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Old 05-24-2009, 11:23 AM
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sansea sansea is offline
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Re: The Paper Thread

1. Paper Used (Manufacturer):Colorfix
2. Paper Color: cool and warm
3. Paper Compared:
4. Your experience level: newbie, intermediate, experienced:experienced
5. Approx. how many layers do you use - can it hold?5-8
6. More or less dust than other papers?very little
7. Can you do underpaintings in water, alcohol, other?Yes
8. How do pastels of differing softness work on it?rembrants,sennelier and unison work well
9. Which brand of pastel works best on this paper and why?all
10. Which brand of pastel works worst on this paper and why?
11. Is it paper or rigid board? What advantages or disadvantages are there?
12. Do you feel the need to spray? During? only at the end?no
13. Does it chew up your pastels or do they last?no
14. What does this paper do better than other papers:softer kinder finish
15. What it does worse:0
16. Is there a specific problem with this paper?none
17. Do you have a solution to this problem?
18. Is there a specific subject matter that you like this paper for?all
19. Have you been able to steam this paper successfully and how does the pastel stick to the paper afterwords?never tried
20. Miscellaneous experiences with this paper:maybe limited sizes
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Old 07-02-2009, 10:09 AM
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plindley plindley is offline
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Re: The Paper Thread

HI all,
And now for something completely different.....

1. Paper Used (Manufacturer): Bainbridge Suede matboard (alphamat core)
2. Paper Color: sand, greengrey
3. Paper Compared:
4. Your experience level: newbie, intermediate, experienced: newbie (~ 1 year)
5. Approx. how many layers do you use - can it hold? many... 6 +?
6. More or less dust than other papers? less.... the pastel sticks like glue
7. Can you do underpaintings in water, alcohol, other? never tried
8. How do pastels of differing softness work on it? you have to push with nupastels... accepts and holds even the softest
9. Which brand of pastel works best on this paper and why? Senneliers, unison and ludwig work well... nupastels are a struggle
10. Which brand of pastel works worst on this paper and why? nupastels unless you want a thin, uneven layer for effect
11. Is it paper or rigid board? What advantages or disadvantages are there? It is rigid and Ihave used it for 'pointilist' works which require tapping away with pastels to produce small dots for visual blending effects. Because it holds the pastels well you can be quite forceful and the colour already on the piece doesn't fall off. It is GREAT for this.. and I have used it for some highly realistic pieces as well. It can achieve lovely softness effects... hard to explain.
12. Do you feel the need to spray? During? only at the end? Don't generally need to.
13. Does it chew up your pastels or do they last? unlike sanded papers it does not chew up pastels but holds them I think just as well.
14. What does this paper do better than other papers: See above.
15. What it does worse: blending an initial coat over large areas is HARD work. Because it grips so well, it doesnt' allow for easy manipulation. This improves as additional layers are added and ultimately blending is easy.
16. Is there a specific problem with this paper? initial blending is difficult
17. Do you have a solution to this problem? persistence
18. Is there a specific subject matter that you like this paper for? Still life.
19. Have you been able to steam this paper successfully and how does the pastel stick to the paper afterwords? Never tried
20. Miscellaneous experiences with this paper: While I like it for still life, I also have used it for landscapes fairly effectively. It seems expensive to buy but comes in very large sheets (40 x 32" or larger) and you can therefore cut it to any shape you want and could get 16 - 8 x 10 panels (if you were REALLY careful) which would make them about $2.50 each.... Unfortunately you rarely find it in the 'scrap bin' of your local frame shop (where I found my first piece which was accidently placed there by the store) and so getting a small piece to experiment with is hard. There are lovely natural/neutral shades and some dramatic deep tones.... I would highly recommend it as an alternative to sanded papers (which I use also).
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Old 10-11-2009, 08:53 AM
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Studio-1-F Studio-1-F is offline
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Re: The Paper Thread

