New Year, New Pens? Show Us!

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I can only imagine all the wonderful new pens that our fans were gifted over the holidays. Willing to share? Snap a pic of your favorite new pen and send it to Stephanie at RhodiaDrive dot com to be added to our “Favorite Pens” Photo Page. Do you have a short story to tell about your new pen? Let us know and we’ll also consider sharing it here on Rhodia Drive.

Image courtesy of maiechinatsu on Instagram.

 

Staedtler Triplus Fineliners and Rhodia

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There was a time when I was trying and buying practically every kind of drawing pen I could find – especially if I could buy them individually as opposed to having to purchase an entire expensive set of colors I wasn’t likely to use. The Staedtler Triplus Fineliners  shown above have a super fine 0.3 mm nib which makes them great for writing or drawing and they have a triangle shaped barrel which makes them easier to hold over long periods of time.

Have you ever tried these? Do you have any other brands of drawing pens/markers that you recommend?

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Top image courtesy of chic ambition on Instagram. Bottom image by Stephanie.

Artist Review: Decoupage and Collage with Decopatch!

Decopatch test and Review

It always makes me happy whenever I have the opportunity to play with new art supplies. Shown above is a variety of Decopatch products (paper, brush & varnish) that Exaclair distributes within the US.

Decopatch test and Review

Decopatch papers are specifically designed for decoupage: (Per Wiki) “the art of decorating an object by gluing colored paper cutouts onto it in combination with special paint effects, gold leaf and so on. Commonly an object like a small box or an item of furniture is covered by cutouts from magazines or from purpose-manufactured papers. Each layer is sealed with varnishes (often multiple coats) until the “stuck on” appearance disappears and the result looks like painting or inlay work. The traditional technique used 30 to 40 layers of varnish which were then sanded to a polished finish. This was known in 18th century England as the art of Japanning after its presumed origins.” Continue Readering »

October Link Share

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Why You Should Try Sketching (Even If You Can’t Draw) at Lifehacker

Fountain Pen Guide Series, Session 2: The Difference A Filling System Makes at Pentorium

“Europe invented the pencil, but America perfected it.” at Contrapuntalism

‘Modern Day Snail Mail’ Project Brings Human Element Back to Texting at Mashable

That Fountain Pen Is Too Much Trouble at Inkophile

Guest Post – Habana Daily 21 Daily Planner/Diary – Review at Plannerisms

The Best Writing Advice Pico Iyer Ever Received at Open Culture

Make Your Writing Pop: 8 Tips at Inc.com

How Small Can You Write? at A Penchant for Paper

The History of the Trapper Keeper at Mental_Floss

Rhodia R Premium Notepad Review at The Pen Addict

How to Keep an Effective Travel Journal at Kaizen Journaling

“New York City” at Ingrid Dijkers

Kenners 1960s Spirograph at My Supply Room

Journaling with a TWSBI Fountain Pen at Gourmet Pens

Review of Helix Pencil Top Sharpener Combo. at Pencil Revolution

Journaling: The Cure for Writer’s Block at Creative Write Now

Imagination Illustrated: Muppets Creator Jim Henson’s Never-Before-Seen Journals and Sketches at Brain Pickings

I’m not sure if I have enough ink… at Pens Paper Inks…Whatever!

What’s the Difference Between Writing and Editing? at Daily Writing Tips

Another Vintage Auction score: lot of Eagle “Chemi-Sealed” Turquoise 3B pencils at Lung Sketching Scrolls

Discovering Your Story: 5 Ways to Find the Missing Pieces at Writing Forward

Image courtesy of lancepinto on Instagram

Product Review: Exacompta Basics Forum Journal and Nostalgie Cover

Exacompta Forum Sandy

Our friend Sandra Strait from the blog “Life Imitates Doodles” recently performed an in-depth review on the Exacompta Basics Forum Journal with a Nostalgie Cover. The review includes an emphasis on how the paper responds both to writing implements and various art materials. You can find the full review here.

View the available options for the Nostalgie covers here and Exacompta Forum refills here.

Other reviews of the Forum can be found at Inkophile and on my own blog, Spiritual Evolution of the Bean.

September Link Share

Public Eva-2

Image above courtesy of Eva Peters. Follow her as Public_Eva on Instagram or visit her on the web. Photo taken at Urban Espresso Bar West. 

