks together for $85. I think they work well as a set, with a good mix of bright and dark colours, plus a balance of two blues, two reds, two greens, a brown and a ‘dark’.
Let’s see how the colours perform.
Flying Squid Blue
FSB is a kind of deep ocean blue — not quite a blue-black, but it has a slight teal/petrol tone to it and is very sober. It shades well. The only ink in my collection that really matched it for tone is KWZ Walk Over Vistula, but Flying Squid doesn’t sheen, while the KWZ does.
Vampire Squid Red
VSR is a bright, pale red that leans towards pink. It’s not as wet as some of the other colours in the range, leaving a finer line. It’s one of only two inks in the range that sheens, with a subtle pretty golden halo. It’s a really good match for Edelstein Ruby, quite close to Pilot Bishamonten, and a shade less vibrant than Montblanc Chine Red.
Spirula is a proper bright mid green, an emerald colour. It’s very wet. I’m not normally a big user of green inks, and generally I like more of an olive colour, but this is nice. Because this isn’t my usual shade of green, I only had one ink swatch that matched it — an ancient bottle of Noodler’s Cactus Green. Luckily, I received the Pilot Anniversary inks yesterday, and Fukurokuju is fairly close, although it’s a bit more minty. Incidentally, Montblanc Emerald doesn’t match at all, despite me using the word ‘Emerald’ above!
Cuttlefish is a very dark brown — it is closest in my collection to Maruzen Athena Sepia, and a little way from Edelstein Smoky Quartz. It has a universal sheen that’s kind of greeny-black, which makes it a bit of a chameleon colour once it’s dried.
Blue-Ringed Octopus Blue
I adore this colour. It’s a really bright, really wet sky blue. It’s so vibrant, electric. The two closest matches for me are Montblanc UNICEF and Akkerman #11, but it’s wetter and more vibrant than both.
Flapjack Octopus Orange
This is a proper punch-in-the-face orange, really bright and saturated. It’s closest to Krishna Autumn, but a bit more vivid. It’s not quite as dark as Montblanc Lucky Orange.
Colossal Squid Dark
I thought I had loads of inks like this, probably from Birmingham. But actually I couldn’t find a close match in all my swatches. As you can see, it’s more green than Maruzen Eternal Blue, but not as green as Robert Oster Grun Schwartz. I like this one a lot.
Bobtail Squid Green
This bright grass green is a good match for Akkerman #28 and Diamine Meadow, but again very wet. It’s cheerful and readable, but I don’t use colours like this very much.
It shouldn’t be a shock that there are close matches for most of these colours — after all, there are only so many colours in the world — but I have really enjoyed these inks so far. They run wet, and don’t go in for gimmicks like sheen or shimmer. They dry in decent time and don’t smear when dry. I’m a touch concerned by the feathering when the paper gets saturated, but this is unlikely to come up in real world situations and probably explains why the dry times are good while the inks feel lubricated.
Anderillium inks are affordable, ethical, genuinely hand-made, and are great to use. I’d happily spend my money on them — and I’m looking forward to seeing what shades the forthcoming Avian series has in store for us.