Whatever kind of drawing paper be used it should be kept dry, or the ink, however good it may be, will be apt to run and make a thick line that will not have the sharp, clean edges necessary to make lines look well.
Drawing paper is made in various qualities, kinds, and forms, as follows: The sizes and names of paper made in sheets are:
Cap, 13 × 16 inches.
Demy, 20 × 15 "
the thickness of the sheets increasing with their size. Some sheets of paper are hot pressed, to give a smoother surface, and thus enable cleaner-edged lines to be drawn.
For large drawings paper is made in rolls of various widths, but as rolled paper is troublesome to lay flat upon the drawing board, it is recommended to the learner to obtain the sheets, which may be laid sufficiently flat by means of broad headed pins, such as shown in Figure 13, which are called thumb tacks. These are forced through the paper into the board at each corner, as in Figure 14 at f. On account of the large diameter of the stems of these thumb tacks, which unduly pierce and damage the board, and on account also of their heads, by reason of their thickness, coming in the way of the square blade, it will be found preferable to use the smallest sizes of ordinary iron tacks, with flat heads, whose stems are much finer and heads much thinner than thumb tacks. The objection to ordinary tacks is that they are more difficult to remove, but they are, as stated, more desirable for use.
If the paper is nearly the full size of the board, it does not much matter as to its precise location on the board, but otherwise it is best to place it as near the left-hand edge of the board as convenient, as is shown in Figure 14.
The lower edge, D, Figure 15, of the paper, however, should not be placed too near the edge, A, of the board, because if the end P of the square back comes down below the edge of the board, it is more difficult to keep the square back true against the end of the board.
The paper must lie flat upon and close to the surface of the board, and a sufficient number of tacks must be used to effect this purpose.
Drawings that are to be intricate, or to contain a great many lines, as a drawing of an engine or of a machine, are best pasted or glued all around the edges of the paper, which should first be dampened; but as the learner will scarcely require to make such drawings until he is somewhat familiar with and well practised in the use of the instruments, this part of the subject need not be treated here.