Tuesday, August 04, 2009

In search of the perfect journal

I am always in search of the perfect journal! I've been on the hunt for years. I have journals that have great covers but the pages are too thin to write with colorful pens or add "stuff". I have journals that have great paper but have coil binding so you can't do real double spreads. I've made a ton of journals myself only to become dissatisfied. Well, for the Italy trip, I found the perfect journal to travel with.

Lurking around visual journaler blogs (you learn a lot by lurking), I came across the name "Moleskine." This is a book with history.
For two centuries now Moleskine (mol-a-skeen'-a) has been the
legendary notebook of artists, writers, intellectuals and travelers. From gifted
artists Henri Matisse (1869–1954) and Vincent van Gogh (1853–1890), to poet and
leader of the surrealist movement André Breton (1896-1966) to Ernest Hemingway
(1899-1961) considered the most influential writer of the last century, to
famous travel writer Bruce Chatwin (1940-1989).

They have a website where people actually post pictures of their books! There's like this "cult" around these books; their website even shows where the books have been found in movies. I ordered the pocket sketchbook because it sounded like it would be small enough to carry around and not be so heavy and the paper would accommodate adding "stuff." When I got it I knew it would be perfect and it was.

So, what made it perfect?

The size. At 3.5x5.5 it was easy to carry. Even though I ended up not carrying it with me everywhere, it is a small transportable book.

The size is also perfect for adding just a little something to each page. Larger and it would be more like a "scrapbook" than a visual journal, which was the effect I was after.

The paper. The website doesn't show the exact weight of the paper, just say it is "heavyweight." The paper was perfect for adding paint (I painted some of the pages prior to leaving) and "stuff."

The thread binding allows the book to open flat (and there is no coil!)

I've never filled one of my travel journals before! I added stuff each night. Then when I got home I printed certain photos to add. While I kept another "journal of words" this journal really will serve as a great memory of our Italy trip.

BTW, I saw these books everywhere in Italy - it is Italian made paper.

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