Any regular visitor to Urban Sketchers or the Urban Sketchers Flickr pool will have seen the gorgeous linework of Lapin, which is often done on a surprising surface - old accounting ledgers. He uses this paper because he likes the surface - the paper is thin, but takes watercolor without buckling, ink without feathering, and you can use both sides since the paper doesn't bleed through. Having seen the paper in person, it's quite surprising; touching the pages, your hands don't want to believe what your eyes are seeing - that this thin, almost waxy paper is strong enough to hold lovely washes of color. Curiosity won out, and I had to order a vintage ledger from eBay. It arrived yesterday. I did a quick experiment to see if the paper was like Lapin's...
Do you see the crazy effect here? The lines on the ledger are water soluble!
Looking close at Lapin's work, I see the blue lines on the ledger sometimes blur a little - but mine sometimes melt away entirely. I guess that's good, since the lines are a bit darker than I would have liked.
Well, it'll be fun to experiment with this!