What paper do I use?

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  1. #1
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    Talking What paper do I use?

    I have an UNDYING urge to draw, but I don't have any decent paper to draw on. I have a tablet but every time I try to draw something digital it comes out looking like crap. I really want to do some work more on the lines of traditional (just recently I started doing pencil portrait drawings) I find that me drawing in pencil is much better work than my digital work. I just need to know what paper to use that would be best suitable for pencil drawing/shading? I currently use a Bic #2 pencil its all I have as of the moment I can use to shade and draw with. What would be the best paper, and the most inexpensive?

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    Just use plain old copy paper. Why should you spend 10 bucks on some kind of special drawing paper when a normal sheet of paper does the same job? It's not the material that makes your drawings look better, it's you: Every blacksmith has to know how to make good iron nails before he can even start learning making swords. Keep that in mind.

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  4. #3
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    I agree, Just remember a bad workman always blames his tools.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LostFayth View Post
    Just use plain old copy paper. Why should you spend 10 bucks on some kind of special drawing paper when a normal sheet of paper does the same job? It's not the material that makes your drawings look better, it's you: Every blacksmith has to know how to make good iron nails before he can even start learning making swords. Keep that in mind.
    You're right....omg WHY did I not think of that from the beginning?? Its EVERY WHERE so its not like it will be a problem finding any. Thank you so much for your advice!

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    If you're only using pencil, and don't care what it looks like in a couple decades, copy paper is fine. If you're using charcoal, you'll likely want something with a bit more tooth, and if you care about it lasting, you'll want something acid-free.

    If you want to work larger than 8.5x11, then newsprint is your best bet for sketching, though you'll want something heftier for anything you plan to keep.

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    There's just something about the feeling of pencils on Bristol or even thick watercolor paper... Different tooths can produce different pieces and allow for a variety of techniques. Right tool for the right job as it were...

    But nothing beats using good old 8.5x11 copy paper and a mechanical pencil for all your great ideas!! Pop it in a binder with high quality low glare sheet protectors and you have a nice archive of your work.



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    For expendable crap-mileage-logging type drawings, e.g., Posemaniacs gesture studies, I chop up old brown paper shopping bags.

    If you're at the stage of just practicing your line drawing, any old paper will do.

    But, the light texture (tooth) of a good Strathmore 400 pad can make for better rendering and blending of values in graphite.

    They're around $10 at Daniel Smith for 100 sheets of 9X12 inch. And, with a Sunday paper coupon, you might be able to get one a bit cheaper at Michaels. (Assuming you're in the USA. . .)

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    Basically I use copy paper but but I buy the not-so-white kind. It looks normal when alone but when compared to regular copy paper the other looks painfully white. Juts feels friendlier.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kamber Parrk View Post
    For expendable crap-mileage-logging type drawings, e.g., Posemaniacs gesture studies, I chop up old brown paper shopping bags.
    It's awesome! I have some chopped up brown shopping bags and a Kraft Pad I bought from Utrecht with cheap brown paper. One of my favorite ways to warm up is using grease pencils (aka China Markers) on that type of paper, really super smooth.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sticks View Post
    Basically I use copy paper but but I buy the not-so-white kind. It looks normal when alone but when compared to regular copy paper the other looks painfully white. Juts feels friendlier.
    And I go the opposite direction, mostly because I scan and clean up my work. Having a stark-white background makes it much easier.

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    Canson paper is also pretty good for rendered drawings (bargue style), otherwise any sketchbook will do. Fast stuff: copy paper or sketchbook; Normal stuff: sketchbook; Slow stuff: Canson or whatever durable paper you like.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Falchion View Post
    And I go the opposite direction, mostly because I scan and clean up my work. Having a stark-white background makes it much easier.
    Actually the tone is not that off-white so I have absolutely no trouble cleaning my stuff in ps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GaussianRaider View Post
    Canson paper is also pretty good for rendered drawings (bargue style), otherwise any sketchbook will do. Fast stuff: copy paper or sketchbook; Normal stuff: sketchbook; Slow stuff: Canson or whatever durable paper you like.
    I'd also like to make the point that cheap copy paper can produce amazing drawings and sketches because you don't feel as afraid of 'messing up good paper'. At least it works that way for me. Most of my best sketches start on index cards..

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