Profile PictureMatt Laskowski

Real Papers: Surface Textures for Digital Artists

Matt Laskowski
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Real Papers is a unique texture pack of real photographed (not scanned) paper stocks capturing their unique surface details for use by digital artists to give their artworks a natural media appearance, with an emphasis on being ready-to-use by not affecting the brightness or contrast of your art when applied. If you've ever gotten annoyed at the quality of stock textures you find on Google Images or pinterest, look no further, this is for you.

Tonally Neutral: 

Each paper stock has been carefully photographed and processed to be as tonally FLAT and NEUTRAL as possible. That means that the average tone of the entire paper sample has been made to appear as close to 50% gray as possible edge-to-edge, that way when the texture is placed over your art and "Light Linear" or "Overlay" blending mode is selected, the brightness and contrast of your art will not change. Instead, you'll see only the surface texture of the paper enhancing your work. Just remember to adjust the opacity to taste -- 100% will be too strong for most textures in this pack!

32-42 Megapixel Resolutions, Quality:

Photographed using high-end camera gear and processed from RAW source files, the samples range in resolution between 32 to 42 megapixels and are chock full of unique detail and character. (Appx 6500x4800 to 7950x5300 pixels.) And with lossless TIFF files to work with, you won't have any compression artifacts if using enlarged scaling.

Consistent Scale, Authentic Texture:

Using a flatbed scanner captures more of the translucent pulp of paper as opposed to getting the dimensional texture of its surface by using a camera. Since each sample was photographed at the same distance away and lighting conditions, the scale of the texture of each paper type consistent to each other to help maintain authenticity of each sample's character, and swapping textures is easy without having to do any filter adjustments to get them to look right.

Here's a comparison of each paper included in this pack:

Stock artwork sample, as-is cropped

(100% scale samples pictured above. Percentages are recommended opacity.)

Note: Two different full-size samples of the Moab Entrada Rag is included. 

How do Real Papers compare to finding some random sample from Google Images? Well let's have a look:


To be able to use these paper textures as intended, all you need is an image editing program that supports layers and "Light Linear" (preferred), or "Overlay" blending modes. (Photoshop, Clip Studio Paint, Procreate all support this.)

How To Use:

A detailed guide is included in the download, but it's very simple! Copy/Paste or Drag/Drop your desired texture on top of your artwork and set it to Light Linear or Overlay. (Light Linear if you want the texture to be visible against white and black, Overlay if you want white and black to be textureless.) Resize as desired and reduce opacity to 30% or lower to taste.


Do these textures seamlessly tile?
No. Though they are quite high resolution and pretty flat tonally, so if you need a larger sample you should be able to paste multiple of the same one together and blend with some erasing to hide the seams. Just make sure your texture is one flattened layer and not multiple blending down together!

Usage rights?

Royalty free!

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11 High resolution Ready-To-Use overlay paper samples in lossless TIFF format, and instruction guide.

260 MB


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Real Papers: Surface Textures for Digital Artists

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