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  1. #16
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    Hi! Peeping up from my watercolour sink! Of course I've been buying journals and paints for a long time and never using them. Today I fixed up a really pretty little travel palette I wanted to show you. I have two Winsor & Newton Cotman travel sketchboxes, one I bought when I was 18, the other I found on sale very cheaply a few years ago. Each of them holds 12 colours and a brush; one of them also has a tiny water bottle and cup and a little sponge, useful for washes. I tried travelling to Gothenburg this weekend with the larger and it was OK but a bit bulky. So I rooted around and found this little box given to me by a friend many years ago. I've used it for years to hold stamps, but it was perfect to hold 10 half-pans of watercolour (of the smaller, new W&N pans).

    Photos show my painting setup with A6 Moleskine watercolour journal (unused and languishing for a few years); a transport card wallet which serves an an extra mixing area, the box (with bottom of yogurt lid taped in to form small mixing area), and it all packed with a bit of waxed paper and bubble wrap on top, followed by my cleaning rag, my travel brush, and the sponge. The card wallet just opens out and lives in the sketchbook (but-- could actually still be used for cards, dual-duty is good, right?). Also you see a plastic cup which has a lid, useful but not wonderfully packable (acquired with slime for child some time ago); and a spritz bottle from the optometrist filled with cleaning fluid that I was going to see if I could turn into a useful mini-atomiser of water, apart from I can't seem to open it :-(

    The temptation to buy new paints and travel brushes and pots was very strong. But I resisted by actually painting after I assembled the kit...

    PS pls don't judge I'm a better assembler of kits than a painter!!! This is from an old B&W photo of my mom in 1967 doing her doctoral fieldwork in Kenya.

    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3016-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3017-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3018-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3019-jpg
    Last edited by ejvc; 04-24-2019 at 02:02 AM.

  2. #17
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    That's so clever! It reminds me of the Altoids tin palettes some people make. Google around for it, although I guess I should warn you that it will make you super tempted to make your own.

    I myself use a Pocket Palette: https://expeditionaryart.com/shop/ar...pocket-palette I have 14 pans which I filled with Talens Van Gogh watercolor paint. I carry it with some travel brushes and a little vial of water in a small pouch (I also usually have a bottle of water with me to refill my painting water, except for that time in Italy when it was so hot I'd drunk it all before I had time to paint!). For paper, I vary a lot. Usually I carry at least a postcard-sized watercolor block, but I've also brought watercolor sketchbooks, from A5 to A4 format.
    I do urban sketching, I've thought about my supplies A LOT haha.

  3. #18
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    I have collected ephemera items used and found on travel for a very long time.

    I used to hold travel info and ephemera for each trip in folders, the ones with elastics but, I think that using TB Large Clear Organizer Pouches is the way to go to store them.

    I already use one in Aether which holds the reservations paperwork, packing list and local attraction ideas needed for most imminent trip. It has been a lifesaver, many times. It is also the place where I, now, collect ephemera during the trip.


    I have had trips with or without the FJN, when I don't take it, I miss it; when I do, it takes a good amount of space.

    The best alternative to, the now retired, FJN, is the Side Kick.

    Same size, front zippered pocket and inner pockets, the only thing missing is a pen slot pouch, like the pen slots in this retired design https://www.tombihn.com/collections/...journal-insert , but, with an O-ring.


    Luckily, the A5 Ghost Whale might be a lightweight solution for streamlined FJN content without the rings. Various setups need to be tried out with the SCB.

    The ultra minimalist watercolorist: a Travel Cubelet with a couple of watercolor pencils in the big inside pocket and a water holding watercolor brush in the pen slot. Various item in the front pocket.

    Coloring pencils, markers, sketch pencils, even fountain pens can be substituted to the watercolor pencils. I think an A6 sketchbook, or, something that fits inside the Small Ghost Whale would complete the package.


    I find that watercolor pencils and brushes with handles that are built in water containers work the best for travel.

    The Clear Quarter Cube is great to carry an A5 or smaller watercolor pad, on one side and watercolor pencils and water holding brushes, on the other.

    The EDC for that set up is either a Packing Cube Backpack, Daylight Backpack, S19, Small or Large Shop Bag.


    The trips were before the Luminary, the Pop Tote and the Zippered Shop Bags were offered.
    The 3 Totes Bags can also be a lightweight solutions to the traveling or plein air watercolor supplies carry, if one needs 11x12 canvas space to work with.
    Last edited by backpack; 04-26-2019 at 08:10 AM.

  4. #19
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    I would have totally made an Altoids kit but they don't sell Altoids here so I don't have any tins! Candy tends to come in pick 'n' mix form or plastic packs (Swedes eat a LOT of candy, I don't quite understand how they are all so healthy-looking). But I like mine very much! I think the expeditionary art pocket palettes are lovely too.

    I have to see if I have the weight allowance to carry a sketchbook. I need a regular pad of paper to play various travel games as well...

  5. #20
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    Virginia, Paris, Berlin
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    I use an A5 ringed notebook I bought in Germany years ago. When I get home I just remove and file any notes I want to keep. I always bring home a package of re-fill sheets. But the typical paper for ringed notebooks of this size is unusable with a fountain pen. You have to look hard for pre-punched paper of a weight appropriate for fountain pen ink(and, I imagine, watercolors). But at least you can find blank sheets for pencil drawing. A5 fits in a small café bag well (as well as the now discontinued field journal notebook).

