How to Tear Watercolor Paper

In this lesson, you will learn how to quickly and neatly tear a large sheet of watercolor paper into smaller sizes, without needing a ruler, scissors or a knife.

Benefits of tearing down a larger sheet:

  • you can create paintings in many different sizes and formats.
  • tearing paper results in a lovely soft edge, similar to a deckle edge.
  • larger sheets may be less expensive than pre-cut small sheets, pads or blocks.

NOTE: Pre-cut sheets, pads or blocks ordered online are sometimes now less expensive than larger sheets ordered online (probably due to savings on shipping costs).

For this course, most project templates are sized for one-sixteenth (5.5 x 7.5″) of a full sheet (22×30″). You can substitute pre-cut 5×7″ or 6×9″ sheets, or any roughly similar size.

You will need:

a sheet of 140 lb watercolor paper
clean flat surface
a plastic jar lid approx 3-4 inches in diameter (or, if you happen to have a bone folder from other crafts, you can use that instead)