Best Charcoal Papers

When it comes to art, the sky is the limit. You can have any medium that you wanted to use. This is a popular trend adopted by contemporary artists. Some mix traditional and conventional art supplies and medium with contemporary items in order to have their thoughts, feelings, and opinions across in the form of art. One of the common art medium used by a lot of artists is the charcoal paper. The textured surface of a charcoal paper is the best medium to use when you are using charcoal to sketch and draw. The textured charcoal paper is able to pull out a lot of your charcoal to its pages so you can create drawings and sketches the way you wanted it to. Even though the art of sketching using charcoal isn’t the most precise way of sketching, it has this amazing result that captivates the audience each time.

You can use your charcoal paper for your art studies or use it as a reference for a more detailed artwork that you have in mind. The use of charcoal can be messy. Since it’s a dusty mode of art presentation, you’d want to use a medium that’s able to present the strokes, highlights and dark tones beautifully and that’s where charcoal paper comes into place. There are a lot of good charcoal papers sold in the market. Some brands might be more notable than some, as you can see from this list. We have gathered a lot of popular and good quality charcoal paper that’ll help you achieve the sketch that you’re dying to make and the image that you wanted to capture.

Strathmore Medium Drawing Spiral Paper Pad 

When it comes to charcoal papers, and other art mediums and supplies, one of the most popular and highly trusted brand is the Strathmore. This is one of their products and it’s a highly recommended one when it comes to making sketches using charcoal. This pad has 24 sheets and each pad weighs about 80 pounds. It’s quite thick and durable which is ideal when you use charcoal for drawings and sketching. This is a perfect medium to use when you do some line drawings as well as for some technical artworks. The surface of the paper is finely uniformed and it also has a non-reflective finish which is ideal for charcoal. It can carry a lot of charcoal dust and lines.

You can use this for other modes of art too. Since the surface is well-textured, you can use your crayons, pens, and pencils here as well as for charcoal. You can even use paints here since the sheet is thick enough to hold paints. You can use this pad of charcoal paper for doodling, drawings or for your study. The price of this product is very affordable which gives a huge relief. When you’re hot and inspired, you can create a lot of sketches and the next thing you know you might have finished a whole pad. You can buy a lot of these charcoal paper pads and you won’t go broke but be perpetually fulfilled in portraying your art in each page.

Strathmore Charcoal Paper Pad

Strathmore 300 Series Charcoal Pad, White, 9"x12" Wire Bound, 32 Sheets

This is another Strathmore charcoal paper pad that we found in the market and it’s another highly rated one. Unlike the first product, this is quite larger. Each sheet of charcoal paper measures 9×12 inches and there are 32 sheets of charcoal paper in each pad. The price might be twice that of the first product on this list but it’s still a very affordable one. You can use this media for different art applications. You can use this for graphite sketching, color pencil drawings, charcoal as well as soft pastels. You can also use this for mixed media as well as your sketching stick. The surface of the charcoal paper is perfect for textured sketching.

Unlike other charcoal papers, this one has a traditional and natural white paper which is one of the ideal laid finish when it comes to charcoal and pastel drawings. Since the surface of this product’s papers is strong and hard, you can also use this for oil pastels as well as for crayons. The weight of each pad is relatively light compared to the first Strathmore product since this only weighs 64 pounds. But, it’s still thick enough to withstand a heavy charcoal painting as well as another medium. There are minute bumps in the surface of the charcoal paper so it can hold lots of charcoal bits. When it comes to erasures, you can do that in stages. You can have the maximum resolution for your sketches with this.

Strathmore Sheet Toned Gray Sketch Pad

Strathmore 400 Series Toned Gray Sketch Pad, 11"x14" Wire Bound, 24 Sheets

The next product on our list is another Strathmore charcoal paper. Unlike the other two products, though, this one has a gray tone to it. Some artists prefer to use color-toned charcoal papers when sketching. It gives your sketches more depth. This grey-tone charcoal paper gives you the liberty to use white chalks in order to do some highlights as well as give a darker side to your drawing without the added effort of putting more charcoal to it. The dark media makes it more dramatic when you add the light and dark media onto it. Each pad has 24 sheets of this grey-toned charcoal paper that you can use.

The good thing about Strathmore products is they’re acid-free. Your artwork won’t be altered even after years that’ll pass and no chemicals or changes in the environment can destroy your artwork. Each piece of charcoal paper is 100% recycled so you’re able to make your beautiful sketches while preserving the integrity of our planet. You can use this pad for your artistic studies as well as for some expressive art pieces that you want to make. When you use a darker paper for your sketches you can have a wider range of values. The price of this product is quite affordable which is great. A lot of artists love to use this product, you can check this out too if you’re interested.

US Art Supply Premium Heavy-Weight Charcoal Paper Pad

Here’s another amazing charcoal paper that we found in the market. A lot of artists recommend this too, and for a good reason. The price is quite inexpensive and the quality of the product is very good. This is a good-sized charcoal paper measuring 9×12 inches. You can expect that this is a premium product which is also a heavy-weight charcoal paper. Each sheet is quite thick. One sheet actually measures 90 pounds which are a great weight for a charcoal paper. With a neutral pH and acid-free finish, you can make your sketches and art pieces here knowing that this is a good quality charcoal paper.

The sheets are white and natural. You can make your own tone, from dark to light, the usual way. The paper itself is quite versatile. You can actually use different media here since this can hold even a heavy media such as paint. One of the best media that you can use is charcoal as well as pastel media. Each pad has 32 sheets inside it which is a great bargain indeed. The pages are high in quality and you can add as thick charcoal as you can without the danger of damaging the charcoal paper. You might be concerned that this product isn’t bound in a spring where you can easily rip it off. The packaging actually makes it easy to rip a page without destroying the whole pad.

Borden & Riley Pastel & Charcoal Paper

Borden & Riley Pastel & Charcoal Paper- Black 9x12 Pad

The last product on our list is another highly rated one. Many artists prefer to use this one too. It might have the same measurements as the other products, and the price might be similar to most products on this list, but the quality of this product is one of the best there is. You can use this pad of charcoal paper for you charcoal sketches as well as for your pastel masterpieces. The pages of this charcoal papers are actually black. When the background of your sketches and drawings is already dark, it makes the colors, your lines, and your tones stand out more. You can actually choose from a black or a grey-tone one.

Whatever suits your artistic needs you can choose which tone you wanted. You can even purchase different toned charcoal paper pads if you want to. The price of this product is quite affordable so you won’t have any trouble purchasing a lot of this. When you start to use this type of medium, you’ll definitely wish that you have more to make your sketches as well as drawings. You can check this product out and see whether it suits your artistic needs.


Your sketch will have more depth and drama if you use the best charcoal paper. There are grey-toned ones and there are darker ones that can make your sketch even more beautiful. The best charcoal paper will be able to hold as much of your charcoal as it can.

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