Ink Swab: Pilot Iroshizuku Asa-Gao (Morning Glory)


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Bexley Corona, 1.1 mm stub nib inked with Asa-Gao

I have to admit that I was waffling between another blue ink or a beautiful green ink to increase the greens in my collection. I just thought that Asa Gao seems to be a popular blue among my pen friends, I decided to see what all the love is about.

I have to admit that, again, Asa-Gao is a spot-on name for it. This blue ink positively pops out of the page in its vibrance without looking too unusual. It’s a very vibrant, vivid kind of blue.

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It’s highly saturated and is not showy in terms of shading. It dries pretty fast and does not lose its vividness or vibrancy after its been dry for a while.

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My first impression of this ink was that it had a purple glow to it. A closer look at the lines it lays down will show that it actually has a reddish sheen around the edges. It lends to the look that it has a purple undertone to it, especially in parts where the ink is darker on paper. Below are close up shots of the writing sample.

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The red sheen isn’t obvious at first glance, though it does achieve the overall effect of a morning glory flower, which is to increase the vividness of the blue with a touch of red.

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I must admit that as gorgeous as it is, it’s not exactly a very unique color. It’s not very complex nor does it have expressive shading or sheen. However, it is an excellent blue ink for daily use. It straddles that line between normal blue and vivid, unusually beautiful blue so perfectly.

It flows really well (like other Iroshizuku inks, no surprises there) and is very well-behaved even though it will stain your converter. If you’re looking for a blue ink for daily writing that stands out in vibrancy without looking too crazy…this is definitely it.

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