Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Review: Fabriano Artistico 100% Cotton Traditional White Hot Pressed Paper


Fabriano Artistico 100% Cotton Traditional White Hot Pressed Paper is one of my ALL-TIME favorite products. I bought this pad of 25 sheets two years ago and I just finished it the other day. You might wonder- if it's one of my favorites, why I haven't gone through more of it in that two year period? The answer is, I have many different kinds of paper in different shapes, sizes and surfaces and I tend to jump around a lot.

This is just the smoothest paper to work with any media - and I probably love it best for drawing with a fountain pen. Watercolors are wonderful on hot press, but it works differently than cold press. Cold press is textured and shows more depth. Cold press also absorbs the paint a little faster than hot press- paints can be worked on the surface longer than on cold press. (Which can be challenging to people new to watercolor painting.)

I love the 5x7" size, and that the cover folds back. It makes it the perfect size to work in one hand, and I love that you can remove a sheet from the block by lifting up one corner and peeling it off. I prefer this method of removal over the watercolor blocks where I have to cut the page free with a knife because I often end up tearing or cutting the edges. (Because I'm impatient.)

So now that it's finished, I looked back through my archives to see what I created with those 25 sheets of paper. I was able to find 20 of the 25 and I wonder what happened to the other 5 pages. Did I somehow screw them up and throw them away? That's not like me so I wonder where they are.

What follows is each of the 20 pieces I found, and they are in somewhat chronological order from oldest to newest.


051807 Bright energy

One of my early watercolors - opaque Grumbacher paints. (I never use them anymore.)

Today's watercolor mandala

Grumbacher opaque watercolors

052007 Seeing through

Possibly Van Gogh watercolors

0607 Looks like that one plate pattern (Delft? Willoware?)

Using a Niji Waterbrush for the 1st time

0607 Pinwheel of Pain

Grumbacher again, painted while I was recovering from hernia surgery.

0507 Watercolor

Not one of my finest pieces.

071207 Rose Madder Watercolor

My 1st tube of artist quality water color. I drove to Blick and bought a tube of Holbein's Rose Madder.

093007 Happy Flowers

Watercolors - maybe W&N Cottman?

Mandala Doodle

Ink doodle. Mandalas have started to kick in.

Colors of my Heart

Artist grade paints. Holbein, Schmincke, Daniel Smith

Finally finished

Started a long time ago - probably the Grumbacker, finished with black marker and Pitt Brush Pens.

Lost and Lonely Mandala

Artist grade paints. Holbein, Schmincke, Daniel Smith

Mixed Media Mandala

This is actually purple... very purple. Scanner couldn't capture it. I was painting with fountain pen ink, then added the doodles and additional colors. (Prismacolor pencils...I think)

Mandala Doodle

Fountain pen mandala

063008 And this is my Reality. Elemental Mandala Doodle

Mandala was drawn with fountain pen ink, and then I took a waterbrush and carefully touched the lines to pull in some of the color in the white spaces. Additional watercolor added to the corners.

Ink Mandala

Painted with Private Reserve Burgundy Mist fountain pen ink.

Ruth's TIde Pool Creature Mandala

Fountain pen doodle

Watercolor and India Ink Mandala

I believe this was drawn with a calligraphy dip pen and Sennelier China/India Ink. Painted in with artist grade watercolors.

Mandala with healing mantra - created with intent

Fountain pen and Prismacolor pencils.

Mandala - Like Attracts Like

Fountain pen mandala. Diamine Steel Blue and Violet inks.

Mandala Doodle

Fountain pen mandala. Diamine Violet (yes... it looks blue here) and Diamine Gray.


Sam said...

Absolutely fantastic artwork, I love it! My favourite piece is the Grumbacker; very cool. :)

B2-kun said...

Good looking examples. The colors certainly look nice and bright on this smooth support.

betsy caƱas garmon said...

especially like the monochromatic fountain pen drawings...

I don't see much buckle when you used watercolors. Did it handle water or did you go light on the amount you used?

Beautiful work

Amy Jane said...

Awesome....I see a trip to Dick Blick in my future!

Gentian said...

Wonderful to see the various pieces! Thank you for sharing. I should try this paper sometime.

Woodworker said...

Wooow you are realy talented. It is my still desire to wish I could draw like that

Biffybeans said...

Sam - Thank you very much!

B2-kun - yes - I too love the way that colors pop on this paper.

Betsy - most watercolor blocks I've worked with have kept the paper pretty tight with little buckling. With this small 5x7 size, I never really noticed any buckling.

Amy - I'm with you!

Gentian - your welcome, and thank you!

Woodworker - thank you very much!

Anonymous said...

Beautifull, kindness, sweetness, generousity, full of soul... thank you so much... thank to exist! Karine.

Michael Stewart said...

I've been using Fabriano Artistico 140 lb hot press paper for years and loving it. With the last few batches I've bought, however, I've been noticing that white spots start appearing in ink and watercolor washes. This is extremely disappointing. Has Fabriano changed the way they manufacture the paper? I'm wondering if anyone else has had this problem.

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