Saturday, September 18, 2010

My Review of the Strathmore Visual Journal

Received a sample of the Strathmore Visual Journal the other day from the nice people at Strathmore. I had contacted them and put in my two cents worth about what I would like in a journal, since they had asked our Yahoo group what we would like to see in one. The visual journal came out just recently and I had been really interested in checking it out, so was very excited to see it show up in the mail.

First of all, I like the outside cover alright, it has the cover you see first, which could actually be torn off, and then, there is a sturdy, brown cover which you could leave as is, or, alter like I probably will. I like to make my journals "all mine", so I always make my own covers out of watercolor paper, etc. then attach over the original cover.

The paper in the Mix Media Visual Journal is 90 lb. and sufficiently heavy for my needs, except for when I use markers. I am still looking for a journal that has heavy enough paper where I can use both sides of the paper (front and back) with my markers, and have no bleed through. I think this could be overcome with the heavier 140lb, Cold Press Watercolor Paper journal, which is what I am showing here. This is a link to Amazon for you if you would like to order yourself one-$8.99 is not bad for a 9x12" journal. I don't think Michaels carries them yet, so don't bother going there to buy one. Call before you go, and make sure you don't waste a trip!

I was sent the small journal, and it is perfect for sticking into an "art to go" bag or even your purse! It has 68 pages, and a heavy, spiral type binder, like they all do, that allows it to open up and lay flat for 2 page spreads, just like we like!  All in all, I like the smoothness of the paper, (feels good to my fingers, lol), the weight of the paper, and the amount of pages in the journal, along with the spiral binder. It seems to be a sure winner with the art journaling crowd!

My current art journal is a Canson Mix Media Journal that has 98 lb paper and is a 9x12". I like that size so I have plenty of room to work. Comparing the two to each other, since they are both Mix Media, I have to lean toward the Strathmore because the paper seems to be just a smidge smoother and heavier. So, anyway, if you haven't tried the Strathmore, or are looking for a great art journal to start, that is my personal opinion of the Strathmore!

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