  6. #21
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    I just received an email from TacticalNotebookCovers.com. It seems they're doing a 3 ring binder system. Aimed at the military there's lots of accessories. I have an iPad cover that I discussed earlier. I'm not connected with them.
    https://tacticalnotebookcovers.com/t...n-binders.html

  7. #22
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    I have an A5 ring binder and punch, and A5 water colour paper is available or if not then A4 and I can use the paper cutter at work. Agree about bad paper for fountain pens though— the Filofax paper is not optimized for them at all.

  8. #23
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    I am soooo jealous of those of you who can draw, sketch, paint - I cannot even draw a straight line or a decent circle!

    So I do what @TRD does - cut photos from the tourist brochures, tape them in my travel “journal.” This makes any notebook notebook bulge quickly. Oh - and I may write notes about the photo, personal observations, etc.

    My favorite notebook to use as a “journal” is Nanami Paper’s Cafe B6. No affiliation - just love their notebooks and service. I use fountain pens. And a multi-pen (easier to tote during travel) - that accommodates 4 ink “sticks.”


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by bbcamp View Post
    I use an A5 ringed notebook I bought in Germany years ago. When I get home I just remove and file any notes I want to keep. I always bring home a package of re-fill sheets. But the typical paper for ringed notebooks of this size is unusable with a fountain pen. You have to look hard for pre-punched paper of a weight appropriate for fountain pen ink(and, I imagine, watercolors). But at least you can find blank sheets for pencil drawing. A5 fits in a small café bag well (as well as the now discontinued field journal notebook).
    Pages of Rhodia A4 folded in half and punched fit perfectly in the FJN or other A5 ringed notebook.

  10. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by ejvc View Post
    Hi! Peeping up from my watercolour sink! Of course I've been buying journals and paints for a long time and never using them. Today I fixed up a really pretty little travel palette I wanted to show you. I have two Winsor & Newton Cotman travel sketchboxes, one I bought when I was 18, the other I found on sale very cheaply a few years ago. Each of them holds 12 colours and a brush; one of them also has a tiny water bottle and cup and a little sponge, useful for washes. I tried travelling to Gothenburg this weekend with the larger and it was OK but a bit bulky. So I rooted around and found this little box given to me by a friend many years ago. I've used it for years to hold stamps, but it was perfect to hold 10 half-pans of watercolour (of the smaller, new W&N pans).

    Photos show my painting setup with A6 Moleskine watercolour journal (unused and languishing for a few years); a transport card wallet which serves an an extra mixing area, the box (with bottom of yogurt lid taped in to form small mixing area), and it all packed with a bit of waxed paper and bubble wrap on top, followed by my cleaning rag, my travel brush, and the sponge. The card wallet just opens out and lives in the sketchbook (but-- could actually still be used for cards, dual-duty is good, right?). Also you see a plastic cup which has a lid, useful but not wonderfully packable (acquired with slime for child some time ago); and a spritz bottle from the optometrist filled with cleaning fluid that I was going to see if I could turn into a useful mini-atomiser of water, apart from I can't seem to open it :-(

    The temptation to buy new paints and travel brushes and pots was very strong. But I resisted by actually painting after I assembled the kit...

    PS pls don't judge I'm a better assembler of kits than a painter!!! This is from an old B&W photo of my mom in 1967 doing her doctoral fieldwork in Kenya.

    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3016-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3017-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3018-jpg
    Travel journals? your best ideas :-)-img_3019-jpg
    This is a very clever minimalist setup and you are a very talented watercolorist.

  11. #26
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    Aw shucks. Thanks so much. I've been actually using my paints and quite happy with it! But, maybe I will go back to the big one for the trip anyway because I really seem to need to have water and a cup with me. But maybe a little travel bottle with water will do.

  12. #27
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    Although not good for art, The Expedition from Field Notes is bulletproof.

    I always have a notebook in my back pocket. Usually their cover is tattered a little before I'm done writing in them. The Expedition has been in my back pocket every day, everywhere for the past 6-8 months and it's still totally fine.

    The slight downside is that the 'paper' is actually plasticy so some pens will not dry. They say it's waterproof. I haven't tested that part.

  13. #28
    Forum Member monkeylady's Avatar
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    I am a pretty devoted user of the Traveler’s notebook, either passport size or regular sizes, both when traveling and at home. It’s an ingenious and simple system of small notebooks held by elastics inside a leather cover (usually). You can find the notebooks (AKA inserts) in a variety of papers. So ostensibly in one cover you could have a notebook of watercolor paper, another for writing/journaling. There are also kraft file inserts which allow you to tuck away receipts and other bits and bobs. In my quest to keep packing weight down, instead of a leather cover I opt for a fabric one. There are a myriad of sellers on Etsy that sell all the components.
    Last edited by monkeylady; 05-13-2019 at 11:52 PM.
    The stockpile keeps growing...I'm in serious trouble.

  14. #29
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    Oh yes, I like those notebooks very much and have sewn some of my own inserts. Great suggestion!

  15. #30
    Forum Member daisy's Avatar
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    Many times I've done the notebook with the ticket stubs pasted in etc ... I couldn't actually put my hand on one now ...

    Last trip I used DayOneJournal app a lot ... lately it's been presenting me with memories from Europe last year ... easy to snap a picture of the ticket stubs and they're stored with location and time for when/if you can get back with added info.
    List under construction ....

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