Ink Notes: J. Herbin Vert Empire Cartridges

J. Herbin Vert Empire Cartridges

I ordered the a tin of J. Herbin Vert Empire ink cartridges when I was shopping for green and grey inks I hadn’t used. I ordered cartridges to get more than a sample but still pay less than a full bottle. When the ink order arrived I looked at the Vert Empire tin and put the ink in with the grays based on the color on the tin. The color on the tin cover in the photo above looks greener in a well-lit photo than it does in typical room light.
J. Herbin Vert Empire is a bit of a chameleon ink. Well, it doesn’t change to match it’s background, so maybe a broken chameleon. It’s color does vary greatly based on the paper and the lighting. Unfortunately for me, I don’t like most of those variations. The only time it’s obviously green is on bright white paper, such as a Rhodia DotPad under bright light.
Most of my writing is on non-white paper, at least not bright white. In most of my lighting conditions (which isn’t the brightest) and on most paper I use the ink looks muddy when it comes out of the pen. It does become visibly greener as it dries but it takes time to become really green. It can be rather pleasant once it’s dry. Unfortunately, by then I’ve usually moved on and turned the page so my impression of this ink was typically muddy.
As I’ve mentioned, I used this ink in cartridges. I assume the cartridges and bottles are the same ink, but the color on the cartridge tin is grayer than the color on the bottle. So there may be a difference, but since the cartridge ink does dry green it’s probably the same.
This ink does better in a wider and wetter nib. I used it in a fine nib when I first got it but it didn’t stay in the pen long. That nib was also on the dry side and the ink never appeared green, it stayed a muddy gray. The ink performed well but it was completely unimpressive and if not appearing gray, it was olive at best, even after drying.

Additional Reading

J. Herbin – Vert Empire – Handwritten Ink Review –
J. Herbin Vert Empire Fountain Pen Ink Review – OfficeSupplyGeek
J. Herbin Vert Empire Ink Review – Pens! Paper! Pencils!
The bottom line, I don’t like this ink. I doesn’t suite the thin nibs I typically use or the papers I typically write on which are usually off-white or cream colored. It does perform well and the only reason I won’t use it is the color.