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Grounds for Silverpoint

Grounds for Silverpoint

Question from Ron, Drawing Academy student

Vladimir,

Are you aware that inkjet photo paper can take silverpoint? If not, give it a try and see what you think of the paper as a ground. I have been experimenting with silverpoint, and because inkjet paper is a prepared paper that had a fine tooth that acted as an abrasive I decided to try it and was pleasantly surprised. However, I feel perhaps the depth of tone may not be deep enough. Regardless of that, it may be a useful paper for soft rendering.

Best regards,
Ron

Answer from Vladimir London, Drawing Academy Tutor

Hi Ron,

Many thanks for your info.

Yes, I have tried to use various ready-made papers.

With inkjet, there’s a danger of your drawing fading out or even completely disappearing with time. That has happened to very stable gold-point. I would suggest doing some test sketches and place them under direct sunlight to see what happens over several weeks.

Another paper worth testing is one made of stone. Art supply stores have started selling such sketchbooks in various sizes. This paper feels like an egg film, which is the thin membrane under the hard shell. It is, in fact, ground stone powder mixed with resin binder. It’s great for sketches, but not so good for long drawings.
Also, as this material is very new, it has not been tested by time.

If you are looking for archival quality drawing surfaces, I would recommend traditional materials.

One support medium for silverpoint that I really like is gesso panels / tiles. They are very sturdy and allow for extensive rendering. The downside, however, is that such panels are heavy, thick, and expensive.

Best regards,
Vladimir

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