The best watercolour paper in May 2024

Three of the best watercolour papers on a blue background
(Image credit: Saunders / Arches / Yuyo / Future)

The best watercolour paper is crucial because it needs to hold up against wet media. For this, it needs to be hardy but also needs to allow the colour to shine brightly. Low-quality watercolour paper may be too thin and rumple under the water, with the colour pooling unevenly as a result.

Usually, you'll want heavyweight paper (around 300gsm/140lb), although speciality or student paper will often be lighter. While they're formulated for watercolours, the best watercolour paper can also be used for other techniques, especially water-based media like the best watercolour pencils

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Lancelot Richardson

Lancelot Richardson is an artist, painter, and freelance illustrator based in Brighton, UK. He tutors life drawing at independent art school Draw Brighton, and teaches in their online Patreon courses. He is also a freelance writer, producing articles on art and drawing. He works in both traditional and digital mediums.

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