The ultimate guide to colouring paper

The quality of paper used to colour on can make a huge difference to your colouring. That’s why we’re bringing you the ultimate guide to paper for colouring! From quality to texture, learn everything you need to know about paper today.

How is paper made?

Paper is usually made from tree fibres. These fibres and mixed with water to create pulp. The pulp is spread and bonded together, then dried, and it becomes paper!

Since the creation of paper, we have established more efficient ways to make paper using papermaking machines, which allows us to make paper faster and in higher quantities.

There are lots of different types of paper, so it’s important to have an understanding of how this will impact your colouring.

What paper does Colouring Heaven use?

Colouring Heaven is printed on a paper called Amber Graphic, at 90gsm weight. This paper is excellent for colouring pencils, and is also suitable for watercolour pencils and pens and markers. We do recommend sliding a sheet or two of card beneath your design when using mediums other than colouring pencils, and being very careful with how much water is used for watercolour pencils.

We’re also proud to say that all of our paper is Carbon Balanced Paper, which supports the protection of forests under imminent threat of deforestation and degradation. In 2022, the equivalent of 274,317kg of carbon dioxide was balanced as a result of Anthem’s use of carbon balanced paper.

How to select paper for colouring

If you’re looking to print a downloaded design, there are a few things to think about when selecting a paper.

Tooth (the texture of the paper) will have a big effect on how your coloured pencils look. The texture of a paper allows the colour from your pencils to grab onto the surface of the paper and means you can build up lots of layers of colour on top of each other.

If you use a very smooth paper (with not much tooth), like printer paper or hot pressed watercolour paper, you’ll find that your coloured pencils look very light as the paper cannot grab onto the colour, you also won’t be able to layer colours.

The other side of the spectrum is a paper with lots of texture, like pastel paper, which can also throw up some issues. This paper may create a slightly patchy effect which may not be what you’re looking for, as the texture of the paper will show through. These papers will also use up your coloured pencils at a very high speed!

When it comes to using markers, using them on the wrong paper means that the colour will likely bleed through and feather, which can ruin your colouring! Bleedproof marker paper will be your saviour here. These papers will prevent bleeding, stop feathering so you can get smooth crisp lines and allow you to layer your markers. Some great markers papers are X-Press It blending card, the Copic Sketchbook and Strathmore Marker Pad.

If you are confused about what paper to choose for your markers then this tutorial is very helpful:

Finding a balance within this that works for you is important so you get the finish you’re looking for.

Want to use your own paper for colouring? Check out our new sister magazine Mindful Mandalas – available to buy as a digital download, for you to print and colour on your choice of paper!

Enjoyed this guide about paper for colouring? You’ll love our other how to colour guides about colouring pencils and markers.

Coloured a beautiful page and want to share it with your friends and family? Take a look at this article about how to photograph colouring pages.

Ready to download and print some colouring designs? Take a look at our free colouring pages!

Stay in touch

Follow us on Facebook and Instagram to keep up with everything in the Colouring Heaven world. Be sure to share your beautiful colouring with us over on our Friends of Colouring Heaven Facebook group and join our friendly, lovely community!

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