Stillman and Birn
middle
 
gallery
contact us
blog Alpha Series Beta Series Gamma Series Delta Series Epsilon Series Zeta Series Nova Series Paper Specs
Monday, November 20, 2017

Nova Series Sample Paper Giveaway

We’re giving away 100 sample packs of Stillman & Birn’s new Nova Series mixed media toned paper. The 5” x 7” packs contain 15 sheets, 5 of each of the three Nova Series shades: beige, grey and black.

Nova Series toned art papers support mixed media artwork. These papers are suitable for: colored pencil, ink, gel pens, paint markers, watercolor, gouache, chalk pastels, oil pastels, water-soluble graphite, charcoal, Conté crayon, colored dry pigments, watercolor pencil, soapstone pencil, etc. Nova Series sketchbooks are available in softcover and wirebound formats, as well as in 22” x 30” loose sheets.

———————–

TO ENTER CONTEST:
Simply email us with your name to: contest@stillmanandbirn.com. We will automatically enter you. You will receive an email reply confirming your entry within 48 hours. Entry to this contest closes November 25, 2017 at 11:59 PM EST.

NOTIFICATION:
Winners will be picked at random on November 26, 2017 and will be announced on our blog and social media sites that day. We will naturally respect any winner’s instructions to remain unnamed.

RESTRICTIONS:
You must be over the age of 18 in order to enter. No purchase required. No geographical limitations.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, November 20, 2017

Thelma

Artist: Carrie LeBlanc, United States
Artist Statement: I was very excited about the release of the Nova Series and wanted to take full advantage of what this new paper had to offer. I wanted to experiment with using the paper as a mid tone, so I had used acrylic gouache both as a transparent and opaque medium. My cat, Thelma, who is a grey tabby would be the purrfect subject to use. I used a limited palette with similar values of the paper in order to create the form of her fur. I had thinned the black acrylic gouache so that it could be used in as a transparent paint in order for the paper to show through and create different values. Using opaque white really makes the lighter areas give more depth against the paper. Finally, I used the acrylic gouache’s opaque attributes for her eyes in addition to using saturated hues to really make a stark contrast with the rest of the image. I had a lot of fun with this piece, and I’m excited to try out the Nova Series in new and different ways.

MEDIA: Gouache
SURFACE: Nova Series – Heavyweight – 150 gsm – Grey – Medium Grain Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Carrie LeBlanc, also known as omanomagon, is an artist who mostly focuses on 2D illustrations. She has also been known to dabble in 3D digital sculpture and 2D animation.
Website: www.omanomagon.com
Instagram: @omanomagon
Twitter: @omanomagon

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Saturday, November 4, 2017

Epsilon Series

Heavyweight: 150 gsm
Shade: White
Surface: Smooth
Media: Pen & Ink, dry media, light wash
Gallery: http://www.stillmanandbirn.com/gallery/epsilon
Recently described as the “fountain pen friendly sketchbook” on The Fountain Network forum.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, October 30, 2017

The Tiger

Artist: Edith Van der Ster, Spain
Artist Statement: This small sketch was one of my first tries with acrylic gouache. I have been using my sketchbooks to really create a habit of sketching and to improve my drawing and painting. I mainly use ink and watercolor in my Beta Series sketchbook, and I have recently started a smaller Gamma Series sketchbook, that I really like as well. Sometimes I try out things with a bigger painting in mind, but most of the time it is just for the joy of painting!!

Media: Ink and acrylic gouache
Surface: Beta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Cold Press Finish

Instagram: @edithvanderster

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, October 16, 2017

Holland Hotel Courtyard

Artist: Tim Oliver, United States
Artist Statement: Sketching is a huge part of my art! Every finished watercolor piece that I do, begins its life as a sketch of some sort in my sketchbook. This is a sketch of the courtyard of the historic Holland Hotel in Alpine, Texas. It was drawn directly from observation in ink and watercolor wash was painted over in drawing. This is a typical technique that I use as I explore composition, values and color. All of my final watercolor paintings, both plein air and studio, begin with studies such as this.

