WetCanvas
Home Member Services Content Areas Tools Info Center WC Partners Shop Help
Channels:
Search for:
in:

Welcome to the WetCanvas forums. You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view most discussions, articles and access our other FREE features. By joining our free community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload your own photos and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please visit our help center.

Go Back   WetCanvas > Explore Media > Watercolor > The Learning Zone
User Name
Password
Register Mark Forums Read

Salute to our Partners
WC! Sponsors

Our Sponsors
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #16   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-09-2012, 07:40 PM
pumkin54's Avatar
pumkin54 pumkin54 is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 736
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by sashntash
However, I will caution you again about using paper from a craft store. Watercolor paint does not handle the same way on cheap paper. Unfortunately, you won't learn what you can do with watercolor on cheap paper.... and.. if you do decide to continue with watercolor, you will have to start your learning curve all over again when you do switch to good paper.
I'm sorry, but I vehemently disagree. That's the same thing I was told when asking for advice on these forums when I first started out. It's complete nonsense. I listed three good quality economy/student papers and there is nothing at all wrong with them. They taught me very well what I could do with watercolor. I could do washes, graded washes, lifting and any other technique I read about and tried. When somebody in my art class gave me a couple sheets of Arches, there was no new learning curve. It was the exact same transition as if I had just switched paper brands. For me, the only truly noteworthy differences for a beginner are that washes go on more smoothly on artist grade, and student grade paper pills more easily and therefore takes corrections less easily. The tactile experience is different (subjective) and artist grade paper is archival (for beginning scribbles, who cares?).

I've since bought some Fabriano Artistico to try. The degree of difference between Artistico and Arches is the same as the degree of difference between Montval and Arches. People do beautiful watercolors on Strathmore 400 with Cotman paints and synthetic brushes. From personal experience (and not just repeating what I've been told and come to believe), the prejudice against student paper is often unfounded. Yes, there are some brands that aren't fabulous, but there are artist brands that I wouldn't waste my money on either.

This is something that raises my hackles because it's a falsehood that's told to anybody who comes on these forums asking for advice. And it's discouraging to newbies. It's essentially telling them if you can't afford artist grade, then you're wasting your time because you're not even really learning to watercolor if you use cheaper paper and you'll just have to learn all over again. And that's bull. If I had listened to that advice, I wouldn't be watercolor painting right now quite frankly. I'd have been discouraged and moved on to something more affordable or stuck with oil pastels. Instead, I chose not to listen, bought my Fabriano Studio and Canson Montval, did a bunch of practicing on a ton of sheets for minimal cost until I had the confidence to buy more expensive artist paper and know that I wouldn't be completely destroying it. For some people $5/sheet is not a negligible amount.

(This wasn't directed at straight at you, sashntash. Sorry if you take it that way.)
__________________
pumkin
the pumkinpatch


Last edited by pumkin54 : 04-09-2012 at 08:06 PM.
Reply With Quote
  #17   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-09-2012, 08:27 PM
sashntash sashntash is offline
Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,034
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Pumkin - no problem.

We'll just have to agree to disagree.

I started with Canson Montval and had a terrible time with it. As soon as I switched to Arches it was like a whole new world opened up.

As you said yourself..... "the tactile experience is different."

And, yes.. that is subjective.

I totally agree... it is far better to be painting on any kind of paper, than not painting at all.... and I certainly know that art supplies are expensive.... I'm retired and not swimming in money, so I have to watch my pennies also.
I just think..... from my OWN experience.... that there is a big difference between student grade paper and artist quality paper.

Your mileage may vary and obviously does... and that's fine. That's what makes the world go round.... Peace.....
__________________
Susan
in beautiful North Carolina
Retired and loving every minute of it !!!
Time to play......
Reply With Quote
  #18   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-10-2012, 12:39 AM
pumkin54's Avatar
pumkin54 pumkin54 is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 736
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

BTW Daniel Smith is having free shipping with a $50 minimum order this week. If that helps.
__________________
pumkin
the pumkinpatch

Reply With Quote
  #19   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 01:08 AM
SSB SSB is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 845
 
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by pumkin54
I'm sorry, but I vehemently disagree. That's the same thing I was told when asking for advice on these forums when I first started out. It's complete nonsense. I listed three good quality economy/student papers and there is nothing at all wrong with them. They taught me very well what I could do with watercolor. I could do washes, graded washes, lifting and any other technique I read about and tried. When somebody in my art class gave me a couple sheets of Arches, there was no new learning curve. It was the exact same transition as if I had just switched paper brands. For me, the only truly noteworthy differences for a beginner are that washes go on more smoothly on artist grade, and student grade paper pills more easily and therefore takes corrections less easily. The tactile experience is different (subjective) and artist grade paper is archival (for beginning scribbles, who cares?).

