Long Time No Blog!

Life has gotten a little crazy lately and I haven’t had much time to spend on this website. But I have been trying to spend a few minutes each day filling a page of a sketchbook, at least. I can also report that I broke from my recent habit of only keeping one daily notebook and one sketchbook, and started a new single-subject notebook with a pretty big theme: life changes! I am about to change jobs and move, and after the dust settles, I’m hoping to have more time for more writing about other notebooks.

So far the life change notebook has a lot of to-do lists about purging belongings, moving furniture, possible renovations, sketches of floorplans and assorted other envisionings of a different lifestyle. We’ll see if they all pan out! As for the purging of belongings, I’ll be needing to thin out my collection of notebooks, so stay tuned for some random giveaways!

Explorers’ Sketchbooks

This looks like a lovely book, full of travel sketches and notes on flora and fauna found in uncharted places: Explorers’ Sketchbooks.

“This remarkable book showcases 70 such sketchbooks, kept by intrepid men and women as they journeyed perilous and unknown environments—frozen wastelands, high mountains, barren deserts, and dense rainforests—with their senses wide open.”

Available at Amazon.

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Paula Wolfert’s Notebook

Another nice example of a cook’s notebook, this time from the renowned cookbook author Paula Wolfert:

 

Read more at: Her Memory Fading, Paula Wolfert Fights Back With Food – The New York Times

Artists and Their Sketchbooks

Thoughts on sketchbook keeping from various artists:

Allen Shaw, Berlin
I SPEAK through my watercolour sketches. I often tell people, “I am the sketchbook and you are my song.” It started off with a course at NID called Environmental Perception, which required us to go into villages and sketch. I have done a permanent repeat in the course since then! I have kept roughly the same academic structure from college, though. But, I still follow a structure.

For instance, I always draw a map in all my sketches.

IN MY SKETCHBOOK: Everything, right from dead fish to architecture. A residency in Finland was one of my most memorable sketching experiences. It was on a raft and, as I dangled my legs in water, I was reminded of Huckleberry Finn.

AN ARTIST’S SKETCHES I LOVE: I’d love to see sketches of the late Austrian painter, Egon Schiele.

Prashant Miranda, Toronto
I HAVE maintained sketchbooks since I was a student at the National Institute of Design — I went from keeping written diaries to visual journals. My odd sketchbooks come in all sorts of shapes and sizes in the last @ years and have now become a visual documentation of my life and travels.

There was a time when I didn’t have a camera and this was an observant way of doing that. Recipes, phone numbers, a calendar of events — practically everything goes into my sketchbook. It is the closest release for my art; when I do a series for an exhibition, it stems from the initial studies in my sketchbooks.

 

Read more at: Artists reveal what’s in their sketchbooks – Life and style

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John Glenn’s Notebook

Here’s something very cool, sent to me by a longtime reader:

From an exhibit at the Ohio State University library honoring the late John Glenn.

Jason Tselentis’ Notebooks

In an article at Howdesign.com , Jason Tselentis writes about the best new notebooks for designers and creatives and how to choose a notebook — but I like this photo of some old ones he’s already been using:

“For the work I do and the vast amount of notes I take, a lined notebook is my tool of choice. My brand of choice? That’s the funny thing, I don’t have one.

Some designers and illustrators are loyal to a specific brand. I’ve met those who love Field Notes. Others swear by Moleskine. Even Michael Bierut came clean about his notebook of choice: the 10 × 7⅛ inch National Blank Book Company composition book. But I’m neither a loyalist nor a purist, and one look at my notebook collection proves it.”

Read more at: New Year, New Notes: The Best Notebooks for Designers & Creatives – HOW Design

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Valentine’s Day at LoveNotebooks

Our friends at LoveNotebooks.com are celebrating Valentine’s Day by giving away a Paperblanks Journal and Ten Design Pen on February 15th– share your favorite love poem in the comments on this post to enter!

 

Lanford Wilson’s Notebooks

I had never heard of this Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright, but I like the looks of his notebooks!

[Playwright Lanford Wilson] passed away in 2011 and left his papers to the University of Missouri Libraries. The collection includes correspondence, working notebooks, drafts and proof copies, and well as work related to Wilson’s personal interests, such as gardening and art collecting.

Source: Monday Manuscript: Notebooks from a Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright – Library News Hub

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Dreamday Pattern Journals: Review and Giveaway

Dreamday Pattern Journals, from Laurence King Publishing, are another coloring book/journal hybrid, similar to the Coloring Notebook I reviewed a few months ago. Six designs are available, incorporating pages of beautiful patterns backed by blank pages inside a flexibound journal. The range of themes will please any designer or art history buff– from Mid-Century Modern/Scandinavian, to Renaissance Florence. The samples I received are Japanese and Moroccan designs, and Heraldic and Art Deco are also available.

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The 6 1/2 x 9″ journals come shrinkwrapped, with a belly-band that shows some of the designs within. When you remove the belly-band, the cover is free of any branding. Even the barcode sticker is easily removable. The cover is a wrapped flexible material, with a contrasting color printed on the spine.

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The texture of the cover slightly detracts from the intricacy of the pattern if you’re looking at it up close, but that is a minor quibble– overall the cover design is beautiful. The patterned endpapers inside are a nice touch too.

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The first page provides a space to write your contact details, and the rest of the interior 108 pages is the patterned pages and blank pages. The signatures are stitched but the glue on the spine makes it difficult to open totally flat.

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I wondered if the pattern pages would be usable for note-writing– some notebooks that have faint patterns on the pages can be written over without too much visual confusion, but in this case, I think it would be really distracting. The pattern pages are really for coloring and doodling. The paper is of good quality, though, and I found that most of my test pens and markers did not bleed or show through. This means you should be able to truly use the blank pages for writing and drawing and free-form doodling.

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You can buy these on Amazon or in bookshops and art/stationery/gift stores, and at $14.95 they are a decent value and a nice gift. And I have three extra samples that I’ll give away, one each to three lucky winners selected from entries received in these ways:

On Twitter, tweet something containing “Dreamday Pattern Journal @LaurenceKingPub @NotebookStories”, and follow @LaurenceKingPub and @NotebookStories

On Facebook, “like” the Laurence King page and the Notebook Stories page and post something containing the words “Dreamday Pattern Journal” on the Notebook Stories page.

On your blog, post something containing the words “Dreamday Pattern Journal” and “Notebook Stories” and link back to this post.

The deadline for entry is Friday February 10, 2017 at 11:59PM, EST. Good luck everyone!
And please remember to check my posts on Facebook and Twitter for an announcement of the winner. Please allow a couple of weeks for me to check all the entries and determine the winners.

Notebook Addict of the Week: Michael

This week’s addict tweeted this photo of a nicely stuffed box of notebooks! Looks like over 30 notebooks in about 4 or 5 years? I’d say yes: he’s an addict!

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Thanks for sharing, Michael!

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