On Jake Parker’s site at mrjakeparker.com/tools, he lists the Epson R2000 Printer which he says:
“This is the best printer ever. I use it for making fine art prints that I sell at conventions. The color is stellar. It’s a work horse too. Any normal printer problems I’ve had with it were easily dealt with. I think every serious artist needs one. It’s also great for printing on smooth bristol or cardstock. I do my pencils in Photoshop, print them out, then ink over it. Win!”
I think that these are newer versions of that printer:
Epson Stylus Photo R2880 Wide-Format Color Inkjet Printer (C11CA16201)
Epson Stylus Pro 3880 Color Inkjet Printer (CA61201-VM)
Epson’s site shows a Stylus Pro 4900
Lee White says:
“I use the epson 4900 and it’s been amazing. It can print on board up to 1/4″ thick. It can print big and the color and resolution are amazing. Some people complain of print heads clogging up which is typically due to not using it enough. These printers need to run at least every other day, even if you just print something small to keep that from happening.”
Regarding paper for selling prints, Lee says:
“I use Epson bright white watercolor paper on roll for my prints that I sell. This is an amazing paper. Better than any other paper I have found.”
Of course, these printers aren’t exactly cheap… Also, they may be overkill if one only wants to print sketches onto watercolor paper and aren’t planning on using it for prints & such. I’m guessing that there are probably less expensive printers that will allow one to get started for something like that; though, 1/4″ thick… that’s nice!
I think there are a few things that one would need to look for in a printer for printing onto watercolor paper:
- Can it handle heavy paper? If it has a feeder, like the Epsons above, then it is likely to handle such.
- Can it handle the size of paper you are doing your watercolors at? If you just work at letter-size, then your options are wide, but if you work big, then you’ll have to go wide-format like the Epsons above; though, that only gets you up to maybe 13″ wide.
- Are the printed graphics water resistant? The Epson R2000 that Jake listed says that the inks are, I’m not sure about the other two, but I’m guessing they are too.
While I don’t have personal experience here since most all of my work has been digital for awhile, being able to print a light, refined sketch onto the paper being used would be so beneficial.
See more articles at QuietYell.com/Ramblings and see the work of Scott Monaco at QuietYell.com/Portfolio