Robert Oster Fire & Ice Ink Review

Inks From Atlanta Tour Part 3. I am way late to the game on this one, the Robert Oster Fire & Ice. This is the first Robert Oster ink I have tried and it did not disappoint. I bought the first bottle I saw Friday when I arrived at the show as I mistakenly assumed supply and demand was not working in the buyers’ favor. By Saturday night it was still selling all over the place so looks like supply has caught up.

  • Price: $16 / 50 ml or $.32 per ml
  • Color Family: Blue
  • Bottle opening Diameter: 11/16”
  • Pen I Used: Kanilea Pen Co Kilauea with a Broad nib


Robert Oster uses a small diameter bottle to hold 50 ml of ink. I would describe the container as utilitarian. Labeling is simple and clear and credit should be given to the Robert Oster camp for saving us money by not investing in more elaborate packaging. My preference is a bottle that is a little bigger in diameter for stability when I’m filling a pen with a stiff converter. My hands tend to make the pen jump around a little more than it should. Without a wide base there is more risk of an inky mess from a toppling bottle. That is in no way a reflection of the quality of the ink or the packaging, just a preference. The good part of this style is you can draw more ink out of the bottle without having to resort to syringe extraction for the last remnants.

Sheen & Shading

The blue is bright and vibrant. A strong color family resemblance to blue is an easy ID. Some have considered it a turquoise but I think it’s a bit darker than a traditional

Shading is prominent with my broad nib giving consistent gradual shading from dark to light, on some paper you get no defined color cut off points in the ink line. I like this gradual shading because the sharp cut off of color sometimes looks like a pen is running out of ink, again a lot of personal preference there.

Speaking of running out of the ink here is a shot of my pen running dry unintentionally but I was pretty surprised at the second tone sheen looks red in person. I never saw that coming. With a full fill I see nothing but blue.

I have several other blue inks that I like but you are probably better served with the two excellent ink side by side tools here than any comparison I could provide.

I’m sure there will be more Robert Oster ink in my future. I like how it performs, the color is beautiful and I can sound really cool when I tell people I only use ink that is imported from Australia. Seriously though, good ink and I’m glad I picked up a bottle.

Writing Samples

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8 thoughts on “Robert Oster Fire & Ice Ink Review

  1. Pretty ink. So far, I’m just using black ink to sketch with because I wash over it with watercolors. The Fire and Ice ink reminds me of Phthalo Blue from Daniel Smith. I tend to think in watercolors and Daniel Smith is my favorite brand.

    • Thanks Donna for the lead, I have never heard of Daniel Smith ink. The hue on the Fire & Ice is growing on me. I have so many other colors sometimes a blue doesn’t last real long in my pen. Take care

      • Hi Bob, Daniel Smith makes paint. It’s based in Seattle, WA. I did find out that the company does offer some walnut brown ink; so, it is possible that it may be soon expanding its line of products. I use Daniel Smith’s watercolor paints. If you go to the the web site and put walnut brown ink into the search window, it should take you to the page where the ink is located. But, just going to the web site, it will not be apparent that this ink is available.

        You can also contact Daniel Smith to see if there is any plans to expand its product line to include ink. I have used the watered down watercolors with a dip pen; but, I don’t know how it would work in a fountain pen, especially the granulating colors. But, dipping the fountain pen into the watercolor should cause no problem.

        • Thanks Donna for the lead, I will watch for any announcement for ink and maybe drop them an email asking about the walnut. Take care.

  2. Good review. I agree about Fire & Ice; it’s an ink I swooped down on as soon as I tried a sample. I love the sheen and shading. Not too many inks provide both features so generously.

    I noticed I get the most shading on Tomoe River paper when it pools. I have to hold the paper a certain way in the light, but then I can see the sheen all over the place. It’s kinda fun. I really do like this ink; in face, I’ve used so much of it lately, I’ll be buying a second bottle soon. I have an Aquamarine Pelikan M200 with an M400 stub nib, and in that pen, I get crazy amounts of both shading and sheen. In a stub it really looks beautiful.

    Robert Oster has some really pretty inks. I have a couple of them. Thanks for your review!

    • Thanks Debi for stopping by. I have refilled the Robert Oster a couple of times myself. I do find it responds differently on different paper. Most inks do but RO seems to vary more than others which makes it fun to experiment!

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