Canson Mix Media Imagine Review

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To create art you need a canvas, and that canvas can be anything. However, a lot of the time it will be some form of paper-stock. For years I’ve searched for the perfect canvas for myself. Canson Mix Media Imagine is great for graphite, light use of water-soluble mediums, and more.


Lauren Ruth Ward in Graphite, on Canson Mix Media Imagine
Lauren Ruth Ward in Graphite, on Canson Mix Media Imagine

Canson are a French company, founded in 1557 by Jacques Montgolfier.

While François de Guise is arming troops to recapture the kingdom of Naples from the Spanish, and at a time when tensions prevail between Catholics and Protestants, Ambert papermaker Jacques Montgolfier leaves his native Auvergne to settle in the Beaujolais area.
This marks the beginning of the geographical expansion of this family which, across several centuries, is to set up a large number of paper mills.

Canson Website

Their history is certainly long and extremely interesting:

Innovation is in the genes of the company.  The Montgolfier brothers invented the first hot-air balloon in 1782. But first and foremost, they were paper manufacturers. Over the centuries, the company created numerous manufacturing processes such as the Hollander beater to tear up rag, pulp dying to obtain uniform coloured paper, etc. They also innovated with vellum paper, then tracing paper in 1809. In 1865, Canson® obtained a patent for a photo paper which simplified printing operations.

Canson Website
Sir David Attenborough in Graphite, on Canson

There is something reassuring about a product whose history goes so far back. There is an unspoken understanding that if a company is producing for so long, they must know what they’re talking about. In the case of Canson, I genuinely believe that this is true.

Why is Canson Mix Media Imagine so Good?

Tiger Eyes on Canson Mix Media Imagine
Watercolour Pencils on Canson

There are many reasons that Canson Mix Media Imagine is so good. It feels amazing. The silky paper-stock comes in at 200gsm (120lbs), making is a wonderful medium for dry and wet mediums. Personally, I wouldn’t use it for wet mediums beyond water-soluble pencils or light washes. However, the company state that it is perfect for ‘pencil, pastel, charcoal, watercolour, gouache, ink and pen’.

Portrait on Canson Mix Media Imagine
Graphite and Watercolour Pencil on Canson

The white paper ensure vibrant colours. When using for graphite, blending is smooth. I’ve even tried oil pastels and the blending is pretty good.

The Inked Crafter approves Canson Mix Media Imagine Paper Pad.

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