I've since bought some Fabriano Artistico to try. The degree of difference between Artistico and Arches is the same as the degree of difference between Montval and Arches. People do beautiful watercolors on Strathmore 400 with Cotman paints and synthetic brushes. From personal experience (and not just repeating what I've been told and come to believe), the prejudice against student paper is often unfounded. Yes, there are some brands that aren't fabulous, but there are artist brands that I wouldn't waste my money on either.

This is something that raises my hackles because it's a falsehood that's told to anybody who comes on these forums asking for advice. And it's discouraging to newbies. It's essentially telling them if you can't afford artist grade, then you're wasting your time because you're not even really learning to watercolor if you use cheaper paper and you'll just have to learn all over again. And that's bull. If I had listened to that advice, I wouldn't be watercolor painting right now quite frankly. I'd have been discouraged and moved on to something more affordable or stuck with oil pastels. Instead, I chose not to listen, bought my Fabriano Studio and Canson Montval, did a bunch of practicing on a ton of sheets for minimal cost until I had the confidence to buy more expensive artist paper and know that I wouldn't be completely destroying it. For some people $5/sheet is not a negligible amount.

(This wasn't directed at straight at you, sashntash. Sorry if you take it that way.)


I have found that I have had much greater success painting SUCCESSFUL watercolors using better paper. By better though I mean like a Strathmore 400 vs. canson 90lb pads and the like. The difference is major between those two. I feel like strathmore 400 is a very fine affordable surface, as is the Utrecht/ canson Montval? ( I think it is called?). Fabriano and Arches are even better, particularly if one is very confident of the success of the piece.

Paint was the same way for me, go too cheap and it was worthless, but the Cotman range is absolutely good enough for sure! Brushes? We can't all kill Siberian skunks... 2.50 squirrel on strthmore 400 with some Cotman pans and you are ready to rock. Good to go!
Reply With Quote
  #20   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 01:55 AM
doug105 doug105 is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 227
 
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Since you guys are talking paper.....Would you mind sharing your experiences with the difference between whole sheets&blocks made by the same maker.

Thanks,

DougN
Reply With Quote
  #21   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 02:04 AM
SSB SSB is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 845
 
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Sheets have been better for us all around, just watch out for overhanded open stock.
Reply With Quote
  #22   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 10:03 AM
sashntash sashntash is offline
Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 1,034
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Doug - welcome to the forum !!!

I have not yet tried blocks, so I can't give you any help with that....

but may I suggest that you might get more answers to your question if you start a new thread with a title something like "sheets vs blocks" in it.....

not that there is anything wrong with asking the question in this thread.... but you just might get more responses in another thread
__________________
Susan
in beautiful North Carolina
Retired and loving every minute of it !!!
Time to play......
Reply With Quote
  #23   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 10:06 AM
virgil carter's Avatar
virgil carter virgil carter is offline
Immortalized
Boerne, TX USA
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,555
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Doug, generally speaking buying whole sheets in quantity from an online retailer (and thereafter cutting the sheets to the desired smaller size, if any) may be more economical. This is especially true during sales and free (or reduced cost) shipping, which are common.

Another advantage of sheets over blocks is that one can work on more than one painting simultaneously.

140lb paper may be the best "all around" weight for watercolor painting in a variety of styles. 90lb paper generally requires stretching, for most painters, to avoid buckling. At the other end of the weight-spectrum, many painters (me included) prefer 300lb paper for its ability to hold water longer and for the ability to almost never buckle, simply using a bulldog clip on each corner to hold it to the backing board.

Paper is a very personal choice, as has been described. I'm one of those painters that thinks it's the single most important choice a painter can make.

Whatever you choose, however, use it long enough to learn what it will and won't do. Constantly switching paper is a frustrating experience since they all differ, just as all paints differ.

Sling paint!
Virgil
__________________
Virgil Carter
http://www.virgilcarterfineart.com/
Reply With Quote
  #24   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 11:01 AM
Tattau's Avatar
Tattau Tattau is offline
Senior Member
Wyoming
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 268
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Any tips on handling rolls? I purchased a 54" x 6 yard roll of 140 lb, paper (Fabriano). It's tremendously economic, but a bear to unroll and flatten.
__________________
Artwork does not become "Art" until someone buys it... until then, it's just an obsession... and a storage problem.
I welcome constructive critiques and comments from anyone and anywhere.

