The first word that came to mind when I received my Report & Art Book from Hahnemühle was ‘sturdy’. It’s thick with a fine-grained black hardcover, contrasting red stitching and a natural white paper.
I’ve been using one for several months, and I’ve found that this sketchbook doesn’t just look sturdy. It IS sturdy and the paper is suitable for almost any medium. Let’s look closer at that. I’ve made a video as well as written it all out for you.
And after you read the review, you might want to hop over to my blog and look at the giveaway I’m holding, since it includes a Report & Art book.
Forgive the state of my fingers. They’re stained and marked more often than not, I’m afraid. I’m an artist, so I wear it like a badge of honor.
- Pages: 64 sheets; 128 pages
- Size: A5 (5.8 x 8.3″) & A6(4.1 x 5.8″)
- Weight: 130 gsm
- Cover: Fine-grain, hard bound, black, reporter style
- Paper color: Natural-white, acid free, age resistant
- Binding: Sewn signatures
- Elastic Band, Elastic pencil holder, back pocket
- Paper described as ‘hard-wearing’
Report & Art Book – Look and Feel
The sketchbook has a fine-grain black cover with a contrasting red stitching on three sides and rounded edges at the bottom. It comes in two sizes, A5 and A6.
The elastic band fits snugly, keeping the book closed securely, but not cutting into the edges. It’s a cosmetic thing, but it always disturbs me when you get those dents where the band squeezes the cover.
The band is inset into the back of the book. The Hahnemühle rooster is debossed on the back of the Report & Art Book as well – the only decoration other than the red stitching.
You can see the grain highlighted in this photo.
The pen band is a good size to carry most pens and pencils, stretching enough to carry a water brush or a fat pen, though if you did that for long, I think it would stretch permanently.
There is a back pocket with the opening toward the inside edge, making it very deep and very secure.
The binding is sewn with even stitching, and like the rest of the book it’s sturdy. Because the paper is sewn into signatures, if you decide to cut out a page, the other half may come out as well. This isn’t really a book meant for you to remove pages. That said, I did it, just to see if I could. The paper tears easily enough with care, but it isn’t likely to tear accidentally.
Because the book is thick, it doesn’t fold over completely flat, but with a reporter-style book you don’t really need to fold it over completely.
You can let it hang free, or just push down a bit with a finger while you sketch in portrait orientation.
It also makes it easy to use the book in landscape. The pages have a bit of spring to them but the book lies flat.
The cover’s edges extend past the body. I like that for carry because it helps protect the paper, but I admit that I like the look when the cover’s edge is flush with the text.
The paper in the Report & Art Book is a natural white, acid free, and age resistant with enough tooth for pencil and paint, but smooth enough for pen. It’s 130 gsm and fairly stiff, like a cardstock, though the surface texture is nothing like cardstock. It’s more likely to crease than to wrinkle if bent sharply.
All though it is called a sketchbook, the paper works well for many mediums. It isn’t quite as heavy as many mixed media papers are, but it can certainly be used for mixed media.
The first thing I do with a book I intend to review, is try out as many mediums as I have on hand. The paper did well with all of them. It even worked with masking fluid.
Only the permanent marker and alcohol marker bled through. Those are the usual culprits and I would have been very surprised if they hadn’t. The fountain pen did not bleed through, and I would call this paper fountain pen friendly. Having said that, some inks in some pens will bleed through – this I know from experience – and there is enough tooth that writing with a fountain pen would not be as smooth as some people prefer.
This kind of test is limited, of course. The real proof of the pudding comes from doing art! So, I did art!
Technical pen in various point sizes.
Technical pen and milk-colored gel pens.
Technical pen and colored pencils.
Technical pen, fineliners and water-based markers.
Watercolor with several glazes. If the paper gets too wet some pilling (little bits of paper coming loose) occurs and the painting becomes overworked very quickly. Both are to be expected since this isn’t a true watercolor paper. The paper curls while wet, but doesn’t dimple as much as I expected, and it dries quite flat if you weight it down afterward. Simply closing the book and using the band is enough to do that.
Fountain pen ink.
This is another fountain pen ink painting that I did as an example on the video.
Even where I saturated the ink, wet-into-wet, there was almost no buckling or wrinkling. There was some curling, but not enough to make the ink pool.
After the ink dried, I drew on it with a fountain pen. The nib didn’t catch or tear even though the paper had been very wet.
