I have a question about using hot press versus cold press paper. It seems to me that you would want cold press paper, because when you are staining and starching the paper, it will absorb more. Once the paper is saturated with the starch and burnished, the surface of the paper would become smooth. Or does it entirely depend on how smooth your cold press paper is? Many watercolor papers are quite smooth, even if cold press. Does anyone have an opinion or preference to relate?
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@Kathlyn Powell thank you for coming and it was lovely to meet you! Fabriano have been going since the 12th or 13th century yes so it's a bit more meaningful for us to use their paper combined with medieval (because what is 'medieval'? Meaningless in the Islamic and Chinese and other contexts; I'm part of a 'Medical in Contemporary Art' research group and we are trying to expand this term a bit, even though it's also still a useful reference point for Western European art and book culture) techniques. Paper rubbed with clay is available from Khadi I think - some Nepalese paper. I don't know if it's always available nor the sizes, they kindly sent me some samples to try.
Hope to see you next time!
Cold press takes a watercolor wash very nicely, but can be like painting on carpet for detail work. For miniature work, I much prefer hot press, and I then burnish it with a muhre. I sometimes spray an additional coat of sizing on it, too.
Fabriano Artistico used to be the very best hot pressed watercolor paper, but it changed a few years back and no longer takes a very fine brush stroke the way it once did and sometimes develops hydrophobic spots. Saunders Waterford Hot Press watercolor paper is pretty good if you burnish it. Wish we had a good reliable source for wasli out here in the US. Since the closure of New York Central Art Supply, we have been bereft. I cherish my stash!
Does anybody have a good source for wasli, or do you all make it yourselves?
I hope so! I'm currently testing a load of papers so once I've painted on a few myself, will report back!
Thanks, Vaishali, it makes sense, and I will probably understand better when I have painted very teeny-tiny miniatures!
I do think hot pressed is still best as yes you’re right that cold pressed is more absorbent, but the main characteristic you want in a paper is the smoothness. Hot pressed paper will still absorb enough of the tea stain (or equivalent, in layers) to build up a deep enough colour if that’s what you’re after. When you burnish cold pressed paper it still won’t be as smooth as hot pressed. Having said all that - you can still paint miniatures on cold pressed paper! Just won’t be as small nor as fine as the hot pressed. But then again not all miniatures are small!