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The Blackwing Notebook

Sometimes I simply can’t help myself when I find lined notebook paper. A few months ago I was in Wet Paint and they had small notebooks by Blackwing (the company that makes the pencils with the rectangular erasers—I use the soft lead version to do my daily sudoku). The notebook is about 3.5 x 5.5 […]

Mixed media sketch on Zeta—Pentel Dye-based brush pen, water brush, watercolor, acrylic marker background and collage. On most smooth papers I've used the dye-based ink of this particular Pentel brush pen lifts off well and creates interesting effects. That wasn't the case on this paper. Lifting this water-soluble ink on this paper was problematic and even gentle attempts led to pilling of the surface.

Part Four: Working in the Smooth Zeta Soft-bound Journal from Stillman & Birn

Today is part four of a multi-part series on the Stillman & Birn (S&B) smooth surface Zeta journals. You can read part one here. This post deals with some mix-media approaches and some pros and cons I discovered about this paper. You can read part two here. In this post I write a bit  more […]

Direct brush sketch with sedimentary colors.

Part Three: Working in the Smooth Zeta Soft-bound Journal from Stillman & Birn

This is part three of a multi-part review of the smooth Zeta soft-bound journals from Stillman & Birn (S&B). You can see part one here. Yesterday I posted part two here. Working in Watercolor on the Smooth Zeta Paper I think it’s fair to say that most of my blog readers work with wet media—most […]

Using the Sakura Pigma Professional Brush pen in FB on the smooth Zeta paper. The lines are crisp, the pen is a bit draggy on this surface.

Part Two: Working in the Smooth Zeta Soft-bound Journal from Stillman & Birn

This is part two of a multi-part review of the Stillman & Birn (SB) Smooth Zeta Soft-bound journal. You can see part one here. Today I wanted to look at two approaches for which the smooth heavyweight Zeta is suited. Mixed Media Because of its weight the paper is particularly suited to collage and mixed […]

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Working in the Smooth Zeta Soft-bound Journal from Stillman & Birn

A couple months ago I picked up a Stillman & Birn Soft Cover Zeta Book. I don’t use Stillman & Birn books. I don’t care for the way they make their hardcover books and their papers are either too lightweight, or in other ways not responsive to the way I work. With so many other […]

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Review of the Seawhite of Brighton Sketchbook

Left: Water-soluble Color Pencil sketch of actress in the British comedy “Hebburn.” I first opened my first Seawhite of Brighton sketchbook in June of this year. I thought I’d be finished quickly (even though it’s a nice thick journal) and would write a comprehensive review.  Then life interrupted. I continued to work in the Seawhite […]

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The Shinola Sketchbook: A Review

Above: Dick sitting on a couch in the TV room. Stabilo All used dry. (I really fixated on those pens in his pocket.) The paper has a nice tooth for use with this and other dry media. ) In April of this year I started working in a Shinola Sketchbook. It’s important that you note I’m […]

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Everything Changes: The New Moleskine Sketchbooks

  Above: Label on the new Moleskines announcing the new paper. If you keep a journal or sketchbook long enough you’ll find particular favorites. A book that is just the right size to fit in your pack and in your hand. A book filled with just the right paper—paper perfectly (or nearly) suited to your […]

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QI: Beyond a Game Show

Left: Quick 9 x 12 inch sketch of comedian Phill Jupitus wearing a hat on a 2005 episode of "Q.I." (Note: he does have two ls in his first name. I didn't realize that when I labeled the sketch.) Brush pen with color added with 15 mm Montana Acrylic Marker; on Fluid Easy-Block 140 lb. […]

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End of Year Wrap Up—How Things Went in 2014

Above: Page spred from my 7.75 x 9.75 inch Strathmore 500 Series Mixed Media paper soft-covered journal. A direct brush portrait of Dick using a regular watercolor brush and Daniel Smith watercolors. I thought when better to show some more sketches of Dick than in an end of year wrap up when one of my […]

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