Back in May 2019 I was asked by Roz Stendahl to be one of a few artists to help her test an A5, landscape format, Clairefontaine Goldline Watercolor Sketchbook provided by the Clairefontaine representative. Roz started out the testing before sending the book along for each us to fill a few spreads using various techniques and media.
I decided to fill a signature by testing assorted techniques: watercolor, water-soluble inks, gouache and watercolor pencils.
I was the fifth to work in the book and unfortunately by the time I received it the stitching was coming undone and the book pages and signatures were separating. I really enjoyed working in it but even the best watercolor paper can’t overcome poor construction. This can be seen in the video Roz posted in conjunction with her comprehensive review of the book. You can also see Roz’s testing and the testing from the other artists at the same link. Their work is exquisite and their comments enlightening.
This was a great opportunity for me to clarify what I look for in a visual journal. I know I’ll continue to experiment with commercially bound books because it’s just too much fun not to… but I also won’t give up binding my own books with my favorite papers in my favorite formats either!
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