Printing Muted or Subtle Colors On a Matte Paper That Really Stands Apart

Printing Muted or Subtle Colors On a Matte Paper That Really Stands Apart

As we've been discovering over the past few months, there are many options and choices when it's time to print your artwork. Today's paper is a rock star when it comes to unique yet subtle texture and really works wonders with your muted color palettes, so let's check it out.

Today, I'm looking at the Kozo 110 in the Moenkopi Washi line from Moab, and let me first say that this is a paper choice that really stands out. If you'll recall in a previous article, I covered another entry in the Moenkopi series, the Unryu 55, and was both impressed and drawn to its bold and stand-out texture. In many ways, the Kozo is similar yet also quite different which offers us yet another unique paper to consider for print work.

The Kozo is a matte paper, complete with a fresh look and feel that stems from being made of mulberry fibers (these papers genuinely have a pretty amazing feel to them when you run your fingers over the surface). One key difference between the Kozo and the Unryu is that the Unryu preserves the long-fiber look, which leads to a much more prominent and random textured pattern. The Kozo immediately made me think of old-school graphic novels or wall scrolls, as there is a beautiful, muted quality to this paper that's great if you're not needing your colors or blacks to appear particularly saturated and rich. The Kozo also has a bit of a grainy appearance to it, which is great if you're okay with a subtle “noise” appearance on the print.

As I've tried to stress in previous articles regarding prints and paper selection, if you let a paper become an extension of your work and take time to consider which may best reflect your creative style, the end result can be that much stronger because of it. Moab's Kozo 110 offers a stylish and stand-out form that plays well with the the muted color palettes that I tend to gravitate towards anyways, so it makes sense that my images would work pretty seamlessly on this one. Available in either sheets or rolls, it is worth noting that the Kozo isn't the most budget-friendly paper when compared to other options. The 13x19 size sheets come in boxes of 10 and run about $9.65 per sheet.

Overall, I'd say that the Kozo is a beautiful paper that, much like the Unryu, definitely stands out in a crowd. It's pretty impressive to see in the larger sizes, with the rolls going up to 44x49'. Both because of its higher price point and its mulberry fiber, I'd label this one anything but traditional. Have you folks heard of this one before or had the chance to give it a try? When it comes to other papers that we might call non-traditional, do you have any recommendations or personal favorites?

Evan Kane is a portrait photographer based near Seattle. He specializes in colorful location portraits with a bit of a fairy tale flair. Always looking to create something with emotion behind it, he fell backwards into photography in mid 2015 and has been pursuing this dream ever since. One if his mottos: "There is always more to learn."

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