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Today's artists work their sketchbooks in many different ways. Some use their sketchbooks in foundation courses for recording ideas in the field. Others use them as art journals for finished work, utilizing a variety of dry and wet media. Stillman & Birn meets this wide range of artists' needs with sketchbooks containing robust, high-performance art papers.

Only Stillman & Birn offers a sketchbook system that gives artists the choice of paper weight, shade, and surface type best suited to their specific techniques. With both internal and surface sizing, our papers have exceptional wet strength that supports the application of multiple washes. Similarly, just as the paper's sizing retards water absorption, pigment stays on the surface of the sheet. The result: remarkably glowing color!

 

Stillman & Birn bindings are equally rugged. Our hardbound bindings - stiff when new - are designed to be broken in. The spines get eased in and then lay completely flat, accomodating both two-page drawing layouts and flatbed scanning.

Bound in the United States, our sketchbook system offers artists a choice of three paper surfaces:

• Medium Grain – distinctive tooth, suitable for all dry media, and will also accept multiple washes
• Cold Press – Substantial tooth, enhanced wet and tear strength, suitable for mixed media artwork
• Smooth – Suitable for pen & ink, colored pencils, water-based markers as well as watercolors

There are six series in the Stillman & Birn sketchbook program:

     
 

THE SKETCHBOOK AS ART JOURNAL

Why do artists need Stillman & Birn premium quality sketchbooks when there are many less expensive alternatives available?

Artists are using their sketchbooks in ever more challenging and inventive ways. As the sketchbook has evolved, many artists use their sketchbook as an art journal for finished artwork, utilizing a variety of dry and wet media. This type of artwork demands robust, high-performance art paper. And that's why today, more than ever, paper quality matters so much to the sketchbook artist.

Stillman & Birn stands out in the crowded sketchbook market, offering a unique collection of archival quality, premium sketchbooks designed to work with many different kinds of media. Only Stillman & Birn offers a sketchbook system, allowing the artist to choose the paper weight, shade and surface type to suit their specific techniques. All of our papers have both internal and surface sizing, providing exceptional wet strength. All of our papers are true art papers that withstand multiple erasures and are suitable for precision work.

 

Because of the robust quality of our papers, we believe that our sketchbooks inspire creativity: artists can feel confident to experiment with new ideas and materials because our papers support the most demanding techniques on paper.

Stillman & Birn is a brand associated with the art materials industry in the United States for decades. The original company was founded in 1958 by Philip Birn (1911 - 2004). Birn was a highly admired Viennese bookbinder, who brought his "old world" craftsmanship to a small plant in the SoHo section of Manhattan. SoHo is now filled with trendy shops, restaurants and residential lofts, but in the 1950's SoHo was a center of light industry. From his plant at 270 Lafayette Street, Philip Birn pioneered the concept of the black hardbound sketchbook. The management team of the new Stillman & Birn organization follows its founder's commitment to uncompromising quality and to developing new sketchbook forms that respond to the changing needs of artists.

 

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