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Nib it in the bud with this Japanese legend

Nib making is in his genes. Taking the mantle from his father, Yoshinobu Nagahara, a proficient nib maker, who repaired and created exquisite nibs for 60 years, Yukio Nagahara has been following his footsteps to the T.

The 51-year-old, who has held pen workshops around the world including USA, Italy, France, Holland and Israel, is now in the city to be part of the pen clinic — a place where you can get the nibs of your pens repaired by the master himself.


Japanese nib maker Yukio Nagahara at work. Pic/ Suresh KK

“I have been doing this job for more than 12 years now. Since my father is a master nib artisan, before starting on my own, I knew a lot about this job. I had seen him doing this since my childhood days. My training has been through him. He taught me everything,” says Nagahara.

This is the second time that the nib maker is part of a pen clinic in India, the last time being in 2010. “Whenever I hold workshops, I listen to the needs and suggestions of my customers and on the basis of that information, I create nibs that would be liked by them. For me, the customer’s wish is most important,” explains Nagahara.

Nagahara’s father, Yoshinobu was known for reviving the technique of Naginata Togi nib, which was uniquely created using two nibs crafted together and Nagahara is no less. He has created many interesting nibs, one of them being the fude fountain pen nib.

“The unique part of the fude nib is that it writes like a paint brush. Basically the width of the line depends on the angle at which the pen is being held. The width becomes broader and leaner depending on the angle,” he informs.

While he is helping people through his workshops, the nib-maker wishes to impart his skill to others as well. “I want to educate people about the techniques of nib-making but I haven’t started on that. Hopefully in the future I will begin work on that aspect as well,” Nagahara signs off.

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