1. Paper Used (Manufacturer): Pastelmat (Clairefontaine). Surface is: “cork grain”; Support is: "acid-free" 360 g/m2 (170 lb) cardstock
2. Paper Color: Light gray (but comes in 8 colors, see Examined: Pastelmat paper)
3. Paper Compared: Hahnemühle Velour and Wallis Belgian Mist professional grade
4. Your experience level: newbie, intermediate, experienced: intermediate newbie
5. Approx. how many layers do you use - can it hold? I used three or four layers. It held. Remarkable number of layers, given how smooth and uniform the surface feels to the fingertips.
6. More or less dust than other papers? Less than Wallis. About the same as Velour.
7. Can you do underpaintings in water, alcohol, other? Yes, with ease. No wrinkling, buckling, or compromise or disturbance of the surface treatment. (See Examined: Pastelmat paper for illustrations of water, alcohol, and Turpenoid washes.)
8. How do pastels of differing softness work on it? Very soft sticks fill the grain quickly. Panpastels leave a very rich, dense, and smooth mark. Hard pastels and pastel pencils don’t dent the nap, as they do on the Velour paper. And they also leave a crisp mark, so if you’re into minute detail, this paper will do well.
9. Which brand of pastel works best on this paper and why? All of them work well. I tried: Panpastels, Townsend, Ludwig, Sennelier, Great American, Girault, Schmincke, Mount Vision, Unisons, and Conte pastel pencils.
10. Which brand of pastel works worst on this paper and why? n/a
11. Is it paper or rigid board? What advantages or disadvantages are there? Paper. I find it convenient to tape it to a drawing board. That way it stays absolutely flat and parallel to my pastel sticks. If a loose sheet is just sitting around on my table, it tends to curl up just a bit. (I live in a fairly humid environment.) So if I decided this was my paper of choice, I’d order a number of sheets dry-mounted to museum board.
12. Do you feel the need to spray? During? only at the end? I usually spray SpectraFix a bit between later (third and fourth) layers. It adds just that little tiny bit of abrasiveness to the surface of the pigment. I suspect it has nothing to do with the paper, but all to do with the pastel pigments' surface. I lack the experience to really know.
13. Does it chew up your pastels or do they last? Somewhere in between. Pastelmat doesn’t chew up pastels as quickly as Wallis but the pigment does go down in a lush and rich mark, so there is ‘grab’ to the paper for sure. It does certainly take a good strong swath out of the pastel stick. With Panpastels you definitely have to re-load the applicator very often.
14. What does this paper do better than other papers: Allows me to make a crisper and stronger mark than is possible (for me at least) on Velour.
15. What it does worse: I haven’t found an answer to that yet.
16. Is there a specific problem with this paper? It’s much more expensive than both Velour and Wallis.
17. Do you have a solution to this problem? Well, no. Buying by the sheet on sale (at Dakota) does cut the per square foot price down, but not to the level of Velour or Wallis.
18. Is there a specific subject matter that you like this paper for? Works for both landscapes and still life. I don’t do individual animal hairs or photorealistic face portraits, so have not tested it with these subjects.
19. Have you been able to steam this paper successfully and how does the pastel stick to the paper afterwords? n/a; I have never steamed paper.
20. Miscellaneous experiences with this paper: See Examined: Pastelmat paper for more. There are also links there to other online reviews of Pastelmat paper.

Hope this helps!

Jan
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Old 10-18-2009, 05:35 PM
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Sam Harrison Sam Harrison is offline
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Re: The Paper Thread

Howdy! I haven't posted any pastel work in the forum here yet but enjoy working in the medium very much.
Here is a paper that I use sometimes but don't see a lot.


1. Paper Used (Manufacturer): Strathmore 500 Charcoal Paper
2. Paper Color: A variety are available.
3. Paper Compared:
4. Your experience level: newbie, intermediate, experienced: I generally know what I'm doing, hehe.
5. Approx. how many layers do you use - can it hold?: A few, not many though. It holds them okay.
6. More or less dust than other papers?: Some dust, similar to drawing with soft charcoal.
7. Can you do underpaintings in water, alcohol, other?: Nooooooooo.
8. How do pastels of differing softness work on it?: Softer pastels work better, it is difficult to fill the laid tooth with hard pastels.
9. Which brand of pastel works best on this paper and why?: I've used W&N, Sennelier, and Unison. They all work okay. Conte crayon works extremely well.
10. Which brand of pastel works worst on this paper and why?: Hard cretacolors were difficult to get to "stick".
11. Is it paper or rigid board? What advantages or disadvantages are there?: It is thin charcoal paper (64lbs), 100% cotton and inexpensive, even in large sizes.
12. Do you feel the need to spray? During? only at the end? I've only ever sprayed finished work.
13. Does it chew up your pastels or do they last?
It's gentle on them.
14. What does this paper do better than other papers: Price, smoothness.
15. What it does worse: Easy to damage.
16. Is there a specific problem with this paper? It's too thin for water, it will pretty much melt.
17. Do you have a solution to this problem? Don't get it wet.
18. Is there a specific subject matter that you like this paper for? Portraits.
19. Have you been able to steam this paper successfully and how does the pastel stick to the paper afterwords?: n/a
20. Miscellaneous experiences with this paper: Good paper overall. Works best with blended conte, IMO.
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Old 12-10-2009, 01:40 AM
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robertsloan2 robertsloan2 is offline
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Re: The Paper Thread

