Blend Alcohol Markers with Ease on this Paper - Canson Illustration Bristol Review

canson bristol paper and car drawing of a ferrari 458 speciale aperta made with alcohol markers on canson bristol paper - canson bristol paper review

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Review of: Canson Illustration Bristol paper


A little towards the expensive side, but definitely worth is


Very smooth surface which is perfect for markers


Very thick and can hold a lot of ink


Really good

What I like

  • Holds lots of ink
  • Only bleeds a little through the paper when heavily layering with alcohol markers
  • Easy blending with alcohol markers

What I don't like

  • Only 20 sheets per pad

Summary: Canson Bristol paper is really good paper for using fineliners and alcohol markers. As it's very smooth you have a lot of control. You can also blend a lot better with marker and you don't need to rush to get the ink very even and not spotty and streaky as this paper is quite thick. But because it's thick you can't layer colors too well.

But nonetheless it's definitely an upgrade to thin marker paper.

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A few years back I read somewhere that it was way easier to blend alcohol markers on thicker paper as opposed to the thin marker paper I was using at the time. I decided I wanted to try Canson Bristol paper as that was the only other marker paper they had at the store where I always bought my art supplies. Drawing with alcohol markers was on this paper a lot easier and it became my go-to drawing paper for a long time.

My experience with the Canson Bristol paper

Ideal for alcohol markers and fineliners

The Canson Bristol paper is very, very smooth. It's the smoothest paper I've used. This makes it ideal for fineliners as you have a bit more control over it than on grainy paper where it bumps around a bit.

Canson Bristol paper also works really well with alcohol-based markers. As it's 250gsm, which is quite thick, you can more easily blend colors compared to thinner paper. And just like with fineliners the markers glide across the paper smoothly.

You can use colored pencils but it's not the best experience

Colored pencils, especially the harder oil-based Polychromos that I have, work better when the paper is slightly textured. When using only colored pencils though they will look very transparent and uneven and you can't build up any layers. But you can use colored pencils to add details or make the colors of your marker drawing more vibrant.

A good successor to cheap and thin marker paper

If you're using thin special marker paper at the moment I definitely recommend trying the Canson Bristol paper. When I first tried out this paper I noticed how much easier it was to blend markers on this paper, but also how easily you can color evenly. This is all because this paper is thicker. And you don't need to draw very quickly to get the color evenly without streaks or darker spots. This paper made my drawing process a lot more relaxed.

However there is one downside to this paper. As it's thicker you can't layer colors as well as on thin paper. The ink presses the ink that's already on the paper further into the paper making it less visible. But apart from that it's definitely an upgrade to your drawing process.


Overall score:





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