Camellia Senensis – Gateway To Good Tea

One of the best places to buy teas in Quebec City is Camellia Senensis.  They import teas from around the world and their selection is huge.  This is a serious tea-drinker’s store and one of my favorites.

I had bought tea and had left the store when I got the crazy idea that it wasn’t cold and that I should sketch the store.  It’s been a long time since I’ve sketched outdoors and the time was right.  Heck, it was only 32F.  And so I did.

I did a quick layout with a pencil and then started working with a Noodler’s Creaper flex pen.  I’m trying this as a somewhat different approach to my outdoor sketching, trying to loosen up the lines a bit relative to my typical consistent line width approach.  I think I’ll know better whether I like it when I can sketch without my fingers screaming at me because of the cold.


I finished the sketch (no color), stuffed my displeased fingers back in their gloves and headed home, quite smug with myself for having sketched outdoors.  I added some color when I got home.

This was done on the new Zeta-series paper that Stillman & Birn are about to release.   And it’s a dream come true, but then I’ve said that about all of the Stillman & Birn papers/sketchbooks.

The Zeta paper is an 180lb version of their Epsilon (100lb) paper and for pen/wash I can think of nothing better.  Very thick, no curl paper that’s smooth like a hot-press paper.  I’ve been using an Epsilon for all my museum sketching this winter and it looks like the Zeta will become my go-to sketchbooks for outdoor sketching.  Stillman & Birn continue to amaze.

2 thoughts on “Camellia Senensis – Gateway To Good Tea

  1. It’s too cold for me too, Tina. My second venture to sketch outdoors on Saturday ended in heading to the museum because my fingers couldn’t handle the cold. Still anxious to get out on the streets, though. I have some gloves that are similar but I can’t get comfortable using them. Hopefully I won’t have to ‘real soon.’

    As for the Zeta, it does sound like release is imminent. I’m always torn between the great, thick paper (almost cardboard thickness) and getting more pages. I’ve found my Epsilon experience this winter to be a really great one and the Zeta is just thick Epsilon 🙂

    Cheers — Larry

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