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Paper for print

SELECTING PRINT PAPER

By Randal Scott, the proprietor of Fine Art Papers, importers and suppliers of fine art and conservation papers throughout New Zealand and the South Pacific.

The day I learned how important the specific characteristics of papers are to the creative process, I made it my business to find out why a smooth hard paper is needed for lithography; why heavily sized paper is preferable for drawing; why soft, supple papers are best for intaglio printing; and why a heavy, textured paper works best for pastel. I knew I had to pay more attention to the way a particular paper influenced the final appearance of drawings, prints, and paintings.

Printmaking papers are not just for print-making. Some printmaking papers have become favourites for drawing or mixed media techniques. The distinguishing feature of a good printmaking paper is its ability to take a soaking, to absorb a lot of ink, often with multiple runs through a press, without disintegrating or deforming.

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