Archive for Interesting
Today’s Noteworthy guest blogger is Ron Manwaring from Pen Chalet. Welcome Ron!
I was first introduced to Rhodia because of my passion for fountain pens. Designing, building and maintaining the website for Pen Chalet has also helped, since we sell Rhodia pads and notebooks online. I like to keep a small Rhodia pad at my desk or with me wherever I go, so I can jot down a quick idea or sketch out a new design. I also keep a short task list of thing to do so I don’t forget them and I can prioritize my goals. I find if I don’t write things down as they come, I may forget them later. I am a big believer of the Chinese proverb, “The palest ink is better than the best memory”.
I recently created an infographic on the fountain pen. When the idea came to me, I immediately grabbed a Rhodia pad and began to sketch out the idea. (Since Rhodia pads come in a wide range of sizes, it is easy to find a small notepad to carry with me at all times.) The infographic shows basic elements of the fountain pen; from the anatomy of the pen, to the nib and feed sections. It also shows a brief history of fountain pens, common brands and more.
In the fountain pen community, there are few notebooks that are “fountain pen friendly”. Rhodia is accepted by the community as one of those and considered one of the top choices by fountain pen users across the globe. I have found that I can lay down a lot of ink on the paper and it will not feather or bleed through. Many cheaper papers will soak in fountain pen ink, causing the writing to feather and bleed. The 80g Rhodia paper is smooth and durable, and the cover is coated- making it waterproof yet flexible, which makes the top staple bound pads ideal for carrying.
I enjoy what I do! I have been in web design and development now for over 10 years for various companies. Creating websites and digital images such as infographics gives me a sense of accomplishment. To be able to watch an idea take shape and then to implement it on the web and share with others is a lot of fun.
Many thanks for sharing your story Ron! Stay tuned for additional Noteworthy guest bloggers each weekend here on Rhodia Drive.
Contest Alert! Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 15 of the appropriately named “No. 80″ Rhodia 80th Anniversary gift sets!
This limited edition gift set includes a 6 x 8 1/4″ (14.8 x 21 cm) notepad featuring 90g ivory paper with our classic grid in a light grey ink. It also includes an 80th anniversary pencil! A copper-colored Rhodia name and logo appears on both sides of the pad, with a special 80th anniversary emblem on the back cover.
This contest is open to US residents only and will be remain open until midnight EST on Tuesday 10/21/14 The winners will be chosen at random and announced on the blog on Thursday 10/23/14. One entry per household please. If you are viewing this post via e-mail or on a mobile device, you may need to visit Rhodia Drive directly to see the entry form.
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Two great opportunities are on the immediate horizon which will allow you to sample Rhodia products, as well as paper from various other Exaclair brands like Clairefontaine, G Lalo and Exacompta.
First up: In tomorrow’s post, we will be giving away 15 of the limited edition No. 80 Anniversary sets!
And then, on Monday, we are rolling out… The Paper Project!!! And just what IS The Paper Project?
The Paper Project will offer 30 people each week (first come, first served) the opportunity to test and compare up to 3 sheets of paper from a wide variety of Exaclair products. We will look forward to hearing your feedback and comments about your experiences testing these samples on the giveaway page itself, and as always, you are more than welcome to write reviews of our products on your own personal blogs and or share your experiences with this project throughout your various social media outlets. (Tag #rhodiapaperproject on Instagram)
So… are you as excited about this project as we are???
With Karen’s encouragement, I wanted to share with you several events and exhibitions that I have going on during the month of October:
On First Friday October 3rd I will be a featured artist at The Banana Factory with an exhibition of my work in the 1st floor lobby. First Friday activities throughout the building are from 6-9pm. Be sure to come up and visit me in my studio #250 on the 2nd floor. (My lobby and stairwell exhibitions at the BF will be on view until Nov. 3rd.) Facebook event details can be found here.
On Wednesday October 8th I will be offering a free artist talk entitled “Metamorphosis” at The Banana Factory from 7-8:30pm. I will be discussing influences, artistic processes, and my evolution as an artist. This event is free and open to the public. The event will begin with a slideshow and talk in the Banko Gallery at The Banana Factory and end with a visit to my private studio on the 2nd floor where light refreshments will be served. Facebook event details can be found here,
October 3rd-30th is the 125th Annual N.A.W.A Members Exhibition held at the Sylvia Wald and Po Kim Gallery, 417 Lafayette St in New York City. I became a juried member of – N.A.W.A (National Association of Women Artists) earlier this year and my piece “Orbit” will be part of this historic exhibition.
On Friday October 10th I will presenting an all-new workshop entitled “Tapping the Source” with Dr. Kell Morton - an expert in the field of transformational healing and personal growth. This experiential workshop is designed to help you awaken, access and nurture your full creative self. See the attached flyer for full details or visit the Facebook event page here.
Rhodia is celebrating its 80th birthday! Take a look at the video below for a behind the scenes look at the Rhodia factory. See below the video for an English translation of the French.