Reading through the thread, there's a cool board that I've tried that hasn't been described yet. Ampersand Pastelbord

1. Paper Used (Manufacturer): Ampersand Pastelbord
2. Paper Color: White, Gray, Muted Green, Sand
3. Paper Compared: Wallis, Colourfix, PastelMat, Velour, Canson Mi-Tientes, watercolor paper, assorted matboard, Colourfix primer
4. Your experience level: newbie, intermediate, experienced:experienced Moderately experienced.
5. Approx. how many layers do you use - can it hold? I think it could hold quite a few although the grain is fine, not as much as Colourfix but close to what PastelMat can.
6. More or less dust than other papers? I don't generate much dust but that may be my techniques.
7. Can you do underpaintings in water, alcohol, other? Yes
8. How do pastels of differing softness work on it? It's fine-grained so if I wanted a lot of detail I'd use harder ones or Pan Pastels. Soft ones may fill it up too fast, so I'd use super soft ones last for opaque details and go hard > medium > soft on it.
9. Which brand of pastel works best on this paper and why? Hard to medium ones, pastel pencils, Pan Pastels
10. Which brand of pastel works worst on this paper and why? Super soft ones may fill the tooth and get fewer layers.
11. Is it paper or rigid board? What advantages or disadvantages are there? Rigid heavy board. Advantages -- wet effects and buckling, not a problem. Weight is an issue, especially on larger pieces weight can become a serious problem in framing. For working small it still needs a pretty sturdy frame. Also the boards can't be trimmed to size without power tools, so I'm pretty much stuck with the standard sizes it comes in. Fortunately it comes in a good range of sizes, and if I wanted a weird shaped painting I might put it in a standard sized mat and place it carefully on a board larger than needed so the board runs entirely behind the mat to the edges - if it didn't, then it could fall out of the frame under its own weight. It needs anchoring.
12. Do you feel the need to spray? During? only at the end? At the end, yes, the way I usually do. It's grabby but not like PastelMat which is like pasteling on the sticky side of tape. I would use fixative to get additional layers too if I start filling the tooth.
13. Does it chew up your pastels or do they last? No more chewing than the Canson or Ingres type papers, the fine grain doesn't chew them up much.
14. What does this paper do better than other papers: It's the durable board that stands up to banging around, it's got a very fine grained surface so it allows fine detail. I think it's great for the super-detail realism and pastel pencils type of works in moderate sizes -- or if you have a framer that can work with it, maybe even big paintings with extra bracing.
15. What it does worse: Matting and framing is a pain and works best if the board is the size of the frame opening, not just the art.
16. Is there a specific problem with this paper? It's heavy, man. No seriously, the difficulties framing and handling can make it inconvenient and it'd weigh a ton for taking out to do plein air. It's a hard board. Also fairly expensive.
17. Do you have a solution to this problem? Work small or use it in the studio, be careful when framing, buy the size of the frame opening not the mat opening.
18. Is there a specific subject matter that you like this paper for? Details, fine details in small pieces. I have some of it at ATC size and it's great for that, though has some logistic problems in mailing ATCs with the weight and packing needs.
19. Have you been able to steam this paper successfully and how does the pastel stick to the paper afterwords? never tried
20. Miscellaneous experiences with this paper: Limited sizes and heavy weight compared to equally fine-grained PastelMat means I'll probably put my money into the PastelMat instead -- unless I want to do a serious abuse multimedia project and need the surface to be that heavy and durable. Which could work -- I can see how it'd hold up better under heavy impastos and piled up textures and stuff given its weight and rigidity in a multimedia piece.

But for most super fine detail stuff I'll probably switch to PastelMat because weight lifting is not for me with my disabilities, and if I did that strategy of using it the size of the frame, then I'm hefting around pretty heavy board. That may not be as much of a problem for those who don't have trouble lifting. A heavy easel would help with it.
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