From ballpoint back to…pencil?! at Recording Thoughts

Working in My Art Journals… at Random Acts of Art

The Writing Tools of 20 Famous Authors at Flavorwire

How to Make More Time for Creative Writing at Writing Forward

Rhodia ve Clairefontaine Notebooks @D&R’s at Write to Me Often!

Three New Mechanical Pencils at Dave’s Mechanical Pencils

Giant Office Supply Props at The Well Appointed Desk

Arnold Pens at Fountain Pen Restoration

Colour or no colour? at Nordljus

3 Functions of the Comma at Daily Writing Tips

New Pencil Blog on the Block at Pencil Revolution

Would you buy a Clairefontaine composition book? at Quo Vadis

50 Years, 1 Imagination: Man Draws 2000 Sq Ft Map by Hand at WebUrbanist

Dream Journaling Puts Your Dream Fairy Back to Work For You at Create Write Now

Review of the Exacompta Basics Forum Journal and Nostalgie Cover at Life Imitates Doodles

Rhodia Notepad Paper Comparison: Classic Pads vs Premium Pads at Jenni Bick Blog

An Alternate History of the Mongol Pencil (or Yes Virginia, there is a Pencildom) at Contrapuntalism

From our friends at Pentorium: Introduction to Rhodia

Brian Goulet’s Top 3 Daily Carry Fountain Pens at Ink Nouveau

Visionary Artist Alex Grey with a Pelikan 150 Fountain Pen

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This past week, I had the great pleasure of attending a Visionary Painting Intensive at CoSM (Chapel of the Sacred Mirrors) in Wappingers Falls, New York with Alex and Allyson Grey. The week included numerous lectures and about 8 hours a day of studio time, (which took place in the Grey’s personal home studio) and while I almost always saw Alex with a sketchbook in hand or somewhere close by, this image depicts the first time I noticed him sketching with a fountain pen.

The pen is a Pelikan 150 (I forgot to ask about the nib width!) currently filled with Pelikan black ink. I say “currently” because Alex was not familiar with Herbin inks and I promised to send him a sample of the Perle Noire which made him very happy. (Good to know that even famous artists get excited at the prospect of trying new supplies!)

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If you are interested in hearing more about my experience with the Grey’s, (I took close to 600 photos during the week!) follow me on Facebook at Stephanie Smith’s Mandala Art.

Friday Link Share August Edition

Review of the Rhodiarama Pocket Web Notebook on Life Imitates Doodles

Transforming Fear Through the Power of Journaling at Creative Write Now

Art Journal Prompts Galore at Daisy Yellow Blog

Carnival of Pen, Pencil and Paper at Notebook Stories

4 Things You Can Do At Your Desk To Be Happier at Inc.com

start by starting at Wild Thyme Creative

Drawn the Road Again: Inside the Travel Sketchbooks of Chandler O’Leary as She Explores the U.S. at This is Colossal

Where nibmeisters differ at And ALl Other Tasks

How to Keep Motivated When Working From Home at Under30Ceo

Review of Neon Ticonderogas at Pencil Revolution

365 Collages | Week 30 – the Post It Note Edition at iHanna’s Blog

Fader Vanishing Ink Highlighter at Office Supply Geek

Sanford / PaperMate Liquid Expresso Extra Fine Line Pen at A Penchant for Paper

Archival Images Combed for Signs of Amelia Earhart at Mashable

Pen Loop at The Well Appointed Desk

Creative Every Day Theme for August 2013: Cycles at Creative Every Day

The Persistence of Pencil at Little Flower Petals

A Week’s Worth of Journaling Prompts: Embarrasing Moments at Writing Through Life

The Pen Addict Podcast: Episode 65 – CSI Pen-Town

Image courtesy of spanisharchitect on Instagram. What was in the cup? “It was tiramisu mocha, really yummy!”

Psst – Have you entered our latest contest to win a piece of ePure luggage? 

Finishing a Notebook or Sketchbook

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I finished a sketchbook yesterday, one that I’d started around June of last year. As a total paper junkie, it’s a big deal for me to finish a sketchbook because I tend to have at least 8 different books (in a variety of sizes and paper types) going at all times and it often seems like I’ve been working in the same books for years with no end in sight.

I don’t have the same type of rituals for finishing a sketchbook/starting a new one as I do with my notebooks – my only “thing” is to make sure I have another one ready to start if it happens to be one of my favorite books. I do try and keep my notebooks/journals separate from my sketchbooks in that I may may make art in my journals but I don’t typically write in my sketchbooks.

