I'm awaiting arrival of the next set of course notes for my fine art degree with huge anticipation. In the meantime I've been ordering all kinds of interesting drawing materials in preparation, including pens.
It so happens my home is surrounded by clumps of bamboo and as I need bamboo drawing pens, it seemed a pity not to have a go at making my own.
This 'how to' video has a commentary in french, but even if you don't understand the words, the pictures show the technique very clearly http://youtu.be/1KWhQBaktzs
I stripped the outer layers from the thin end of a cane, which was alive and green underneath. I shall dry some before making more pens and use sharper, thinner knives next time. The craftsman in the video makes it look so easy and
his pen is beautiful. My first attempt lacks any finesse and is not a
pretty sight. But I shall persevere.