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INTEREST: Art Shops to Stop Carrying Manga Artist-Favored Ink


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Blanchimont



Joined: 25 Feb 2012
Posts: 1811
Location: Finland
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 2:58 pm Reply with quote
So, any idea if the rise in cost was due to production issues(raw materials etc), or simply an easy money grab by the producer toward a basically captive customer base? Also, anyone know how much the rise was to lead to such drastic measures, the article fails to mention that tidbit?
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MarshalBanana



Joined: 31 Aug 2014
Posts: 3381
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 3:11 pm Reply with quote
What alternatives are there? This Ink really suits the Shojo style.
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overlordrae



Joined: 16 Dec 2010
Posts: 61
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 4:41 pm Reply with quote
Blanchimont wrote:
So, any idea if the rise in cost was due to production issues(raw materials etc), or simply an easy money grab by the producer toward a basically captive customer base? Also, anyone know how much the rise was to lead to such drastic measures, the article fails to mention that tidbit?

My guess is probably captive audience, or maybe custom prices went up. I use this ink, and it's my favorite art tool. There really isn't anything else on the market much like it, except MAYBE Blick's watercolor inks(I have never tried them but I doubt Blick is very accessible to Japanese retailers anyway).

Here's to hoping they find a solution. Dr. PH Martin is a great brand and I know I'd be the same too if it became unavailable in the USA.
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Sakagami Tomoyo



Joined: 06 Dec 2008
Posts: 787
Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 6:23 pm Reply with quote
If it was to gouge a captive audience it backfired a bit, given the art shops that will no longer be stocking it because they figure the increase will put too many customers off. And retailers ceasing to stock something because of it getting more expensive is not a decision they make lightly, so it sounds significantly more expensive, likely beyond the usual scope of price increase for the sake of greater profit. I'd guess it's an issue with production costs, though I can't imagine what.
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zawa113
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Joined: 19 Jan 2008
Posts: 7117
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 7:02 pm Reply with quote
It's interesting to learn that an entire color palette and modern look might be contributed to by just a single brand's ink. I do hope they all find a replacement before then, shame it's going away (well, not "away" away, but much harder to get)
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EleutheroMaster



Joined: 15 Aug 2011
Posts: 79
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 7:06 pm Reply with quote
Can't they use coloring pencils or a PC paint programme?
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Sakagami Tomoyo



Joined: 06 Dec 2008
Posts: 787
Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 7:59 pm Reply with quote
EleutheroMaster wrote:
Can't they use coloring pencils or a PC paint programme?

Of course they can. They can also use other inks. It's just that they really like this ink.
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overlordrae



Joined: 16 Dec 2010
Posts: 61
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 8:24 pm Reply with quote
A lot of other inks aren't really comparable because these are essentially ultra-pigmented liquid watercolors that are permanent they dry. So you get the vibrancy and luminosity of watercolors, but layering possibilities similar to acrylic inks without the muddying of colors. They're also not as hard on brushes as acrylic inks, so your brushes will last longer.

Looking it up, it does seem like the price is going up stateside too, so might be a production issue after all. It still sucks that the retailers aren't even giving artists a chance to decide if they still want to buy the product, though. TBH, a full set of colors for Dr. PH. Martin still cost me less than what my art school made me shell out for oils.
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unready



Joined: 07 Jun 2009
Posts: 380
Location: Illinois, USA
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 10:37 pm Reply with quote
This situation seems like the perfect opportunity to establish dominance in newly-emerging Japanese watercolor ink smuggling rackets.

Hey, buddy, you wanna buy some ink? I know a guy who knows a guy. It'll cost ya, but it's the good stuff, legit.
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
Posts: 8102
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 10:51 pm Reply with quote
Unless they're contractually obligated to quit now or take on a ton of expensive stock they might get stuck with, it seems premature to second guess your buyers. Why not just see what happens when the price increases? If the bottom falls out of the market, then stop buying new stock and sell to the remaining diehards until your inventory is exhausted. If people are willing to pay the increased price, then you're good to keep going.

On another note, I must've read the headline in the dropdown menu and the title bar 5 times before I realized it said "artist-favored" and not "artist-flavored." I kept trying to figure out why artist-flavored ink was even a thing, and what it would taste like. I thought it might be some celebrity mangaka tie-in, like vials of Elvis's sweat. Laughing
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Sakagami Tomoyo



Joined: 06 Dec 2008
Posts: 787
Location: Melbourne, VIC, Australia
PostPosted: Fri May 10, 2019 11:42 pm Reply with quote
Gina Szanboti wrote:
Why not just see what happens when the price increases? If the bottom falls out of the market, then stop buying new stock and sell to the remaining diehards until your inventory is exhausted.

Because there's every chance of winding up with a whole lot of stock you can't move, at least not without taking a loss on it. Depending how much the price increase is, what minimum order quantities from the manufacturer/distributor are, etc, it could be a very unattractive prospect. And there is a point where even the most diehard will say "no way, that's too much for that". As I said earlier, this is not a decision that retailers tend to make lightly.
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
Posts: 1311
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 1:05 am Reply with quote
Huh, I wouldn't have guessed it was a US company behind this supply.
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yuna49



Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 2871
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 5:14 am Reply with quote
Sure is a lot of product from this manufacturer at Amazon. Is this the ink in question?

Dr. Ph. Martin's 400034-XXX Black Star India Ink, 1.0 oz, Black, Matte https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001UN1K2I/

S9/bottle
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TheKillerAngel



Joined: 02 Mar 2018
Posts: 27
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 10:59 am Reply with quote
I wouldn't be surprised if these price increases had something to do with the Trump tariffs, given that these inks are made by a US company and a lot of businesses have seen their production costs increase because of them.
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AJ (LordNikon)



Joined: 14 Apr 2009
Posts: 319
PostPosted: Sat May 11, 2019 7:47 pm Reply with quote
yuna49 wrote:
Sure is a lot of product from this manufacturer at Amazon. Is this the ink in question?
Dr. Ph. Martin's 400034-XXX Black Star India Ink, 1.0 oz, Black, Matte https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001UN1K2I/
S9/bottle

Covnam wrote:
Huh, I wouldn't have guessed it was a US company behind this supply.


I don't think either comment is fair, and would be more than willing to speculate that the demand for ink just does not exist as it use to with greater use of computer imagining. But, if we want to get in to a nationalism debate, then Japan is in the same boat with photographic film, a media still preferred by MANY photographers world wide. FujiFilm has jacked up film prices and discontinued film in droves over the past five years, with three price hikes in four years.

https://www.fujifilm.com/news/n190225.html

This is not an anime/manga only issue, nor is this a national/tariff things; this is simply economics of scale at play, and the reality is that the demand for traditional analog materials simply are not as great in the digital era.

Need more evidence, look at magnetic tape, how about traditional CRTs, or any other commodity loses value as it is replaced by newer technologies... Technology has changed, and like it or not, the demand and the profits simply do not exist today as they did a decade, two decades ago, or longer. There's two options, raise prices, sometimes dramatically, or go out of business; however, to immediately start blaming corporate greed or international politics, just comes off as ignorant, uninformed, and flat out as emotional rhetoric.
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