Let’s explore two special pastel papers that I absolutely love for drawing: Pastelmat from Clairefontaine and Pastelcard from Sennelier.

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Pastelmat from Claiefontaine

This is my all-time favorite pastel paper! It’s high quality and really well made. When you draw on Pastelmat, you can add many layers. It feels soft and velvety, not rough. You don’t even need to use a spray to fix your drawing, which is great because sometimes that spray can make the colors look darker and you might lose some details.

The cool thing about Pastelmat is how it lets you build up layers. Imagine the paper has tiny valleys and hills. As you draw, you fill these up with color. When these valleys are filled up with pigment, the paper is saturated and you cannot draw more layers over it and your liens start to smear and smuge. With Pastelmat you can draw a lot of layers, before your paper is saturated. You can keep adding layers, mixing colors, and pushing the pastels into the paper. It’s amazing for creating lots of details, even with white over dark colors.

Pastelcard from Sennelier

I’ve used this paper for many years, especially for my animal portraits. It’s sandy, a bit like sandpaper, so it feels rougher than Pastelmat.

It’s also good for layers but creates more dust. When you blend colors, you might feel a bit of pain in your fingers because of the rough texture, so using gloves or a tissue can help. Some people think it’s hard to draw fine details on Pastelcard, but I’ve done it a lot, and it works well. Just use less pressure to draw fine lines. However, be careful with water around Pastelcard. If it gets wet, it can damage the paper and ruin your drawing.

My Advice



Always go for high-quality pastel paper like Pastelmat from Clairefontaine. It’s acid-free, lightfast, and doesn’t age quickly. Using a good paper like this can make your drawings look better and you’ll feel happier with your work.

Lastly, I’d love for you to join my free Animal Art Week workshop! We’ll be drawing a squirrel, a dog’s eye, and a butterfly. Click the link below to join!

I hope this information helps you pick the right pastel paper for your art projects. Enjoy drawing, and I can’t wait to see what you create!
Don’t forget to join me in the Free Animal Art Week
and the Animal Art Club for more fun drawing together! 🌈