Here is the newest Rhodia product, with its white color and metallic logo – offering a nod of recognition to the technology (cell phones) of today. For 80 years, the Rhodia brand has stood resilient- watching change after change in the way people communicate with one another, proving that nothing beats a great pad of paper.
Geraldine Muller product manager: “The Rhodia pad is timeless. – which is the way Rhodia founders wanted it from the beginning. The Rhodia logo and characteristics have remained the same. The only changes have been the introduction of the black cover in 2007 and now this year in white for its 80th birthday with a silver logo. It is a sort of wink to the digital with whom it gets along very well.”
40 people at the plant have produced 10 millions pads, and other than the color of the cover, the pads have not really changed since 1934 when two brothers from Lyon started with this simple orange pad with 80 sheets, and 80g paper, staple bound at top, To this day, it remains 100% made in France.
Patrick Sartre, plant manager: “We have both the people formed and ‘faithful’ to the company as well as the tools specialized for this product. With this winning combination there is no need to move away in order to stay abreast of the competition.”
Finally the 5000 tons of paper we use are guaranteed to protect the environment and the socio-conomic role of the forests. Knowing that 11% of forests are harvested for paper, it is a very respectable accomplishment.
One of our office mates, Jim Burke, spotted one of our Exacompta cloth bound journals on a promo for the new ABC television show, “Selfie.” Here is a clip of the promo. They show the journal at a distance and close up.
This journal is the cousin of Exacompta sketchbook that has been discontinued, much to the sorrow of its many fans.
The paper is off white, laid finish, 25% cotton and 100 g. The line width is rather wide – 3/8″ inch, so if you have big handwriting or like lots of line room, this book is for you. The journal includes a bookmark, and gold edge pages.
Goulet Pens -
I love a lot of things vintage for their classic design. Classic, as in that sweet combination of simple, practical and durable.
When I first started writing with fountain pens, I wanted nothing more than to exclusively use vintage, but it never seemed to work out for me. One after another I’d buy a vintage piece (typically on the cheap) that would work for a while then ultimately, a seal or sac would break, the nib would bend or get scratchy, or the ink would stop flowing properly. I began to see vintage pens as fragile creatures and became reluctant to invest in their restoration. As much as I love vintage, there was a part of me that didn’t like knowing that a favorite tool would be difficult to repair or replace and so I began to favor more modern designs like Lamy’s Safari, Pelikan’s M200 and the Sailor Sapporo – though I can’t tell you how many times I’ve poured over the offerings on sites like Vacumania, longing for a silver celluloid Parker Vacumatic, or a fully functional Parker 51. (Mine has a cracked front section and needs a new seal/sac)
Do you have a favorite vintage pen? If you take a picture of it and send to to me at firstname.lastname@example.org I’ll include it on our Favorite Pen Fan Photo Page.
- 4000 BC: Clay tablets are etched with metal or bone tools
- 3000 BC: Egyptians use reed pens on papyrus
- 1300 BC: In Rome metal styluses are used to write on thin sheets of wax
- 600-1800 AD: Europeans use quill pens
- 1790: Pencils are invented in both Australia and France
- 1800-1850: Dip pen nibs are made of steel and tipped with Iridium, Rhodium and Osmium
- 1884: Waterman invents the fountain pen
- 1888-1916: Ball point pens are invented
- 1940: Ball points become popular with the British military during WWII.
- 1945: Ball point pens are introduced to the US market
- 1960s: Felt tip pens invented
- 1980s-90s: Roller ball pens invented
- 2000s: Fountain pen revival!
Some during August-September I will be organizing a project to compare the different Clairefontaine, Rhodia, Quo Vadis and G. Lalo paper surfaces and how they interact with different writing instruments and inks.
We will collect the comments of as many people as possible on their experience with an individual product paper–how it feels to the touch, how their pen (pencil or other writing instrument) moves across the surface and interacts with it; basically–what is their experience, and what they like (or don’t like) about it.
The summary of the comments can be a good reference not only for people getting started with journals and notepads, but also for expert practitioners to exchange experiences with each other.
The products I am thinking of including for this comparison are: classic Clairefontaine notebook paper; Clairefontaine Triomphe pads, R by Rhodia pads, classic Rhodia notepads, Rhodia Ice, Rhodia Webbies, Quo Vadis Habanas, G. Lalo Verge de France pads, and G. Lalo correspondence cards.
People can test each sheet with their favorite writing instruments (fountain pens, rollerballs, pencils, etc.) and contribute feedback via an online form. We will publish the results on both Quo Vadis Blog and Rhodia Drive either in December 2014 or January 2015.
Each person would be limited to three or four different sheets per month (that I can send in a first class letter), but can sign up each month for other papers to sample and add their thoughts.
What do you think? Are there specific questions we should ask? Are there any other product papers you would like to try? Your input at this stage is very much appreciated and welcome. As always, thank you for your thoughtful suggestions, help and support.
