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Tips To Buy The Best Sketch Paper For Drawing

by Uneeb Khan

There are a variety of sketching papers available in the market. Which sketch paper is best for drawing? What kind of surface should we use for various types of drawings? These questions stick into an artist’s mind when he or she decides to start his journey.

You can choose a paper that suits you perfectly, depending on the art you plan to create. Through this article, you will learn tips on which sketch papers you can use to make your art and explore some of the most popular options for drawing paper. There are a lot of valuable tips in this article that can help you get started in the art world!

What Kind of Paper Should You Use for Drawing Practice?

It is determined by the artistic method or techniques to be used. Some techniques, such as marker drawing, do not require erasing. Therefore, printer papers can be used. However, charcoal drawings require more support (and thus higher quality) than a standard sheet of paper.

Matte-finished surfaces are great for painters who want to blend colours evenly. While most brands will not advertise their product as archival-safe, matte finish pages will last longer if not exposed to direct sunlight for extended periods. 

Glossy finishes are better suited for pastels and markers because they have contactless surface area. Glossy surfaces are also preferable for watercolour because they allow the paint to flow more readily across the surface, resulting in a smoother effect.

High-quality sketching paper is thicker than regular printer or bond paper, so it won’t buckle under your hand while working, making it ideal for creating art using graphite pencils, charcoal sticks, compressed wax crayons, ink pens (fountain pen), and other similar tools.

Basics of Paper

To start, it’s critical to understand the fundamentals. You can discover a wide variety of papers in art supply stores and internet sites. Before purchasing one for your drawings, there are only a few things you need to be aware of.

Drawing Paper Weight

Paper’s weight is expressed in kilograms (kg) or grams per square meter (g/m2). In art supply stores, it is frequently marked with the phrase “base weight.”

When purchasing sketching paper, weight might be crucial because it indicates how thick and sturdy your final drawings will be. The more substantial they are, the more detail you can add without fear of the paper tearing.

Paper Texture

The paper’s teeth determine roughness. It can be smooth, medium, or rough; each will impact your drawing differently.

Smooth papers are frequently selected because they have just the right amount of “tooth” for pencils to perform correctly without being overly rough. Even less smearing results from using such surfaces because erasing lines don’t involve much effort.

Contrary to what many believe, the rough texture doesn’t make it difficult to blend colours and doesn’t harm coloured pencils. Instead, it tends to catch some graphite.

We recommend the medium tooth because it offers the best of both worlds. If you wish to add some colours or other tones between the lines, this type of paper allows for flawless blending while still giving your pencils just the right amount of “teeth.” However, because the details are crisp and sharp while still having an authentic feel, this drawing paper doesn’t smudge as much and produces excellent results when finished.

Material of Paper

The most popular type of sketching paper is made from cotton, and its smooth surface makes it ideal for graphite and coloured pencils because the latter won’t smear on such drawing sheets. Cotton fibre is excellent for watercolours, inks, or acrylic paints since it absorbs liquids more quickly than regular cellulose.

Compared to cotton, cellulose drawing paper is less smooth. Your pencil lines will be darker and easier to see (suitable for shading) on cellulose sketching paper, but if you don’t use fixatives or colour gently, they could also be smudged by blending colours. These surfaces produce fine details effortlessly while not overly slippery, making them ideal for ink drawings.

Cold Pressed vs Hot Pressed

Pressing paper can be done in two ways: with or without heat. Cold-pressed sketching papers provide a more excellent “tooth” because they don’t use chemicals to bind the fibres together (texture).

As a result, they can be used with pencils, although blending colours is trickier because it demands a lot of pressure. However, coloured pencils will look gorgeous on these surfaces.

High temperatures press the fibres together in hot-pressed drawing paper, significantly reducing their quantity and creating a smoother surface. If you’re skilled enough, you won’t need to use as much effort when shading paintings because they have less texture, which leads to even cleaner lines and less smudging.

Tips on Choosing the Best Drawing Paper for Your Needs

With so many sketching papers available, selecting the right one for your creative project can take time and effort.

Choose the Best Sketch Paper for drawing:

  • Determine the drawing technique you wish to use. Small-grain papers are preferable for drawing art using ink or pencil. If you’re using markers, consider paper with fine grit.
  • Use high-quality paper for classic pencils, inks, markers (smooth), or watercolours. Paper designed exclusively for artists is compatible with any drawing medium.
  • Look for acid-free and archival-safe materials to keep your artwork from fading.
  • Choose lightweight paper if you want to carry many art supplies.


Choosing the best paper for sketching according to your drawing technique is essential as it represents your art skills. The good news is that now you can get the sketching papers delivered right to your doorstep with Canvazo. 

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