NARA paper is a synthetic paper created specifically with alcohol ink painting in mind. NARA paper is non-porous which means the ink sits on top of the paper making it easy to manipulate and worked with.
NARA Paper is manufactured by NARA Synthetic papers located in Maharashtra, India. The company ships the papers worldwide and even provides custom orders.
Available NARA Paper Colors
The white NARA paper is notorious for being able to wipe back to white. Only certain brands and colors will stain the NARA paper, making it a great solution for realistic art. Before NARA paper, achieving elements of white in alcohol link paintings required masking fluid or a masking tape to preserve areas that needed to be white.
Nara Black is a black synthetic paper designed specifically for alcohol ink painting. This black surface for alcohol ink painting has a slightly different texture than the usual white synthetic paper for alcohol ink painting. Because alcohol ink is a translucent medium, it is best to create paintings on the black paper using NARA’s pastel inks, their artic white and/or their metallic inks.
The NARA Classic white and Black Papers are available in a plethora of shapes and sizes ranging between 5” x 6” and going up to 30” x 40”
Currently available standard sizes (inches):
- 5” x 6”
- 12” x 9”
- 12” x 18”
- 11” x 14”
- 14” x 22”
- 18” x 24”
- 24” x 36”
- 6”, 8”, 10” diameter circles
- Custom sizes available upon request.
Videos with NARA Paper
There is so much I love about NARA paper. I tend to paint realistic artwork with more detail than most and NARA paper provides an excellent solution. The fact that it lifts to white is a huge advantage over some of the other options. The tooth of the paper both allows the ink to flow, while at the same time allowing me to strategically paint and have the ink stay in place once I have it to a suitable consistency. I also love that it can be ordered in virtually any size!
The overall pros to the medium are:
- Lifts to white
- Durable quality
- Available in multiple weights and sizes to fit most projects
The polypropylene (plastic-like) characteristic of the paper gives it a great shape memory, which is why synthetic papers have traditionally been used in packaging. So when you order the rolled NARA paper, it can be difficult to flatten for use in art. NARA recommends placing rolled paper flat with something heavy such as books to flatten the paper. I just order the flat sheets and rounds, since I’m inpatient and don’t like to wait!
Where to Buy NARA Paper
Other NARA Products
NARA recently launched their own brand of alcohol inks. These inks are available in 48 colors, which include six pastel colors, two metallics and a white Mixatives. The white can be mixed with any alcohol ink to create a pastel version of the color.
Another addition to the NARA line is the NARA shapes. NARA has a variety of shapes available on their website, but even better, you can order custom shapes! Shapes are not just simply cut-outs of NARA Paper. They are thick, durable, and strong shape that can be painted and used for dimensional alcohol ink projects. Watch the replay of a LIVE demo I provided recently using the NARA shapes.
In 2020, it was my pleasure to partner with NARA paper to deliver the first Alcohol Ink Art Journal! The journals are 9” x 12” with 20 pages, spiral bound and can be purchased at https://shop.alcoholink.community. The journals are a great solution to journaling with alcohol ink because most journals are made of porous papers which do not work well with alcohol ink.