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View Full Version : Ampersand vs Pastelmat


SngnArtist
10-14-2018, 04:39 PM
I have someone wanting their cat on a portrait and all I have is UArt 9 x 12 and they want 8 x 10. I dont want to mess with trying to cut my uart and then have to mess with mounting it on something like gatorboard so I was thinking Ampersand or Pastelmat. I worked detailed and lots of layers sticks and pastel pencil and both i hear are great with that so what is the difference between the other then Pastelmat being more expensive?

The cat is grey so would you go with a sand color paper?

Barbara WC
10-14-2018, 05:42 PM
Which grit of UArt do you normally use?

Ampersand and PastelMat surfaces are very different.

Ampersand boards are gritty and have a lot of tooth- I'd equate it to one of the toothier UArt surfaces like maybe 320 (or even grittier). But Ampersand feels different than UArt.

PastelMat is a very soft surface- more similar to maybe UArt 800. And again, PastelMat feels different than UArt.

Do you like near an art store? Most of the art stores I've been to sell Ampersand Pastelbords and you can feel the surface for yourself.

SngnArtist
10-14-2018, 06:05 PM
Which grit of UArt do you normally use?

Ampersand and PastelMat surfaces are very different.

Ampersand boards are gritty and have a lot of tooth- I'd equate it to one of the toothier UArt surfaces like maybe 320 (or even grittier). But Ampersand feels different than UArt.

PastelMat is a very soft surface- more similar to maybe UArt 800. And again, PastelMat feels different than UArt.

Do you like near an art store? Most of the art stores I've been to sell Ampersand Pastelbords and you can feel the surface for yourself.


ahhh I only know UArt 800 grit so far. I have to have everything shipped as we have no art stores anywhere around here. Not even hour or so away is there any. This is why i ask so many questions and search youtube like crazy lol. Bummer I was hoping Ampersand was smoother and is easier then find then Pastelmat board

Equus Art
10-16-2018, 08:52 PM
I have never tried Ampersand so I can't make a comparison for you in that regard, but I am a PastelMat fan and it is my go to paper above all.

I have worked in pastels, sticks and pencils, doing mostly animal portraits and you can get many, many layers with PastelMat. It grabs pastels like glue. The first time I tried it I was shocked at how much color it grabs. I don't think you will be disappointed if you try it but if you are used to sanded papers, there may be a learning curve. I wasn't sure it was the paper for me at first, but I have learned it's personality and love it.

Cat

SngnArtist
10-19-2018, 03:21 PM
I have never tried Ampersand so I can't make a comparison for you in that regard, but I am a PastelMat fan and it is my go to paper above all.

I have worked in pastels, sticks and pencils, doing mostly animal portraits and you can get many, many layers with PastelMat. It grabs pastels like glue. The first time I tried it I was shocked at how much color it grabs. I don't think you will be disappointed if you try it but if you are used to sanded papers, there may be a learning curve. I wasn't sure it was the paper for me at first, but I have learned it's personality and love it.

Cat

I'm not that used to sanded paper yet ive only used two the UArt and only done two pieces with it. I love lots and lots of layers and one wildlife artist I follow loves PastelMat and is his go to paper so I am familiar with it through his reviews etc. I doubt I'll be disappointed and I somehow have a knack for succeeding with stuff I try the first time. No idea how it just works lol. Like my first practice on canvas sheet came out great and never worked on canvas before.


What do you guys do though for paper that isnt not hard on its own like UArt? Glue it with special glue to hardwoord or? and is PastelMat pretty sturdy once you remove tape off support you use when painting?

Moises Menendez
10-20-2018, 08:41 AM
I have used both. I like Ampersand since it comes on a rigid panel and also is gray. However, there is a problem with Ampersand; if you scratch the surface by accident it is very difficult to cover it with pastel. So be careful in that regard.
It really does not matter if you paint the cat in a 9x12 canvas since the matting will reduce the size to a convenient frame.