My website
Reply With Quote
  #25   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 03:42 PM
CharM's Avatar
CharM CharM is offline
A WC! Legend
Pinehurst, Ontario
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 35,741
 
Hails from Canada
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Like most of our tools, paper is a very personal choice. Of course, what you feel most comfortable painting on will depend on what and how you paint.

In my work, I do not lay down a lot of watery washes. Typically, while I do paint a lot of my elements wet-in-wet, I rarely soak my paper. So, it isn't necessary for me to stretch it or purchase heavy paper to prevent buckling.

140# Arches rough paper is my favourite working surface. I like the whiteness of it and the deep tooth. I'm able to achieve very fine details despite the paper's texture.

140# Arches cold pressed is generally what I recommend to my Students. It has a nice even tooth, is sized evenly and can take a lot of abrasion before looking overworked.

200# Saunders Waterford or 200# Curry's papers are very nice warm white supports that really don't buckle very much. They are an excellent alternative to the more expensive 300# paper. Neither of these papers has much tooth, though, and if whitest whites are needed for your composition then this paper won't suffice.

These papers come on sale often enough that I never have to pay full price for them.

Before I retired from my full time job, I used blocks extensively.
  • Generally speaking, their textures are quite similar to the above full sheets, but not identical.
  • They also measure a little differently... i.e. they don't correspond to 1/2 sheet, 1/4 sheet sizes, etc.
  • The binding material that holds the blocks together will sometimes loosen which is annoying, so I always ended up taping around the edges of the block for each painting.
  • I did like the convenience of using the blocks, though and they travelled easily in my luggage (I travelled 2-3 weeks per month in my job).
  • They are typically more expensive than the equivalent number of pieces torn from full sheets.

I have tried several other papers including Strathmore, Fabriano, Canson, Bockingford and Daler Rowney... I come back to Arches or Saunders Waterford every time.

For rolls of paper, Click Here or Try Here for a little more information. I investigated buying a roll, but the price worked out to be at least 1.5 times regular sheets. For what I needed, I did find a piece of elephant size paper though.
__________________
Char

Where the spirit does not work with the hand, there is no art. Leonardo DaVinci
Handbook Index ... Help for Newbies
Reply With Quote
  #26   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-11-2012, 05:37 PM
virgil carter's Avatar
virgil carter virgil carter is offline
Immortalized
Boerne, TX USA
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Posts: 4,555
 
Hails from United States
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Tattau, there have been past threads on rigs for cutting rolls of paper, as Char mentions above.

I keep telling people that there's a much simpler approach. Just turn the roll and the length of paper over so the the natural "curve" of the paper coming off the roll is DOWN (not up). This will help flatten the desired length of paper on your table top. There after use a metal straight edge and box cutter knife to cut the paper (or just use scissors).

It's an old architecture studio trick for using lengths of tracing paper from the roll.

Or make something really fancy as per the threads. Your choice.

Sling paint!
Virgil
__________________
Virgil Carter
http://www.virgilcarterfineart.com/
Reply With Quote
  #27   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-15-2012, 06:18 PM
Yorky's Avatar
Yorky Yorky is online now
Administrator
ORMSKIRK, Lancashire
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 74,076
 
Hails from United Kingdom
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

My advice is don't stint on the paper, it makes a tremendous difference in the way the paint goes on. I prefer to use Saunders Waterford 200lb rough, a great surface and no stretching necessary.

Doug
Reply With Quote
  #28   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-15-2012, 07:38 PM
Improv Improv is offline
Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 1,265
 
Hails from Canada
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by sashntash
Your MIL is giving you some good stuff


MIL? To what is that referring?

Thanks!

Doug
Reply With Quote
  #29   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-15-2012, 07:43 PM
Yorky's Avatar
Yorky Yorky is online now
Administrator
ORMSKIRK, Lancashire
 
Join Date: May 2000
Posts: 74,076
 
Hails from United Kingdom
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

MIL= Mother In Law.

Check out the WC Acronyms link in my signature.

Doug
Reply With Quote
  #30   Report Bad Post  
Old 04-15-2012, 10:45 PM
Improv Improv is offline
Enthusiast
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 1,265
 
Hails from Canada
Re: Paint/paper (for the millionth time!)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yorky
MIL= Mother In Law.

Check out the WC Acronyms link in my signature.

Doug

Thanks Doug. At first I thought it had something to do with metric measures!

Cheers

Doug
Reply With Quote

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 07:09 AM.


© 2014 F+W All rights reserved.