Claudia McGill is one of my favorite contemporary artists because it was her colorful and whimsical art that first inspired me to take risks in my own art. She works with a variety of mixed media; including acrylic paint, collage and clay. Something I didn’t know about Claudia is that she uses Rhodia tablets. When she first learned that I worked for Rhodia, she told me about a zine she had been working on which included a short story about a train ride to Pittsburgh and how the story was based on notes she’d taken in a small Rhodia pad during her trip.
To read the story, click on the first image and then keep clicking to move from one page to the next.
After seeing this post on Buzzfeed: 37 Books Every Creative Person Should Be Reading, I noticed that I’ve already read several and will probably want to eventually read them all. Do you have any favorites from this list? #25 is an all-time favorite for me.
3. Bird by Bird by Annie Lamott: Read this a long time ago. Remember it being sweetly encouraging.
4. Steal Like An Artist, by Austin Kleon: Read recently. Good info, but nothing that was really new to me
7. The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron: This is a classic. Excellent info to be found here. Do the work if you want to experience transformational growth in your life. (It’s not just about art)
15. Just Kids, Patti Smith: This has been sitting patiently in my Kindle for over a year…
19. The Elements of Style, by William Strunk, Jr. and E. B. White: Great info. “Omit needless words” is a classic.
21. Art & Fear, by David Bayles & Ted Orland: I’ve never read it cover to cover, but every time I crack it open and read a few pages I find something totally relevant.
22. Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, by Betty Edwards: Just recently bought a copy.
25. The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield: One of the BEST books I’ve ever read. It’s about resistance. You do not have to be an artist to get a lot out of this book. It’s tiny – read it in an afternoon.
29. On Writing, Stephen King: I owned this a very long time ago. Can’t remember if I read all of it. The one thing that sticks with me is his mantra of “Write every day:”
The Traveling Muse – Inspiring Pocket Notebooks at European Paper
The Epic Refill Reference Guide: Rollerball, Gel and Ballpoints at The Well-Appointed Desk
7 Letters to Write Before You Turn 70 at The Art of Manliness
48 great examples of doodle art at Creative Bloq
Can You Call Yourself A Writer? at Thought Catalog
Rhodia Ice 80th Anniversary Notepad at Office Supply Geek
Lamy CP1: Quick Look at Ink Nouveau
5 Ways to Develop a Consistent Journaling Habit at Kaizen Journaling
Review: The Monteverde One Touch Stylus Tool Mechanical Pencil at Woodclinched
TWSBI Teases with More Eco Info and Images at FP Geeks
The Stylographic Pen of Edith Wharton at Palimpest
Rhodia Ice at A Penchant for Paper
Uni-ball Signo: A Comprehensive Guide at JetPens Blog
The Illuminated Sketchbook of Stephan Schriber (1494) at The Public Domain Review
Mailbox Goodies: Pen Jewelry at Gourmet Pens
Esterbrook Dollar Pen Review at The Pen Addict
Contest Alert! Rhodia has designed a new notepad for its 80th anniversary year (1934-2014): a white cover with silver logo pad that we are calling Rhodia Ice. The silver and white pad is emblematic of Rhodia’s simplicity and minimalist design. It has beauty and character and a little bit of mystery. It is quite different than anything else—just like Rhodia.
Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 15 No. 13 (4×6″) pads. (Graph or lined ruling, our choice.) This contest is open to US residents only and will be remain open until midnight EST on Tuesday 06/24/14 The winners will be chosen at random and announced on the blog on Thursday 06/26. One entry per household please. If you are viewing this post via e-mail or on a mobile device, you may need to visit Rhodia Drive directly to see the entry form.
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From Wiki: Parchment is a material made from animal skin; often calfskin, sheepskin, or goatskin. Its most common use was as a material for writing on, for documents, notes, or the pages of a book, codex or manuscript. Parchment is limed, scraped and dried under tension. It is not tanned; therefore, it is very reactive to changes in relative humidity and will revert to rawhide if overly wet.
While the term parchment refers to any animal skin, particularly goat, sheep, or cow, that has been scraped or dried under tension, vellum refers exclusively to calfskin.
The heyday of parchment use was during medieval times, but there has been a growing revival of its use among artists since the late 20th century. Although parchment never stopped being used (primarily for governmental documents and diplomas) it had ceased to be a primary choice for artist’s supports by the end of 15th century Renaissance. This was partly due to its expense and partly due to its unusual working properties. Parchment consists mostly of collagen. When the water in paint media touches parchment’s surface, the collagen melts slightly, forming a raised bed for the paint, a quality highly prized by some artists.
“We like lists because we don’t want to die.”
In a 2009 Spiegel interview with Umberto Eco, the Italian philosopher and novelist states “The list is the origin of culture.” And what does culture want? “To make infinity comprehensible. It also wants to create order — not always, but often. And how, as a human being, does one face infinity? How does one attempt to grasp the incomprehensible? Through lists, through catalogs, through collections in museums and through encyclopedias and dictionaries.”
I’ve kept my own book of lists for over a decade by contributing several lists per year of material either relevant to the time or from memory of things past.
Do you keep a book of lists? If not, would you ever consider it?