SngnArtist
10-20-2018, 04:17 PM
I have used both. I like Ampersand since it comes on a rigid panel and also is gray. However, there is a problem with Ampersand; if you scratch the surface by accident it is very difficult to cover it with pastel. So be careful in that regard.
It really does not matter if you paint the cat in a 9x12 canvas since the matting will reduce the size to a convenient frame.


OKay but Ampersand sounds to gritty for me I use UArt 800 grit can maybe do 600 but i would not go lower then that. I wish UArt made theres with a rigid panel that woudl be perfect. as for the smaller sized cat piece you have a point there 8 x 10 not that far off from 9 x 12 and with mating would surely work
Thank you

Equus Art
10-21-2018, 06:42 PM
You can get UArt already mounted and I did, but I didn't like it. Whatever glue or treatment they used to mount it onto the board left some weird pattern that showed up when I worked on it. I haven't purchased them again and I think it was about 4 years ago that I first tried them. I'm not a fan of UArt, though I know tons of people do love it. I don't like the curling issue and have found it wants to curl so badly, that it pulled the tape off of the easel board I use.

I hinge tape my PastelMat to the board, using about a 2" piece of artist's masking tape on all four corners (or sometimes along the middle edges also if the painting is large. Tape directly to the backside of the piece, facing forward and then tape another piece in a T across the sticky side of the first tape, directly to the board. I have never had a problem carefully removing the tape from the paper when I take it off. PastelMat is fairly thick and rugged.

Cat

kcwhitney
10-22-2018, 04:42 AM
Consider Grafix Double Tack Mounting Film for mounting your sheet to a board. It is archival and works pretty well for me. I like UART.

westcoast_Mike
10-22-2018, 04:50 PM
However, there is a problem with Ampersand; if you scratch the surface by accident it is very difficult to cover it with pastel. So be careful in that regard.

This can happen with Pastelmat as well.

SngnArtist
10-22-2018, 07:41 PM
You can get UArt already mounted and I did, but I didn't like it. Whatever glue or treatment they used to mount it onto the board left some weird pattern that showed up when I worked on it. I haven't purchased them again and I think it was about 4 years ago that I first tried them. I'm not a fan of UArt, though I know tons of people do love it. I don't like the curling issue and have found it wants to curl so badly, that it pulled the tape off of the easel board I use.

I hinge tape my PastelMat to the board, using about a 2" piece of artist's masking tape on all four corners (or sometimes along the middle edges also if the painting is large. Tape directly to the backside of the piece, facing forward and then tape another piece in a T across the sticky side of the first tape, directly to the board. I have never had a problem carefully removing the tape from the paper when I take it off. PastelMat is fairly thick and rugged.

Cat

I hate the curling too its a real problem and even my cat i did is starting to curl again ;( and we are cold here in upstate ny. I'm going to try PastelMat i just haven't yet with it being pricier and no extra funds to buy and give it a go yet but I plan too. I don't mine the sandiness of UARt but the curling does drive me nuts and thank about hinging I do know what that is. I prefer to just tape around with artist tape to postal board when im working on it. I don't work on an easel. I guess for storing i could pull that up and then hinge tape back on the postal board and hopefully prevent curling until its ever sold/ matted /framed where then it wont matter. I am happy to hear that PastelMat is fairly thick and rugged and i assume your saying just the paper not the pastelMat board?

SngnArtist
10-22-2018, 07:44 PM
Consider Grafix Double Tack Mounting Film for mounting your sheet to a board. It is archival and works pretty well for me. I like UART.

Thanks it might try that. What board do you mount it too? I like working on UARt surface 800 grit though, but i cant stand fussing with all the curling issues.

Equus Art
10-22-2018, 08:40 PM
I haven't tried the PM board, just the paper and yes, it is thick and you can use alcohol, Gamsol, water and also Zest It to wet underpaint as well.

I truly wanted to like UArt, but can't get past the curling issues.

Cat

kcwhitney
10-23-2018, 04:57 AM
I use Gatorboard

SngnArtist
10-28-2018, 04:00 PM
Ughhh my current WIP is curling more while im working on it even though its taped down on poster board ....I dont know what to do with it