Ink for writing on prints

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Tim Gray

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I'd like to write on some prints of mine, back and possibly front. As of now, they are RC prints, but there will be some FB prints too at some point. I'd rather not use something like a Sharpie, since they fade with light and generally aren't archival. However, I'm having problems finding something that will actually write on the back of an RC print, stay, and be waterproof. There's got to be something out there...

I'm ok with using a fountain pen or a dip pen if that's what needs to happen. Actually, I'd rather do that then buy some kind of pigment-based marker.

So if anyone has recommendations for specific products that they know work, that would be great.
 

Uncle Goose

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ink used in a pen will also fade by light, I think the best option is graphite based markers like pencils, these do not fade or search in art stores for archival markers, they must exist although they may be a little expensive. (maybe ink based on metal??).
 

eli griggs

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If you want ink for a dip or fountain pen, use Noodlers otherwise get a carbon/pigmented based ink like this Pigma, light-fast and archival.

Eli
 
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Tim Gray

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Thanks for the ideas. The Pigma markers don't work at all. They don't dry. Sakura makes another line of markers, Microperm which do work reasonably well, but I'm unsure of how close/different they are from Sharpies, which are not ideal.

I'll check out the Noodlers.
 

jmcd

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The Prismacolor Premier pens are archival, acid free, and lightfast. They do dry readily on RC paper, but not on something as impermeable as a Plastine or plastic negative file. Several tips diameters are available. I get the pens at my local artists' supply, and have been using these to label my RC proof sheets.

As for the back of a fiber print I would use pencil.
 

Nicholas Lindan

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For the back of RC prints I use Sharpies or a #8B pencil. For the front I use Sharpies as the mark can be wiped off with 90% methanol or Pec-12. Sharpie on the front will wash off with processing, on the back it lives through processing.

I don't know that Sharpies fade in light, they do weather off in outdoor applications unless applied to something porous.

For signing on the front you might try India ink with a bit of ox gall to help it wet. The ink might flake off with time, though.

At one time prints were signed with India ink with a bit of sugar added. Worked okay until the ants came an ate the signatures off the prints.
 
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Tim Gray

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Tasty ink. Interesting.

This might develop into a mixed media project, so I was looking for something black and ink-like.

Related question - what kind of ink pads are used for those rubber stamps people stamp their prints with sometimes?
 
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