Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Thu Oct 29, 2015 5:11 pm

You were doing well in the museums, so don't forget to show us what you do there when you return. Lotta people would be delighted to have your museums to hand...
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Thu Oct 29, 2015 9:52 pm

Andre Jute wrote:You were doing well in the museums, so don't forget to show us what you do there when you return. Lotta people would be delighted to have your museums to hand...


I want to attack :lol: this one but is not that close to my house. Is about an hour trip and I have to change two trains to go there. Let's say to the other side of the city. And I count that I need about two months to sketch it.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Fri Oct 30, 2015 9:36 am

Alitogata wrote:I want to attack :lol: this one but is not that close to my house. Is about an hour trip and I have to change two trains to go there. Let's say to the other side of the city. And I count that I need about two months to sketch it.


Ambition is good. Energy is better. Perseverance is best.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Fri Oct 30, 2015 11:54 am

Andre Jute wrote:
Alitogata wrote:I want to attack :lol: this one but is not that close to my house. Is about an hour trip and I have to change two trains to go there. Let's say to the other side of the city. And I count that I need about two months to sketch it.


Ambition is good. Energy is better. Perseverance is best.


The forum Coach spoke wise for one more time.. :wink:
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby ikonographics » Fri May 13, 2016 8:24 am

Alitogata wrote:I had a very nice surprise the other day when I discovered in a store a range of very very nice hardbound sketchbooks that a local company produces.
These sketchbooks are very well made, with hard black covers, with acid free watercolour paper. I bought one at A4 size but the company produces these sketchbooks at A5 and A3 sizes also and with soft covers all in portrait binding.

The sketchbooks is this one. ( is not curved.. my camera does this :roll: )

DSC02446.JPG


and it has 48 paper sheets ( 90 pages) of 220 grs watercolour paper acid free as they told me when I contacted them.

DSC02448.JPG


I tested the paper and it didn't buckle neither lost its sizing and the paper is of the colour that I like the most, white enough to show nicely my watercolours.

Look what I made in this sketchbook to get an idea about the paper.

Julie the Kings Charles Puppy- Watercolour Sketch- Artist Marialena Sarris - 10-2015.JPG


A Rose- Watercolour Painting- Artist Marialena Sarris - 10- 2015.JPG


And the paper has another advantage. Dries fast and completely flat. See at the photo above that I show you the side of the the book to see that the pages that I made my sketches have dried completely flat. Excellent for this weight of paper.

The only minor ( for some people not for me anyway) is that the paper has two different surfaces, the one side is like vellum with very very light tooth and the other one completely slick something like bristol. But is properly bound in order to have each surface matching with the same kind on the opposite page.
But personally I have no problem with this thing as I like flat of the hot pressed kind of papers.

The book also stays completely flat when open.

DSC02447.JPG


The company is called NEOHART and the sketchbook I bought is this one: ( and you can see under the one I bought the full range of this sketchbooks).

http://www.neohart.gr/prod-en1634-a4-21 ... sheets.php


Hi I'm new to the forum and I see that you are also in Athens! Where did you buy that sketchbook? I saw one that looked similar at Plaisio, a few days ago, but they only had A4.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Wed Sep 07, 2016 3:20 pm

ikonographics wrote:
Alitogata wrote:Hi I'm new to the forum and I see that you are also in Athens! Where did you buy that sketchbook? I saw one that looked similar at Plaisio, a few days ago, but they only had A4.


And I'm too late in the discussion. Yes I'm in Athens and yes you can find these sketchbooks at Plaisio and only in A4 size.
For anyone interested here is a full review about these sketchbooks.

And below are reviews for various other sketchbooks and paint set..

http://www.marialenasarris.com/?cat=51

(Scroll down)
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Wed Sep 07, 2016 11:52 pm

Loved your reviews. If your reproductions (taken at different times, etc) permit comparison, it does seem as if the Strathmore 500 is the best paper, despite being a bit light. Especially the Poppy 15 June 2016, beautifully bright on Strathmore.

With an honourable mention for the Neohart doublesided paper. I looked into those books when you first told me about them, and they weren't for sale in the UK or Ireland.
Last edited by Andre Jute on Fri Sep 09, 2016 11:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Thu Sep 08, 2016 11:49 pm

Glad you like them. I made a review about Strathmore 400 sketchbook on Wet Canvas but I was too bored to copy it on my web site. Every day I say I have to move it to my web site and every day I find an excuse not to do it. :D

Anyway.. from all sketchbooks the best is indeed the Strathmore 500 mixed media at 190gsm. This is fantastic paper though it needs to iron it afterwards if you work on large sizes. ( not in the sketchbook of course). I bought a roll of this paper and I made on this my last starry sky that it was huge 106x106 cm. The paper performed perfectly. I ironed it afterwords and became super flat (this paper is 100% cotton so it doesn't have issues with heat).

I told you the other day that if you want a Neohart sketchbook so desperately I can send you one to give it a try. Is not something very special, I don't compare it of course with other more expensive sketchbooks with special papers ( all cotton etc) but it is easy going sketchbook and I'm about to completely fill the one that I have..

The sketchbooks that turn out to be a complete waste of money are the Fabrianos. It isn't good for nothing in particular. It doesn't work with watercolours at all, I try it with graphite pencils too and is not that good either, I wasted completely my money with it.. :cry:

O think that Fabriano is incompatible with me.. whatever I've bought from them didn't perform that good.
I;ll stick with the SS from now on! :lol: ( Strathmore - Saunders) No more experiments.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Fri Sep 09, 2016 11:57 pm

Those Venezia sketchbooks from Fabriano are filled with their student grade Accademia paper. A few years ago people raved about those sketchbooks, then went off them more recently when they bought another one. Maybe the formula was changed.

