When ground in a suzuri stone with water these ink sticks produce ink that can be used to make deep black tones and subtle variations of gray. They are ideal for creating beautiful Asian ink paintings. The artist grade stick (YOSSB700) is made in Taiwan packaged in a paper box and peggable plastic bag. The professional quality ink stick (YOSSB900) is made in Japan and is packaged in a sturdy, paper box. The dot on the end of the box indicates the higher quality ink.