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Best Paper for Use with Derwent Inktense Pencils – What to Know

Your choice of paper can impact how the artwork turns out | To figure out the Best Paper for Derwent Inktense Pencils may need some experience and knowledge.


Derwent Inktense pencils are a unique medium that artists love for their intense colors and water-soluble nature. However, choosing the right and best paper for use with Inktense pencils can require some experience and knowledge. This is because the paper choice can greatly affect the final result.


In this article, we’ll explore the best paper to use with Derwent Inktense pencils, as well as some tips on using them.


Unique Ink and Watercolor Effects - Best Paper for Derwent Inktense Pencils



Section 1: Overview of Derwent Inktense Pencils


Derwent Inktense pencils are a unique wax-based medium that artists like because of their bright colors and ability to dissolve in water. People often say that they are like traditional watercolors, but they are not.


Despite their shared water solubility, Inktense and Watercolor pencils each have their own unique characteristics once dry.



Know The Inktense Quality

Watercolor pencils are fantastic for blending and layering to get delicate light effects. This quality allows the layers to be reworked by pouring water on top. Nevertheless, Inktense dries to a bright ink-like coating that is permanent. As a result, subsequent applications do not bleed through to the base layer. A real “WOW” effect is produced by the color’s striking directness and intensity.


Layering is really a breeze with the Inktense pencils. The colors are bright and saturated with pigments. When the pigments get wet, they dissolve quickly because they are very soluble. 


The Inktense family comes in a wide range of 71 colors and 1 outliner pencil. They can be used either wet or dry. When used dry, they create bold, intense lines that can be layered and blended for different effects. When used with water, they create a watercolor-like effect, allowing for even more versatility in artistic expression.



Why is Derwent Inktense Pencil Popular?

So why are Derwent Inktense pencils so popular among artists?


For starters, their unique properties provide artists with a level of control that is not always possible with traditional watercolors. Inktense pencils allow artists to create bold, vibrant lines and then activate the pigment with water for a variety of effects. As an example, artists love the opaqueness of Inktense Antique White which makes it great for creating highlights. The other Inktense colors, on the other hand, can be used to make transparent color washes with dark and light tones, depending on how much water and pigment you use.


In addition, the fact that the pigment becomes permanent once activated means that artists can layer colors easily. You would not need to worry about the bottom layers becoming muddy or smudging.


Another reason for their popularity is their versatility. Inktense pencils can be used on a variety of surfaces, including paper, fabric, and even wood. They can be used to create detailed line work or to fill in larger areas with color. In addition, they are suitable for a wide range of artistic styles and techniques. This makes them a great choice for both hobbyists and professional artists alike.


All of these factors make Derwent Inktense pencils a popular choice for artists, even at a premium price point. 


Artist Choice of Watercolor Medium - Best Paper for Derwent Inktense Pencils
Image Credit: Community Contribution for Inktense Pencils – Patricia B.



Section 2: Popular Paper Choices for Inktense Pencils


Fun Fact: The texture of the paper can also affect the final result of the artwork. For example, when using rough watercolor paper, the pencil marks can blend together more easily, creating a more blended and organic look. In contrast, using hot-pressed watercolor paper can result in a more polished and refined look with distinct pencil lines.


When it comes to choosing paper for Derwent Inktense pencils, there are several popular choices to consider. Watercolor paper is a top choice for many artists, as it can handle the water-soluble nature of pencils. Moreover, watercolor paper provides a textured surface for layering and blending. Mixed media paper is also a good choice, as it can handle both wet and dry media and provides a smoother surface for fine details.


Fabriano Artistico Watercolor Paper- Fox Painting | 9-inchx12-inch | Cold Press 140lbs
Image Credit: Community Contribution – Fox Painting | Done on Fabriano Artistico Watercolor Paper | 9-inchx12-inch | Cold Press 140lbs


Choice#1 – Watercolor Paper

Watercolor paper comes in three main surface textures: hot-pressed, cold-pressed, and rough. The hot-pressed paper has a smooth surface, making it ideal for artists who prefer fine details and a polished finish. On the other hand, cold-pressed paper has a medium texture, providing a balance between smoothness and texture for a more versatile surface. Rough paper has a pronounced texture, making it ideal for creating more organic and textured effects.