Actually, Fabriano's Artistico Hot Press, a 100% cotton paper that is relatively cheap where I live (compared to Saunders or Arches), is my favourite paper for working with pigmented ink, painting with brushes or drawing with Chinese fude pens.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Sat Sep 10, 2016 1:15 pm

Andre Jute wrote:Those Venezia sketchbooks from Fabriano are filled with their student grade Accademia paper. A few years ago people raved about those sketchbooks, then went off them more recently when they bought another one. Maybe the formula was changed.

Actually, Fabriano's Artistico Hot Press, a 100% cotton paper that is relatively cheap where I live (compared to Saunders or Arches), is my favourite paper for working with pigmented ink, painting with brushes or drawing with Chinese fude pens.


Let me tell you what happened because I searched about this matter.
The older versions were made with Academia 240 gsm paper while the newer ones are made with the same paper at 200 gsm.
The difference in performance between these two papers is like the difference between day and night.
A Greek fellow artist that met at Wet Canvas had the kindness to send me a sample of this Academia 240gsm which I tested.
Below is what I made on it.

Fabriano Academia 240 gsm review sketch- Artist Marialena Sarris- 7-2016.jpg
Fabriano Academia 240 gsm review sketch- Artist Marialena Sarris- 7-2016.jpg (93.21 KiB) Viewed 403 times


The thing is that I asked before buying these Fabriano books and I read all reviews available and they were all rather positive. That was the reason I bought the books.. how could I know after all, that they downgraded the paper quality and went for lighter paper.

They kept though the description of the product intact, saying that it contains a paper suitable for wet media.. Suitable their a$$, that was the reason they did it.. $$$$$$$ :evil: :twisted:
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Sat Sep 10, 2016 7:35 pm

That's a superb sketch. Nothing wrong with the original, heavier version of the paper, then. The change probably accounts for the change of attitude by quite a few constant sketchers.

If the new paper is good for nothing, throw it out. No matter how poor you are, it's what you put on the paper that creates the value, not the paper itself. It's not worth the irritation of working on poor surfaces.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Sun Sep 11, 2016 1:13 am

I will not throw these sketchbooks ( I bought two .. how stupid I was). I kept them and I stick in there other sketches that I have made on various sheets of papers and colour swatches and I keep also notes.
Andre this paper is not even good for watercolour swatches. It is tragicomic how poor it performs with all media ( except ball point pens.. ha ha haaaaaaa).

The Strathmore though are.. power!!

Check what I made at my Strathmore 400 sketchbook ( this is bound with 300 gsm CP paper).

A Red Orange Rose Study-Artist Marialena Sarris- © 10-9-2016.jpg
A Red Orange Rose Study-Artist Marialena Sarris- © 10-9-2016.jpg (202.48 KiB) Viewed 391 times


P.S Copyright and url label exist because I'm sick and tired with the unstoppable pinning towards Pinterest. Whatever they pin there is copied on Pinterest servers you know and if the image is not on my web site then is pinned with the url of the web site that the image was uploaded.
I made a fuss about this matter at Wet Canvas you know and they blocked the hot linking from there to Pinterest. I've also blocked Pinterest on my own web site after of course I asked them to remove several of my paintings from this malakia and that because I got to a point that half of my artworks were copied there at Pinterest without my permission. If I'm about to move all my web site's content to Pinterest why do I bother to setup and pay for my own web site?? :roll:
Anyway.. lesson learned. From now on all my artwork images will have my url. And those who pin them without hotlink to my web site, will be shot on spot... :twisted: :twisted:
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Andre Jute » Sun Sep 11, 2016 2:07 am

That rose is really very fine. Even the background shows your experience making those night sky images.

Its best to take an uncompromisingly tough attitude right from the beginning about the use of your copyright property and your name. Nobody likes you better for letting them steal from you, and the internet is a mechanism for facilitating theft of artistic property.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Sun Sep 11, 2016 2:58 am

It is not that they use the images, though they can do this too. Is that they copy them on these damn social media and this Pinterest that all of them work as internet over the internet. And then if someone searches for your work, he founds a trillion links that send him where else?? .. to Pinterest or to Facebook no matter if you don't have and he doesn't have an account there or you don't want to search for you in there.
Not on your own web site that you pay for it in the end of the day. These web sites steal our traffic in other words.

Not to mention that any changes you do on your web site go in vain because even if you remove a painting because you don't want to have it online any more for whatever reason, is already copied on their servers and so remains online for everyone to see it. ( and search it and repin it if s/he likes).
You can't even control your content in other words with all these web sites.
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Re: Best Sketchbook for ink and watercolor these days?

Postby Alitogata » Sun Sep 11, 2016 3:09 am

Andre Jute wrote:That's a superb sketch. Nothing wrong with the original, heavier version of the paper, then. The change probably accounts for the change of attitude by quite a few constant sketchers.
.


Oops I didn't get this.. No the change accounts because of the money grabbing attitude of Fabriano. All those who read my review said that they wouldn't like to buy such a sketchbook.. I mean well bound but with completely crap paper. I didn't see anyone asking for such a change. Fabriano wanted probably to increase its profits and so bound the sketchbooks with lighter paper.

Check what this guy said at wetcanvas and check the links he gave too.
http://www.wetcanvas.com/forums/showpos ... ostcount=8

It is certain that the paper that his sketchbook had was different than the paper that has mine. The guy said that he worked on both sides of the paper. I couldn't work not even on the front one..
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