Hot Press Watercolor Paper

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Hot Press Watercolor Paper


Find the best assortment of hot press watercolor paper for any project at Blick! Our selection includes high-quality options for students, hobbyists, and professional artists in a range of formats, styles, and sizes, from pads and blocks to rolls, loose sheets, and beyond.


What is hot press watercolor paper?

Hot press watercolor paper is smooth, absorbent paper designed to accept water-based media, such as watercolor, gouache, and ink. The name "hot press" refers to the paper manufacturing process, in which heated rollers press the paper to create a smooth, even surface. Hot press watercolor comes in a variety of sizes and weights and can be made from wood pulp (cellulose), cotton, or a combination of materials. Designed for experienced artists and professionals, hot press artist grade watercolor papers are usually made from 100% cotton (rag) which is very durable and naturally acid-free.


Why do artists use hot press watercolor paper?

The smooth finish of the paper makes it ideal for fine detailed work, calligraphy, and multimedia techniques that combine painting and illustration. Hot press watercolor paper also allows for easy “lifting”, a technique in which media is partially or fully removed for visual effect or to correct mistakes.


What is the difference between hot press, cold press, and rough watercolor paper?

Watercolor paper is categorized according to its texture and finish. Rough and cold press watercolor paper has a bumpy, irregular surface texture, while hot press watercolor paper has a smooth finish. Generally, artists use hot press watercolor paper for highly detailed artwork or calligraphy, as it tends to render intricate detail better than cold or rough press papers. Hot press watercolor paper is typically less absorbent than cold press paper, which can make it harder to achieve the granulation effects that some painters prefer. Absorbency also depends on the paper’s weight, as heavier-weight papers hold up to multiple layers of water better than lighter-weight papers, which may need to be stretched. Ultimately, there is no right or wrong choice. The paper’s texture does not indicate its quality, and the best watercolor paper for you is the one that meets your needs.


Our wide assortment of cold press watercolor paper includes high-quality options for artists of every skill level. Shop cold press artist grade watercolor paper as well as cold press student grade watercolor paper in every size and format, including pads, blocks, rolls, journals, and more.