Paper suggestions for use with Conte Pencils (other than smooth newsprint)
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Thread: Paper suggestions for use with Conte Pencils (other than smooth newsprint)

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    Paper suggestions for use with Conte Pencils (other than smooth newsprint)

    I've been playing around lately with the conte 1710 pencils since they are so highly reccommended by many people. I'm pretty impressed with them so far.

    I know the paper of choice for them is smooth newsprint. I was wondering if anyone could give me some suggestions for a higher quality paper that would give similar results. I like these pencils very much, and while the newsprint is great for practice (which I need alot of), I don't know what type of paper I should use for a drawing that I want to last for at least my lifetime. Should any smooth drawing paper or bristol board provide good results? I'd like to find something that will last a long time but is still fairly affordable. Expensive in my opinion would be something that costs about dollar per sheet. Thank you for your knowledge and time.

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    What you need is acid-free, archival paper. Every major brand has their own types, from very grainy, to very smooth, toned paper and so on. The best way really is to try for yourself. In my art store the expensive paper is sold on sheets so even without buying it i can touch it and see if i like the texture or color. If it's the same where you live, buy 2 sheets of every paper that catches your eye and just try it. Good brands that i heard of are Strathmore: http://www.strathmoreartist.com/products.html and Canson: http://www.canson.com/. Browse their product pages and see what type of paper you are interested, the choice is big. There are more brands if you are in Europe, but I don't know what they are selling in USA, if you are from there. Still, when choosing look for these things:

    - It must be acid-free, archival or pH neutral, it's all the same and it means that the paper will last long time.
    - Available size - Some types aren't offered in A4 or smaller but you can always buy bigger sheet and cut it.
    - Color - Today you can buy paper in every color, so if you are buying online make sure to look carefully, sometimes photos don't show the right color.
    - Texture - again the choice is big, I'm using grainy paper for pastels and smooth for pencils. But it's all personal preference.
    - Paper weight - Now this is important. It measured in g / m2 or it might be mentioned as gsm. Your ordinary paper should be 80-90 g/m2 this is good for sketches or writing, but it's too thin for something that you want to preserve. The expensive paper for drawing is 150 to 300 g/m2. Weight means that the paper gets harder and more solid, you can't damage it as easily as the other one, but you might not be able to roll it. Again something to check for yourself. My Moleskine sketchbook has 250 g/m2 which makes it almost 3 times harder than my crappy sketchbooks. It's cool, but it might not be what you are looking for so try different weights. What i heard is that artist paper for serious work should be at least 140-150 g/m2. Obviously they become more expensive, but are sold in sheets so you don't have to buy more than you will need.

    I hope that helped a bit, but the best way is to hit your art store and see what they got. I can't tell you the exact prices, because i didn't pay much attention but $1 per sheet of A3 or A2 seems to be the average price.

    Last edited by Vari; June 9th, 2010 at 05:11 AM.
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