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Horsa
02-11-2011, 02:11 PM
Which of the three tools of watercolour painting have you found to make the biggest difference in your work?

I have found paper to be the biggest influence to me. Both the colour and the texture of paper matter to me. I don't like painting on ultra-bright whites, they throw off too much glare for my eyes.

I prefer the surface texture of handmade to machine made paper. Especially the machine papers with very regular, mechanical feeling surface texture.

I have fun playing around on all sorts of papers, some of which are not "artist" papers at all.

Yorky
02-11-2011, 02:43 PM
I like to extrapolate when facing a choice. What difference does paper make - well try painting on thin printer paper - very difficult to get a decent result with the best paints and finest brushes.

I agree with you the paper is the most important factor in watercolours. Some cheap papers are too absorbent or have a heavy pattern making it difficult to control the paint.

Next a decent brush, but even then good results can be achieved with synthetics.

Finally the paint quality has an influence, but not as much as the other two elements.

Doug

claude j greengrass
02-11-2011, 03:18 PM
Which of the three tools of watercolour painting have you found to make the biggest difference in your work?
Paper, Paper, Paper. Good quality, although not the most expensive is the most the most important of the three. Find a paper that suits you style and paint, paint, paint.

ReggieS
02-11-2011, 08:36 PM
PAper, paper, paper!!!

Reggie

Captain G
02-11-2011, 08:55 PM
I agree with Doug!

BDorsa
02-11-2011, 09:12 PM
Paper, my art mentor made me a Fabriano Artistico snob & it's all I use.

cgonzaga
02-11-2011, 10:28 PM
Saunders Waterford :thumbsup:

juneto
02-12-2011, 12:28 AM
GO Arches !!!!!:clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :clap: :lol:
June:evil:

skappy
02-12-2011, 02:35 AM
Paper is important I tied a lot Arches and Fabriano artistico are my favorites I bet some others are great too I did nt try them all and once you find one that suits you it is hard to change
Robert

Rhodylady
02-12-2011, 07:38 AM
Is fair to break the rules of the question? Can I add: the encouragement of my watercolor teacher?

And yeah, paper! And I might add - good paper, and keep using the same paper for a long time until you get the hang of it? For a bit I was trying everything under the sun and I had no consistency... gee... I wonder why.

watercolourfanatic
02-12-2011, 07:57 AM
Having tried lots of papers, lots of brushes and lots of paints(!) :eek: I have to agree with those who say paper, paper, paper!!!:)

PainterRon
02-12-2011, 09:05 AM
I've used Arches 140 med/rough for 35 years so paper is something I don't think about much but brushes and the way I use them is by far the most important thing for me. I use W/N paint with some additions, so thats also under control...but brushes, thats the thing. You can paint the same compo twice, once with a synthetic 7 and once with a sable and for me there are radical differences. The sable skips across the paper, the synthetic pushes the paint into the tooth of the paper. This leads to different textures strokes...all sorts of stuff. Takes skill to handle the pliant point of a natural brush. Same with with bigger brushes I am now using. Handling a no. 36 round or a big flat takes you to places you aren't going to get to scrubbing away with a synthetic 12 round. Whole different skill set. I hear all sorts of talk about how much water big or natural brushes hold, well try painting with a big round (12 isn't big) using the tip, holding the brush high up the handle with the paper vertical...and the versatility of riggers or using the corner edge of a big flat...Its not just a matter of good brushes, its the myriad possibilities of even just a few different brushes.

oCDs01-711
02-15-2011, 10:15 PM
I use Arches, but I've wanted to try Fabriano just cuz. How is it different, or is it different from Arches? :)

Bobar57
02-16-2011, 01:16 AM
Paper definitely.I like Fabriano Artistico.

Bob

Marcio C
02-16-2011, 02:06 AM
Paper, for sure. Then brush, then paint.

sashntash
02-16-2011, 11:45 AM
I use Arches, but I've wanted to try Fabriano just cuz. How is it different, or is it different from Arches? :)

I'm no expert.. by any means...

but I've been experimenting with different papers for the last several weeks.... with the goal of choosing one paper to stick with.

I narrowed it down to Arches 140# CP and
Fabriano Artistico 140 # CP.

The Fabriano, IMHO, is softer, smoother and more absorbent than the Arches. I think the sizing must be different.

The Arches seemed to me to be a little slower to absorb the water/paint and it has just a tad bit more texture.

I ended up choosing the Arches 140# CP for my standard paper. I liked the Fabriano, but there was something about the way it absorbed the water that I didn't like....

I know... not very scientific...

the Arches just seemed to "fit" me better...

perhaps someone can give you a more experienced point of view.... far better than my limited experience.

I hope so... cause I'd like to hear it also !!!! :D

Bobar57
02-16-2011, 12:02 PM
I'm no expert.. by any means...

but I've been experimenting with different papers for the last several weeks.... with the goal of choosing one paper to stick with.

