And now for something completely different; A blue horse with no head.
That is what greets you when you crack open the box of Baron Fig’s latest limited edition Confidant. It’s called Unfinish, and it features incomplete pieces of art to serve as inspiration to get your creativity flowing. The book was created in collaboration with the designer Khoi Vinh, who is the former Art Director of The New York Times and the current Principal Designer at Adobe. In other words, this was developed by Creatives for Creatives.
From the outside in, the Unfinish provides the same great quality that I have come to expect from the Baron Fig product line. This time around, the familiar cloth cover is in the beautiful shade of Non-Repro Blue, matching the designs provided on the interior. Non-Repro Blue, as I’ve recently learned, is a shade used by artists and designers because it is not picked up by copy machines. This frees them up to sketch away without having to worry about erasing later. A nice detail of the cover is the lightly stamped suggestion to “Have Fun” in the lower right corner, exemplifying Baron Fig’s dedication to enjoying and embracing minimalism.
This edition uses blank pages with those Non-Repro Blue unfinished designs on a majority of them. The paper is better than ever, holding up to any pencil, pen, or fountain pen I’ve got. While a few of my fountain pens have had issues with bleeding through the dot grid paper in my daily-use Confidant, the Unfinish takes it all in stride with no feathering on the front and minimal ghosting on the back. I wouldn’t go so far as watercolors or thick, Sharpie-like felt-tip markers with this one, but it’s a great sketch book quality piece.
Using the Book
The designs held within the Unfinish are intended to get your creative mind moving, but are subtle enough to act as background noise in an otherwise blank notebook.
If you’re anything like me, you get very intimidated by a blank page. I choose to write because I have a far easier time telling you what something looks like rather than showing you. But, with the incomplete every-day items as a guide, I’m finding it much simpler to start in a familiar place and take a drawing to a place that shares a border with the absurd. While other sketchbooks may include prompts or guides to get you moving, the Unfinish gives you a bare minimum, random, and incomplete jumping-off point that I’ve found to be far more effective in getting me to actually put pen to paper.
The Unfinish may not be the most useful for an every-day notebook like the Flagship Confidant or the other limited editions that came before. But it certainly fills a need that was previously underdeveloped in the industry, and it does so in the classic Baron Fig style of intentional minimalism.
If it’s time to grab a new notebook, and you don’t mind paper devoid of grids or lines, check out the Limited Edition Unfinish from Baron Fig. And remember to have fun!
Available for $20 at Baron Fig.
Disclaimer: Baron Fig provided all of the products in this article to The Poor Penman blog free of charge for the purpose of review. All opinions stated are those of the author.