Choice#2 – Mixed Media Paper

Mixed media paper is a versatile option that can handle a range of wet and dry media, making it a popular choice for many artists. It typically has a smooth surface, which can be beneficial for achieving fine details and crisp lines.


When selecting paper for Derwent Inktense pencils, it’s important to consider the weight or thickness of the paper. Lighter-weight papers may not be able to handle the amount of water used with the pencils, which can cause the paper to buckle or warp. Heavier-weight papers can handle more water and provide more stability, but they can be more expensive.


Some popular paper brands that are commonly used for Inktense pencils include Strathmore, Fabriano, Arches, and Canson. When choosing paper for Inktense pencils, consider both the surface texture and weight of the paper. A rough texture can provide a more textured and organic look, while a smooth texture can provide a more polished and refined look. Heavier-weight paper can handle more water and pigment but may take longer to dry. Lighter-weight paper may not hold up as well under the water and pigment of Inktense pencils.




Importance of Surface Texture and Weight

Choosing the right surface texture and weight is crucial for achieving the desired effects with Inktense pencils. The surface texture refers to the roughness or smoothness of the paper, while the weight refers to the thickness and density of the paper.


When it comes to surface texture, the choice of paper can greatly impact the final look of the artwork. Paper with a rough texture can provide a more textured and organic look, while paper with a smoother texture can provide a more polished and refined look. The texture of the paper can also affect how much pigment the paper can hold and how much water can be added without the paper warping or buckling.


To illustrate the impact of surface texture, we can compare the results of Inktense pencils on rough watercolor paper and smooth hot-pressed paper. On rough paper, the texture of the paper can add depth and character to the artwork, enhancing the natural beauty of the medium. Meanwhile, on smooth paper, the colors appear more vibrant and can be layered more easily, resulting in a polished and refined look.


On the other hand, the weight of the paper can also greatly affect the final result. Heavier paper can handle more water and pigment and tends to be more resistant to buckling and warping. Lighter-weight paper may not hold up as well under the water and pigment of Inktense pencils.


To further illustrate the impact of weight, we can compare the results of Inktense pencils on 140 lb paper and 300 lb paper. The heavier paper can handle more water and pigment, resulting in deeper colors and more texture in the artwork. Meanwhile, the lighter paper may not be able to hold as much water or pigment, resulting in a less vibrant and less textured artwork.





Section 3: Examples and Tips for Using Inktense Pencils on Different Paper Types


Layering and gently building up color is key when using Inktense pencils on watercolor paper. This prevents the paper from becoming too saturated and buckles. The colors can be mixed on the paper with a wet brush to achieve a watercolor impression.


On mixed media paper, Inktense pencils can be used dry for more precise details. It can also be used wet for a more blended look. The smooth surface allows for fine details but also allows for the colors to blend together more easily when used with water.


For smooth or hot-pressed paper, Inktense pencils can be used to create highly detailed and refined work. However, since the paper is less absorbent, it can be harder to blend the colors with water. It’s important to use a light touch when layering the colors and to blend them slowly and carefully.


No matter what type of paper is used, it’s important to experiment and find the best techniques for achieving the desired effects. Try working with different layering techniques and blending methods. Also, experiment with water-to-pencil ratios to find what works best for your particular style and preferences.


Inktense Pencils - Color Palette Community Contribution
Image Credit : Community Contribution for Derwent Inktense Pencils by T. Reed



Final Thoughts


To get the most out of Derwent Inktense pencils, you need to use them on the proper paper. Popular options that offer a range of textures and effects include watercolor paper, mixed media paper, and smooth or hot-pressed paper. When selecting paper, pay attention to details like weight and surface texture. You can also learn what suits your personal taste and approach by trying out various techniques and experimenting with different mediums and surface texture .


By following these tips and guidelines, artists can create stunning artwork using these Inktense pencils on the best paper for their needs.



We trust you enjoy this article. Share your thoughts with us by leaving a comment.


Editorial Contributor & Author: Kellen M

Original Published Date: 5-Apr-2023




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