I narrowed it down to Arches 140# CP and
Fabriano Artistico 140 # CP.

The Fabriano, IMHO, is softer, smoother and more absorbent than the Arches. I think the sizing must be different.

The Arches seemed to me to be a little slower to absorb the water/paint and it has just a tad bit more texture.

I ended up choosing the Arches 140# CP for my standard paper. I liked the Fabriano, but there was something about the way it absorbed the water that I didn't like....

I know... not very scientific...

the Arches just seemed to "fit" me better...

perhaps someone can give you a more experienced point of view.... far better than my limited experience.

I hope so... cause I'd like to hear it also !!!! :D

It's a "taster choice":D.I will say that quite more than 50% of watercolor painters chose Arches,they all have their personal reasons and one is that's a good damn paper.Yet I still like the Fabriano,precisely for the reason you dislike it:softness,less sizing and therefore more absorbent.I like the way it plays with the washes.It forces me to get out-it is costing me effort-of the uptight and perfectionist way I want to render the watercolors and I shouldn't do that.
I need to study more the Impressionists and practice more copying their works,in the process I will lose that frustration of not being able to render the photo-realistic(not even close) effect I want to achieve.I will learn to go with the flow,lets the pigments set his rules too,call pigments my harem.:wink2:.But eventually I'll feel confident and in the process I will start developing my own style.

Bob

Mayberry
02-16-2011, 07:03 PM
I've been painting on Fabriano HP and have really been enjoying it. I do have a bit of Arches CP and some Langton CP that I'll eventually try out, but I've focused on getting to know the Fabriano HP first. On the other hand, I have a pad of Strathmore paper that I bought years ago when I didn't know anything about watercolor. It's totally different to paint on, and I've been avoiding it lately because it's so annoying.

I like what Ron said about brushes. I started out with a bunch of super cheap synthetics that were given to me. And they were fine. Then I started slowly buying Kolinski sables, and they're fine too, in a very different way. And I recently got a squirrel mop, and a kolinski cat's tongue, and a goat hair flat, and a chinese brush. And they're totally different too. They're all good tools, but they cause you to use the paint in very different ways. These days I find myself painting with a sable and a synthetic close at hand and switch back and forth to do different things. It's by no means second nature yet, but I want to continue to train my hand to reach for the best tool for what I want to do.

As for paint, I started with a set of 6 Cotmans. I gradually have been adding some Sennelier, some M. Graham, and recently some Daniel Smith. They're all good, and I use them all, but they all have a different feel. I'm starting to get kind of tired of the time it takes to soften up the Cotmans, especially since the DS paints are soooo awesome. I have a few DS prima tek colors now, and they are so different from any of my other colors, that they are causing really different things to happen in my painting.

CJMonty
02-16-2011, 08:00 PM
Personally, I would say All Three are important, I would however put paper at the top, the quality of your paper will determine how your watercolours will work for you. I do use the Fabriano Artistico 300 gram and 640 gram papers, why such heavy papers you may ask, well, by using these I find I no longer have to stretch my papers, in fact with the 640 you can actually get away with not having to mount it at all providing you are not using extremely wet washes.

I also find that the quality of your brushes also play a role on how much control you have over your paint. The type of brush you use is however a personal issue.

As for your paint, this too is important, if you are using a good Artist Quality Paint then you will also have some added control, not to mention how much more vibrant the colours are too and how well they respond to the test of time. I find that the M.Graham watercolour paints are excellent value for money, on top of the fact that their vibrancy is fantastic. Also, the fact that they do not dry rock hard on your pallette they are so much easier to reconstitute, not to mention that they are just as vibrant and easy to use as
though they were fresh from your tube.

Of course, e eryone is an individual and personal preferance also plays a part, but I do feel very strongly that you should be using Artist Grade Products. Yes, your initial outlay may be a bit more expensive but overall it will end up less so as you will not have to replace things as often.

You get what you pay for.

Take Care.
Lots of Love Carolynn. :grouphug: :grouphug: :heart: :heart: :heart: :) :) :clap: :thumbsup: :wave: :heart: :heart: :heart: :grouphug: :grouphug:

Dondi
02-17-2011, 12:11 AM
Hi Kids!
My vote definitely goes to *paper*. When I first started painting, I was using cheap paper and it was so discouraging. As soon as I tried my first sheet of Arches, the whole experience changed from frustrating to fun! :D
I use Arches 140 CP - but I just bought some Fabriano to try out since so many people here at WC rave about it. I'll let you know what I think after I experiment with it a little.
:heart:
Dondi

Bobar57
02-17-2011, 12:14 AM
you can get away with cheap paint and cheap brushes,but cheap-read bad quality- paper won't cut it.:smug:

Bob