The Hahnemühle Report & Art book is a great choice for sketching, art journaling, tangling and light watercolor. The top-fold format makes it convenient to sketch while standing. It looks sturdy and it is sturdy.
I’m having a giveaway at my blog for a Hahnemühle A6 Report & Art Book, a sampler pack of Hahnemühle Bamboo mixed media paper and a 6-pack of Zebra Zensations Technical Pens and last week’s winner donated the copy of Alice Hendon’s Tangle Planner:Into the Future, because she had a copy.
Art supplies used in this review:
- Hahnemühle Report & Art sketchbook A5
- Jacques Herbin 1798 Anniversary Ink – Cornaline D’Egypt
- J. Herbin 1798 Anniversary Ink – Amethyste de L’Oural
- J. Herbin Fountain Pen Ink – 30 ml Bottled – Vert Olive
- Molotow GRAFX Masking Fluid Pump Marker, 4mm
- Zebra Zensations Fineliners
- Zebra Zensations Technical Pen
- Zebra Zensations Mechanical Colored Pencils
- Zebra Milk Colored Gel Pens
- Zebra Pen PM-701 Permanent Marker
- Zebra Zensations Fountain Pen
- Zebra Zensations Brush Pen, Medium Brush Tip, Black
- Zebra Mildliner Highlighter
- Zebra Mechanical Pencil, Tect 2way, 0.3mm
- Uniball Signo Broad White Gel Pen
- Schmincke Horadam Aquarell Half-Pan – 12 colors
- Sakura Gelly Roll Pen Set
- Tombow Dual Brush Pen Set, 9 Pastel Colors
- Higgins Black Magic Ink Pump Marker, Waterproof, 1mm
Hahnemühle has been producing paper at the same place for more than 430 years. They have a high commitment to sustainability. You can follow their blog for alerts to giveaways, contests, events, artists and new releases.
Disclaimer: I received the A5 copy of the Hahnemühle Report & Art Book for the purposes of this review. Another A6 copy was sent for the giveaway at my blog. I received no other considerations, though this post contains affiliate links which help support the Doodlewash Community features. As always, all opinions expressed are my own.
Recommended3 recommendationsPublished in Art Supply Reviews
Wow! What a thorough review from a great multimedia artist. You really put this notebook through a work out. Thank you Sandra.
Laura, I apologize for the late reply and I thank you for the compliment!
What a thorough and outstanding review. I feel as though I know exactly what I’d be getting with this (and of course, I’m off to sign up for the giveaway and check out your blog!) Thank you.
Thank you, Jeanie! I checked out your blog as well.
Terrific review. Thank you.
Thank you, June!
Great review…love my A6 A&R! My one gripe was the centered pen loop. If you need to hook a slimmer pen using the clip, the pen extends past the edge of the book. I prefer my loops high 😊
Thank you, Bekki! Truthfully, I never use the pen loops. I’m never paying attention when I put my pen down. It has led to some interesting adventures in ‘Let’s Find the Pen’ land. But I just can’t get my brain to focus on where I set my tools down.
Great review! Love the Octopus especially !
Thank you.I know I’ll be doing more colored pencil in this book!
What a great review. I like the sturdy paper and it looks like it is pretty smooth making it perfect for colored pencil.
Thank you, Carol. It’s great for colored pencil because it has just enough tooth to pull the pigment while still being smooth enough for good coverage.
You didn’t mess around on this review! Thanks for all the great examples. It is great to know how all the mediums will work. There is nothing more frustrating than buying a new sketchbook, only to have it not live up to your expectations.
Thank you, Lori! I absolutely fell in love with this sketchbook!
Wow, that is a cool sketchbook. LOL another art supply added to my list to try.
Did you enter my giveaway?
absolutely spectacular review my friend. Now I really have to get to mine, lol. I had forgotten how good it sounded when I got one. YUMMY. You rock Sandra, wear that ink as a badge, it screams “I’m AN ARTIST!!”. heehee!
Thank you, Jennifer. I do wear that ink proudly. Good thing too, because I’m always wearing!
Interesting review, thanks. Maybe a new tool (or a new toy LOL) will stimulate me to restart my apprentice in sketching…
I have been too lazy lately…
robert, absolute beginner
Thank you, Robert! I believe that Hahnemühle has discontinued the Report & Art Book, though I’m hoping it’s only temporary! I love these books!