There are many different sketchbooks on the market and some of them are sold as watercolour or multitechnique. But the truth is that most of them contain paper that does not work well with water-based techniques. As a result, many people find it difficult to obtain satisfying results, and some even become discouraged with watercolours. All because of the wrong paper. Paper plays a crucial role here. Therefore, we will share with you what a watercolour sketchbook should contain, how it should be made and, above all, which paper is absolutely suitable.
Since we’re getting many questions about our products, we’ve decided to dedicate a whole article to dispel any doubts you might have. Let’s get started.
A peculiar approach to the matter
A thing that you may not know, is the fact that the majority of sketchbooks are produced on a mass scale. The process is similar to the production of books, notepads or even calendars. That’s why some sketchbooks look almost identical to notebooks. The only difference is the paper - it’s blank and therefore “recommended” for painting and sketching.
I got these samples of different watercolor papers from “Koval” who make beautiful sketchbooks for watercolor and gouache, and I decided to test these papers with gouache, my favourite painting medium. First, I thought I would just make a few brushstrokes on each of these strips, using gouache, but then I decided to use the strips to do tiny master copies of the paintings of some of the artists I admired. It was such a fun task!
Five of the six papers that I tested were cold pressed and one of them (Fabriano 5, 50% cotton paper) was hot pressed.
Our main goal is to produce high-quality and cruelty-free products. Creating Premium sketchbooks means making sure that we’re acquiring the best possible materials and that our clients know exactly what has been used to bring their sketchbooks to life.
Transparency is our domain. We’re not a corporation, so there’s no secrecy; we’re always happy to share the components of our sketchbooks; from paper through threads to glue and covers. There are very specific reasons behind our choices: all the elements come from manufacturers with a long history and experience in their field. The fact that our suppliers meet strict ecological requirements as well as ensure an ethical environment means a great deal to us.
We’re attaching all the components that we use and the description of the brands, below.
And how to choose right weight of paper in sketchbook?
Before you make this decision it’s crucial to understand the difference between cotton and cellulose paper. Many people that have had experience with cellulose paper would consider the 200gsm cellulose as unsuitable for their needs. The thing is, it's not only the paperweight and the thickness that differs. Most of all, it's about the quality of paper and its hardness. To put it simply, 200gsm cellulose is not the same as 200gsm cotton and you would be able to feel that difference.