Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Copics, Prismacolor Pencils and Paper

I wanted to share a comparison of paper that I have personally researched in my attempt to find what I feel is the best paper for using Copics and Prismacolor pencils. I am in no way affiliated with any of these companies, this is just my personal findings that I am sharing in hopes that it will help you too:)

I have tried the following brands of paper, using both Copics and Prismacolor pencils.

*Georgia Pacific (the cheap cardstock found at Walmart)

*PTI (Paper Trey Ink Stampers Select White)

*Neenah Solar White


*Gina K Pure Luxury 120#

Of all of these I am most pleased with the Gina K. It is a wonderful weight, though not quite as heavy as PTI's, but it is incredibly smooth. This paper feels different to the touch and the way Copics and Prismacolor pencils take to it, it will be my permanent choice of paper.

The other papers all have a lot more "tooth" to them, or are rougher and not as tightly woven so the Copic ink gets pulled into the paper a lot more which means you are using more ink out of your pens. The Gina K 120# also has no bleed through on the back which all of the other papers do. The only thing one may not like about the Gina K paper that is different than the others listed is that the Copic colors are more muted with one layer colored in. Since the ink "floats" more on the top of the paper instead of sinking in you may need or want to add more to the parts of your image you wish to be brighter. That is the only negative I saw with this paper.

The Prismacolor pencils drag a lot more on the other papers and do not blend as seemlessly as on the Gina K. In most of my coloring now I am using a combination of Copics and Prismacolor pencils. I first color my entire image with my Copics and then for the areas I want deeper shadows or more depth I go back over the Copics with my pencils. Because the Gina K paper is so smooth the pencils have no issue being colored and blended over the Copics. If you have both mediums it is a great way to supplement your Copic colors for a lot less money.

The visual I did is a test of 3 things. The number 1 spot shows me holding Copic color R89 with the brush tip to the paper for a total of 3 seconds. This is to demonstrate how much ink is flowing out of the pen into the paper.

The second slot, (2) shows a small circle of Prismacolor pencil not blended with Gamsol or baby oil. I personally use baby oil.

The third slot, (3) shows the blended same size circle of Prismacolor pencil as in slot 2. I blended it with baby oil and a Ranger dry nib as far as I could get the pigment to go.

I also showed the backside of each sample and though the baby oil spot will disappear on all the papers after more time it is not there at all on the Gina K.

I hope this is informative and helpful. I did a lot of online reading about paper and Copics and was delighted when I discovered that the Gina K. paper works so beautifully for the Prismacolor pencils as well. The only place you can order the Gina K. paper is through Gina K. Here. I have seen many other stampers get amazing and beautiful results with the other papers I tried, so it really comes down to a matter of personal preference. If you have any thoughts or questions please let me know and I'll do my best to answer you! Thanks so much for stopping by and please leave me a comment letting me know if this was helpful. Happy coloring!


Brenda said...

Wow awesome tips!! I came over to congratulate you on being part of the DT on Kristina's new blog...I am soo excite to get to know you and work with you on the DT!

Chris Olsen, Glowbug said...

Wow!! Thanks for sharing! The Gina K paper has the least blotching on the back by far. Good to know!

Kristina said...

Thank you Leah, this was very helpful. I have just started using pencils and OMS so I don't know too much about it yet and I haven't even thought about buying Copics (one step at a time)
Your colored images are always gorgeous, so I think I'll take you advise.

aswann said...

Thank you for your helpful comparisons! I've been looking for Gina K paper and have only found it directly from her sight (http://shop.ginakdesigns.com/main.sc). Is this the only place I can purchase the Pure Luxury paper?

Belinda said...

Thanks for sharing!

Ms. Cheryl said...

I went to a copics class taught by a certified copic instructor this year. She said the Prism paper is the BEST. She also said the color is supposed to show through to the other side. She said the back side should be exactly as the front minus the outline. Also the best ink to use is Memento. You don't want the stamped ink to bleed when touched by the copic marker. Hope this helps. ms.cheryl

IamDerby said...

Very interesting. I have never tried Gina Ks paper. I usually use PTI with my copics. Rarely do I use my pencils anymore.

Mary said...

Thank you for the great comparisons! I will definitely try that paper next time I buy.

Also, congrats on your new DT position!

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