Looking back through old sketchbooks is interesting in that I think it’s easier to see growth (artistic or otherwise) since the means of expression is primarily visual.

Do you doodle/draw in your notebooks or keep a separate sketchbook?

Psst – Have you entered our latest contest to win a piece of ePure luggage? 

Image courtesy of snarkeysmachine on Instagram

Pilot Parallel Calligraphy Pens

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Have you ever tried any of the Pilot Parallel Calligraphy pens? They are an inexpensive ($12 each) introduction to the world of calligraphy.

Review of the Pilot Parallel at Gourmet Pens at Parka Blogs and PenInkcillin

Sketching with a Pilot Parallel Pen at Leigh Reyes my life as a verb

Gentian Osman sometimes draws with a Parallel, check out her photostream on Flickr. 

Image courtesy of jrmartz on Instagram

The Creative Retreat

Stephanie Smith Rhythm Renewal

Have you ever considered taking a creative retreat? I’ve been going to one in central Pennsylvania for the last seven years that includes a variety of expressive options such as hand drumming, African dance, writing, and mandala making. (Guess who teaches that class.) People of all skill levels have the opportunity to try new things in a safe environment- and speaking from experience, it can be life changing to do something you always wanted to with 100 people cheering you on.

8 Retreats to Spark Your Creativity

Gentian’s Calligraphy, Pelikan Pen and Rouge Opera Ink

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It is such a treat to see Gentian Osman’s art and calligraphy and we always appreciate her using our dotPads and Herbin inks in her creations.

You should look at her pictures on Flickr, then check out her blog Drawing with a Squirrel. After that, read this brief artist highlight about her at JetPens and if you want, you can also check out her Pins on Pinterest.

Image courtesy of Gentian Osman –  gentian_o on Instagram

Crok Book Winners!

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These are our 20 winners from our Clairefontaine Crok Book giveaway – did you win? Stay tuned for more Summer Giveaways – including my SPECIAL Anniversary Contest here on Rhodia Drive!

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Caitlin Livingston
Jennie S. from Sunderland
Michele S. from Ridgefield Park
StanF from Toronto
Johnny Gamber
Sarah LG.
C Tyler From Beaverton
Sarah from Chicago
Elliot M. from Herndon
Karan A. from Buffalo Grove
KAH
Fehim
Gordon Huang
JoniB from Phoenix
Rhonda Pena
xtica
Melissa K. from Tulsa
Seth Barber
Bodah

Art Making is Accessible to Everyone

Stephanie Smith Mandala

If I may, if like to share a little something with you about art that might make it more accessible to you. Children are able to create art without fear. Put any variety of art supplies in front of the average child and they will have a blast. Put those same supplies in front of the average adult and your likely to hear something like, “No thank you, I don’t draw because I’m not an artist.”

Here’s a few things that might help you warm up to the idea of making art. Continue Readering »

Encre et Chocolat: Ink and Chocolate Art in Montreal!

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From our friend Lorna Mulligan: ENCRE ET CHOCOLAT is an exhibition of contemporary calligraphic work by Les Calmars of Montreal. This is their fifth exhibition together and features a theme close to every writer’s heart… the exchanges that happen around pots of ink and the sharing of chocolate! Lorna’s piece shown above, entitled Goûte le passé is an exploration of Proust’s text, using Herbin inks and gouache on paper.

 

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Did someone say chocolate? Rhodiarama Webbie shown in Chocolate. 

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David Allen of GTD on Rhodia

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Season 5 (Bravo Network) Top Chef Hosea Rosenberg, originally from Taos, New Mexico, was always good at math. After graduating 3rd in his class at Taos High School, he moved to Boulder, CO to study at the University of Colorado. His dream... Read on »

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Testing a vintage Mabie Swan fountain pen with a lot of flex - on a Rhodia Pad

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About

Rhodia Drive is a blog about Rhodia notebooks and the people who use them. It’s a place where devotees of this “French orange notebook” contribute ideas, experiences and links on the latest tools, events and general notebook-related news.

Rhodia Drive attracts creative people passionate about their Rhodia. Designers and artists, writers and pen collectors, thinkers and free spirits—anyone who loves notebooks—come together on Rhodia Drive.