California Cedar’s “Creative Legacy”

California Cedar has fixed the most recent errors, which I mentioned were originally copied from here but done so in an erroneous manner (see this post for the details). This is further proof that CalCedar closely monitors this site for information, but never credits it.

From Palominobrands (Click)

I know it’s too much to expect an “I’m sorry” from them for the copying, but I thought maybe a “thank you” or some attribution at least for doing their error-checking for them, too. Maybe a check’s in the mail. I wonder what would happen if I actually sent them an invoice. :) I don’t understand why it is so impossibly difficult for them to do their own work.

For a site that speaks so much about one’s “creative legacy”, I wonder what their’s will be.

Justin Oberman, the Art Directors Club NY, and the “Blackwing Experience”: Copyright Infringers

Where does it stop?

In a newly posted video for the “Blackwing Experience”, Justin Oberman of has included one of my original photos without permission and without attribution. The video is watermarked with the “Palomino Blackwing” seal of approval in the lower right-hand corner:


You can see it here [video has been removed] If the video is taken down, I have saved a copy and will post a link. Surely Mr. Oberman won’t mind if I share his work without permission.

1. This is inexcusable and indefensible on Oberman’s part, on the Art Director’s Club part, and on California Cedar’s part. It seems David Rees is an unwitting participant. These are people who work in media, and they’ve chosen to plagiarize—there are no “oops, I should have checked” that will work here at this level. The copyright notice is clearly stated on my blog. But if it weren’t, there’s no excuse to take someone else’s work (unless you’re just hoping you won’t get caught).

2. As “artists”, I wonder how Mr. Oberman or the Art Director’s Club would feel if someone took their work without permission and attribution.

3. I know nothing of Mr. Oberman’s standing in the art community, but I’m betting plagiarism won’t put him on the fast-track to success.

Ladies and gentleman, even if you have been on the fence about recent developments, surely you can see that this is wrong and that it is a pattern. What more has to happen before something is done about this?

How is this O.K.?

Dear California Cedar: If you are going to take from me…

From (click)

…at least get it right.

The character’s name from Jaws is Matt Hooper, (wiki) not Matt Cooper.

I can’t say that I was the first person online to mention the Mad Men sighting but my post preceded yours (though his character’s name is Paul Kinsey, not Harry Crane). [Added: since I posted this, CalCedar has quietly updated their site, which illustrates how they monitor and use information from this blog.]

What a drag this is becoming.

John Lennon too? Michael at Orange Crate Art has discussed this more eloquently than I could (I wish I could audit some of his classes). It seems now that the standard of proof for being a “Blackwing user” has been lowered to nothing more than any single and virtually anonymous comment that has been left on a blog.

This reminds me of an old Saturday Night Live news sketch with Father Guido Sarducci, where he talks about how the Vatican’s requirements for sainthood have now been lowered to only three miracles, and two of them can be card tricks.

But yet it’s the Blackwing that suffers.

P.S. It’s customary, ethical (and I think required), to credit the photographers who took those pictures. I wonder how you’d feel if others were using your original content on their sites, without permission or attribution. For example, your exclusive dealer in the U.K. has been using my original content for months, and has refused to take it down or provide attribution despite my repeated requests.

What a drag this is.

Patent 1373062 or, Lothar Faber Was a Genius

A pencil, barely alive. We can rebuild him…
Blackwing stubs are often cared for with the same reverence as cryogenically-frozen heads, because deep-down they share the same dream: that one day, some future scientist will find a cure for them and they’ll be brought back to life. Pencil extenders such as those by Staedtler, Derwent, Cretacolor, etc. are beautiful and well-made, but the pencil has to be removed in order to be sharpened, or at least pulled forward a bit, and having to do so again and again—especially with a soft pencil—becomes too disruptive. The best solution I have found is an old one:

We have the technology…
This Faber eraser/extender/cap dates back to the 1920s. It’s patent number, 1373062, refers to several iterations of the extended ferrule and clip eraser design. It adds just enough weight and length to the stub, and the pencil is easily positioned inside. It’s kind of like a prosthetic barrel, or dare I say, a bionic pencil:

To make him better than he was before…
The Blackwing 602 fits snugly inside but the sliding clip adds a little extra pressure. What’s nice is that even though you have to remove the Blackwing’s ferrule, the extender has one very similar to it. The cutout arrow is reminiscent of the ferrules found on early Van Dyke pencils, and the color of the petrified Chiclet eraser is a bright red like those found on the older pencils. The gilt finish is all but rubbed off, revealing its natural brass color and “E. Faber U.S.A.” is stamped on the side.

Better. Faster. Stronger. [cue music]
This is by far the most effective lengthener I’ve seen for pencils, and it’s some 90 years old. While I am a fan of those made by Graf von Faber Castell, they for the most part do not accommodate hexagonal pencils.

If not Lothar, shouldn’t some Faber get his own United States postage stamp?

Aha! Clamp? No…Clip!

While preparing a post that is soon to follow, I came across something interesting in a patent application from the early 1920s. Made by Lothar Faber, he is describing the extended ferrule and the parts associated with it. In a previous post I mentioned that I was unsure about what to call the small metal part that holds the eraser inside of the ferrule. I decided to go with “clamp” since Eberhard Faber called the assembly a “clamp eraser” in their catalogs. But it seems that was something akin to a marketing name.

Clamp? I don’t think so. It’s a clip.

Thank you, Lothar.


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