Product Review: Cold Press vs Hot Press Watercolor Paper

July 2, 2014

Product Review: Cold Press vs Hot Press Watercolor Paper


Have you ever wondered what the difference was between cold press and hot press watercolor paper? Me too! Over the past 24 years, I have been painting on 140lb cold press watercolor paper. I recently did an interview with Pat Yuille (you can watch the interview with a membership to the Gather Dream Create Inner Circle) and she uses hot press watercolor paper. I love her art and the vibrant colors so I wanted to try it for myself.

In the video I paint an angel first on the cold press paper and then on the hot press paper. This was my first time using hot press paper. I discovered the cold press paper is textured while the hot press in very smooth. The cold press soaks up the paint like a sponge and the hot press slowly soaks up the paint allowing more time to move the paint around. I like both, but I may just have to make the switch to hot press for a while to really see which one I like best.

I also mention in the video that these paintings are very small, 6×6 to be exact. I didn’t like the texture of the cold press paper for the angel painting. I think partly because it was such a small painting. The angel painted on the hot press paper looked better because there was no texture and her skin was smooth; like an angel’s skin should be, right!?

Anyhoo, I hope you enjoy the video and I also hope it helps you to determine which paper will work best for you and your art. Happy Painting!

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Do you paint on cold press, hot press watercolor paper, or both??  Which do you prefer?

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