Anyone who uses water color...
Eric Castleman last edited by
What type of paper do you use? I have tried 140# and it just bowed like crazy. Then tried stretching it more, and the same issue happened. I went and bought a block, and the same result happened. I am barely applying water, and I just want to be able to practice without needing the discover the esoteric secrets of watercolor paper
"These options are all good and will work, BUT I have some different advice. See, I don't like any sort of prep work whatsoever. I hated gessoing canvases when I worked in acrylic and oil, I hate stretching paper as a watercolor artist. When I want to do a painting, I want to paint RIGHT NOW ( I would have been terrible back in the renaissance where they had to crush their own pigment, etc! haha!).
So, to get around this childlike lack of patience, I have a few different methods that get you painting within 5 minutes.
The first (and easiest) is to buy watercolor board. All the major manufacturers make them now and they are simply watercolor paper that has been attached to a heavy mat board base. Here's where I buy it:
I do tape this to foam core or my board listed below to paint just to give it more structure while I am working. I'm not stretching it however, just taping it down with white artist tape.
Now, sometimes you don't want to work on more expensive, heavy paper, so what do you do? Maye you want to work on cheaper 140lb. paper. How do you do that? Simple, you staple that sucker down. It's much faster than the tape method and works far better. (there are a lot of things that can go wrong with the tape method and then you have to start all over!).
For this method, you need a substrate to staple to. I use the "Incredible Art Board" found here:
I wet the paper for about 5 minutes in a tub (20 is far too long, btw). Then, just pull the paper out of the tub and staple it down. Start in the center of all 4 sides and work your way to the edges. Work each side the same (in other words, don't just staple all the way down one side at one time. You want to be gradual about it.
Typically I'll already have my drawing on the board before soaking it. That way once it's stapled, I can go ahead and paint a wet-in-wet layer and be off to the races. No waiting!
Here's a quick tutorial I found online: http://www.craftsy.com/blog/2013/11/how-to-stretch-watercolor-paper/
Lately I have been painting on Cheap Joes 300 lb. paper which is very reasonably priced (around $9.50 a sheet) and is whiter than Arches. No need to do stretch this paper due to it's thickness. I just tape it to board and start painting.
I'll be posting instructional videos for all this with my watercolor class. : )
BTW: never use blue tape to tape a board or paper down. The blue will totally mess with your ability to really control your color because it's so dark and saturated. Use white tape only. It costs a little more, but it worth it.
Hope that helps some. Let me know if you have any questions"
Eric Castleman last edited by
@Kevin-Longueil THANK YOU!!!!!