MEDIA: Ink and watercolor
SURFACE: Alpha Series – Heavyweight – 150 gsm – White – Medium Grain Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Tim Oliver is a full time Landscape Architect and passionate watercolor artist and sketcher. He paints exclusively in watercolor and is dedicated to consistently keeping a sketching regimen. He sketches in pencil, pen and ink, water soluble graphite and watercolor. He holds associate membership in the Outdoor Painters Society, American Watercolor Society, National Watercolor Society and West Texas Watercolor Society. He is also a member of the GAS Painting group and Urban Sketchers Texas.
www.timoliverart.com
www.tim-sketchbook.blogspot.com

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Sunday, October 8, 2017

Guiness® Extra Stout

Artist: Dorrie Rifkin, United States
Artist Statement: No matter what I paint, much planning goes into it. Having been commissioned to paint a bottle of Guinness® Extra Stout – whose color is advertised as being equally as deep as its taste – made this job a bit more stressful.

I always start a painting with an underlying detailed drawing. My Two Commandments of drawing/painting type are (1) Thou shalt not run short of space and then have to squeeze in characters, and (2) Thou shalt have no typos before thee. (My love of both drawing and painting type predates the computer era, harkening to my former life as an art director.) Motto: Planning is key.

I usually begin painting with the label. If that works, all else will fall into place. The bottle proper is where the fun is. Honest, I just toss, splatter, and pray… and in the process give the paper a real beating. Watercolor paint has a mind of its own. I think it’s wiser to love the way of watercolor than to try to tighten your controls.

MEDIA: Watercolor
SURFACE: Zeta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Smooth Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
An Englewood, NJ, resident, Dorrie Rifkin paints from her passions. Thirty years’ experience as an award-winning art director ignited and cemented a life-long love affair with typography. Her other passions — music, New York City, and family – are palpable in her work. Every painting has a personal story.

Dorrie Rifkin’s paintings have won prizes in many international and national juried shows. She is a signature member of the Baltimore Watercolor Society, Pennsylvania Watercolor Society, Transparent Watercolor Society of America and the Northeast Watercolor Society. Her work has been selected for both Splash 14: Light and Color and Splash 15: Creative Solutions (North Light Books) and she was profiled in Watercolor Artist magazine’s “Ones to Watch” feature.

Website: www. dorrierifkin.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/dorrierifkin
Instagram: @dorrierifkin

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Saturday, October 7, 2017

Tutorial: Establishing Perspective in Dividing the Space Between Objects

In this excellent Craftsy tutorial, Paul Heaston explains the step-by-step process of establishing perspective in drawing a row of identical objects fading into the distance. Paul makes this understandable even to the beginner. A great read:  http://craftsy.me/2hUHWd7

 

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Thursday, October 5, 2017

The M and N in Minnesota Breweries

Artist: Jeffrey Nelson, United States
Artist Statement: This M and N is made with the negative space left over from lettering every single brewery in the state of Minnesota. I did the layout and handlettering on thick and creamy sheets of Stillman & Birn Delta Series paper with a Pentel brush pen and good old Sharpie markers. This project was commissioned by The Growler magazine to be used on merchandise ranging from t-shirts to blankets.

MEDIA: Ink and (alcohol-based) markers
SURFACE: Delta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – Ivory – Cold Press Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Jeffrey Nelson is an illustrator based out of St. Paul, Minnesota. He does business as Jephemera because 1.) his name is Jeff and the nature of his work is ephemeral, and, 2.) Do you know how many Jeff Nelsons there are in Minnesota? His areas of concentration are handlettering, murals, maps, and general illustration. His local S&B dealer is Wet Paint.

Jeff can be found at…
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Jephemera/
Instagram: @jephemera
Etsy Shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/Jephemera
Website: http://www.jephemera.com/

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, October 2, 2017

Las Vegas

We share the grief of the nation on this day of mourning. #LasVegas

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, September 25, 2017

Lobstermen Reflections, Crail Harbour – Scotland

Artist: Iain Stewart, United States
Media: Watercolors
Surface: Beta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Cold Press Finish
Iain Stewart is a watercolor artist / illustrator and a signature member of both the American and National Watercolor Societies. His work has received numerous awards in international competition and he is a sought after juror and workshop instructor. He is also an architectural illustrator with an international clientele – a business he has run for the last 20 years. Iain maintains a studio in Opelika, Alabama.

