Writing instruments are one of our greatest passions. We have been designing pens, pencils and markers for years. Some of them even were granted patents. Writing instruments have some magic and powerful energy on more than just one level and often carry significance way beyond their cost or technology of making. Pens can be subject of pride and distinction. They somehow inspire people to believe that with "THIS NEW PEN" life will change and students start believing that they will pass exam or write essay better, managers would believe that they will work better and their career will improve or a better sales deal will be signed with "THIS PEN".
O! And did we mention that writing instruments are some of the most ancient tools of humans? Creative tool, that is.
Like design process of any product, design of pens also starts with "thoughts on paper" - hand sketches. A lot of line and/or color hand sketches. Sometimes it is best to disengage the brain (except for the part that controls hand movements) and let your pencil fly on paper following... following... heart or something that resides in heart area rather then head.
Of course, any "flying on paper" must at certain point lead to a design which will be not only beautiful, but also ergonomic and technologically make-able. And not just that, but it also must be strictly within targeted tooling and production costs. So, designing pens is a pleasure and a pain at the same time.