I’ve talked about really reaching out to people from your past and taking the time to thank them for their influence in your life.
Today let me share a fun way I’ve discovered to do that. Flow Book for Paper Lovers.
I’ve found the book several times in a Barnes and Noble store, but I cannot find it on their website. I say this because the online version of the book (it’s a one-inch thick magazine with a substantial binding) at Amazon is, ah yeah, really expensive and if you have a Barnes and Noble membership card and you can find it in one of their stores, you can save beaucoup bucks.
How the publishers (their names are Irene and Astrid) founded Flow Magazine reads a bit like you’d like a story to be told about two women who, in 2009, founded a magazine. Nope, not in a restaurant sketching their ideas on a napkin like two businessmen.
Irene and Astrid launched Flow in 2009 in an attic in a house in Haarlem,* near Amsterdam. I haven’t been to this town, but I’ve seen pictures which jumpstarted my imaginings.
Can’t you see these two woman thinking in the attic of one of the houses above, amidst some of the retro papers like this:
designing their magazine? You’ll find plenty in this 300+page book from which to choose to send your next letter of thanks. Besides stationery, you’ll find wrapping paper, stickers, little note cards, fold-out banners, paper dolls, paper houses – all designed for you to play and make another person happy too.
What I love about Flow, besides the beautiful images and paper, is the purpose of Flow, and I quote, “Flow is a magazine that takes its time. It’s about doing things differently, making new choices, tiny pleasures, daily life and the beauty of not always having to be perfect.”
Do. New. Pleasures. Daily. = Beautiful.
I also love that Flow is a way for that consortium I call worldwide illustrators to have a place for their audience to see their beautiful creations.
And, as they say, Irene and Astrid even “have an app for that.”
An app, for paper?
Well, not exactly, but it is an app, that, like Flow’s purpose, is designed for your fingers and brain to take their time exploring some well-done creative interactions with paper. Here’s the link to the Flow Special Digital Edition 1 app (it’s free), the Flow Special Digital Edition 2, as well as to the money-making digital app.
Last week I went to find the real book to buy it again, this time for a friend, and errr, the book was gone. I did spy an older Flow Magazine on eBay here. Looks just as fun as the one I have.
And while I did not find Flow Book for Paper Lovers, I DID find Flow Sketchbook, which is just as fun and it won’t set you back more than a hardcover book that’s not on sale ($19.99).
What the publishers have done is again, invited illustrators to contribute their sketching into this sketchbook. But, what is wonderful for the yous and mes who can’t draw, the illustrators have been kind enough to provide step-by-step instructions as to how to draw, say, a teacup, a house, or flowers.
Some of the images are out of the Flow Book for Paper Lovers, some are original to the Sketchbook. The sketchbook has, according to its cover (and it’s true, it does) lessons from Flow illustrators, DIY postcards, a paper house and tracing paper.
I love their editorial page. “If there is one field in which copycats actually learn — and what’s more, in which copying is completely acceptable behavior — it is in the realm of drawing. Because when you copy something, it always becomes your own drawing anyway, as it will have details and elements that only you can make.”
*Note: This is the same town where Corrie ten Boom’s family hid Dutch Jews in their house during the Nazi occupation from 1940 to 1945. The movie, “The Hiding Place tells the ten Boom’s story.