Website: http://iainstew.fineartstudioonline.com/
Blog: http://stewartwatercolors.blogspot.com/

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Friday, September 22, 2017

Mixed Media Portrait

Artist: Sebastian Tinajero, United States
Artist Statement: This piece began as a pencil sketch inside my sketchbook during one of my routine visits at my favorite coffee shop where I often go to draw and paint. I usually visualize colors according to the sense of mood I’m feeling while working on a project. For this piece I was feeling hues of pinks, reds, and violets, which is what the entire portrait consists of. After the sketch was done I decided I wanted to develop the drawing further and turn it into a finished, complete portrait. So I outlined it using my India ink brush pen. The tiny crosshatching lines were drawn using Micron ink pens; I used a wash of watercolor for the face and body and then gouache for the hair and background.

One of the techniques I use very often is laying down some values with crosshatching and then utilizing watercolor as almost a glaze over the ink. I find that this helps give values a greater sense of depth. I carry my sketchbooks everywhere I go and this portrait was done in my Zeta Series sketchbook. I love the smoothness of the paper since it allows for nice fine lines and the paper can support quite a great amount of wet media.

MEDIA: Ink, watercolor, gouache
SURFACE: Zeta Series – Extra heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Smooth Finish

Instagram – @sebliminal_artist

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Thursday, September 14, 2017

Det Stride Band (see editor’s note for translation)

Artist: Tomas Björnsson, Denmark
Artist Statement: I was asked to do a poster illustration of a band playing crazy lyric folk style music for kids. I thought that an ink and watercolour drawing would fit the three guys and their sound. Traditional media for a traditional sounding band. I chose to do caricatures of the band members and to enhance the whimsy of their personalities.

Every drawing starts in a sketchbook, this one too. The finished drawing was done on a single sheet of drawing paper, which was then transferred to a sheet of Alpha Series paper, because this paper is smooth enough for pen drawings and still accepts watercolours. The lines are drawn with a fine point fountain pen loaded with waterproof ink and watercolours were added. I used coloured pencils to enhance a few of the highlights. The finished drawing was scanned and digitally hand drawn type was added.

MEDIA: Ink, watercolours, coloured pencil
SURFACE: Alpha Series – Heavyweight – 150 gsm – White – Medium Grain Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Tomas Björnsson is a Danish illustrator living in Copenhagen. He works with a broad range of clients, from international publishing houses to local youth clubs, with jobs ranging from book covers and editorials to posters and graphic recordings. He works with pixels or pigments depending on the job.
Blog: “Inking Copenhagen “ http://copenhagenink.blogspot.dk/
Website: www.tomasbjornsson.dk

EDITOR’S NOTE:
The title “Det Stride Band” (literally The Strid Band) refers to Jakob Martin Strid, a Danish satirist, cartoonist and children’s book writer.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Thursday, September 7, 2017

Delta Series

DELTA SERIES
Extra Heavyweight: 270 gsm
Shade: Ivory
Surface: Cold Press Finish
Media: Dry & wet media, watercolor, ink
Gallery: http://www.stillmanandbirn.com/gallery/delta

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, August 28, 2017

Gamma Series

GAMMA SERIES
Heavyweight: 150 gsm
Shade: Ivory
Surface: Medium Grain Finish
Media: Dry media, light wash, ink
Gallery: http://www.stillmanandbirn.com/gallery/gamma 

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Beta Series

BETA SERIES
Extra Heavyweight: 270 gsm
Shade: White
Surface: Cold Press Finish
Media: Dry & wet media, watercolor, ink
Gallery: http://www.stillmanandbirn.com/gallery/beta 

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Saturday, August 5, 2017

From Urban Sketchers Symposium 2017

Chicago Theater Marquis
By Urban Sketchers founder, Gabi Campanario
The landmark Chicago Theater on State Street, built in 1921.

MEDIA: Ink and watercolor
SURFACE: Zeta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Smooth Finish

Thank you to the Urban Sketchers organization for inviting Stillman & Birn to be a sponsor of this year’s symposium. Thank you, especially, to members of the Urban Sketchers’ Chicago Chapter for hosting this event and for treating us and the other exhibiting sponsors so well. Special mention of appreciation to Alex Zonis, Mary Ernst, Joel Berman, Barbara Weeks, Joel Winstead, and Andrew Banks.

