After testing out a few different sizes of the Stillman and Birn Softcover Sketchbook range in Alpha paper, I have decided that my new favourite sketchbook for daily use is the Softcover Alpha 8 x 10″.
I used one during the month of November and found the larger size suited my style of sketching during my day to day life. It gives me lots of compositional options which is really important as often my daily sketches are small, quick and ‘nothing special’ – just attempting to do something most days. The softcover not only reduces the weight while still providing adequate support (once you are a few pages in) but it also creates a casual, ‘working book’ feel. This is exactly what I want from my daily sketchbook.
If you missed it, here is a video of the flip-through for this book. Note: If you can’t see the embedded video please click here.
This supersedes my previous go-to book: the Alpha hardcover 12 x9″. I still have a few spare books in this size, so I will be returning to them at some stage during the year to use up my stock, but for now I am going to start a new 8 x 10.
And just to confirm: I still prefer the A4 Moleskine watercolour book for my travel sketching and dedicated sketching outings here in Sydney. I prefer to use true watercolour paper when I am doing some ‘serious’ sketching. But for everyday use, I prefer the alpha paper and will be showing you why in a video later this week.
You can also read more about my decision-making process in regard to sketchbooks here. There are lots of links to other articles on sketchbooks on that page too, and these can be found at any time under the Sketching Tools section.
And yes, I stocked up with three sketchbooks! For those in Australia, I bought these from LarryPOST. Please leave a comment if you know any other places that currently stock the softcover versions.