I have compared 45 different papers for markers. I have not included 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 for the somewhat thicker marker paper (110-120 g/m2)
I started with some small samples to se color saturation and value, bleeding and feathering.
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.
I especially wanted to test the blending and layering abilities. With blending I mean that I work wheat in wheat, and with layering I let the ink dry before I put another layer on top.
Before I started my drawing I wrote down the name of the brand on 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 found that this only works if you compare two or three of them. When you compare many items (as I have done earlier; I compared 30 markers, and now I compare a lot of papers) 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 use the same subject (in this case, one girl stood model for all drawings). I also chose to use the same colors for the face and hair on every drawing.
|Montana Marker paper|
Montana Marker paper 120 gsm
Montana is a graffiti oriented company that offers this marker paper. It comes in A4 or A3 sized pads. It is for both alcohol and water based markers.
The back and front of this paper seems to be the same, you can draw on either side.
The look on the paper is a bit disturbing. The paper has a dull surface and is grey to the color. The paper also looks and feels rather cheap. It has visible lines, which you also can feel. The surface resists the marker some. It doesn't goes on smoothly. However it isn’t all bad. The paper takes many layers without any problems. It is easy to get a good result but the big downside is that colors don´t get as dark as they can be on other papers.
On my color samples the colors look much worse than on the sketch I made. However, that can be because I have not used vibrant color in my sketch. All color samples looked very grainy, light and milky. Especially my Copic looked very grainy. I would not recommend this paper for a Copic user.
A good thing is that the ink does not feather on this paper, even when I saturated the paper with many layers of ink.
The ink will bleed through to the next page. The downside of bleeding is however easy to overcome by putting a paper you don't value underneath.
Conclusion: This paper is not as bad as it looks, except for a Copic user.
|Sketch done on Montan paper|
|Color samples on Montana paper|