A suitable watercolor paper is decisive for the success of watercolor painting. This is due to the special properties of the watercolor and above all to the water. Watercolor paints are dissolved with water and painted. The paper must react with the water in such a way and work together that one has as much control as possible over the picture.
- If the paper's too thin, it waves. Then the paint collects in the wave troughs and usually leads to unintentional stains. In addition, a paper that is too strongly curled is then very obstructive to viewing or framing.
- If the paper is too smooth, the (not soluble) color pigments of the watercolor are not properly bound to the paper. As a result, the ink can then easily smudge or crumble.
- If the absorbency of the paper is different, the ink will stain the image intensively.
Basically it can be said that the paper is an essential factor for the controlled ink application. Since the painting technique is an essential factor for the quality of watercolors, one should always strive to use a suitable watercolor paper.
Watercolor paper / artist paper
Watercolor paper is a paper optimized for the artistic technique of watercolor painting (painting with pigments that can be mixed with water), but it can also be used for other drawing techniques. The paper must absorb watercolors well and must not break through, at the same time it must be erasable.
Watercolor paper (250 gr/m², "Burgundy") with colour gradient
Watercolor Paper Types
Good watercolor paper can be ordered in specialist shops. One differentiates watercolor paper according to
- the method of manufacture (grain size, texture)
- Fine grain - fine, smooth surface, almost no texture
- Medium grain - slightly rough surface, light texture
- Coarse grain - rough surface with strong texture
- Torchon - very rough surface, almost like a fabric
- Weight of paper per square meter
- light: 120 - 300 gr / m²
- medium: 300 - 600 gr / m²
- heavy: 600 - 840 gr / m²
One cannot really say which watercolor paper is particularly good. Because that depends on the type of use. Beginners are advised to choose a paper that does not have too strong a texture. Although this can be used very effectively, it requires some experience.
Watercolor paper for beginners
For beginners the watercolor paper "Burgund" from Hahnemühle (fine, 250 gr / m²) is a good basis. The paper is quite fine and does not suck so fast. At the same time it hardly waves. You can buy it in stacks of 10 or 20.
More about the peculiarities of watercolor.