Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Moleskine Cahier Pocket Notebook

sketch - Micron sepia pen in Moleskine Cahier pocket notebook

I was first introduced to the Moleskine Cahier notebook when Rose Welty used one to create her book of flower sketches. Shortly thereafter I bought my own pack of three. I thought I'd share with you why this is now my current favorite sketchbook. Here are the top five reasons.

1. The Moleskine Cahier pocket notebook is small, only 3.5 inches by 5.5 inches. It's small enough to fit in my smallest purse, which is saying something since I carry some very small purses! Carrying a small bag is the surest way I know not to get stuck carrying stuff for my husband and kids. But now it doesn't have to also mean leaving my sketchbook at home.

2. The pocket notebook has a cardboard cover which keeps it very lightweight. I can slip it in any bag without worrying about the extra weight which makes it perfect if I am going to be carrying the bag for long distances, say if I am out hiking for the day.

3. There is nothing "precious" about this sketchbook. I mean that as a compliment. Sometimes if a sketchbook is fancy or expensive, I don't sketch in it because I am worried that a lousy sketch will ruin the whole book. This book is small enough and inexpensive enough that I could tear out lousy sketches or even throw out the whole book without guilt. And surprisingly enough, now that I'm not worried about the outcome of my sketches before I start them, I haven't had any that I feel I can't live with.

4. The Cahier notebooks are sold in sets of three which means I can spread them out and leave them in places where I am most likely to need them, for example in my purse, in the car, in a travel bag. I don't have to worry about forgetting to transfer the sketchbook and finding myself without one.

5. Like other Moleskines, these books have smooth, creamy colored pages which easily take pencil or ink.

sketch - Micron sepia pen in Moleskine Cahier pocket notebook
The only downside I have found with these books is the relatively thin pages. I work around this by only sketching on the right hand side pages (not using the backs of the pages). I also place a piece of cardstock behind the page when I am scanning it so the scanner doesn't pick up the image on the next page. I feel that these are two small concessions which I am willing to live with given all the other benefits.

So what is your current favorite sketchbook? Do you find that your favorite changes? And if so, what dictates the change? Share your answers in the comments section. You know artists can never have too many sketchbooks. Even though I have a current favorite, I am always looking for new ones to try.


Robyn said...

I love them too, Stacy pretty much for the same reasons you do. I even feel free to scribble notes and shopping lists of art supplies around the sketches. Most of all I love painting the covers. Decorated, they make delightful and unique little gifts. I do need to stock up again because I keep giving them away.

Jennifer Rose said...

I usually use a normal moleskine, but its gone missing so now I just use paper :p I did get some sketchbook from college but just think they are generic brands. I like the size of the moleskines, but would actually prefer if the paper was white instead of cream coloured.

Stacy said...

Painting the covers!! Thanks for the idea Robyn! Now that you mention it I remember Jeanette decorated the covers on one of her books and it looked really cool. I'll have to give it a try. What kind of paints do you use?

Jennifer Rose, I have some normal Moleskines that I use as well as a watercolor one, but they rarely fit in my purse and I'm afraid if I carry it separate I'll lay it down somwhere and lose it. So are you going to be required to do a lot of sketching in college? When my dad went to art school he had to fill a sketchbook every semester - maybe even more than one - in addition to his drawing or painting projects.

Robyn said...

Stacy - Gouache works well, as do coloured pencils and of course markers of any kind.

Stacy said...

Thanks Robyn!

Jennifer Rose said...

they want us to do a lot of sketching but didn't tell us if we had to fill all the sketchbooks they have given us. Not sure if we will be getting more sketchbooks as the year goes on, but hopefully we do get some more if we manage to fill the ones we do have.

Rose Welty said...

You make a real argument here to never be without a sketchbook! I have recently switched to the bigger cahier sketchbooks - but you are right, those pocket ones are really good. Hmm...feeling like I should really pick up some more :D

Pedro Garcia Millan said...
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