Updated: Jun 8, 2021
What kind of paper to use for alcohol inks? What's the difference between synthetic paper and yupo paper? Which brand of paper to buy for alcohol ink art? This post will answer the above questions.
Alcohol inks can be used on a variety of surfaces but the best ones are those that are non-porous and do not absorb the inks. Several surfaces like glass, ceramic, metal, craft plastics, laminated board, photo papers, freezer papers, etc., can be used. But to make it convenient and practice the techniques, good quality art paper that can be framed or mounted and looks professional is what we all search for.
When alcohol inks started coming in the market there was just yupo paper. Yupo paper is a kind of synthetic paper with a very smooth surface and hence alcohol inks flow and spread perfectly on them. Many art products manufacturers have their own brands of yupo papers that come in various thicknesses. There are many techniques that work beautifully on yupo paper. But there was always a slight issue with yupo papers - they got stained with the inks so if your technique involves going over same areas again or reworking, you might face a problem as the stains of previous work will show through. And the second problem is that yupo papers are expensive. Although, both the above are now changing as brands are working on making them more friendly for alcohol ink art.
When more people started working with alcohol inks, the demand for a more suitable paper also increased. And that is when new companies launched different kinds of synthetic papers that were more specially designed for this medium. These papers are more wipeable and quite stain resistant, they come in several thicknesses and sizes, and they are more affordable. The papers I mention below are by Indian companies. Some of them ship internationally. I am sure there are similar kinds of synthetic papers available in your country as well. If you have used any such paper that I have not mentioned, do leave the brand names of those papers in the comment section of this article.
Synthetic paper available in many sizes and thicknesses (275,330,430 microns). Also available in Black (350 microns). Size customization is also possible.
Watch my complete review of Nara Papers in this YouTube video:
Beyond Inks Papers
Yupo Paper (150,300 microns), Synthetic Paper (330 microns), and Just Black Paper (400 microns). Sizes available are A5, A4, A3, 6”/12” diameter circles.
Watch my complete review of the various Beyond Inks Papers in this YouTube video:
Diy4u Alcohol Ink Papers
A newly launched synthetic paper in several sizes (275 and 430 microns). Size customization is possible. The paper works perfectly for all kinds of alcohol ink techniques and is very stain resistant.
Watch my complete review of the Diy4u Synthetic Art Paper in this YouTube video:
Craftangles Alcohol Ink Paper
A newly launched synthetic paper available in 5x7 size.
Watch my complete review of the Craftangles Alcohol Ink Paper in this YouTube video:
Brustro Alcohol Ink Paper
300 micron paper (similar to yupo paper) available in A5, A4 and A3 sizes. (Review coming soon)
Personally, I like to try several types of papers because inks behave differently on different papers. All these papers are of extremely good quality and you can definitely test them out based on what you prefer and what is easily available. Do leave the names of other papers that work well for alcohol ink art in the comments section.