Before I began working in design studios and in-house art departments, I worked in art supply stores to pay the bills and score cheap art supplies while I was freelancing as an illustrator. In retail, I found a niche in fountain pens, which provided a nice little creative outlet, and soon I was sketching solely with fountain pens. I enjoyed the old-world feel coupled with the smooth flow of ink onto paper, which left behind beautifully expressive lines as the nib flexed on downstrokes and gave individual life to each stroke. My favorite pen was an inexpensive Alvin Reform sketching pen, which while having served me so well in the past years, has become rather leaky nowadays. I’m retiring the pen, and chances are moving on to a fine-point Sharpie for cleaner hands, plus linework that doesn’t smudge and can serve as a base for potential watercolor washes. Still, I will be keeping a cleaner Lamy fountain pen on hand just for the random want to sketch in the ol’ skool style.