Hello, I apologize for not too precise information.
It was understood that you were talking about shading, blend,
I had tried with tortillon and with stump,
with tortillon I could not fade, but I was scratching as they explained on the forum because I was using little coal.
Stump instead I could use it more easily to fade, without scratching a sheet, I'm not saying it's better but I think I will do less damage.
Still on the blend I read a totorial, a class on the site that spoke of blends with an ear stick.
But I read that they can use a bit of everything so it doesn't matter so much the vehicle (personally I am only afraid to use my finger because I already mess a lot and then in the summer my hands sweat me too much I fear).
I think it's just what you say, the cards can be very different so using a single card is even better on the importance of quality.
On paper I had read while looking for stratmore but I had not tried it for convenience in finding it in Europe () but I would like to try some models because many artists that I admire on the forum I think they use or used just that cards, strathmore 400 or sthratmore 500 smooth, smooth bristol but I talk about pencil drawings (as my last album I took I bought a smooth bristol album but another brand, it seems very good indeed but for the next time maybe I look for the original, the smooth but it's strange with coal but I have to try it again).
However, I tried to look for some charcoal cards maybe strathmore and I get a specific card that seems to speak very well.
**Strathmore Paper 500 Series Charcoal Pad, 18 "x24", White, 24 Sheets
On the arches, google indicated me writing better arches for charcoal designs I'm reading this type that looks great, 100% cotton, ARCHES® 88, smooth
, maybe it's the most expensive card so maybe you have to feel to understand which cards to try who knows the drawing well and loves the medium of charcoal (which is actually an incredible medium), maybe to reduce the circle on which to find the most suitable paper ( and maybe even more easily available) for what is the purpose
It would be good if not a free sample also to be able to try a single sheet for a couple of types or more, some types of paper that intrigue you, to have at least 1 or a few sheets as a first purchase since once you choose the paper you will supply yourself.
I don't think I was very helpful, but I am writing this article that was helping me to get a first idea on a subject that I find very complex (and I also ignored all the differences on the cards), it's a very nice article by Sparrow
Last thing besides the watercolor paper I had forgotten to tell you that even paper that might sell like pastel paper might be ok.
A year and a half ago to buy my best album and just to try practicing charcoal drawing at the end I bought a card indicated as pastel paper.
mi teintes canson (earth color) colorful album, 5 colors but also sell it loose I think.
It is paper called crayon paper, it should be specific for crayons but from some drawings I have seen it is also used for charcoal and fine (in fact crayon paper should be a possibility and compared to the economic paper I was struck by how it was deleted)
nice thing and that has 2 sides, one has bee plots and another smooth, I liked the smooth one,
I took a4 format, I think I had to choose a3, I saw these 2 formats.
Regarding the colors, there are 50 shades so this gives a lot of choice but I think it would be practical as I think you will always want to use a single white or similar color.
On the site there was written 50% cotton but in my album there is 30%.
160 g / m˛ thickness.
Searching on their site there is also this card which should be a higher version and speaks directly of charcoal
I paste the features of Canson® Mi-Teintes® Touch
*Weight or thickness
350 g / m˛, Colors and finishes, 11 colors available (sand colors says? Maybe the colors I give), Recommended techniques
Ideal for: Pastel, charcoal, colored pencils
Also suitable for: melted and sanguine Formati
Sheet: 50 x 65 cm,
Block 1 side: 24 x 32 cm and 29.7 x 42 cm, I could not find the price.
And all, I hope I have said something useful and that they will be able to show you some suitable papers and that with the new carbon brushes you said you will be fine