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I am a beginner artist, and have been exploring the medium of soft pastel and the different surfaces for some time now. Not long ago i came across the Uart sanded pastel paper; once i experienced the higher quality of the paper i was no longer able to paint on the cheaper Canson Mi-Teintes. The latter only takes two or three layers of pastel and the texture is rough and it gives the painting an unfinished look. The Uart paper, on the other hand, takes on many many layers of pastel, and the texture is so smooth and it makes your drawing look fantastic.

My only problem with the Uart is, that the are sooo expensive! I looked for a cheaper line of sanded pastel paper, but alas there is nothing cheaper. The colourfix and Sennelier are all in the same range of 25-30$ for a pack of 10 sheets of 9x12 (which i think is very very expensive). Since i am only a beginner and still learning through trial and error i think it is a waste to spend so much money on such a small amount of paper. On the other hand if i don't practice i'll never get better, and practicing on the cheaper Canson Mi-teintes is really not a solution for me (since it is so different than sanded pastel paper).

So i'm looking here for any suggestions on how i could practice my pastel art without spending too much money on the paper (mainly sanded pastel paper).

Any suggestions will be appreciated.

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Perhaps you could make your own version by mixing up a ground that you could paint onto less expensive paper. I am pretty sure Golden makes things that you can mix into their acrylic mediums to add tooth to the surface. If you build up a thick enough base you could hand sand that surface to get the different grades that Uart provides.

It would be tricky to match the even consistency of Uart but rolling your own seems the most economical approach. It also lets you control the base color of your surface as you can pigment the ground you are applying.

  • Thank you very much. I just found that colourfix makes primers that increase the tooth of any surface. It is applied to the paper as an under-painting and it supposedly works very well with soft pastel. There is no need to hand sand or do any stuff like that. I'm going to get a bottle of 250 ML and try it. I hope it will last me long enough because one such bottle is 16-17 $ excluding shipping. In any case, they're definitely more economical than buying artist quality sandpaper. – Bach Sep 26 '17 at 13:55
  • For anyone that wants to check this out here i provided a link jerrysartarama.com/art-spectrum-colourfix-pastel-primer – Bach Sep 26 '17 at 13:59
  • Even cheaper option amazon.com/Golden-36405-Acrylic-Ground-Pastel/dp/B000HZGJJO/… – Bach Sep 26 '17 at 14:27
  • You can make your own pastel ground using a mixture of 2 parts acrylic gesso and one part water. Then add pumice powder for grit and some acrylic paint to add color. Just make sure to read some precautions to ensure you handle the pumice powder correctly. Makes pastel ground super cheap. – robhasacamera Jan 31 '18 at 3:58

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