Sunday, July 2, 2017

Watercolor on print paper

I bought 10 sheets of Arches Velin BFK Rives paper not knowing how it would work with watercolor. The label said "Art Publishing" with uses listed as lithography, screen printing, colotype, intaglio, relief engraving, letterpress, linocut, blind embossing and gold tooling but nothing about watercolor. The price was right for experimenting. 

The surface was soft lending itself to gradient effects. The soft surface also worked well when scrubbing my brush into the paper pushing the paint out of the way. This worked to give the clouds the dark edges. The azure blue paint is Holbein "Irodori" Antique watercolor(another bargain) containing pigment PB15 pthalo blue and PW6 titanium white, which is opaque. I often use this when I get carried away with the ultramarine in the sky. 


  1. I've read and been told that watercolor paper prior to 1850 or or so was closer to our printmaking papers, like Arches Cover or BFK , or as you say, "softer" or more absorbent. After 1850 papers were more heavily sized. I wonder if that quality was more conducive to the oil painting like style from then?

    1. I need to do a side by side comparison with my hot press and cold press regular watercolor paper. I see where Fabriano has a soft press paper. A friend of mine uses it because she glazes multiply layers. It is listed as between hot and cold pressed.