Frankly it’s efficient but it has its drawbacks. For a start you get rusty with your pens. I compare it to handwriting. I notice that my handwriting isn’t the clear and steady hand it used to be, simply because nowadays the only writing I do is confined to pc and it involves just finger tips and keyboard. Writing a cheque is so alien that I frequently use two cheques when one would do – the first has to be torn as I think my writing is not clear and neat enough.
Same happens with drawing. You get so used to the luxury of erasing stuff online, copying repetitive elements, cutting bits of online drawings and sticking them elsewhere to have an idea how things will look that way and so on, that drawing with a pen becomes almost a mine field. One mistake or drop of ink (pen malfunction) and you have to start again. This is the corrupting influence of programs like Photoshop, but also their undeniable magic. Erase and rewind sort of compared with the uncompromising real hardware pens.
Thing is, with drawing it’s like riding a bicycle – once you master how to ride it without falling off you never quite forget. Maybe you stop riding for five, ten years, but if you get in the seat after all that time you will not fall off. More than that a stroke or line on a pc screen can never quite compare to a stroke with a pen (except for straight lines – I can never draw one).
Doing cross-hatching with my lovely Faber-Castell technical pens and gradually building up a shaded gradient is not only fun but almost therapeutic.
I have not used my technical pens for about a year now. It will take an effort to clean them out. Plenty of running hot water, soap, and an old toothbrush that will invariably end up with blackened bristles. After that the wash-hand basin will need a thorough clean out from the visible black shadow left on the porcelain. Then it’s the syringe to push a little quantity of Indian ink into the pens' miniscule container. At the end of this long and dirty ritual one hopes the cleaned out super pens will work.
I have just cleaned my pens today and gave them a tryout.