March 19th, 2015

Summer Breezes

Artist: Faustine Vaughn Artist’s Statement: I am still a beginner in the process of finding my preferred art medium, so have been playing with inks, watercolors, markers, you name it. I love that my 7×7 Zeta Series sketchbook has taken most everything I’ve thrown at it well. Whatever media I use, I love the bright […]

March 12th, 2015

Channeling Dürer

Artist: Anya Toomre Artist Statement: I am enrolled in the online Sketchbook Skool and was presented with the creative challenge of stealing an admired artist’s work. I chose Albrecht Dürer because the animals he has drawn have always fascinated me. I knew about his Hare and Walrus, but only recently came across his Rhinoceros. Given […]

March 6th, 2015

Field Trip to Molbak’s

Artist: Charlene Collins Freeman Artist Statement: I am a sketcher, watercolorist and art instructor. I am drawn to objects and scenes which, through their ordinary and familiar qualities, take on a sense of beauty. Something catches my eye, something common, and in the process of sketching it, it strikes me as extraordinary. There is great […]

February 6th, 2015

Gapstow Bridge

Artist: Joanne Gustilo, United States Artist Statement: Central Park is definitely one of the best places to capture winter’s finest landscapes. It is absolutely beautiful, a winter wonderland in the heart of New York City. The park is covered with mounds of snow, after a blizzard hit the city a week ago. While walking and […]

February 2nd, 2015

Singapore Temple

Artist: Edric Hsu, Singapore Artist’s Statement: I am a freelance illustrator, and I dream of one day writing and illustrating my own story books. This is a drawing of the Tang Gah Beo Temple, located at Bukit Purmei district of Singapore, not far from where I live and grew up. This is the temple where […]

December 28th, 2014

Homage to Fermor

Illustrator Jeff Nelson explains in this post that he likes to do calligraphy drawings to accompany the books he’s reading. This one is a tribute to Patrick Leigh Fermor (1915 – 2011), who was regarded as England’s greatest travel writer and “a cross between Indiana Jones, James Bond and Graham Greene.”

“My name is Jeff […]

December 22nd, 2014

Austere and Elegant

AUSTERE AND ELEGANT Thank you naturalist Jean Mackay for posting this unique art journal spread. It combines a botanical study of desiccated pods (they’re Baptisia australis; common name is False Blue Indigo) and a line from a Winter poem from the Victorian era. Jean says the Zeta Series paper was “a perfect match for both […]

November 28th, 2014

Holiday Giveaway

We’re giving away ten gift sets of Stillman & Birn sketchbooks bundled with a case of QoR® Modern Watercolors from Golden Artist Colors. The watercolors are a QoR High Chroma Set, containing a six-tube palette of brilliant colors. The sketchbook is a 5½” x 8½” (14.0 x 21.6 cm.) hardbound, your choice of either a […]

November 27th, 2014

Eagle Head

Elaine Hill, from Lancashire, England, recently posted this powerful drawing of an eagle’s head and we asked Elaine to describe her vision and technique. “I’m an office worker and painting is my hobby. I have painted since I was a child but I recently started to study a very comprehensive online art course provided by […]

August 13th, 2014

Portrait of Elle H.

Riko Colin Chuck never got to meet his model, Elle H. He drew this exceptional portrait from a selfie she contributed to the Sktchy iPhone app. Sktchy invites users to upload their selfies and then watch how artists transform the photos into drawings. We asked Riko to explain: “I am a self-taught artist with a […]

July 14th, 2014

Crescent Hotel, Eureka Springs

Janette Meetze, a sketchbook artist and tapestry designer, posted a drawing of a classic hotel a few weeks ago that captured our attention. We asked Janette to send us more details and she sent us the following write up: “Sketching the 1886 Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas has been on my mind since I […]

June 4th, 2014

GUEST POST — Laure Ferlita: Keeping a Sketch From Becoming a Painting

Watercolorist Laure Ferlita writes about an issue that confronts most artists: staying mindful of the investment of time made to a sketchbook drawing. After all, unless the artist is prepared to remove the page from the sketchbook, the drawing cannot be framed or sold. This is a summary of Laure’s insights:

“My brother went down […]

April 29th, 2014

Paranakan Pottery

Whee Teck is an artist based in Singapore working in a variety of mediums, primarily watercolor. He recently sent us this drawing of Peranakan pottery. Exuberant, ornate and colorful, Peranakan pottery is a variety of polychrome enameled porcelain made by the Straits-born Chinese or Peranakan communities in Penang, Malacca and Singapore.

Whee Teck writes: “I […]

April 19th, 2014

New Beginnings

Starting a new art journal can be the beginning of a spiritual journey. Naturalist Jean Mackay illustrated this belief by integrating poetry about new beginnings into the opening pages of her journal.

“Starting off my new Zeta Series journal with a favorite subject! The red-winged blackbird nest was a great find at a local nature […]

April 16th, 2014

Feather Mixed Media Exercise

British mixed media artist Vivien Blackburn created this two-page spread of feather drawing as an exercise for her mixed media class. “I’ve been teaching some individual classes as well as my usual weekly ones and this drawing was a demo of mixed media for new students. I find that feathers are a good subject for […]

April 14th, 2014

Portrait of Sean Connery

French watercolorist Martine Pittet draws a striking portrait of the legendary Scottish actor, creating the work with ink and a water brush. “As a member of the Facebook group Sketching Workshop, I took part in the Portrait Challenge and drew this sketch of Sir Sean Connery. I loved the black and white photo which was […]

March 30th, 2014

Two Daffodils

Kelli McNichols’ daffodils are a welcome reminder that warm weather in this part of the world is not far off. “This painting of daffodils was inspired by flowers I purchased on a recent trip to my local market. Their sunny yellow color was the perfect antidote for all the snowstorms we have had this winter. […]

March 18th, 2014

Fourth Presbyterian Church – Chicago

Illustrator Andrew Banks reflects on the influence of spirituality in resolving the challenges of drawing a monumental subject. “On-location sketching is just as much about capturing the experience as it is illustrating your subject. The Fourth Presbyterian Church was a perfect opportunity for me to bring those two elements together into this sketch. This church […]

March 16th, 2014

Homage to Cowboy Bebop

Jorge Santiago is a freelance comic artist and illustrator working on his MFA in sequential art. Students of sequential art will surely be influenced by Japanese anime and this drawing reflects that connection. “This is an homage to one of my favorite animated shows, Cowboy Bebop. I wanted to use a limited palette of cold […]

March 14th, 2014

Zeta Series Selected by Nature Trails 2014

We are honored that our Zeta Series sketchbook has been selected by Nature Trails 2014, a prominent group of botanical artists, for a unique artwork exchange. Here is an explanation of the program’s concept:

“Nature Trails 2014, a natural sketchbook exchange, is promising to be an exciting collaboration of 15 botanical artists from all over […]