#uskchicago2017

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Monday, July 24, 2017

Update on Nova Series Product Launch

Our upcoming Nova Series sketchbooks are made with toned paper that will support mixed media artwork. There are three shades: beige, grey and black; the sketchbooks will be offered in softcover and wirebound formats. Production is proceeding on schedule and we expect to make our first shipments the week of July 31. From there, it will take two to three weeks for the sketchbooks to flow through our distribution channels and reach store shelves in North America.

Nova Series toned paper sketchbooks are great for mixed media artwork because the paper is made with both internal and surface sizing. Benefits of double sizing:
1. Exceptional wet strength.
2. Keeps pigment from penetrating deep into the paper, forcing it to remain high on the surface. As a result, pigment glows on this paper.
3. Retards penetration of wet media (bleed through). Therefore, both sides of sketchbook sheet can be used.
4. Protects surface from abrasive effects of multiple erasures.
5. Strengthens surface to allow for wide range of inking techniques without feathering.
6. Allows for blending and layering with colored pencils and pastels.

Nova Series papers are suitable for: colored pencil, ink, gel pens, paint markers, watercolor, gouache, chalk pastels, oil pastels, water-soluble graphite, charcoal, Conté crayon, colored dry pigments, watercolor pencil, soapstone pencil, etc.

Participants at the Urban Sketchers Symposium in Chicago this week will be the first to see this new range. Full disclosure: Stillman & Birn is a sponsor.

For advance product information: http://bit.ly/2eGi17J

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Saturday, July 1, 2017

Zeta Series Sketchbook Tour

Thank you to Mark Fraley for posting this great video sketchbook tour of his recently completed Zeta sketchbook. https://youtu.be/W9J4Ti3_aSk  Shown here, “Bighorn Sheep”

MEDIA: Ink, Watercolor, Collage
SURFACE: Zeta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Smooth Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Mark Fraley is a collage and portrait artist based in Broomfield, Colorado. He creates images that inspire hope and reveal a sense of calm. His inspiration comes from three places – his work as an early childhood special education teacher, his family life with his wife and three children, and his faith. Mark is the creator of a sketchbook story, “The Creation of Calm” published by Cladach Publishing and available on Amazon.

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Saturday, June 17, 2017

Nova Series – Coming August, 2017

Toned paper sketchbooks for mixed media artwork.
Three shades: beige, grey, black
Bindings: Softcover & wirebound
Supports multiple erasures without pilling; holds ink line without feathering
Suitable for a wide range of dry and wet media, including: colored pencil, ink, gel pens, paint markers, watercolors, water-soluble graphite, gouache, charcoal, etc.
Exceptional wet strength and surface luminescence…pigment glows on these papers!

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss
Friday, June 16, 2017

Poble Espanyol

Artist: Brenda Swenson, United States
Artist Statement: Great memories from my workshop in Spain. The Poble Espanyol (literally, Spanish town) is an open-air architectural museum in Barcelona. Built for the 1929 Barcelona International Exposition, the museum consists of 117 full-scale buildings, which recreate an Iberian village. It also contains a theater, restaurants, artisan workshops and a museum of contemporary art.

MEDIA: Ink and Watercolor
SURFACE: Beta Series – Extra Heavyweight – 270 gsm – White – Color Press Finish

ABOUT THE ARTIST:
Brenda Swenson is the artist author of two books, “Keeping a Watercolor Sketchbook” (Award of Excellence Finalist) and “Steps to Success in Watercolor”. Her paintings and sketches have been featured in Splash 11, 12 & 14, Artistic Touch 4, Creative Freedom, Watercolor Artist, Watercolor Magazine, Watercolor Highlights, Wheels of Time, Plein Air Magazine and numerous other publications. Brenda has achieved signature status in WW, NWWS, and SDWS. An active participant in the arts community she has served on the board of directors for the National Watercolor Society and Watercolor West. She is in demand to demonstrate and teach her painting techniques to groups nationwide and abroad.
Instagram: @brenda_swenson
Website: www.swensonart.net
Blog: brendaswenson.blogspot.com

Facebooktwitterredditpinterestmail
Facebooktwittergoogle_plusrss