Copics were not something I had planned to get involved with, then I found Some Odd Girl and started to color. I had colored pencils (they were a hand me down) and worked with those…until I was frustrated with my inability to color anything approximating skin tone.
My Copic journey began with the skin tone set. Then I needed paper…a Hammermill paper was suggested and was not inordinately expensive so I purchased a ream. I colored with this and was generally happy with it. THEN, someone purchased me Express-It paper. So much better! I didn’t have to work to blend, it just magically happened.
My Express-It paper is running out. So, I was looking at purchasing 1/2 a ream for around $40. Having been a purchasing manager (among other things in a past life) this just seemed like a lot of money with very little investigation. I decided to purchase the selection of papers for Copics from Paper Temptress and test, compare, and investigate.
The papers arrived and were clearly marked. One of my concerns was that I might not be able to tell what was what. She also included samples of others sort of papers…much appreciated.
The first thing I noticed was that the Express-It was so much darker and grayer than the other options.
And I fell in love with the Cryogen…it is sparkley! But, it is kind of yellowish in comparison.
The other papers are basically two different papers in different weights.
I didn’t like the Heavenly White at all. The ink seems to sit on top of the paper. It didn’t make blending easy in anyway.
The Neenah Solar #110 was clearly my favorite. But, the #80 was a close second. I spent some time testing each. This testing pic is the top right. I *LOVE* the #110 from a coloring perspective it is the winner for me. When I looked at availability and price, the #80 is the one that I will be coloring on. It isn’t my TOP preferred, but it is exceptional and has the right value for me.
What did I look for in a paper for Copics? When I began testing I wasn’t even clear on this. At the end of the testing, I was looking at:
- Do I want to put this color paper on a card or project?
- Is this paper thick enough to stay flat if I use popups? Neenah #110 is clearly the winner here!
- What do the colors look like on this paper? The colors on the Neenah Solar are brighter than on the other papers.
- How much does it help me blend? This is the primary thing I was looking for.
- What is the cost per sheet?
- What is the online availability? My preference is Amazon Prime.
How did I test?
- I found a stamp that was easy to color the face and had other options for easy coloring.
- I inked the stamp with Memento black, and stamped on each type of paper. I didn’t wait for it to dry.
- I colored all the first set in under 15 minutes. I wanted to color fast and not work to blend and make it all perfect. I tried to color each one similarly, it terms of colors, strokes, blending, and time.
- I went back and did some more coloring on my favorites.