Borden & Riley #125 marker paper

I have compared 45 different papers for markers. I have not included any papers that are not specified for markers by the company that produce them. It is not uncommon that an art store will market a paper as a marker-paper but if you look at the brands homepage they are not label as a marker paper. But with that said, a lot of other kinds of paper can work very well with markers, for example watercolor paper (even though they will “eat” the ink in the marker a lot faster than any other paper). I also tried some Japanese sumi-e paper with good and interesting result.  I might write more about that in the future. For now, this is a marker paper review.

The theory and method
I will start with a group of eight papers, the very thin paper for layout. I categorized the thin layout paper as being between 45 g/m2 and 65 g/m2.  

Since it is layout paper and not drawing paper for final work, I will not test them to harshly on properties as blending capacity or layering capacity. It isn´t after all what the paper is meant to be.

I started with some small samples to se color saturation and value, bleeding and feathering to mention some of the things I look for. However, I am a firm believer in working the paper as you normally would, to be able to fully understand the potential the paper has, so I decided to do a drawing on every paper.

Before I started my drawing I wrote down the brand name of the paper. I then covered the name so I wouldn't se which paper I was working on. I wanted it to be a blind test.

I have earlier tried to do the exact same drawing but find that that is only working if you compare two or three items. When you compare many items (as I did; I compared 29 markers) the chances are huge that the first couples of drawings are a less good than the following (because you are learning) and the last ones are pretty bad because it get so monotonous that it is very difficult to do a good job. At least that is true for me. I therefore chose to draw every drawing different but in the same manner and the same subject (in this case, one girl stood model for all drawings). I also chose to use few colors so that the face would have the exact same colors. I did the skin on every paper before moving on to the hair since it where easier to compare the paper in that way. I let myself have the freedom to use different hair colors after that.

Borden & Riley #125 marker sketch pure bleedproof paper

Borden & Riley
This is a neutral PH paper. This paper pad has (for European standard, but obviously not for US) an odd sizes; 9x12 in (which is 22x30 cm), 11x14 in (which is 27,94x35, 56 cm) and 14x17 in.

It has a smooth feeling and a slight yellow tint. The paper has a very different backside. You can both se and feel it. The backside is very shiny and is not suitable to draw on. The paper had a little different feel and sometimes it resist my pen a bit.

I did not have any problems with the ink feathering out when I draw the portrait, but on the swatch I made (with a lot of ink) it did feather some. The colors (in comparison to the other brands) are a bit darker then the average paper. There is also some bleeding on to the next paper but that’s not a huge problem, and is also very easy to prevent by putting a sheet underneath to protect. Colors do, however look great on this paper and you can both layer and blend on this paper without problems.
When I started the drawing the paper buckle a bit, but it dried flat.

Conclusion: I think this is a very good paper. A didn't love the feeling of resistance but I do believe it is only a matter of getting used to.

Borden & Riley paper

Sample on Borden & riley

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